The opening ceremony of the UNESCO Chair on Teachers as Lifelong Learners at Farhangian University (FU) 6 September 2015

The opening ceremony of the UNESCO Chair on "Teachers as Lifelong Learners” was held with the speech of Prof. Dr. Mehrmohammadi, acting president of FU, Dr. Nasiri Gheidari , head of the National Commission for UNESCO in Iran, Dr. Navid Adham , Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Education, in administrative building of FU. It is noteworthy that after the opening of the first session of the UNESCO Chair at FU, the concept of "Teachers as Lifelong Learners" was explained by Prof. Dr. Mehrmohammadi, and a group of experts in the panel provided for technical discussion on the issue. Dr. Eimani and Mr. Soltani (experienced and professional teachers) were also two other participants of the panel who gave practical first hand experiences and suggestions for teachers on how to be lifelong learners. 

At the opening ceremony, Prof. Dr. Mehrmohammadi welcomed participants and the audience and said that “Education is not an introduction to any end; but it is the end in itself ". To define the stated phrase, he said this indicates that there is no limit for any level of education and you cannot ascribe any possible counted level to it as any obtained level preludes to rank higher levels and would be a basic foundation for progress. He said for a teacher to achieve professional development and growth, there is no extremes and he should strive for permanent and continuous scanning to occur in this regard. Prof. Dr. Mehermohammadi, Chair Holder, pointed to the title of the Chair and its associated concepts and said that: Being in the orbit of learning requires teachers to teach, and no one can know his teaching before he is a learner and a teacher can teach well to the extent that he is a good learner. He stressed that FU as the main teacher-training institutions in the Islamic Republic of Iran has been an honor and a privilege to be successful in the early years of its establishment that won the UNESCO Chair and the license of the World UNESCO. He said: Teachers need to compensate the arrears of teachers' discourse in the country, and this is an excellent opportunity. 

Prof. Dr. Mehrmohammadi said that: To remove mismatches and to compensate the arrears of teachers' discourse we are not satisfied only with the help of UNESCO, although we have attached to it. Beside UNESCO and its efforts for improvement, other possibilities must also be involved and we have already taken steps in this regard and additional measures within the framework of the strategic plan (such as the establishment of Teacher Training Institute, Establishment of the Department of Islamic Education and Activities) have been among our main activities that together they can help teachers' discourse. Prof. Dr. Mehrmohammadi also stated that Farhangian University as a Teacher University which has the important mission of striving to make this dialogue will help to produce, publish, and disseminate the required teachers' knowledge, and in this regard, the UNESCO Chair can be a vehicle to accelerate the efforts. Prof. Mehrmohammadi, said that we have accepted the global and international responsibility of the Chair and at the same time realized our duty for action. He continued: Through the establishment of the UNESCO Chair in Farhangian University we are on the international stage and we committed explicitly in the global arena and international activities and this is a good opportunity which must be appreciated and valued. He said that: UESCO Chair do not play roles only by relying on domestic resources of knowledge management and it acts at global level. We hope to cooperate with the associated countries in the field of teacher training that are superior in the theoretical knowledge. He added: We hope to take advantage of knowledge and expertise, knowledge management work at global level and in the international arena in the field of teacher education with a focus on the issue of lifelong learning as a feature to organize our teachers. Referring to the 625 UNESCO Chairs at the global level and 9 Chairs in Iran he said: One of the concerns in Iran and elsewhere in other countries is their inactivity. He expressed hope that the program anticipated for the Chair in the Institute of research for Teacher Training, in cooperation with international logistics in university management, the Strategic Council of the university, and the knowledgeable members of the Council, synergically will assist the Chair on “ Teachers as Lifelong Learners” to be among active and effective Chairs.

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