The seventh annual Global Education and Skills Forum (GESF 2019), a Varkey Foundation initiative, to be staged at The Atlantis, The Palm, Dubai, UAE on Saturday 23 - Sunday 24 March, will focus on the
theme ‘Who is changing the world?’
The two-day forum will be attended by Global educational leaders and leading personalities from the public, private, social, entertainment and sports arenas, including over five former Presidents and Prime Ministers and 40 Education Ministers.
Among the key speakers spearheading sessions are Julius Maada Bio, President of Sierra Leone, Juan Manuel Santos, Nobel Peace Prize winner and former President of Colombia; Bana al-Abed, the Syrian
schoolgirl whose moving Twitter messages brought home to the world the horror of the siege of Aleppo; and Matteo Renzi, former Prime Minister of Italy.
Other change-makers include Steven Pinker, the world renowned Canadian psychologist, Mark Pollock, the first blind man to run to the South Pole, Kennedy ODede, a social entrepreneur that combats urban poverty and gender equality in the slums of Nairobi, Kenya and Mina Guli, a passionate water advocate and ultra runner.
Commenting on the summit, Founder of the Varkey Foundation and the Global Education & Skills Forum, Sunny Varkey said: “By sharing the stories of grassroots activists, campaigners, philanthropists, tech developers and many more, we can have a much smarter debate about how to solve challenges on a global scale. “Our fervent hope is that education leaders gathered at GESF 2019 will be able to learn from these pioneers to help make the change needed to give every child their birthright: a good education”.
The climax of the GESF will be the award ceremony of the US $1 million Global Teacher Prize 2019 on Sunday 24th March. This is the fifth time the prize will be awarded to one exceptional teacher who has made an outstanding contribution to the profession. And for the very first time, on the eve of the Global Teacher Prize ceremony, the Varkey Foundation will hold ‘The Assembly: A Global Teacher Prize Concert’ as a joyful ‘thank you’ to teachers all around the world for the unsung work they do every day.