Schools Now!, an online global conference for Partner Schools on the theme of Leading Recovery: curriculum, community and wellbeing was hosted by the British Council on March 9, 2022, over two days.
In its seventh year, the British Council’s Schools Now! conference brings together partner schools from 36 countries to consider themes such as resilience, innovation, and internationalisation of vision and curriculum. The conference aims to help foster academic excellence and prepare students for the wider world.
This year, over 3,000 attendees came together online to explore the theme of Leading Recovery: curriculum, community and wellbeing through keynote presentations, panel discussions and workshops. In Ghana, principals, and leaders of the British Council Partner Schools, attended the live event on 9 March at the British Council Accra premises.
The conference recognised the confidence of school leaders who supported their learning communities and embraced challenges during the pandemic, and it explored ways to build on success and have open discussions about the next steps for recovery. The conference also enabled policy makers, school leaders and academics to collaborate and exchange ideas, experiences, and policies.
The attendees were welcomed by Scott McDonald, Chief Executive, British Council. He said:
“Our ambition is for the conference to provide you with opportunities to further learn, share knowledge and be inspired by like-minded educators. The themes and topics explored during the conference will help you lead your school’s recovery with a spirit of boldness and optimism, and build connections to support other British Council Partner Schools to do the same.”
Amongst the highlights from Schools Now! was a keynote presentation from Dr. Funke, Head of Counselling and Support at Al-Rayan International School in Ghana, about innovative approaches to mental health and wellbeing in an international school, Dr Funke spoke about practical approaches that schools can implement to help students thrive.
Evelyn Forde MBE, Headteacher at Copthall School, UK, discussed the challenges schools are facing with regard to the mental health and wellbeing of young people as they emerge from the pandemic and the return to school in an uncertain time. She shared some of her experience, best practice, and discussed what resilience means for schools, staff and students.
Closing the conference, Simon Higgins, Global Head of School Examinations added:
“We remain committed to raising the quality of our support for your schools by delivering your exams, giving you active account relationship support, and providing a wide range of focused, relevant professional development opportunities. This year the British Council will once again help more than 100,000 students make over 800,000 exam entries from more than 2000 Partner Schools like yours worldwide.”
Globally, British Council Partner Schools work with more than 2,100 schools, supports over 100,000 teachers and touches the lives of about one million students. With attendees from the Americas, Europe Sub-Saharan Africa, Middle East & North Africa, South Asia and East Asia, the truly global event helps to support the mission of the British Council in building connections, understanding and trust through education.