“We are gathered here today, for the twenty-first time, to reward and recognize ten of our country’s teachers, who represent many thousands of educators, who not only have pride and certainty in their choice of profession, but believe that education is not only a right, but the only way to build a better country.
I would like to express enormous gratitude that I am able to be here, representing my 30 co-selectors, and all ten of you teachers, great educators with years or decades of work and investment in the classroom, who have shown us that education is the great mainstay of the process to transform society.
You ten teachers, you didn’t just dream, but built your professional successes, invested in your continuing and constant education, established exchanges and partnerships with other professionals, and above all else assumed the role of the educator who teaches and also learns. And in doing so, you helped build a comprehensive framework for the profession.
It didn’t just require faith and hope, but discipline, resilience, study, audacity, and courage to accomplish what needed to be done: educate all children and young people who believe that school is a place of opportunity, the place to find oneself, and to better oneself.
You, through your work, have shown that all children and young people, regardless of color, gender, race, class, location, more or less favorable structural conditions, or level of knowledge, must have the right to a quality education. That a good teacher is one who can make knowledge accessible and understandable to whoever is listening.
You show us how to surprise even ourselves, and to supersede doubt in a society where the value and importance of education is something only spoken of, where it is not yet state policy, subject as it is to economic and political crises and conflicts; you show us that it is possible.
You are here, representing so many millions of educators who have turned adversity into knowledge, and made this country’s education system function.
Each of the ten of you bring and awaken the realization of a dream in us: to have school, not only as an obligation, but as a space of learning, of transformation, of social, emotional and intellectual achievement.
On behalf of all of us here, I thank all ten of you for strengthening and recharging our energy and willpower to keep on believing and working to recognize what good have we achieved, and for the transformation of what we still need to invest in and build.
The work that you all have done reveals something so precious, valuable and necessary, not only for education, but for the world, especially in such troubling and difficult times: respect for diversity. You, through your work, which we will have the honor of getting to know a little bit more about today, prove that people are equal in their humanity.
Ten projects that demonstrate the value of tolerance, the ability to understand and respect others who are different from us and from the strict standards that we often establish for ourselves.
The contemporary world is built on pluralism and diversity. There are many races, religions, and ideologies. You have to choose your own values and live in harmony with the choices of others.
Your work shows us that knowledge seen as absolute truth, or treated as unquestionable dogma, has no value or meaning, because it does not make us better people. You didn’t allow the rattling of other voices drown out the whisper of your inner self. You didn’t let fear and insecurity dictate the course of your professional lives. You were strong enough to believe in the right to an education that transforms lives, in equality, the power of words and knowledge.
Today we celebrate the success of education in our country, through the work you have accomplished and carry out on a daily basis with your students.”
Excerpt from the speech given by the Pedagogical Coordinator of the 2018 Educador Nota 10 Prize, Luciana Hubner.