On 4 July 2023, the fellows and teachers of the Ethics Education Fellowship program gathered for the first time at a Global Community of Practice meeting. While the 30 fellows from Bangladesh, Indonesia, Kenya, Mauritius, Nepal, and Seychelles had been meeting regularly, this was the first meeting where the teachers had the opportunity to connect with colleagues from the six participating countries.
Under the title “Bringing Ethics Education to Life in our Classrooms,” the webinar brought together over 200 teachers. During the two-hour session, teachers shared their experiences of implementing ethics education in their classrooms and highlighted the challenges they face. These challenges include sustaining transformations in learners amidst negative stereotypes and biases reinforced by families and communities, as well as dealing with competitive education systems and limited time availability for participatory and collaborative learning.
However, teachers also spoke positively about how transformative pedagogy has allowed for dynamic engagement with learners, leading to improved relationships and increased reflection on diversity within their communities.
The webinar aimed to promote a deeper understanding of transformative pedagogy, and teachers from different countries had the opportunity to listen to each other’s experiences. Language interpretation in various languages, including English, Bahasa Indonesia, Bengali, and Nepali, was provided to ensure inclusivity and effective communication.
The success of the first webinar inspired another session that took place on 25 July 2023. Over 100 educators attended this session to further advance knowledge and reflections on how to support meaningful learner-led actions. The emphasis was on fostering positive transformations within the communities. Participants had the opportunity to listen to positive examples of genuine child-led actions. They reflected on the value of allowing learners to propose ideas, conduct their own projects and carry out actions to bring positive transformations in their communities. They also discussed the importance of teachers providing proper and strong support to children.
The webinar was an extraordinary opportunity for teachers from different countries, cultures, and religions to come together, share their experiences and reflect on how they can promote and ensure meaningful participation of learners in their classrooms.
The Ethics Education Fellowship program is a collaboration between the ministries of education of Bangladesh, Indonesia, Kenya, Mauritius, Nepal, and Seychelles, together with Arigatou International, the Guerrand-Hermès Foundation for Peace, the KAICIID International Dialogue Centre, the Muslim Council of Elders, and UNESCO, represented by the UNESCO Regional Office for Eastern Africa and the UNESCO New Delhi Cluster Office. The process is supported by the National Commissions for UNESCO.