KDSL Global Managing Director selected as a judge for the GESS Education Awards 2020

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We are thrilled to announce the 7th annual GESS Awards, whether you’re a teacher, supplier or anyone in education this is your chance to celebrate excellence in the education industry.  The Gala will take place on 26 February 2020 in Dubai at the H Hotel. KDSL Global Managing Director Kevin Simpson has been selected as a judge for the awards.

What are the Awards?

The awards highlight and reward the quality and diversity of educational products, resources, services and people as well as the best educational establishments and the most dedicated members of the teaching profession. The GESS Education Awards aim to encourage the raising of educational services & product standards throughout the industry and aims to be recognised throughout the sector as the accolade of excellence.

 

For more information on GESS Education Awards visit https://www.gessawards.com
Meet the team of judges here https://www.gessawards.com/judges

 

 

KDSL Global interviews Ashley Green

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Our KDSL Global Intern recently had the opportunity to interview Ashley Green, the first ASCD Emerging Leader based in the Middle East.  Currently, Green is in the United Arab Emirates and passionate about teaching, learning, and ensuring autonomy and student interest are central in working with studets. She also serves as a Senior Associate with KDSL Global.

 

Tell us about the ASCD Emerging Leaders program. 

Educators selected for the Emerging Leaders program have been in the education profession for 5–15 years; demonstrate a passion for learning, teaching, and leading; come from a diverse range of positions, locations, cultural backgrounds, and perspectives; hold promise as leaders; and are committed to ASCD’s beliefs and to pursuing leadership opportunities. Following the nomination process, this year’s leaders were chosen by an advisory panel composed of ASCD staff, education thought leaders, and emerging leader alumni.

For 75 years, ASCD has been at the forefront of education issues that affect learning, teaching, and leading. Since the launch of Educational Leadership magazine in 1943, ASCD has developed trustworthy, research-based, and up-to-date information that shapes the international conversation on best practices to support the success of each learner.

Throughout history, ASCD’s members, authors, and expert cadres have read like a “Who’s Who” in education. ASCD has been the birthplace of transformative ideas such as the Understanding by Design® framework, the ASCD Whole Child approach, and capacity-building professional learning.

 

 

As an Emerging Leader (EL) in the MENA region, how will you contribute to the growth of ASCD?

As an EL in the MENA region, I hope to contribute by raising awareness and highlighting the goals and initiatives of ASCD. In October, I will assist with the Teach to Lead summit in Dubai. Teach to Lead is a partnership of the U.S. Department of Education, ASCD and Teach Plus. I am looking forward to working alongside teacher leaders and amplifying their voice and work in this field. It is essential to bridge relationships with community stakeholders and the Teach to Lead summit will provide educational leaders with the platform needed to foster relationships beyond their organizations.

 

If you could change anything about today’s education system, what would you change and why?

If I could change anything about the educational system, it would be the way differentiation is viewed. This is a term that several educators hold near to their hearts. Educators believe that if they are differentiating, they are working towards meeting the needs of children. For some differentiation can seem like a three ring circus. Others may struggle with seeing the value of changing instruction when assessments are the same, motivation is low, and behavior is out of control. To be very clear, I do not think differentiation should not be included in the current educational process, but I believe as educators, we have to visit a different concept first.

A concept that has the student’s at the core. A concept that educator’s want, but may possibly struggle with giving; autonomy. Autonomy simply put is the right or condition of self-government. A classroom that is autonomous will benefit from differentiation. Autonomy starts with the students (I want to learn more about…. or I need help with….). Differentiation begins with the teachers (Based on the data, the student needs this….). In an autonomous classroom students have stake in their learning goals. In a differentiated classroom, most teachers are using data to drive the teaching and learning. Teachers then select the activities or assessments that they think will help the students based on the data. Autonomous classrooms make the process of differentiation easier, while supporting the students and maximizing motivation and effort. Educators may be wondering, what does an autonomous classroom look like or how can I achieve that when the classes are all the same and I have to meet certain guidelines. Getting started can be achieved in three easy steps.

Getting to know the students

If you’ve ever had parent teacher conferences in the fall, then you know how difficult it was to speak about a student that you barely know. We make general blanket statements while smiling and nodding most of the time. In a classroom that honors autonomy, the teachers will sit down with every single student in the beginning and learn their story. Children are naturally inquisitive, so this will also give them an opportunity to ask questions. Both the student and teacher should walk away feeling like they’ve gotten to know one another.

Analyze their data story

Whether a student is in 1st grade or 12th, there’s a data story. Talk about the data. Analyze it. Ask questions and explain what the data means. If there was a year where scores dropped or spiked, ask the students what was taking place. Get to know the person behind the numbers.

Set goals

After getting to know the students as individuals and analyzing the data with them, set goals. To honor autonomy, the goals should be student driven. If there is a certain benchmark that has to be met, make that clear to the student and then create attainable goals. Explain what the process will look like and ensure the student that you will help them along the way.

The three easy steps above will show the students that you care. With autonomy at the forefront, teachers can then use differentiation to help execute their plans and assist the students in achieving their goals. For example, if a student realizes that he/she has not been meeting the reading benchmark based on the data, when a teacher gives an assignment, she/he can make it very clear that this assignment will help you reach your goal. The teacher can also state, by mastering this skill, you will be one step closer to the goal you set. Autonomy starts with the student. Differentiation begins with the teacher. In order to maximize instruction, we have to transform our thinking. Autonomy is driving the classroom, differentiation is simply the navigation system.

 

To learn more about the ASCD Emerging Leaders Program visit http://www.ascd.org/programs/Emerging-Leaders/Emerging-Leaders.aspx

 

To learn more about Ashley Green selected as the first ASCD Emerging Leader based in the Middle East visit https://kdslglobal.wordpress.com/2018/07/07/ascd-selects-the-first-emerging-leader-based-in-the-middle-east/

 

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Ashley Green’s passion for global education has led to her teaching in classrooms and collaborating with teachers from all over the world. Her desire to become a global educator began when she taught students in England, and had the chance to make connections between the International Baccalaureate (IB) Program and Common Core standards. Since then, she’s honed those skills in Dubai; in both Elementary and Middle school settings as a full-time classroom practitioner.

 

Ashley is a lifelong learner and believes that while she is an educator; she will always be striving to improve her own practice. She’s currently employed as a Global Teacher Leader in the United Arab Emirates. She is also the Director of Operations for Hayward’s Hands, a nonprofit organization that specializes in community service and enrichment programs.

 

Ashley holds a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction and has developed and written curriculums for English, Language Arts and Mathematics for grades 3-8. She obtained a Gifted Endorsement in 2015 and also served as an ambassador for Gifted and Talented Education in Georgia, USA. Ashley was selected in 2018 as the first ASCD Emerging Leader based in the Middle East.

What Made Ms. T Matter Most to Me

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Teachers Matter. This hashtag used by the Global Skills Education Forum, GESF earlier this year and  now the catch phrase is more than a hashtag or catch phrase to me. Teachers Matter to me because had it not been for teachers, education, one of two things that transformed my life, would have definitely eluded me.

As a maladjusted child, I struggled in school despite possessing great academic prowess throughout my academic life. Nothing could fill the void left inside by my mother who decided that I should not have been born. As a high-spirited child, I carried on with life, albeit fighting beasts such as feelings of insignificance, emotional imbalances, self-doubt and fear, inability to trust and inappropriate advances made by close relatives. Who could I share these horrors with? I was brought up in a household in which I was to be seen and not heard and so I tried hard enough to live by such rule.  Well, every full cup must run over. Sadly, most of my spills occurred at school. To some teachers I was the girl with the attitude that wouldn’t get very far in life.

Truth be told, I was blessed with some of the best teachers and lecturers throughout my primary, high school and even college years. And maybe some of the teachers were made the above-mentioned judgment had valid points – I had issues. These issues had they been left untended would most likely result in the destruction of me. Even though most of my outstanding teachers and lecturers inspired me in various ways, whenever I think of a life-changing teacher this one teacher, Mrs. Donna Thompson comes to the forefront of my mind. Mrs. Thompson, or Ms. T as I affectionately refer to her, bore the name ‘Bad-pickney Defender’ in her selfless pursuit to reach students like me who lacked one thing or another but were continuously brushed aside and sometimes even pushed into greater lack by people who should have been fully invested in our well-being.

During my mid-teen years life got even more horrendous at home and life at school was not better in my eyes. When most persons turned a blind eye to my situation, Mrs. Thompson reached out to me and never stopped showing she cares. She provided me with emotional support, built my self-esteem, showed me how brilliant I was – validation I never got from my family, took care of my physical needs and provided a place of refuge – just somewhere I could go to clear my head. When I walked away from high school because of the surmounting stress, she formed a team which included the school counsellor, and called an intervention. This team ensured that I sat my exit exams instead of wasting time and money. Because of Ms. T’s actions, I could have matriculated to just about any university if I could afford to. She never gave up on me, always supported me and is very much still a part of my life. Mrs. Thompson is the difference between teachers who know their content but do not know their students and teachers who know their content and know their students because they care about the people they teach.

Today, I am a heart-centered educator who is passionate about knowing my students and teaching beyond written standards and assessments. Connecting with students, making a real difference and impact in their lives and giving back, and being empathetic in my classroom and  society at large  are things I value above all.  To leave as powerful a legacy as Mrs. Thompson, I teach my students to do the same as the mark she left on me is an indelible one.

 

 

 

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Sania S. Green-Reynolds is an overcomer, and award-winning international educator who is passionate about personal and professional growth and cultivating the richest, most diverse learning experiences for learners. She is the founder and director of Lit Publishing Ltd., a mom, wife, visionary, teacher-leader and trainer, and resourceful friend and colleague. Apart from being an extroverted-introvert who likes a light yet empowering conversation, she likes meeting new people, spending time with family and friends and exploring new content and business ideas. Sania has authored and co-authored Amazon Best-selling books, transformed her clients’ lives through coaching and the re-channeling of creative energies, and inspired change among people across the globe. In 2018 she was selected as a KDSL Global Fellow.

Connect with her on LinkedIn – @Sania Green-Reynolds or on Twitter @SaniaEmpowers

Apply to join our new KDSL Global Advisory Council

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 Join Our Advisory Council!

Are you interested in collaborating with education colleagues around the world? Apply to become part of our new advisory council!

Being a part of the KDSL Global Advisory Council is a great way to serve the education community, learn more about the work we do, and connect with colleagues around the world. This newly established council will connect with our team, partners, fellows, and our affiliates.

The council will consist of six individuals from around the world currently working in the field of education.

Advisory Council members may:

  • Give feedback on initiatives
  • Write for our blog
  • Have priority to serve on projects
  • Host and attend virtual and in person education events
  • Act as an ambassador for KDSL Global

 

KDSL Global Advisory Council members will serve from August 2019 until June 2021.

To apply please email your resume and a two minute video introducing yourself and why you would like to serve on the council to kdslglobalinfo@gmail.com.  The deadline to apply is 21 June 2019.

 

 

Thank you for your interest in our new council!

KDSL Global interviews Sue Beers

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Our KDSL Global Intern recently had the opportunity to interview Sue Beers, the Executive Director of MISIC. Now serving 160+ school districts in Iowa and other states, MISIC began in 1998 as a collaborative between 15 school districts in central Iowa.

 

What inspired you to work in education and curriculum? 

My mother and grandmother were teachers. I just followed in their footpaths! My interest in curriculum development came for designing my own lessons and curriculum, as we had no state or local curriculum guides. I received a Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction and while doing that study, became intrigued with not only writing curriculum, but leading others in this work as well. As a Director of Curriculum for 19 years, I had the opportunity to work with teachers from all content areas and grade levels to design and implement high-quality curriculum.

 

Tell us about the books you have written for ASCD.

As a former language arts teacher, literacy has always been my passion. Early in my career, I discovered that I had a significant number of high school students who were reading below the 5th grade level. I also realized that even my high-performing students were unable to independently process and understand the content-area text that they encountered. Many had simply stopped reading and waited for teachers to tell them what they needed to know.

I started researching and studying how to help students use text to learn in all content areas. This has been my lifelong passion and resulted in my writing 5 Action Tools for ASCD in the area of literacy in the content areas. The books were Reading Strategies for the Content Areas, Reading Strategies for the Content Areas Volume 2, Writing to Learn in the Content Areas, Adolescent Literacy, and Teaching 21st Century Skills, which included a great deal of literacy connections.

In addition to literacy, I am passionate about providing high-quality professional development programs for teachers and administrators. ASCD asked me to develop a set of tools for this, resulting in another action tool on this topic.

 

 

What is the importance of integrating literacy skills in science curriculum?

The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) standards include alignment to the literacy skills students need to be able to read, write about and talk about science concepts. If one knows a lot about science, but cannot share that knowledge by communicating with others, the advantage of that knowledge is loss. If they cannot read science content, they will miss a key method for gaining science knowledge. There are specific tools and methods for reading science that need to be explicitly presented to students. Science teachers are not asked to be reading and writing teachers, but rather to use reading and writing to help students learn their science content. Science teachers need to help students unlock the content by giving them the tools they need to comprehend the unique structures, vocabulary and nuances of scientific language. In addition, they need to provide opportunities for students to write about their learning in order to deepen and sharpen their understanding.

 

To learn more about MISIC visit http://misiciowa.org.

 

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Making connections among a myriad of initiatives and supporting learning through humor and example are professional passions for Sue Z. Beers.  In workshops delivered across the country, Sue shares strategies and tools for creating effective learning opportunities that prepare students for college, careers and citizenship.  Improving teaching and learning will necessitate that teachers, administrators and district personnel participants deeply examine their own current practices against best practices.

Sue’s 40-year career as a classroom teacher, program coordinator and district administrator has provided her with hands-on experience in the areas of effective teaching and school improvement.   As the founder and current Director of the MISIC Consortium, Beers works with over 160 school districts in Iowa and other states in guiding the alignment of curriculum, instruction and assessment in order to improve student learning.

As a consultant, speaker and ASCD Consultant, Sue has shared her expertise and experience with school districts and educational organizations nationally and internationally to improve teaching and learning in the areas of

  • Using Professional Learning Communities to Achieve Effective Instructional Change
  • Leading the Implementation of the CCSS: Strategies and Resources
  • CCSS Implementation in Literacy and Math Classrooms
  • Key Shifts of the CCSS in Literacy and Math
  • Reading and Writing Strategies in the Content Areas
  • Literacy Across the Curriculum
  • 21stCentury Teaching and Learning
  • Professional Development Planning
  • School Improvement Planning
  • Effective teaching strategies
  • Curriculum Development
  • Assessing Student Learning
  • Using Data to Inform Instruction

 

Sue co-authored ASCD’s “Leading the Common Core” professional development institute and is also the co-author of Reading Strategies for the Content Areas:  An ASCD Action Tool, Volumes 1 and II  and Using Writing to Learn Across the Content Areas:  An ASCD Action Tool.   She has also authored an ASCD Action Tool on Strategies for Designing, Implementing and Evaluating Professional Development, Adolescent Literacy and Teaching 21st Century Skills.

 

 

Meet our KDSL Global Intern – Tanner Lauren Harris

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Tanner Lauren Harris is a junior at Oregon State University studying accounting and education with a focus on multicultural education. She has over four years of experience working with educational companies, including MidSchoolMath and Imagine Education, developing organizational systems for curriculum, mailing marketing campaigns, assisting in planning of national conferences, and working behind the scenes to complete invoices, payroll, business reimbursements, and other accounting projects. Tanner recently received her Protecting Student and Civil Rights in the Educational Environment Professional Teaching Licensure in preparation to become a substitute teacher. By the end of this internship, Tanner hopes to gain a worldwide understanding of education and increase her global awareness of other cultures.

New KDSL Global Senior Associate

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Meet Mona Fairley Nelson, our new KDSL Global Senior Associate.
 
Mona Fairley-Nelson is an educational leader who has served in numerous international schools since relocating abroad in 2014. Mrs. Fairley-Nelson’s vast leadership experience includes: developing international partnerships with colleges and universities to support school innovation, developing quality instructional practices in K-12th grade, accreditation planning and report writing, multidivisional strategic planning and school improvement, budgeting development and allocation for organizational growth, implementing effective leadership and supervision models, and creating sustainable practices for start-up schools across the globe.
 
The majority of Mrs. Fairley-Nelson’s work in education has centered on supporting American curriculum schools in the NESA region. She presented at the MENA Teacher Summit in Dubai, AAIE conference in San Francisco, and the END conference in Portugal. Additionally, she organized the PEAK 2019 educational conference in Kuwait which hosted over one thousand of the country’s educators. In August of 2019, Mrs. Fairley-Nelson will expand her professional reach to include the AASSA region as well.
 
Mrs. Fairley-Nelson holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Child Development, a Master of Education degree in Elementary Education, and a Master of K-12 Leadership and Supervision degree. She is currently pursuing a Doctor of Education degree in International Educational Leadership from Wilkes University.

KDSL Global interviews The GEMS Camp Founder Saki Milton

KDSL Global recently had an opportunity to connect with Saki Milton, Founder of The GEMS Camp.  The GEMS Camp, launched in summer 2010 as a free 6-week Saturday camp, preparing urban girls in grades 7 through 9 to be well-rounded, confident, and ready for college and beyond.  Since its inception, The GEMS Camp has been instrumental in inspiring more than 200 girls in STEM studies and is hosted annually at The University of North Texas at Dallas.

 

What was your inspiration to work in STEM?

As a secondary mathematics classroom teacher, every year I saw 1-2 kids in each class who actually wanted to learn. They were focused, studious, hard-working, and hungry for a challenge. Unfortunately, with the challenges many teachers like myself face in an urban classroom, those students are typically the ones who end up getting shafted. Large classroom sizes, disrespect, and lack of resources are issues an urban teacher faces on a daily basis. I know I did. My heart broke every time I saw a girl who reminded me of myself as a student, but wasn’t getting the quality education that every child should receive because I was too busy dealing with classroom management or catching up those who were 1-2 grade levels behind. Going home every night knowing that I wanted to do more led me to action.

In 2010, I was teaching at an IB school. I was so moved by my students’ personal projects that I decided to explore my own summer project to give back to those students in my neighborhood. That’s when I started The GEMS Camp. I started The GEMS Camp for the girls who are ridiculed for being smart. Girls who do everything they’re supposed to do, but have to stay in their environments just because they don’t have anywhere else to go. I wanted to give them what was given to me – a quality learning experience that made me curious about the world and compassionate about others in a safe environment. Over the years, my interest in STEM has grown as demands for the workforce have changed. I’ve realized the significance of preparing students for jobs of the future, especially problems facing the environment or those with disabilities.

I believe that the shortages in STEM fields can be filled by preparing more women, which currently account for about 13% of the U.S. STEM workforce. To do so, we need to prepare girls with knowledge and skills but also equip them with confidence to be successful in such fields. My involvement in the community led me to combine my background, experience and passion into forming a nonprofit organization. I encourage teachers to find ways to explore their talents and interests beyond the bell.

 

Tell us about the GEMS Camp

The mission of The GEMS Camp (Girls interested in Engineering, Mathematics, and Science) is to build confidence in urban teen girls in grades 7-12 through five core areas called the 5 Karat Gems – Academics, Career, Creativity, Leadership, and Service– so that they will be successful in STEM studies and careers. The Organization’s vision is to change the trajectory of generational poverty for underrepresented girls’ families.

We teach girls how to be CREATIVE thinkers and communicators – a valuable life skill to help them break away from the pack. They learn LEADERSHIP strategies through a one-of-a-kind, research-based curriculum addressing specific needs of urban girls. Third, girls participate in SERVICE to help them internalize the value of giving back to a greater cause. The camp also prepares girls through ACADEMICS by using rigorous and engaging lessons and experiments led by highly qualified instructors. And finally, The GEMS Camp addresses CAREER opportunities to its participants by inviting local, successful STEM women to speak about their professions and personal backgrounds.

The program started in 2010 as a Saturday day camp servicing 30 rising 7th-9th-grade girls held at a public library in Dallas, Texas. Since 2017, the model has evolved to a one-week residential Summer Experience program held at the University of North Texas at Dallas. The program concludes with a Graduation Ceremony and Community Exhibition, recognizing girls for completion and achievements throughout the program. The GEMS Camp continues to gain momentum reaching more students while maintaining authenticity to its mission. To date, we have served roughly 400 girls, exposing them to more than 30 North Texas female STEM professionals representing major corporations and organizations such as IBM, Atmos Energy, Frito Lay/Pepsico, Mary Kay, Inc., Hilti, Texas Instruments, HKS Architects and more.

One of our greatest accomplishments is the expansion of our mission to include helping girls build global STEM networks through travel. In June 2018, eight high school girls traveled to Italy (Naples, Rome, and Florence) to explore the “M” in STEM, studying geometric concepts of ancient and modern architecture, technology, and engineering. June 5-15, 2019, ten girls will have the opportunity to participate in a culture exchange in the United Arab Emirates (Dubai and Abu Dhabi) with local female STEM girls, while the Dallas camp will be held, June 21-28, 2019.

 

What do you see as the future of STEM?

To address the whole child, The GEMS Camp program design is rooted in the latest STEM education research, primarily STEM Learning Ecosystems (SLE’s)and incorporates best practices for bringing minority and low-income girls into the STEM career pipeline. In the future, I foresee STEM education headed more down this path based on reports I’ve read. The phrase STEM learning ecosystem has emerged from early works of human development research. SLE models include children at the center influenced directly by other people (e.g., family, friends) and settings (e.g., schools, neighborhoods) and indirectly by their environment and culture. Students shape and influence their environment and narrative via connections with other learners, community representatives, and the broader scope of world culture. I believe more funding will shift towards collaborative partnerships that are operating with this model. The emergence of newer adaptations of STEM –STEAM and STREAM will continue to take place.

However, long-term sustainability of such concepts are dependent upon the global job market. All of the data still point to science, technology, engineering and math-based positions; not the arts – though I am a firm believer and supporter of the arts. Until we see extreme shortages and disparities in the arts, as it pertains to STEM, I am not fully convinced yet that STEM is on its way out nor STEAM has enough critical mass to sustain its current popularity. But, I could be wrong; I hope it is not a fad.

Unlike the early days of STEM where emphasis was on engineering and computer science, I do believe greater increase in the sciences –biology, environment, and chemistry — will experience tremendous growth as human impact, biological warfare, and medical care are becoming macro-economic issues for both government and private sector.

To learn more about The GEMS Camp visit:

https://www.thegemscamp.org

 

Saki Milton

 

Saki Milton is an experienced mathematics educator with more than 20 years in the education industry including adult learning, curriculum writing, coaching, market development, consulting, and most importantly eight years of classroom teaching. Passionate about STEM education, Saki is known for her extensive work in the U.S. by founding The GEMS Camp (Girls interested in Engineering, Mathematics and Science), a non-profit organization whose mission is to build confidence in girls in grades 7-10 in five core areas called the 5 Karat Gems – Academics, Career, Creativity, Leadership, and Service – so that they will be successful in STEM studies and beyond. The organization has served more than 350 girls across Texas since 2010, partnering with major STEM employers such as BP Oil, Pepsico-FritoLay, HESS Corporation, and NASA to name a few. Saki has worked for Pearson Education Middle East as the U.S. Schools Curriculum Manager, delivering educator support to American international schools across the gulf region. Today, she is an independent international educational consultant working on worthwhile edTech and publishing projects globally. Saki holds a B.A. in mathematics from The University of Texas at Austin and an M.B.A. in marketing from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas.

KDSL Global Founder selected as a judge for Top School Awards in the United Arab Emirates

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SchoolsCompared.com has announced the judges for the SchoolsCompared.com Top Schools Awards 2019. Seven senior educationalists will assess the final shortlist, and choose one single winner in each category.

The 2019 judges include the founder of the Emirates Literature Festival, Isobel Abulhoul OBE; the former head of the UK boarding association and Repton, Dubai, Jonathan Hughes -D’Aeth; former Samoan dual code international and professional rugby player, and owner of Apollo Sporting Academy, Apollo Perelini; former head of School Development for Sobha, and founder of the Education Intelligence Group, Shaun Robison; founder of the Early Years Educational Services and a recognised authority in Early Years, Sarah Rogers; founder of professional learning organisation KDSL Global, Kevin Simpson, and Which Media’s Head of Community, Lyn Soppelsa.

To learn more visit https://whichschooladvisor.com/uae/school-news/top-school-awards-judges-announced.

KDSL Global interviews Literacy Leader Jacob Sule

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KDSL Global recently had an opportunity to connect with literacy leader Jacob Sule. Jacob is the founder of iRead To Live Initiative, a non-profit organization that focuses on achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals of Quality Education in Nigeria. He was recently named one of 30 literacy leaders named to the International Literacy Association’s (ILA) 2019 30 Under 30 list.

 

 

Tell us about the iRead To Live Initiative, why it’s important, and some of the accomplishments of the non-profit. 

We are a team dedicated to serving the course of humanity by giving back to the society by promoting and enlightening the community on the importance of education, supplementing government efforts in achieving the Sustainable Development Goal of Quality Education in Nigeria, and inspiring students to imbibe a reading culture.

As a Non Governmental Organization, we are focusing on advocating for quality education and improved learning conditions in both government and private owned schools. This is in accordance of the Vision 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). As a team, we also share the same philosophy that education is a tool with which one can change the world for the best.

WHAT WE DO

We are currently working in Ifetedo community, Ife South Local Government, Osun State Nigeria with the management and teachers of public cchools, by volunteering to teach different topics and subjects in various schools, providing students with textbooks, exercise books, writing materials and other educational materials to aid the learning process.

In promoting and enlightening the community on the importance of Education, we adopted the Parent Teacher Association meeting strategies, where parents, teachers and notable stakeholders hold meetings often times to discuss and sensitize parents and guardians on the need to enroll their children and wards in school(s) rather than using them as laborers on their farmlands knowing fully that farming is predominant in the community.

OUR MISSION

Promoting and advocating for quality and equitable education for all, connecting rural areas by organising academic and extracurricular events.

OUR VISION

To supplement government efforts in achieving the sustainable development goals of quality education in Nigeria.

OUR FOCUS

We have a desire to reach out to the Nigerian and African child that deserves quality education and self-empowerment; as well as mental alacrity but with less or no capacity to attain the feat.

As young people who are tired of continued neglect of children in rural communities, we decided to ensure that every child, regardless of their backgrounds, in Nigeria must continue to have unhindered access to quality and equitable education. As a non-profit organization, we have consistently engaged government to ensure that it does not neglect its responsibility of providing quality education to all Nigerians.

Though as a relatively young organization, we have been able to accomplish the following:

  1. Launch of iRead To Live Maiden Quiz Competition for Schools
  2. Establishment of Reading Clubs in some schools
  3. Purchase and donation of writing materials, textbooks and other educational materials
  4. Donation of a wheelchair to a physically challenged Undergraduate Student
  5. We hosted the Maiden Edcamp in Nigeria, 2018
  6. Successfully hosted several oratory and literacy competitions in 2016-2018.

 

 

The International Literacy Association (ILA) named you one of the 30 under 30 for 2019. What does it mean to be a champion of literacy?

The ILA celebrates rising innovators, disruptors and visionaries in the literacy field. As a literacy champion you must have shown commitment and continued passion and be involved in innovative ideas and adventures towards strengthening of literacy in your immediate community. For me, having been named alongside 29 other leaders globally, I have been involved in grassroots literacy campaigns by engaging students in rural communities in Nigeria, creating reading clubs, hosted oratory and literacy competitions.

 

Last year you were the founder of Edcamp Nigeria as a way to empower and ignite teachers in the country. What are your major goals for 2019?

My overall goal for 2019 is to scale up advocacy for literacy, ensure improved access to quality education, and professional development for teachers in Nigeria by embracing 21st century teaching approaches.

Also, I will be working with some other educators globally and within Nigeria for possible collaboration and getting students, teachers, and communities to take more actions in the realization of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals by offering solutions to societal challenges.

This is in furtherance to the proposed launch of a makerspace in Nigeria. The makerspace will be incorporated alongside anAdopt a School Program and built around the SDGs indicators and targets, so that teachers and students can be fully exposed to the SDGs targets.

The Adopt a School Program – I intend to adopt four schools through iRead To Live Initiative. We will deploy educational resources, train teachers, donate writing materials and take more actions on sanitation and hygiene.

 

 

To learn more about Jacob’s work visit:

https://ireadtolive.org
https://twitter.com/sulejacobs
https://twitter.com/iReadInitiative
https://ireadtolive.org/international-literary-association/

 

 

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About Jacob Sule

Jacob is the founder of iRead To Live Initiative, a non-profit organization that focuses on achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals of Quality Education in Nigeria. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Public Administration and is nearing completion of his study of Law.

As a leader of Inspire Citizens in Africa, Jacob has consistently advocated for the delivery of SDG 4: Quality Education for every child, launching schools literacy clubs and campaigns, while supporting teacher training and professional learning opportunities in rural areas of Nigeria.

His goal remains empowering all students, teachers, and community members to become educated, impactful, and sustainable thinkers. Jacob is also a featured guest in the Inspire Citizens Activist in ResidenceProgram.

He joined the TEACHSDGs in 2018 as an Ambassador in Teaching the SDGs targets in Schools particularly in rural communities. His continued passion for education in Nigeria made him to host the Maiden Edcamp in Nigeria on December 15th, 2018, a participant-driven session for educators in Osun state, Nigeria for professional development and empowerment.

Jacob’s several literacy advocacies, projects, and campaigns in 2018 earned him the Global recognition as a Literacy Champion alongside 29 other leaders globally.