08 October 2019

Global Education Week

A multi-year pupil committee led Global Education Week with a focus on learning more about education in different contexts.

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Global Education Week, which took the place of Upper School Charity Week, was a wonderful opportunity for all students across the school to reflect on the value of both education and global collaboration. The week, which was run by a team of Upper and Middle School students particularly involved with social initiatives within the school and beyond, had a focus on education and opportunity for children and youth, particularly on a global scale.

Throughout the week, students across year groups were presented with a range of activities that they could take part in, including a ‘Voice in Global Education’ panel, a pizza lunch for the Upper School, and the singOFF. They also heard from visiting South African artist and activist Donovan Julius during assemblies throughout the week, which allowed all students to receive a different perspective on education from one of the communities Sevenoaks is involved with.

The ‘Voice in Global Education Panel’ was particularly enlightening. Seven student and visiting speakers, representing an array of initiatives to do with education, including the Light for Africa Foundation, Education for All (Morocco), Ahimsa (Indian PSHE story books created by students Molisha Shah and Anya Tanti), Eduspots (Ghana), Horizon of Hope (supporting refugees in Malaysia, founded by student Gabby Tan), and the CAIRN Trust (Nepal), offered their unique perspectives about education and development in the global context. Each speaker discussed their own experiences of working with members of different communities to help provide educational opportunities, the way in which they considered the voice of the local community when creating programs and the power of education to build and create voice.

Meanwhile, the Sevenoaks singOFF, in support of several educational charities in India, was a resounding success, making over £2800. Meanwhile, the Upper School pizza lunch was extremely popular, with funds going to Horizon of Hope, Ahisma, and the CAIRN Trust. There was also a South Africa Quiz evening, with Donovan Julius as a guest speaker, which raised funds for the upcoming Global Education trip to South Africa alongside the art exhibtion. Junior Social Enterprise was also launched, in which students were encouraged to create their own project or initiative, and an online discussion course was also advertised, in which students were given the chance to collaborate with African students over the course of ten weeks, exploring global issues such as environmental sustainability, theories of development and the harms of foreign aid.

One of the most special things about the week was the way in which it was not focused on fundraising for one particular cause, but instead supported a variety of initiatives worldwide, reflecting the school’s international outlook. Furthermore, there was an emphasis on reflecting on our own privilege and on considering how we can work with people from across the globe in the sphere of education.

Overall, the week was a valuable experience for students, allowing us all to consider the value of education and how important global development and collaboration truly is.

Tasha Dambacher, L6

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