KDSL Global Math Consultant Dr. Cory Bennett provides the keynote at the Middle East Maths Teacher Conference

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The fourth Middle East Maths Teachers Conference was held on February 22, 2020, at Le Meridien Dubai Hotel and Conference Centre and brought together, School Leaders, Maths Advisors, Education Consultants and Mathematics Educators, from all over the Middle East and beyond, for a jam-packed day of learning and networking, with the main aim of advancing the teaching and learning of Mathematics in classrooms. The first Middle East Maths Teachers Conference was held on March 11, 2017, under the theme Active Maths…Engaged Learning. Since then, the Middle East Maths Teachers Conference has become the must-attend event for teachers of Mathematics from the Middle East and even further afield.

KDSL Global Math Consultant Dr. Cory Bennett served as the keynote speaker. He is a passionate educator who strives for equity in learning for all students. As a global consultant and an Associate Professor of Education specializing in curriculum and instruction, he has worked with educators throughout the United States and across the Middle East, Europe, Australia, and Asia.

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KDSL Global Founder on Ed-Talk Live

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Ed-Talk Live is an International Educational Talk show hosted by ELASCD and Pakistan ASCD. The mission is to connect educators globally and spread wise words for better education. On a recent show, KDSL Global Founder Kevin Simpson was a guest discussing education entrepreneurship and supporting international education leaders of color.
To access the discussion visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MxGa0UjSbl0

2019 KDSL Global Fellow Octevia Torian reflects on her experience

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We had a chance to connect with 2019 KDSL Global Fellow Octevia Torian and find out about her year as a fellow. She is from Virginia and has 15 years of experience in the education field. In the past she has served as an instructional coach, advisor and advanced academics resource teacher. Currently, Octevia is in her third year of working in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates with a focus on the Next Generation Science Standards, Project-Based Learning, STEM, drones and more.

Share your experience as a KDSL Global Fellow.

My experience as a KDSL Global Fellow was a great opportunity.  I knew I wanted to disrupt education in a creative way.  Kevin listened to “big goals” and he did not discourage me in working towards my goal. We worked on a plan to achieve the plan.  I shortly realized I needed to change my plan a little, and Kevin went with the flow.  He continued to encourage me and provide resources to help me move forward.  He supported me on social media and throughout my work in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).  He connected me to people in the UAE, and I was able to learn and grow from their advice.  Within a year, I accomplished so much as a KDSL Global Fellow.  The Teacher Table launched in 2019.  The Teacher Table is talk show on education.  The show discusses “Everything Education.” I am grateful for the opportunity to grow under the leadership of Kevin and as a KDSL Global Fellow. The Teacher Table is just getting started.  However, I am excited to meet other people within the education field and throughout the global community to discuss “Everything Education.”

 

 

Advice you would give to an educator looking for opportunities outside of the classroom.

To the educators looking for opportunities outside the classroom I would say start your business in education or in area you desire.  Write down your plan and take those initial steps. Check off each step as you go and then celebrate. When times get hard, go harder and push through.  It’s your breakthrough to the next level.  If you want to start your business or whatever it is outside the classroom, GO FOR IT!   Network and build relationships with people in education and find opportunities to network with people not in education.  Share your story. Share your passion.  Complete a vision board. Use a planner.  Do whatever it takes to make it happen.   But the main thing that worked for me was finding my squad who supported me and all that I am doing! Then ROCK IT!  Don’t worry about the onlookers. That’s their job!  Wave and keep striving for greatness.  You will win!!

 

What will you work on next?

That’s a good question. I know I want to continue to make videos for The Teacher Table on a regular based.  Now I am a certified Educational Success Coach and collaborate with educators on how they can reach their goals with fun and creative action plans.   This year and beyond I want to continue to present on STEM and build my teacher platform on education.  The next project is writing and publishing my first children’s picture book (with an interesting twist).  I am excited to see how and when this will happen.

 

 

To learn more about KDSL Global Fellow Alumni Octevia Torian check her out on social media.

Blog- inspired2coachblog.wordpress.com

Instagram- theteachertable

LinkedIn- Octevia Torian

Twitter- OcteviaT

Right, Just, and True: Why I Did Not Attend or Speak at #AAIE2020

Right, Just, and True:
Why I Did Not Attend or Speak at #AAIE2020

5 Minute Read

 

The shorter story:

I’ll answer the above question in a short, simple manner: I don’t see investment in diversity by those proclaiming to lead diversity and inclusion in education. All I see, after numerous attempts to engage, is silence.

 

July 2019:

Sent a letter to leadership and board at AAIE as well as the CEO of PLS 3rd Learning requesting a dialogue about how diversity, inclusion, and equity are being explicitly built into the curriculum and content and concerns that the new faculty were lacking in the diversity department.

The mission of AAIE is a global community that connects diverse people, ideas and resources, AAIE helps international educators lead with vision, wisdom, courage and integrity.

 

July 2019 – November 2019:

Follow up emails sent and no response.

Received a response indicating interest from PLS 3rd Learning, stating their interest in engaging in a conversation and asking for a point person to coordinate with.

After receiving this email we followed up several times, but the silence continued.

 

January 2020

I decided not to attend AAIE’s 2020 Conference and withdrew from a panel entitled Leading by Example: Cultivating Equitable, Inclusive and Just Communities.

We requested AIELOC members not to financially support organizations who are silent on issues important to us.

 

 

The longer story:

“A man dies when he refuses to stand up for that which is right. A man dies when he refuses to stand up for justice. A man dies when he refuses to take a stand for that which is true.”
– The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Junior

 

Almost one year ago on 6 March 2019 I would write a blog post entitled #AAIEGlobalsowhite. In this post it stated that:

“Last year after attending #AAIE2018 there was a shock after noticing how much the international education leadership community lacked in the diversity department. There was talk at a session about critical issues (diversity being one of the topics). A hard decision was made not to attend #AAIE19 being that I was a member and studying in the AAIE Institute for International School Leadership.”

I questioned if the strategic plan would ever shift at AAIE as well as at ALL international schools around diversity, equity, and inclusion in international leadership.

I ended this blog by highlighting that the next generation of international leaders are diverse, disruptive, and want their voice included. We are ready to collaborate and add to the CONVERSATION. Is AAIE ready to listen?

In the last year the Diversity Collaborative increased in activity, membership, and a first report was produced by this committee, ISC Research, and George Mason University called From Resistance to Sustainability and Leadership Cultivating Diverse Leaders in International Schools. However, there are too many areas left unwritten such as race in international school leadership. This is one area the Association of International Educators and Leaders of Color (AIELOC) is focused on as we amplify and advocate for those who are treated as invisible or ignored at times. The Diversity Collaborative focuses on creating a more diverse, inclusive, equitable and just environment among the leadership of the international school community. While this group acknowledges work needs to be done, I notice very few willing to be publicly vocal about organizations and systems which they benefit from. I want to give a shout out to those international educators and leaders who consistently use their voice, listen, connect, and take action. Thank you to Luke Roberts, Brian Bedrick, Liam Hammer, Hope Teague-Bowling, and Adrienne Michetti.

I ponder many questions, such as diversity for who? Who is to benefit and at whose expense? Why so many remain silent and comfortable? Who is included and excluded in conversations?

 

The message below was sent to the leadership and board at AAIE as well as the CEO of PLS 3rd Learning in July 2019.

Dear AAIE,

On the about me section on your website it states that you “exchange international ideas, resources and research that help develop and improve international education, to diversify and expand school leadership capacity.” We are hoping to have a conversation after reviewing the AAIE Institute for School Leadership team of instructors found here https://www.aaieinstitute.org/about/institute-team/

We currently list the institute as a suggested international school leadership program for our AIELOC members. Our founder is enrolled in the program and is elated to see additional instructors beyond having one who taught all courses in the past. After reviewing the seven faculty members it was noted that there was a lack of racial diversity present.  We would like to know the process for serving as an instructor.  As future opportunities arise to serve on this team, please let us know so that we can share this with our membership. In addition, we are curious to know how topics of diversity, inclusion, and equity are being explicitly built into the curriculum and content of the seven courses.

 

We followed up numerous times with hopes to engage. However, there has been silence except the one time the CEO of PLS 3rd Learning sent this message:

 

Dear friends at AIELOC,

We would be very happy to engage in a conversation about our coursework and instructor cadre.  Of course, we would also love to add new instructors and have greater diversity on our team.  It would help if you would identify a contact person in your organization that we can engage with.  Thank you.  Sincerely, Don Jacobs

 

After receiving this email, we followed up several times, but the silence continued.

After reflecting on this lack of response I declined to attend the recent AAIE 2020 Conference in New York and serve on a panel, which I supported in organizing, entitled Leading by Example: Cultivating Equitable, Inclusive and Just Communities.  In addition, we have recently shared with the AIELOC members to not financially support any international education organizations who are silent on issues that are important to us. I am grateful to Liz Duffy and Dana Watts at International School Services for including me in the planning process and for their leadership.

The Association of International Educators and Leaders of Color (AIELOC) is devoted to amplifying the work of international educators and leaders of color with a focus on advocacy, learning, and research.

  • We continue to challenge and call in organizations whose values and actions are not aligned.
  • We continue to ensure all of our members are supported in order to develop and reach their full potential.
  • We continue to share the importance of diversity, inclusion, and equity as highly valuable and a necessity in all international education organizations.
  • We continue to invite allies in who want to change the narrative
  • We continue to engage in conversations that lead to action

 

A man lives when he stands up for that which is right. A man lives when he stands up for justice. A man lives when he takes a stand for that which is true.

Impact International Schools Advisory Council

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Our Vision

Empower vulnerable children (autistic, orphan and handicap children) and young women who can reach their full potential so that they are healthier, able to make their own decisions and through their education, enable their families and communities to flourish.

Our Mission Statement

The Impact International Schools (IIS) exist to empower orphan, handicap and autistic children, as well as young women to reach their full potential by providing sustainable, affordable and accessible quality education and primary healthcare to vulnerable children and young women in Hastings village and beyond.

 

 Join Our IIS Advisory Council!

Apply to become part of our new advisory council!

Being a part of the IIS Advisory Council is a great way to serve the education community and learn more about the work we do. This newly established council will connect with our team and community in Sierra Leone. IIS is collaborating with KDSL Global, a leading learning organization focused on empowering educators and education businesses globally, on organizing this council.

We are looking for a dedicated group of individuals from around the world who work in the field of education and are seeking a new, challenging opportunity to serve.

Advisory Council members may:

  • Give feedback and input on initiatives
  • Serve on committees
  • Provide funding leadership

IIS Advisory Council members will serve for a two-year term starting in April 2020. To apply please email your resume and a short note about why you would like to serve on the council to www.mohamedabasssankoh88@gmail.com  and kdslglobalinfo@gmail.com. The deadline to apply is 20 April 2020.

 

Thank you for your interest in this new council!