Even if we are still unable to hold our traditional international seminar in Bologna in the superb San Domenico hall, we have decided not to let another February pass without meeting you all again. We can’t surrender to the coronavirus! So we have thought of an online meeting, in which sharing some of the most significant international education experiences through the pandemic, with a glance to the new normal and beyond.
Why the title “Rebirth of Education”
We share a rather optimistic view of education in a post-pandemic world, or at least we try to.
School systems around the world were stagnant before Covid-19 and had been for some time.
In his 2018 book, World class, Andreas Schleicher drew the following conclusion: “Over the past decade there has been virtually no improvement in the learning outcomes of students in the Western World, even though expenditure on schooling rose by almost 20% during this period” (Schleicher 2018, p. 13).
Other studies reveal that anxiety and stress have been steadily increasing over the past decade and there have been higher and higher suicide rates among young people. All this happens in a complex world where humanity faces existential threats and global transformations such as climate change, mass migration, intolerance and violent extremism.
Covid-19 has only exposed and exacerbated what was wrong with the system, but has also provided opportunities to make changes . It is time for the old “grammar of schooling” to be disrupted by unprecedented advances in science and technology, such as artificial intelligence and neuroscience.
Change will happen. We just do not know what it will look like. We have on our hands “the battle of the decade” with respect to public education systems, as Michael Fullan has written.
And we want to fight this battle for the “Rebirth of Education after the Pandemic”, as the title of this seminar states.
The two sessions
The international online seminar is divided into two sessions of three hours each :
1^ Friday, February 26th from 3 to 6 pm (Italy time UTC/GMT +1)
2^ Saturday, February 27th from 9 to 12 am (Italy time UTC/GMT +1)
1st Session: Education during Covid-19 and beyond
In this session chaired by Maria Teresa Siniscalco, we’ll meet Think Global School, the world’s first traveling high school. Its unique academic calendar fully immerses students in four countries a year. The school year is divided into 4 sessions and each session begins with one week of online preparation, as the students come from different cities and countries, so, even before the pandemic, students were used to Distance Learning. Jamie Steckart, the school director, will tell us about this very special school.
The pandemic has also given an unexpected opportunity to connect boys and girls from across the planet. A link, a click, a world is the name of an extraordinary experience lived by dozens and dozens of young people, who have been virtually sharing their experiences of life, study, sport, reading. A friendly youth network which virtually covers the globe. Lene Jensby Lange, co-founder of Link Online Learners (as well as founder of Autens and President of Global Alliance School) will refer about this amazing virtual connexion.
Into the future we will be led by Cristina Pozzi , future maker, CEO of Impactscool . She will immerse us in the world of education at the time of artificial intelligence .
Nathan Strenge, Senior Learning Designer at Fielding International , USA, will deal with how virtual connections and collaborations are reshaping the emerging learning paradigm and aligned learning ecosystems .
And finally, some teenagers of Radioimmaginaria in Bologna will bring us back to the daily reality of school, with the lights and shadows of their learning experience at the time of Covid-19.
2nd Session: Covid-19: education challenges and responses
In the second session, chaired by Lorenzo Benussi , we will meet two more groundbreaking schools, but completely different from those in the first session.
One is Albany Senior High School in Auckland, New Zealand, the country with the most autonomous school system in the world. Throughout 2020 ASHS worked with their students, community and teachers to co-design a flexible approach to learning, developing learners’ agency and self-directed study. ASHS also seized the opportunity to become increasingly responsive and creative in how they evidenced student learning; with an already flexible National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) the school focused on developing individualised assessment plans, assessing students when ready, using portfolios so to collect evidence of learning over time both online and face to face.
February 2021 sees the beginning of a new school year in New Zealand and whilst not currently in lockdown ASHS sees the new year as an opportunity to embed and amplify what they now regard as a new normal. Headmaster Claire Amos will tell us about their experience through pandemic and beyond.
The second school is IC 3 in Modena, Italy, which is attended by pupils from 3 to 14 years old. A school that has been able to turn the Covid-19 crisis into an opportunity for reimagining education. They implemented beautiful innovations : online tutoring , new subjects in the curriculum such as artificial intelligence, digital sound, graphic design, English and movement and much more, and experienced new ways of assessing learning. The school principal Daniele Barca will describe their experience .
And then we will have an exceptional speaker: Dr. Anantha Duraiappah, Director of UNESCO MGIEP. He is an environmental-development economist, he has played a key role in positioning MGIEP as a leading research institute on education for peace, sustainable development and global citizenship. His Institute held two World Youth Conference on Kindness to re-affirm the central role of empathy, compassion, and kindness to achieve the SDGs.
In this second session, young people are represented by a fantastic fifteen year old Pakistani girl, Amna Habiba. She attends the 10th grade with a major in biology. She received the Young Achiever Award at the age of 10, and was titled “Pakistan’s Youngest Female Participant in a Digital Exchange”. COVID-19 helped her find her inner potential. She created Global Creative Hub. She won the 3rd prize in an artificial intelligence hackathon for teens. In Pakistan, girls are generally confined at home, and tech fields are considered only for boys. So she decided to teach the basic digital literacy skills to girls from underprivileged backgrounds. She also founded MoodUp – a mental health app.
The session will end with a global glance at educational responses to the pandemic, with a view to the future. Lasse Leponiemi, executive director of the Finnish HundrED, a community of innovators that every year collects the 100 most significant educational experiences worldwide, will provide an overview of these trends.
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1st Session, February 26th, friday afternoon, 15:00-18:00
||Alessandra Cenerini, President of ADI
SCHOOL DURING COVID-19 AND BEYOND
|15:05||Introducing the session||Maria Teresa Siniscalco, INVALSI Consultant|
|15:15||Welcome to “Think Global School”||Flash of two Italian presenters|
|15:25 (GMT -5)||How a traveling school has redesigned its curriculum in the pandemic
||Jamie Steckart, former headmaster of Think Global School, NewYork|
|15:50||Living and studying in times of COVID-19||Some students from Radioimmaginaria,the teenagers network|
|The Power of Gathering – the Elements of Transformation
||Nathan Strenge, progettista della formazione al Fielding International USA|
|16:40||Education in the age of artificial intelligence: critical issues, limits and new frontiers of technology||Cristina Pozzi, Ceo and Co-founder of Impactscool|
|17:15||Students: one link, one click, one world||Lene Jensby Lange, President of Global School Alliance|
|17:55||Conclusion of the session|
2nd Session, February 27th, sathurday morning, 9:00 – 12:00
COVID-19: EDUCATION CHALLENGES AND RESPONSES
Chaired by Lorenzo Benussi
|09:00||Introducing the session
||Lorenzo Benussi, Chief Innovation Officer|
|09:10||And now to New Zealand , discovering what highly devolved self-managing schools are like||Flash of two Italian presenters|
|09:20 (GMT +13)||It’s time for education to prepare for the new normal||Claire Amos, Principal at Albany High School, Auckland, Nuova Zelanda|
|09:55||Education rediscovered: what have we learned from Covid-19?||Daniele Barca, Principal of IC 3 Modena|
|10:20||From India with Kindness||Flash of two Italian presenters|
|10:30 (GMT +5.30)||An education for Humanity. The whole brain
|Anantha Duraiappah, Director of UNESCO MGIEP, India|
|11:05 (GMT +5)||Empowering students and girls from underprivileged backgrounds
||Amna Habiba, Founder Global Creative Hub & MoodUp|
|11:30||Finding power from collaboration – through COVID and beyond||Lasse Leponiemi, Executive Director, HundrEd, Finland|
|11:55||Conclusion of the meeting|
KEY SPEAKERS OF THE 1st SESSION
SCHOOL DURING COVID-19 AND BEYOND
Jamie Steckart is THINK Global School’s head of school. THINK Global School is a travelling high school where students live and learn in four countries a year, making unforgettable connections between their education and the world around them.
Jamie is widely recognized as an engaging school leader and visionary educator, and he brings to TGS over twenty years of experience designing and leading schools which utilize place- and project-based learning. He is passionate about student-centered learning. He believes in collaborative leadership and listening to the voices of students.
Jamie holds a master’s degree from the University of Minnesota and is a licensed teacher, principal and superintendent.
Prior to his coming to THINK Global School, he held the post of Principal of Qatar Leadership Academy, in Al Khor, Qatar. Jamie has a long history of being on the leading edge in educational reform and innovation. He was part of the initial group of teachers that designed Northwest Passage High School, ending his twelve years as the school’s Director.
As a former Outward Bound Expeditionary Learning Instructor (ELOB) for Voyageur Outward Bound, he was part of the early implementation of ELOB concepts in St. Paul Schools. He founded Project L.E.A.D., an expedition high school, which won the Minnesota Association of Alternative Program of the Year Award and the Crystal Award from the National Drop-out Prevention Association.
Secondary school students and speakers at Radioimmaginaria
Radioimmaginaria is the first teenagers’ European network created by boys and girls from 11 to 17 years old. It was first established in Castel Guelfo (Bologna, Italy) in 2012 and today there are more than 300 teen speakers who broadcast from 50 cities in 9 different countries. In summer 2019, a group of teens from Radio Immaginaria was the protagonist of “OltrApe”, a trip in ApeCar (Piaggio Three Wheeler) from Castel Guelfo to Stockholm to discover Europe and talk about climate change in the footsteps of Greta Thunberg.
During this pandemic they have interviewed a lot of students all over Italy.
Nathan Strenge is Senior Learning Designer at Fielding International, Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA.
Nathan believes that schools that truly support all learners are built on a foundation of deep relationships, designed for a learner-centered paradigm. Furthermore, he forsters the interdependence of time, space, and roles; and how they must be aligned to achieve the 21st-century goals that most schools aspire to. For students to become engaged citizens, curious learners, critical thinkers, complex problem solvers, empathetic listeners… an integrated ecosystem needs to be purposely designed with students, parents, and teachers as authentic collaborators.
Since Nathan has joined Fielding International as a Senior Learning Designer, he has invested in network building to be at the forefront of education innovation through human-centered design.
Nathan serves as USA Country Lead at HundrED and is an active member of Education Reimagine’s Learning Lab.
In spring 2020, he leveraged this network to lead a global COVID response series called From Gathering to Transformation with 1,000+ participants from all across the globe.
Cristina Pozzi is CEO and Co-founder of Impactscool. Cristina Pozzi defines herself as a future maker. Graduated in Economics at Bocconi University and now a student in Philosophy, in 2006 Cristina founded Wish Days with Andrea Dusi.
They sold the company to Smartbox in 2016 and it was one of the most important exits in Italy in the last 10 years.
In 2017, she founded Impactscool with Andrea Dusi and Andrea Geremicca.
She is the author of the book “Welcome in 2050. Changes, criticality and curiosity“, published in Italian by EGEA.
Cristina Pozzi has received an important international recognition: the nomination as Young Global Leader 2019 for Italy by the World Economic Forum (this title has come back to Italy after 5 years).
The mission of the Forum of the Young Global Leaders is to create a dynamic global community of exceptional people with the vision, courage and influence to drive positive change in the world. Each year they select people from all over the world who must be younger than 40 with and with extraordinary careers. EGEA.
Lene Jensby Lange
Lene Jensby Lange is the founder of Autens Future Schools, a consultancy specializing in third millennium learning, schools transformation and learning space design.
Autens inspires and develops visionary futures with clients, creating momentum, ownership and courage to transform. Autens strongly believes in the power of how our schools and learning spaces are designed and works tirelessly to transform schools and higher educational facilities – both in content, pedagogy, student work, structure, interior design and architecture – into vibrant places learning suited for the needs of students in the 21st Century.
Lene Jensby Lange also leads the Global Schools’ Alliance, whose goal is to ensure children experience a better quality of education no matter where they live. Its mission is to collaboratively raise the standards of education in countries worldwide by connecting with the most progressive schools to:
- exchange research about how children learn and the newest ways to educate children,
- share teaching and learning methods that are proven best practices continously develop member schools’ teachers through rotating fellowships at other member schools’ locations,
- create common projects between the schools that have a trans-national relevance facilitate educational visits between members to understand diverse cultures and work ethics,
- evaluate, adopt, and share emerging technologies for learning.
In March 2020 Lene co-founded Link Online Learners as a response to Covid19. Link Online Learners is a platform where youth across the Globe can connect and build relationships and global understanding in a safe environment.
KEY SPEAKERS OF THE 2nd SESSION
COVID-19: EDUCATION CHALLENGES AND RESPONSES
Claire Amos is Principal at Albany Senior High School in Auckland, New Zealand. She was also one of the three foundation Deputy Principals at Hobsonville Point Secondary School.
Claire has worked for a variety of schools and educational organisations in her twenty- plus year teaching career. This has included working at a number of new and established secondary schools as well as working on various national projects with the NZ Ministry of Education, the Network for Learning and, and the New Zealand Qualifications Authority. Claire was a founding member of the Education Council of Aotearoa and is a board member of NetSafeNZ and 21C Skills Lab.
Claire is passionate about her family, education, design and tattoos, living by the mantra – “You can never be overdressed or overeducated”.
Daniele Barca is principal at IC 3 in Modena, Italy. He is well known as one of the most innovative and challenging school leaders in Italy.
He holds a PhD in Literary Cultures, and is a passionate expert in the use of digital technologies in teaching.
He has also held many positions in various ministerial and non-ministerial commissions, such as:
– member of the ICT and Education working group of the European Commission,
– advisor in the National Digital School Plan for MIUR,
-member of MIUR technical-scientific committee on digital school publishing,
-member of the technical scientific committee on PON DIDATEC project,
-expert for INDIRE in the use of digital technologies in teaching and tutoring of teachers in blended mode,
-member of the MIUR working group on technologies applied to teaching and quality in education.
Pr. Dr. Anantha Duraiappah took the position as inaugural Director of the UNESCO Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development (MGIEP) based in New Delhi, India in 2014. A science-policy pacesetter, with over 33 years’ experience, he now plays a key role in positioning UNESCO MGIEP as a leading research institute on education for peace, sustainable development and global citizenship.
Anantha received his PhD in economics specialising in mathematical and computational modelling from the University of Texas in Austin, USA. He has authored numerous peer-reviewed books and journal articles and presently sits on the editorial boards of a number of international peer reviewed journals. He is a Fellow of the World Academy of Arts and Sciences (WAAS), a Fellow of The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) and a visiting Professor at the University Of Tokyo, Japan.
In his previous post at the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), he initiated and played a pivotal role in the establishment of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). He was the Co-Chair of the Biodiversity Synthesis Group of theMillennium Ecosystem Assessment and founding director of theInclusive Wealth Reportreleased at the Rio+20 Summit in 2012.
Dr. Duraiappah is presently focusing on strengthening the science-policy guide in Education by researching and exploring how the neurosciences of learning can contribute to developing emotional & intellectual intelligence through innovative digital.
Amna Habiba is a Pakistani 15-year-old 10th grader with a major in biology. Here what she says of herself :
“I was always inspired by my mom to be a public speaker, and use the power of my words to impact and inspire others. I received the Young Achiever Award at the age of 10, and was titled “Pakistan’s Youngest Female Participant in a Digital Exchange”. COVID-19 helped me realize and find my inner potential. My mom gave me a license for Coursera for Campus that she currently was hosting in her university. I completed many courses and learned a lot of new skills that were rare in Pakistan. As a Pakistani girl, I knew what the problems young people faced when navigating through the digital world. We have a lot of computer centers here, where people go and do courses to learn computer literacy skills. I wanted to impact them, and thus created Global Creative Hub. I initially had a blog, but I wanted to do more, which is why I launched a complete platform in September. In Pakistan, girls are confined and locked at home, they are not allowed to go outside for learning or doing a job. Tech fields are considered only for “boys”, and the only career options that a girl has are to become a teacher or a doctor. I wanted to teach girls the basic digital literacy skills that were needed in an always-changing world, and thus started giving weekly virtual sessions to girls from underprivileged backgrounds. I got my first internship at the age of 14 at Chipkoo Labs, won 3rd prize in an artificial intelligence hackathon for teens, founded MoodUp – a mental health app, was invited to speak by MAMA.codes, and will be collaborating with IBM Z and Teens in AI in 2021.”
Lasse Leponiemi is Executive Director and Co-Founder at HundrED – a Finnish not-for-profit organization – which seeks and shares inspiring innovations in education. HundrED selects annually 100 pedagogically sound education innovations around the world and helps them spread with their wide network of educators in over 70 countries. Lasse is also a co-founder and the current chairman of Mentors of Finland, a non-profit organization that mentors unemployed young people to find a job, free-of-charge. Annually the organization helps 700 young people to find a working place.
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EDUCATION DURING COVID-19 AND BEYOND
How a “traveling school” has redesigned its curriculum in the pandemic
As former Headmaster for Think Global School will look back on how this world-traveling upper secondary school, handled its transition into the Covid-19 era, when the school was no longer able to travel. Before Covid-19 students at the school used to immerse themselves in 4 different countries each year, visiting twelve before they graduate.
I will give key insights on how the school used previous online learning techniques to handle disruptions in their education. What lessons can other schools learn from their experience moving forward as they implement and prepare for these types of contingencies?
Students: living and studying in times of COVID-19
Some students from Radioimmaginaria, the teenagers network
Radioimmaginaria is a network operated by teens aged 11 to 17.
More than 200 girls and boys from different European countries are part of it.
Our aim is to share our aspirations, our lives and studies.
During lockdown Radioimmaginaria has not stopped broadcasting.
Indeed, lockdown restrictions have strengthened our desire to stay connected to our peers all over the world and talk about the “hidden lives” we are living between remote lessons, stress and dreams.
The Power of Gathering – the Elements of Transformation
If you’ve ever thought why do we keep doing that to our kids, this session is for you. At Fielding International, we work with schools and communities around the world who have transformed their learning ecosystem by aligning their vision, environment, and human capacity. We’re sharing the source code for how to apply our best practices and design patterns that will help align your own learning ecosystem. Upon leaving this session, you will have an understanding of what we have learned from designing schools in over 50 countries on 6 continents, and what the first steps are to begin your own locally sourced alignment journey.
Education in the age of artificial intelligence: critical issues, limits and new frontiers of technology
The pandemic has accelerated the digitalization in schools by force opening their doors to platforms, devices and new learning methods .
This has made the topic of artificial intelligence technologies applied to education even more relevant. Which are the most promising applications?
What impact do they have on the learning process? But above all, which ethical principles should we follow in opening up to these new worlds?
These are the questions and challenges I will deal with in my presentation.
An education for Humanity. The whole brain approach
Pedagogy as we know it today is focused on building the cognitive dimension of learning.
However, recent research in positive psychology and the neurosciences show that not only can cognition be a cause of emotion but emotions can be a cause of cognition. In other words, cognition and emotion work hand in hand. This provides a challenge for the education system. Assuming away the role of emotions in students learning experience is diminishing their potential to learn to be active, humanitarian citizens.
The brain must be seen as a social brain whereby behaviours and decision making are influenced by a complex neural network connecting the cognitive and the emotional.
Education therefore, needs to be realigned to the way we learn and react. This calls for introducing Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) as an integral part of curricula. The purpose is to train the emotional brain to exercise self-regulation, emotional regulation, empathy and compassion.
The school must no longer be seen purely as an institution for developing cognitive skills but rather as a place where kindness starts. Experiential learning in the form of acts of kindness is one of the strongest pedagogical tool for social emotional learning as, through action, it is able to develop the social and emotional competencies we so urgently need in our present world.
COVID-19: EDUCATION CHALLENGES AND RESPONSES
It’s time for education to prepare for the new normal
In my presentation I will share my experiences of teaching and leading within the New Zealand (NZ) education system. New Zealand is known for its self-governing schools, its innovative and creative national curriculum which encourages schools and educators to personalize learning to their local context and student interests.
Whilst last year saw the world massive disruption, we also experienced “a once in a pandemic” chance to prepare for a “new normal” in all areas of how we love, live and work. As a secondary school leader, I focused on how Albany Senior High School (ASHS) might reimagine secondary schooling, so as to ensure a hope of rolling with the punches and coming out of this fight fit for the 21st Century challenges.
Throughout 2020 ASHS worked with their students, community and teachers to co-design a flexible and agile approach to learning that saw students continue to thrive both within school and online developing learner agency and designing learning that enables students to work in an increasingly self-directed manner. The school also took the opportunity to prioritise student and staff wellbeing with a focus on developing deep learning relationships between teachers and learners. ASHS also seized the opportunity to become increasingly responsive and creative in how they evidenced student learning, with an already flexible National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) the school focused on developing individualised assessment plans and assessing students when they were ready, gathering portfolios of evidence so as to maximize opportunities to curate and collect evidence of learning over time both online and face to face.
February 2021 sees the beginning of a new school year in New Zealand and whilst not currently in lockdown I and my school see the new year as an opportunity to embed and amplify what we now regard as a new normal.
Education rediscovered: what have we learned from Covid-19?
The story I will tell has been going on at IC 3 in Modena, Italy, since March 2020, and it could be summarized with the slogan “Today we could”. In some way the changes and adaptability imposed by the coronavirus have given a boost to the virtuous circle guidlines / competences / curriculum / activities / assessment. Throughout our primary and junior school, but especially in the junior school Pier Santi Mattarella, the process of experimentation has taken the name of “Beyond the subjects”, with personalized tutoring, clubs, subjects without subjects. The idea is to develop transdisciplinary teaching and learning, trying to avoid splintering knowledge into subjects, and to adopt self-assessment and formative assessment without marks during the school year, and with a final certification of competences.
Students: one link, one click, one world
Lene Jensby Lange
In the early spring of 2020 after Covid really struck globally, the isolation of students all across the world became a huge concern. At the same time, young people across the Globe had never had as much in common.
A network of global educators came together to found Link Online Learners; a platform where youth could connect in a safe environment. The mission was and is to open up the world for young people as their daily life closed down around them, and in the process building empathy and global citizenship through exposure to other cultures as well as the experiences and passions of young people all over the world.
Lene Jensby Lange who is one of the co-founders will share the story, journey and special moments of Link Online Learners.
Reimagining education to identify creative potential
Being a girl, and living in a 3rd-world country I never knew of the vast sea of knowledge and fields that was out there. COVID provided me with the opportunity to redefine the meaning of education and discover my hidden talent. Now I am on a mission to help change the education system in Pakistan, make skill-training a norm especially for girls so that we can identify creative potential among youth. I’ll talk about my journey and how I am reimagining the future, passionately working at the intersection of tech, science, and education, as a #education activist of YxY and the founder of Global Creative Hub, an educational platform promoting 21st-century skills through capacity building program.
Finding power from collaboration – through COVID and beyond
No organisation has been unaffected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The education sector around the world was forced to react quickly by closing schools and shifting to distance learning. Many countries have been creating new regulations for schools to cope with the situation caused by the pandemic. Distance and hybrid learning is the new norm, and some countries – including Finland – have even made legislative changes to provide more freedom to schools and offer learning experiences in the safest way possible. These changes have included a right to organise learning in a flexible manner, balancing between in-school and distance education.
Some of the practices learned during this time will remain and transform the learning experience for students in the future. At the same time, at-risk students have struggled with their education world-wide. For many of these children, the change of educational landscape has caused extra stress, frustration, and difficulties. How education systems can take care of these students? And while we are doing so, it’s important to not only look at the student wellbeing but also parent and teacher wellbeing – how these demands and needs can be met?
HundrED has been doing their best to find solutions for students, education providers, educators and guardians in this challenging situation. In April and May 2020, HundrED quickly re-prioritized their work and set up a task force to look into different solutions that help educators around the world handle the change. HundrED Covid Toolkit was then published in May 2020 in collaboration with the OECD. In this presentation I will be sharing our findings of the initial research and what has happened with solutions since then.
* keynote speakers will be directly invited as panelists to the webinar so no action is due.
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