The director of a public high school in Buenos Aires, Silvana Corso, has been chosen among 50 finalists in the running for the Global Teacher Prize. The award is considered the “Nobel Prize in Education” for the best teacher in the world and rewards the winning teacher with a whopping $1 million prize money.
Corso’s school in the neighborhood of Villa Real, is home to more than 500 students, mostly adolescents from the marginalize Fuerte Apache neighborhood and children with severe problems such as cerebral palsy, hydrocephalus, spina bifida and schizophrenia. This area of education is dear to her as she lost her own daughter to severe cerebral palsy at the age of 9 in 2009.
Corso joins the other 49 teachers who are from 37 different countries in total, selected from among 20 thousand teachers nominated in 179 countries worldwide.
This comes as the third edition of the Global Teacher Prize, an initiative started by the non-profit organization: The Varkey Foundation. Founded by India-born billionaire Sunny Varkey, an entrepreneur renowned in the education sector for his GEMS chain of private schools, it aims to guarantee quality education for children in vulnerable margins of society.
“By 2030, 30 million teachers will be needed around the world, where will they go if the profession has been devalued and no one wants to become a teacher? The award aims prevent that from happening,” said Varkey Foundation CEO Vikas Pota last year.
Corso states that should she win, the first thing she’ll do is improve conditions in her school; hoping to open a daycare center at the school and financing trips to train other teachers.
This isn’t the first time that an Argentine has been in the running for the prize; with Argentinean teachers Inés Bulacio and Gracia Goicoechea reaching the final. The most recent award went to Israeli teacher Hanan Hroub.
The new winner will be announced in Dubai in March 2017 when a new edition of the Global Education and Skills Forum (GESF) will be held, also organized by the Varkey Foundation.