Sub-Regional Colloquium: Teaching in a World with AIDS

29 Nov 2004 to 1 Dec 2004

UNESCO Harare Cluster Office in conjunction with the UNESCO Division of Teacher Education and Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA) conducted a Sub-Regional Colloquium with the theme "Teaching in a World with AIDS", held from 29 November to 1 December 2004 at the Meikles Hotel in Harare, Zimbabwe.

The aim of the meeting was:

  • To introduce and discuss the global initiative “Towards an AIDS-free Generation” and the need for a coordinated national response.
  • To discuss with key Ministry Officials and other stakeholders the main issues.
  • Relating to the new role and management of teachers and related education policies in the face of HIV/AIDS.
  • To discuss with Ministry officials on the factors that impede their Ministries from tackling the issues affecting teachers.
  • Identifying and sharing best practices on the main issues.
  • To agree on what constitutes a comprehensive response towards teachers and HIV/AIDS.

56 delegates mainly from Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe participated in this meeting. Delegates were from Ministries of Education, Teacher’s Unions, National AIDS Councils, UN agencies, International NGO’s, a group of Zimbabwean teachers that are openly living with HIV and resource people from different parts of Africa and Europe.

The ADEA ad hoc WG on HIV/AIDS facilitated the participation of the delegates representing ministries of education and of two ADEA WGs (WG Teaching Profession and Higher Education). It also supported the participation of teachers living with HIV/AIDS in the colloquium.

The meeting was officially opened by the Honourable Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education in Zimbabwe Dr. Herbert Murerwa who noted that:

  • The pandemic witnesses a growing feminization and the need to address gender inequalities become apparent,
  • prevention currently falls well short of its aim and that youth are insufficiently involved in prevention programmes,
  • ARV programmes can be provided in resource-poor settings but that out-migration of health professionals should be reversed,
  • Stigma and openness remains a massive barrier in the fight against HIV and AIDS.

Countries present noted the following cross cutting priority areas which include:

  • Need to increase and improve monitoring and evaluation mechanism and skills.
  • Need to review teacher education-curricular to integrate HIV&AIDS and enhance pedagogical competencies.
  • Further promotion of gender and girl child rights issues in the education sector.
  • Need to bridge the gap between the school and community.
  • Need for ART and treatment education.

At the end of the colloquium, participants agreed that UNESCO and its partner institutions should provide technical support in the development of a joint cluster proposal. UNESCO was tasked with assisting countries raise funds to address identified needs.