Education World forum is held from 19 to 22 January in London where 1200 delegates from 112 countries are discussing changes and reforms in the education. British Council has had a pleasure of accompanying representatives of the Ministries of Education from Western Balkan countries.

During the first day of Forum, PISA had an impactful talk where they presented their research findings. Some of the conclusions are about how it is crucial for children to learn critical thinking and problem-solving skills for them to be fully functional in the society of tomorrow. It was said: “In the past children would have one book per class meaning only one source of information; nowadays there are many sources of information that children can turn to. Job of the teachers is to teach them how to critically analyze available information and use many perspectives at the same time.” The research showed that teachers lack enthusiasm and motivation, which the education systems need to work on. Also, parents and corporate sector wish to be more included in the process.

On the sidelines of the event Western Balkans Ministers had a meeting with the British Minister for Europe, Christopher Pincher, to mark the success of the 21st Century Schools programme and discuss the importance of digital skills and education in the 21st century. 

During the meeting, Minister Pincher underlined the UK dedication to improving digital skills and education in the Western Balkans to ensure children are prepared for the digital challenges in the next generations as the region continues to stabilise.

The Minister for Europe Christopher Pincher said:

Our young people represent our future: our respective countries’ success will depend in large part on their talents, their skills and their ambitions. The world in which they are growing up is changing. They are already incredibly tech savvy. We need to tap into their talent, and develop it further."

“That is why the UK is a proud supporter of the 21st Century Schools programme. It will help future generations in the Western Balkans to become the dynamic entrepreneurs of tomorrow and generate prosperity for their countries today – and with it, stability for the region.” 

On the 22 January, Ministries representatives will be visiting Highgate elementary school.