- Organized by Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government under the Patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum
- Workshop reviews high-performing jurisdictions, presents Cambridge approach to change management
Dubai-UAE: 13 March, 2017: Education experts from Cambridge University explored global best practices and presented a methodology for effective stakeholder engagement in the field of education in a workshop on the first day of the UAE Public Policy Forum 2017.
Titled ‘Capacity-building Approach to Education System Improvement', the interactive session was a key item on the agenda of the event, organized by the Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government (MBRSG). Under the theme ‘The Future Directions of Education Policy', this year's edition of the Forum runs from March 12 to 13 at Dubai World Trade Centre's Sheikh Maktoum Hall.
Chaired by Roderic Gillespie, Director of Assessment for Cambridge International Examinations at the University of Cambridge, the workshop gathered a group of international educators, policy makers and other stakeholders for an engaging exchange of experience and a challenging group exercise.
Gillespie opened the session with an overview of the Cambridge approach to education development and system-wide reform projects in countries around the world, drawing on the examples of countries such as Finland, Singapore and the UK.
He said: “High-performing education jurisdictions benefit from a solid ecosystem that is coherent, and therefore can be advanced. However, education reform cannot simply be imported or exported without considering varying aspects of the local education system and practical implications of the potential replication. The key to success is a proactive approach to stakeholder engagement, based on a comprehensive strategy to partner with various groups in the education improvement process.”
Referencing current academic research, data from international studies, and Cambridge's experience, Gillespie and his colleagues also overviewed the components, change models and data that can help implement effective education solutions. Furthermore, they presented a method-based approach to education reform and change management.
In the presentation, Gillespie drew on his academic expertise as well as his previous experience with the Scottish Qualification Authority (SQA), where he headed Scotland's national assessment reform.
After the talk, the participants were divided to groups and encouraged to apply the presented methodology to a practical exercise on stakeholder analysis, fueling discussions on the role of various stakeholder groups, ranging from parents to media, in the education process. In particular, social media was highlighted as an emerging medium for more effective stakeholder involvement.
The session was one of the three workshops hosted at the UAE Public Policy Forum, applying the experiential learning model to enhance the attendees' experience that they can channel back to their fields of work.
Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council, the two-day forum features panel discussions among leading local and international education experts as well as top decision makers in the field. The event discusses challenges and opportunities for education policies in the UAE.
Participants include His Excellency Hussain bin Ibrahim Al Hammadi, Minister of Education, Her Excellency Jameela bint Salem Al Muhairi, Minister of State for Public Education, His Excellency Dr Ahmad bin Abdullah Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Higher Education, Dr Essa Al Bastaki, President of University of Dubai, Dr David Johnson, Education Policy Specialist at Oxford University, Professor M Ramesh, UNESCO Chair on Social Policy Design in Asia, Dino Varkey, Managing Director of GEMS Education, and Frode Mauring, Resident Representative of UNDP.
The UAE Public Policy Forum has partnered with numerous organizations, including UAE Ministry of Education, GEMS Education, Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Distinguished Academic Performance and United Nations Development Programme, to develop the framework of public education policies.
Those wishing to attend the Forum can still register at the event's website.