World Teachers' Day
Students cross their arms to demonstrate they are listening carefully to their teacher at Al Hakim El Kassar Primary School in Tunis, Tunisia, September 16, 2015Reuters

The World Teachers' Day slogan for 2015 is "Empowering teachers, building sustainable societies", and this day is observed to celebrate all the efforts and sacrifices the teachers have made towards building sustainable societies.

In most countries around the world, Teachers' Day kicks off with students presenting their beloved teachers with gifts as tokens of appreciation.

In Thailand, for instance, teachers' day is a school holiday, but schools across the United States of America celebrate this day with a lot of pomp and gaiety. In Ukraine, activities include concerts and public speeches where contribution of teachers is celebrated.

Here are some quotes from famous personalities that elaborate the importance of teachers in shaping cultured societies:

The task of the excellent teacher is to stimulate "apparently ordinary" people to unusual effort. The tough problem is not in identifying winners: it is in making winners out of ordinary people. -- K. Patricia Cross, a scholar of educational research

The future of the world is in my classroom today, a future with the potential for good or bad... Several future presidents are learning from me today; so are the great writers of the next decades, and so are all the so-called ordinary people who will make the decisions in a democracy. I must never forget these same young people could be the thieves and murderers of the future. Only a teacher? Thank God I have a calling to the greatest profession of all! I must be vigilant every day, lest I lose one fragile opportunity to improve tomorrow." -- Ivan Welton Fitzwater, educator

The teacher who is indeed wise does not bid you to enter the house of his wisdom but rather leads you to the threshold of your mind." -- Khalil Gibran, Poet

The aim of education should be to teach us rather how to think, than what to think — rather to improve our minds, so as to enable us to think for ourselves, than to load the memory with thoughts of other men." -- Bill Beattie, Politician

There is an old saying that the course of civilization is a race between catastrophe and education. In a democracy such as ours, we must make sure that education wins the race." -- John F. Kennedy, 35th President of the United States

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