Center for Education Innovations: This Week's News & Views

May 22, 2015Duncan McCullough

This Week at CEI

Global leaders in education converged this week for the World Education Forum in Incheon, South Korea.  Included among them were two senior CEI team members; Nicholas Burnett and Molly Eberhardt.  Molly Eberhardt served as a panelist for the panel – Innovating Through Technology: Shaping the Future of Education – and expanded on her recent article highlighting 5 innovative projects being supported by a partnership between CEI and UNICEF.  Eberhardt presented not only on the progress of these growing programs, but on the lessons they present for practitioners around the world as well.  Stay tuned for a more in-depth recap of her experiences at the conference.

Nicholas Burnett traveled to South Korea in support of his contribution to the NORRAG publication, Education, Learning, Training: Critical Issues for Development.  The collection of essays served as the basis for a side-panel discussion that looked critically at both the global and national governance of the proposed SDG Education Goal and its ten Targets, outlined in the Framework for Action for Education 2030.  To read Burnett’s chapter of the publication, click here.

Back in the Western hemisphere, the CEI blog posted another thought-provoking piece by Gabriel Zinny.  Zinny’s recent work, “Reforming Education from the Bottom Up in Buenos Aires,” examines the case of Minister of Education Esteban Bullrich.  Bullrich has overseen a period of relative stability and growth in Beunos Aires’ education sector, and Zinny considers the benefits of city-level reform movements before national-level policy changes.  At a time when new global plans for 2030 will soon be implemented, analysis like Zinny’s demonstrating the effectiveness of more narrowly-defined programs is important to keep in mind. 

CEI’s most recent update to our Innovator Interview series this week features a captivating discussion with READ Global on relief efforts in Nepal.  READ Global has worked in the country for 24 years, building community libraries and providing a multitude of other outreach services to rural communities.  After the destruction brought about by the recent earthquakes, READ Global has adapted quickly.  The organization leveraged its roots in the country into a response team providing critical support and relief to people in great need.  The passion, hope, and determination of these heroes makes this interview a particularly special one for CEI, and the pictures from the field are extraordinary as well.


June 15 - 3ie is seeking grant applications from researchers prepared to conduct an impact evaluation for education programs implemented by the Rwandan Ministry of Education.  For more information about eligible applicants, and greater detail about the policies being evaluated, click here.

June 17Overseas Development Institute (ODI) hosts a conversation with Former Australian Prime Minister and current Board Chair at the Global Partnership for Education, Julia Gillard.  Gillard will discuss future efforts towards education for all in the current international environment, as well as other upcoming imperatives for global education.  To register to attend the event in person, click here.  Or watch the event live on ODI’s website, here.

August 21 – Just posted on May 19, the Open Society Foundations’ Education Support Program and Human Rights Initiative is in search of organizations contributing to the right to education in inclusive settings.  The program makes special mention of obstacles to children’s participation due to majority attitudes about disability, race and ethnicity, minority or citizenship status, minority language and culture, gender, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, or social or economic disadvantage.  For more details about the opportunity, click here.

Open, ongoing - The Ghana Research and Advocacy Program is looking for organizations with a track record of public policy engagement and a focus on social development, gender equality, and peace-building efforts, among others.  Selected organizations can receive grants for up to 40% of their total budgets.  For more information about applying, click here.

Education News From Around the World

Dierdre Williams pens a piece for the Open Society Foundations Voices blog contending that Global Education Goals Shouldn’t Just be a Numbers Game.  Williams argues that while quantifiable assessments are important for the upcoming Sustainable Development Goals through 2030, other targets that are harder to measure in numbers must not be overlooked.  To read her valuable contribution towards a more holistic international approach, click here.

“A huge step forward” – The United Nations has released a statement following the World Education Forum praising the Incheon Declaration as an important foundation for the SDG’s that will be adopted at the UN in September.  To read more about the declaration, as well as quotes from various key multilateral organization leaders about the progress made in South Korea, view the release here.

Meet Luna the literary pony!  Luna is a white, slightly diminutive horse working part-time as a mobile library in Central Java, Indonesia.  She’s accompanied by Ridwan Sururi, her caretaker that stocks her saddle with free books donated by supporters that the two distribute to rural community members in the area for free.  A horse is simply a horse, of course, but in a region with nearly 1 million illiterate adults, every additional access to learning is valuable. 

Following up on our recent Innovator Interview with READ Global in Nepal, the upcoming monsoon season for the country is contributing to the sense of urgency in the country’s relief efforts.  The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies released a statement that funding shortfalls may exacerbate the crisis significantly.  The country is in an incredibly precarious situation, and it is important for the international community to follow through on the initial investments made in the wake of the disaster.  Read the full release, here.

Point of Departure

During the World Education Forum this week, the Twitter Hashtag #WorldEducationForum periodically reached trending status among the Global Education community.  This is a great sign for awareness of global education development’s importance for future prosperity.  However, while the hash-tag certainly scores points for accuracy, it is not the catchiest term we’ve seen.  In the next few months before the UN General Assembly in September, it will be critical to maintain pressure on public officials to adopt ambitious and effective goals for 2030.  What other twitter hash-tags to do you think can help in keeping global engagement high?  Tweet us your suggestions @CEInnovations, and maybe we’ll start the next world-wide trend ourselves!

Photo Credit: Republic of Korea, Jeon Han

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