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Education International enters its third decade

On Jan. 26, Education International will celebrate its 20th anniversary. Founded at a special Congress in Stockholm, EI unified the two largest international teachers and education workers organizations—the World Confederation of Organizations of the Teaching Profession and the International Federation of Free Teachers' Unions—when delegates representing 210 organizations with 18 million members agreed to unite. The AFT is a founding member of EI and its second largest affiliate.

Today, EI represents more than 390 organizations with nearly 30 million members in over 175 countries and territories. AFT president Randi Weingarten is a member of EI's executive board and chairs its teacher quality committee. In addition, the AFT has partnered with EI in areas of mutual interest, including the website Share My Lesson, global teacher migration and the privatization of public schools around the world.

Through the organization's advocacy work on providing high-quality education for all, and its emphasis on the crucial role of education professionals in achieving this goal, EI has succeeded in making this a top priority in the international community.

After 20 years, Education International has much to celebrate, but must not be complacent, said EI president Susan Hopgood and general secretary Fred van Leeuwen in a joint statement commemorating the anniversary. "Today, we are confronted by many social and economic developments which threaten the provision and quality of education in many countries. With the continued commitment and solidarity of [Education International's] member organizations, and the dedication of its leaders and staff, it will be an effective advocate for education and education workers long into the future." [Roger Glass]

January 25, 2013