In October this year, Education Partnerships is attending the international youth-led movement – the World Food Forum. This year, the theme is AGRIFOOD SYSTEMS TRANSFORMATION ACCELERATES CLIMATE ACTION.
The World Food Forum is an initiative of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO). It is a dynamic global platform that transcends boundaries, generations and sectors to transform the future of our agrifood systems. On 16–20 October 2023, both at the Headquarters of the FOA in Rome, Italy, and on the interactive virtual platform, the 2023 event will bring together world experts, impassioned changemakers and visionary leaders of all ages to unpack the theme.
Education Partnerships will actively participate in the 2023 forum through workshops for students and educators. “We are super excited about working with the World Food Forum team to create unique ‘money can’t buy’ experiences for students and educators internationally.”, says Heather MacDonald, Founding Director of Education Partnerships. “It is critical that if we are going to transform how we feed the world in the future, youth ‘voices’ must be heard. They think differently, access information differently and have valuable, insightful and innovative ideas if given the chance to speak and be heard.”
In 2022, Education Partnerships presented student work from PNG and Australian Students at the Global Education Fair. Their work was profiled in the end-of-year WFF report.
We look forward to reporting on developments leading up to the World Food Forum and reporting on the outcomes and opportunities for Australia and Asia Pacific regions.
Education Partnerships has recently been working in the highlands of Papua New Guinea (PNG) with Entropolis and UNICEF Australia to upskill primary school educators to embed entrepreneurship in their schools.
Starting with seven pilot schools, we trained 35 primary school educators on the Teen Entrepreneur program materials. Additionally, 25 Head Teachers and the PNG Department of Education participated in our Train the Trainer program to support the ongoing implementation of the program throughout PNG. The long-term aim of the program is to expand Teen Entrepreneur to all provinces in PNG. Through this expansion, students will learn to cultivate their entrepreneurial mindset and skillset.
Why is the PNG Department of Education committed to entrepreneurial education?
The PNG Department of Education cited that to succeed in the workforce in the future, they need to build capacity and capabilities in students to be agile thinkers, critical and creative thinkers to define problems and ideate solutions, self-directed learners, and thoughtful of how they can be productive citizens with the resources readily available to them.
It has been such a powerful experience to work within a different culture to create tailored program materials for their schools and to build confidence in their educators in delivering a style of education that gives such agency to students.
The best way to embed programs into different communities is to work collaboratively to design the program.
To listen to their needs, their strengths and the opportunities that may be very different to what is familiar to us.
To ask lots of questions and actively listen to responses.
To employ an entrepreneurial mindset – no idea is a bad idea until we have explored all the options. One ‘different’ idea can form the basis of a brilliant new idea!
We look forward to watching Teen Entrepreneur empower students to be active learners and innovators in PNG and also see how entrepreneurship transforms education in Australia as well as other countries. It is truly an exciting space to be working in!
Image: Students growing crops as part of the Teen Entrepreneur Program.
What does success for a business look like when working with the Education Sector?
Education Partnerships (EPS) achieved notable successes in 2022 whilst delivering powerful programs for businesses and government agencies providing a range of educational services to schools. These successes include the development of resources for the FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup, accreditation by the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA), and working with various organisations to develop professional learning programs.
“Heather led the planning and delivery of a series of education resources for the FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup 2022 and did an incredible job. From stakeholder consultation through to final design, Heather provided her expertise every step of the way to ensure the project was a success. She was generous with her knowledge, thorough with her planning and a pleasure to work with.” Alicia Kish (Marketing, Digital and Audience Engagement).
EPS also successfully navigated the Accreditation process of the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) on behalf of an EdTech company and The Crawford Fund. EPS worked alongside clients to develop professional learning opportunities for educators and teachers by outlining the requirements and aligning them with professional teaching standards to have these opportunities accredited by NESA. This significant accomplishment reflects the high level of professionalism and proficiency of EPS in creating instructional programmes.
Education Partnership collaborated with the Australian Olympic Committee throughout 2022 to equip Olympians to provide engaging curriculum-linked presentations to primary, secondary, and tertiary school students. Since 2016, the Australian Olympic Committee has collaborated with EPS to provide Summer and Winter Games materials. Also, EPS provided Conflict Resolution Services with a feasibility study and strategic plan to help them identify the need for mediation training to support relationships in the education sector. The objective was to assist the educational community in helping schools deal with complex relationships.
EPS collaborated with Entropolis, a company specialising in entrepreneurship education, over the second half of 2022 to develop learning experiences based on the general capabilities of Critical and Creative Thinking, Problem-Solving, and Personal and Social Capabilities. EPS and Entropolis created online courses using the design thinking process to enable students to think creatively and engage in hands-on learning.
Another significant success of EPS in 2022 was the Asia Education Foundation’s one-day design sprint, which involved over 300 students from Australia and Papua New Guinea. The sprint included a live workshop with breakout groups and audio recordings to support schools that may have lost connection during the sprint. EPS initiated and engaged Maximo Torero, Chief Economist, Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) for the United Nations, to present to the students why their voice matters to a global audience. Maximo also provided certificates and letters of thanks from the FAO to all participating schools. The work was profiled at the World Food Forum in Rome in October 2022.
The Food Security Design Sprint and Growing Food for the Future Guided Project are initiatives from the PNGAus Partnership Secondary Schools (PASS) Initiative, managed by Tetra Tech International Development on behalf of the Australian Government, supported by Asia Education Foundation at Asialink, The University of Melbourne.
Many significant achievements were realised through the close collaborative work between EPS and their clients. Whether it is developing educational resources, professional development opportunities for teachers and staff, providing communications support, or navigating the Education Sector, EPS has the expertise and dedication to providing high-quality education services.
As part of our ACIAR-supported NextGen project to encourage the next generation into studies and careers to improve food and nutrition security, the Crawford Fund is offering a $1000 prize to the school of a student or student team that wins our ‘Development for a Better Future’ Competition.
We want tomorrow’s scientists, researchers, communicators, AI and big data specialists, nutritionists, geographers, engineers, designers, social scientists, problem solvers and creative thinkers to let their imaginations run wild and help us with their ‘development for a better future’ ideas.
We look forward to students’ solutions to some of the most vexing challenges to food and nutrition security. We hope to get lots of entries of videos produced as part of using our materials or a video about their work and learnings from the materials.
Each entry will be individually judged by a panel based on its message, the evident understanding of the issue being addressed and the appropriateness of the suggested solution.
The Crawford Fund will then publicise video submissions on our website and social media platforms and share them with some of our partners to highlight the work of students and schools and their suggested solutions.
Entries must relate to a student’s class use of one of the seven modules in our “Development for a Better Future” series. While the teaching materials provide an opportunity for students to develop videos, blogs, essays, PowerPoints, ‘how to’ guides, field reports and social media campaigns, competition entries will be a short video.
The videos can be produced by an individual student or a class team and must be submitted by their educator. The students must attend a school in Australia or be home-schooled in Australia.
You can read more on our new updated Secondary School modules here or register to download the materials here. The competition closes on Friday, 22 September 2023.
Further information on competition details and how to submit your video are here.
The module topics ask students to:
Outline how Australia could support farmers in the Asia Pacific Region to address climate change challenges. (Climate Change module 1)
Develop a training program to build capacity in the Asia Pacific region around a climate-smart technology (Climate-Smart Technologies module 2)
Raise awareness of the challenges and possible solutions to how Covid-19 impacts food and nutrition security (Covid-19 and Food Security module 3)
Showcase an innovative solution to enhance food production in our region (Australia – A Powerhouse of Agriculture Research module 4)
Review strategies to address the gender dimension impacting agriculture in Australia and developing countries (Gender in Agriculture module 5)
Inform an audience on the value of Genebanks and crop diversity in the future of food and nutrition security (Genebanks – Saving more than Seeds module 6)
Develop an awareness-raising campaign on the challenges and opportunities of Food Loss and Waste for the UN International Day of Awareness on Food Loss and Waste Reduction- (Food Loss and Waste module 7)
Have a go – we can’t wait to see what students produce as part of their efforts on “Development for a Better Future”.
Hundreds of thousands of dollars go into developing education resources and programs for schools each year. While a percentage are extremely successful and have high participation rates, others go straight to the school resource library or float around in cyberspace waiting to be discovered. Here, we will look at what organisations can do to ensure greater success for their school programs.
Designing and developing an education resource for schools can be a tricky business. What will teachers use? What do students use in the classroom? How long will my resource be relevant? Organisations can run the risk of spending enormous amounts of money developing the most high tech resource only to find schools cannot access it or it is inappropriate.