Transforming Education Ecosystems

Transforming Education Ecosystems

 The Western Academy of Beijing is transforming its educational ecosystem to better meet the learning and developmental needs of every single student in our community. Rather than students bending themselves around inflexible systems and structures, WAB’s systems and structures are being re-designed into agile and adaptive support networks to serve students and improve holistic learner development.

This is no easy feat, as you might well imagine. Though many change advocates call for the transformation of education, we’ve not found any offering comprehensive solutions comprising all features of an educational ecosystem. Some address spaces but not curriculum, some curriculum but not schedules, other schedules but not spaces. WAB believes to create an effective and sustainable solution for learner-centred education all ecosystem features must be moved forward.

At L2 we will generate our own collective understandings about complexities, opportunities, and barriers regarding educational transformation. We will then create our own elegantly aligned educational ecosystem solutions. Finally, we will have a look at WAB’s solutions, including newly built learning communities, self-directed learning, and competency-based progression (and more).

Session Audience:

Whole School : Anyone interested in learner-centered education, institutional change management, or wanting to be inspired by a school trying to making a difference

Session Goals:

  • To provide participants with some of the tools they might need to initiate or move forward their school’s conversations and practices about educational transformation.

  • To share the work being done at WAB in order to inspire others to see school differently, to provide a change/leadership model for others to borrow/adapt, and to connect with others making changes to improve school.

Session Outcomes:

Participants will leave with foundations for transforming any school’s educational ecosystem.  From compelling reasons to practical solutions, participants will develop language and see exemplars for change.

Presenter Bio:

John D’Arcy D.Ed began teaching in Toronto in 1987. While in Toronto John taught at Mary Ward HS where every day 1200 high school students create their own personalized schedules, there was no school-wide schedule. In 1998 John became a founding faculty member of Marshall McLuhan HS, which launched one of the first laptop programs in Canada.  In 2005 John joined CDNIS in Hong Kong where he led the implementation of one of the region’s first 1:1 laptop program. In 2011 John became Director of Learning at IICS in Istanbul where he led a shift to more personalized education. In 2015 John joined WAB as Deputy Director where he oversees the educational program.