Festival sets to break educational borders

Geoff Barton addressing the audience at the launch of the International Festival of Learning at West Suffolk College.
Geoff Barton addressing the audience at the launch of the International Festival of Learning at West Suffolk College.
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The launch of the International Festival of Learning took place at West Suffolk College in Bury St Edmunds last week.

To be hosted by the College on April 16 next year the event will have debates, keynotes and professional development led by experts from Suffolk, the UK and around the world.

Nikos Savvas, Principal at West Suffolk College said: “We started as a group of 10 headteachers, business and education leaders to produce the Suffolk Festival of Learning in Ipswich in 2016, but we now have more than 50 partners who have joined the movement.”

The aim is to support long-term educational success and develop relationships across the East of England and internationally.

The four themes will be Empowering Communities, Creating the Environment, Future-proof Workforce and Curriculum Leadership- skills for a changing world.

Geoff Barton, who is now General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), returned to address the 50 strong audience.

He said: “It’s ideas like this that will enable education to flourish in a challenging globalised world. Extending our profile internationally, and learning from some of the best education systems in the world will play a key role in our future.”

Rob Loe, CEO and Director of Cambridge based Relational Schools Research and Yvonne Folkes, Head of Visits, Events and Exchanges at the British Council also spoke.

The event in 2018 is expecting to have more than 3000 delegates attend.