ESF is committed to ensuring that all staff, including principals, have the required expertise to drive high performance. Last week I attended a conference in Edinburgh, which was focused on the latest research in effective teaching.
One of the keynote presenters Michael Fullan (a partner of ESF) spoke about the ways schools must evolve to ensure that our students graduate prepared for a rapidly changing world.
Fullan contends that schools need to accept that the conventional curriculum (IB diploma and IGCSE’s) is unable to keep pace with the rapidly changing conditions and challenged schools to make sure that they stay focused on the following global competencies:-
- Critical Thinking
Fullan also explains that classroom learning has limitations on how these competencies are developed and cautioned that these competencies are best mastered by:-
- Higher-order cognitive processes that reach a deep level of understanding of content and issues in a contemporary world.
- Include immersion in addressing issues that are often cross disciplinary.
- Integrate academic and personal capabilities
- Are authentic, challenging and student centred
- Are often designed to impact the world, locally or more widely
- Take place in a range of settings and increasingly use digital and connectivity.
Our Futures curriculum and community engagement activities provide excellent vehicles for Island School students to develop the global competencies. Researchers from Michael Fullan’s team will visit the school and ESF in April to help us evaluate our approach and provide advice on how to further strengthen our unique programmes.