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01 January 2005

Global learning links

Our not-for-profit arm Cambridge Education Foundation is a consortium partner of the Department for International Development’s Global School Partnership initiative, helping teachers in the UK and develop-ing countries gain formal recognition for practical, work-based learning through forming global partnership links – a fresh approach which has not been a standard part of practice.

Working with universities in the UK plus higher education institutions and ministries of education within southern partnership countries, Cambridge Education Foundation is helping teachers to receive recognition for the everyday work they do as an element for further study – whether it be a piece of curriculum development or some action research. In the UK this may contribute towards a postgraduate certificate or MA, while in some of the partnership countries where many teachers aren’t graduates, the work may be used in a form of certificated continuing professional development.

By identifying and meeting their training and support needs, the programme aims to support teachers in building their confidence, knowledge and skills in order to teach about global development issues. Part of Cambridge Education Foundation’s role in the endeavour is to promote the globalisation of curricula as well as encourage opportunities for teachers in developing countries that match those available to UK teachers. Such systems have already been implemented in Ghana, Namibia and South Africa and are being extended to the Caribbean, Gambia, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Zambia.

Promoting further international links, Cambridge Education Foundation is also a member of BUILD (Building Understanding through International Links for Development), which has launched an all-party parliamentary group to raise political awareness of the power of the community partnerships. “Both the Department for Education and Skills and the Commission for Africa have invited us to input into new initiatives,” explains Angela Cook who’s co-ordinating our work with international bodies. “The convergence of presidencies involving the G8 countries and EU next year provides real opportunities and exciting challenges for international linking.”
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