Turkish teacher Nurten Akkuş shortlisted for $1 million Global Teacher Prize
Nurten Akkuş, a pre-school teacher and principal at the Ayvacık Pre-School in the northern province of Samsun, has been named as a finalist for the Varkey Foundation Global Teacher Prize 2018, philanthropist and co-founder of Microsoft Bill Gates has announced.
“Finalists were selected based on a rigorous set of criteria, including their proven effectiveness in inspiring students and helping them learn. Just as important, these teachers are leaders who have innovated in the classroom and mentored their colleagues,” Gates said in a video message published on the foundation’s website on Feb. 13.
Akkuş is one of 10 finalists selected from over 30,000 nominations and applications from 173 countries around the world.
The winner, who will be paid the prize money $1 million in equal installments over 10 years, will be announced at the Global Education and Skills Forum in Dubai on March 18.
Akkuş has pioneered projects that have been adopted around the world, including her “Daddy Tell Me a Story” campaign to increase the participation of fathers in pre-school education. Her acclaimed work also includes a “toy fellowship project,” mobilizing volunteers to gather toys for distribution to young children in disadvantaged regions, a pre-school sports service, and Turkey’s first “multi-intelligence game hall” where different groups of children are combined to share interests and abilities.
The other finalists include teachers from Australia, Brazil, Belgium, Colombia, Norway, Philippines, South Africa, the U.K., and the U.S.