Speakers & Presenters
The fourth in a series of
international School of Tomorrow conferences
exploring a new vision for schools
Background

Beaconhouse has been organising the Beaconhouse Academic Conference, an internal gathering of its school leaders and academic decision makers, at regular intervals over the past few decades.

Participants at this conference have increased as Beaconhouse has grown.  In particular, participation from school-based leaders has been systematically enhanced with the inclusion of School Coordinators and Senior Masters/Mistresses.  The last Beaconhouse Academic Conference under that particular name was held at the Pearl-Continental Hotel, Bhurban in Pakistan in 1995.

In 2000, on the occasion of its Silver Jubilee (25th anniversary), Beaconhouse organised a conference called ‘Rethinking Education’ at the Convention Centre, Islamabad.  This conference was inaugurated by former President Pervez Musharraf, and featured Dr Roger Schank as the keynote speaker.  Rethinking Education represented an important shift in focus as it was the first time that the Beaconhouse Academic Conference took on a broader, more global theme.  It was also the first time that guests outside of the Beaconhouse Group were invited.

In November/December 2005, on the occasion of its 30th anniversary, Beaconhouse organised ‘Towards 2035: The School of Tomorrow (SOT).’ This conference opened at the Convention Centre, Islamabad, while its 2nd and 3rd days were in Karachi and Lahore, at the Pearl-Continental Hotels.  This three-day international conference featured around 30 speakers, workshop leaders, and panellists from around the world, most notably former President Pervez Musharraf, former Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz, Noam Chomsky (via live video conference), Roger Schank, Jonathan Power and Parvez Hoodbhoy, and aimed to identify challenges within the global education system as well as propose possible solutions in the realms of teacher education, early childhood learning, student assessment, education technology, and enquiry-based learning.

For the first time, the audience for this Beaconhouse conference also included delegates that represented other private schools and educational institutions, publishers, and other stakeholders of civil society.  Beaconhouse also invited a large number of delegates from less privileged schools, NGOs and government in addition, of course, to its own key members of staff.

In 2010 Beaconhouse continued to focus on what a School of Tomorrow entailed with its conference called ‘The School of Tomorrow: Freedom to Learn.’  A key objective of the conference was for educators to reassess some of their earlier beliefs of what constitutes progressive teaching and learning while helping to shape a new direction not just for Beaconhouse, but for schools at every level, everywhere. The conference featured the former Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, Richard Mark Gerver as the keynote speaker, and renowned speakers including Andrew Cecil Goodwyn, Catherine Temple Wilson, Richard Pietrasik, Claude Alphonso Alvares, Mary Louise Holly, Dennis James Taylor, Anthony Colin Townsend, Norbert Pachler and many more.

In continuation of the central theme, in 2012 Beaconhouse organised a conference called ‘The School of Tomorrow: Empowering Lifelong Learners’ in Kuala Lumpur on the 20th and 21st of November. The key objective of the conference was for participants, almost 80 per cent of whom were teachers, to explore and examine new ways of teaching and learning and identify a way forward to implement them in their schools. It also focused on models of professional development and their impact on classroom practice and the role of school leaders in enhancing learning and teaching in their schools.

SOT 2010 videos