According to the World Bank, Latin America is going through the largest educational crisis in its history due to the Covid-19 pandemic, before which students from all Latin American countries dropped out of school. It is estimated that school dropouts in the region may reach 15 percent, having as main causes: economic factors, school closings and the digital divide that exists in most Latin American countries.

According to UNICEF estimates, the total or partial closure of schools in Latin America and the Caribbean currently leaves 114 million students without face-to-face schooling, which is why BIC considers that the greatest challenge in this area is to promote children and young people not to abandon their studies and offer the best tools to contribute to their development.

Given the above scenario, BIC promotes positive actions to ensure that girls and boys have greater opportunities, therefore, every year it holds its World Education Week (Global Education Week) within which, as of 2020, it launched its first edition of the BIC Cristal Award, recognition of teachers for their great work and commitment and fundamental pillars for the educational development of children and young people.

The award is for BIC employees worldwide to nominate exceptional educators who have managed to improve learning and teaching conditions in their communities. Through an internal jury, 10 winners are selected who will be recognized with financial support of 5,000 euros (more than 100,000 Mexican pesos) for their school or organization, a product donation and the great recognition of the BIC Cristal Award.

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According to the firm, since the pandemic the teachers demonstrated that there are no obstacles to continue with education, increasing their efforts and implementing new teaching strategies during this last school year. In order to understand these new challenges and needs, BIC conducted a survey of Mexican teachers, parents and students, which revealed that one of the main challenges in distance education for teachers has been to maintain order and control of their groups, due to the external distractors and the lack of concentration that the students have presented, as well as the adequacy of the teaching materials in this modality, reason why BIC decided to continue with its initiative and hold the Second Edition of the BIC Cristal Award .

With more than 200 nominations worldwide, Latin America had 19 outstanding professors in Mexico, Brazil, Ecuador and Argentina. By means of a panel of experts, a total of 10 professors were selected. On this occasion, the winners from the region were professors Hernán N. from Buenos Aires, Argentina and Carmen Lucia Gonçalves da Silva from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Education is part of BIC’s DNA and they will continue to promote support for children and young people so that they can always have the best tools for their development. The BIC Cristal Award initiative has provided the opportunity for team members to celebrate exceptional teachers and support them in the fulfillment of their projects for the benefit of their localities. This year’s winners exemplify the company’s values ​​and share the vision and importance of continuing to write the future through supporting education.

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For next year BIC wants to continue encouraging more teachers to continue with their efforts and goals in education; may the nominations grow, and may the BIC Cristal Award continue to allow access to education throughout the world.

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