Malaysian special education teacher in running for Global Teacher Prize 2023

Picture from The New Straits Times

Malaysian special education teacher in running for Global Teacher Prize 2023

BY: Patrick Beech

A special education teacher from Sekolah Kebangsaan Klang has been shortlisted as among the top 50 teachers in the Varkey Foundation Global Teacher Prize 2023 which offers a prize of USD1 million. 

Wan Muadzam Wan Abidin was selected from a list of over 7,000 nominations from 130 countries in recognition of his work with visually impaired children at his school. 

The Global Teacher Prize 2023 is organised in collaboration with Unesco and Dubai Cares, a UAE-based global philanthropic organisation. 

Wan Muadzam showcased his various innovations and advocated for his students via social media platforms, in order to dispel societal myths about them. 

His work even attracted the Education Ministry's attention in 2011 when he took three of his blind students to the peak of the highest mountain in Southeast Asia. 

Among his achievements is the use of and development of assistive tools including the Caballus Rafvi, a running aid in the form of a foldable wheeled trolley made from PVC pipes and joint connectors. 

This allows his visually impaired students to participate in athletics on their own without assistance. 

He also invented the Braille Al-Quran reader which enabled his students to win various Al-Quran reading and Hafazan Al-Quran competitions up to the national level. 

Dubai Cares chief executive officer and vice-chairman Dr Tariq Al Gurg, in congratulating the top 50 teachers, said teachers are the driving force behind progress, inspiring and shaping the leaders and innovators of tomorrow. 

Varkey Foundation founder, Sunny Varkey also extended his congratulations to the sole Malaysian standing in the 'race' for the USD 1 million Global Teachers Prize 2023 this November.