The second regional AFS Intercultural Programs forum on global citizenship education in the Caribbean will explore the main theme, “Education and Global Citizenship: Developing Essential Competences for the 21st Century”. The forum will take place on 1 July 2017 in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, and it will bring together educators, ministries of education, businesses and civil society organizations to discuss and promote global citizenship education in the region as a basis for the essential 21st century competences. The forum is organized under the patronage of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

Recent research and trends, such as the introduction of global competence into PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) tests for fifteen-year-olds, make it increasingly clear that traditional academic knowledge is not sufficient to prepare young people for life and employment in our a globalized world. While education systems are rethinking goals, content and methods of the their curricula, employers are revising the types of skills and experiences they look for in job seekers.

Civil society organizations have a significant role to play in this changing environment, which is why AFS Intercultural Programs in the Caribbean region invites those who share our learning to live together philosophy join us and work together to understand and address the issues of our time and to promote the global movement for citizenship education. This forum builds on the success of the first edition of the educational forum that took place in San José, Costa Rica in 2015.

photo by AFS Dominican Republic

The forum will explore the state of global citizenship education in the region, best practices for global competence development and perspectives of different governments in the region on the subject. Educators will have the chance to exchange best practices on how intercultural learning and global citizenship education can be incorporated into school curricula and discuss the value of global competence for employers. Finally, the forum will tackle the role of civil society organizations in promoting intercultural and global education, and possibilities for civil society to collaborate with employers and formal education institutions.

Forum participants will have the opportunity to exchange ideas and best practices to reach a better understanding of intercultural and global competences needed in the 21st century. Educators will identify appropriate strategies to incorporate and increase intercultural learning in their curricula and education policies. Recognizing the work AFS and other civil society organizations invest in the development of key competencies for global citizenship, participants will create concrete action plans to increase the value of global competence in the 21st century workplace for both students and employers.

A group of distinguished keynote speakers will address the Forum, including:

  • Carlos Alberto Torres, University of Los Angeles, California (UCLA), UNESCO Chair in Global Learning and Global Citizenship Education
  • Sylvia Schmelkes, Director of the Mexican National Institute of Educational Evaluation
  • Daniel Obst, President and CEO of AFS Intercultural Programs
  • Dr Mu-kien Sang Ben, Vice-Rector of the Pontifical Catholic University Mother and Teacher
  • Dr Jorge Enrique González, Colombia National University, UNESCO Chair for Intercultural Dialogue
  • Oscar Oviedo, Vice-president of BHD León bank and CEO of Vida Azul foundation
  • Mark Silverman Multz, President and CEO of Banco del Progreso
  • Ana Steinbach Torres, researcher and professor at University of Los Angeles, California (UCLA)
  • Johan Hernández, Deputy Minister of Soils and Waters at the Ministry of the Environment.

All interested stakeholders are invited to register for the Forum until 7 June 2017 by using the registration form available on the website. Participation in the forum is free of charge.

Download the press release