Award-winning teacher, Andria Zafirakou MBE, former Minister of State for Schools and Learning Lord Jim Knight, Chief Executive of the Chartered College of Teaching, Professor Dame Alison Peacock, and founder of @TeacherToolkit, Ross McGill, have joined the Judging Academy for the new World’s Best School Prizes, launched this year by T4 Education in partnership with Accenture
Award-winning teacher, Andria Zafirakou MBE, former Minister of State for Schools and Learning, Lord Jim Knight, Chief Executive of the Chartered College of Teaching, Professor Dame Alison Peacock, and founder of @TeacherToolkit, Ross McGill, today urged trailblazing schools in the UK and across the globe to apply for the inaugural World’s Best School Prizes, launched by T4 Education in partnership with Accenture. Andria Zafirakou, Lord Jim Knight, Dame Alison Peacock and Ross McGill have joined leading figures from around the world on the Judging Academy of the new $250,000 Prizes that will celebrate schools everywhere for the pivotal role they play in developing the next generation of learners and for their enormous contribution to society’s progress especially in the wake of COVID.
The World’s Best School Prizes have been launched this year to create a powerful new platform to tell the stories of schools that are transforming the lives of their students and making a real difference to their communities.
With over 1.5 billion learners impacted by school and university closures, global education is emerging from the greatest crisis it has ever faced. Even before the pandemic, the UN found progress was already too slow to achieve its Sustainable Development Goal 4 of quality education for all by 2030. The World’s Best School Prizes provide a grassroots solution to help build the systemic change needed. They will enable inspirational schools from every corner of the globe to share their best practices, help others replicate their innovative ideas, and democratise school-based expertise to improve education.
Andria Zafirakou said:
“As a teacher, I know first hand the tireless work schools in the UK and across the globe have put in throughout the pandemic to keep children learning.
“The first ever World’s Best School Prizes will help showcase and celebrate the incredible work our schools are doing across the planet. I urge them to apply so that the whole world can see their greatness.”
Lord Jim Knight said:
“Schools are essential expressions of our communities and our hopes for the future. As the world becomes more connected, our schools reflect a global community. Now is the perfect time to establish the World’s Best School Prizes.”
Dame Alison Peacock said:
“Schools and all who work within them deserve recognition and praise. The pandemic has brought the world closer together in our shared endeavour of supporting children and young people to learn in the face of adversity. I hope these new global Prizes will increase cooperation, collegiality and kindness.”
Ross McGill said:
“Teaching is a team sport; what better way to support all teachers by celebrating some of our amazing schools from across the world.”
Vikas Pota, Founder of T4 Education and the World’s Best School Prizes, said:
“As the world seeks to rebuild from the devastation of the COVID pandemic, we must always remember the vital role our schools will play. Strong schools will not only equip the next generation to fulfil their full potential, but empower them to tackle the greatest challenges our societies face, from inequality to environmental destruction and rapid technological change.
“We have launched the World’s Best School Prizes to bring to light the stories of schools that are building stronger societies, and give them a voice at the top table to help transform education so that every child can achieve the quality education that should be their right by birth.”
There are five Prizes schools can apply for:
- The World’s Best School Prize for Community Collaboration
- The World’s Best School Prize for Environmental Action
- The World’s Best School Prize for Innovation
- The World’s Best School Prize for Overcoming Adversity
- The World’s Best School Prize for Supporting Healthy Lives
A Top 10 shortlist for each Prize will be announced later this year, followed by the Top 3 finalists for each Prize. After a public advisory vote, the winner of each Prize will be chosen based on rigorous criteria by a Judging Academy comprising distinguished leaders all across the globe including academics, educators, NGOs, social entrepreneurs, government, civil society, and the private sector.
The winner will be announced in October 2022 at World Education Week. A prize of US$250,000 will be equally shared among the winners of the five Prizes, with each receiving an award of US$50,000.
All 50 shortlisted schools across the five Prizes will share their best practices through toolkits that showcase their “secret sauce” to innovative approaches and step-by-step instructions on how others can replicate their methods to help improve education everywhere.
The Prizes are open to all schools who teach students in compulsory schooling, and are legally registered with their respective Ministry of Education or government regulatory authority, including early childhood centres, kindergarten, primary and secondary schools, and online schools.
Schools can apply online at worldsbestschool.org
Applications close on March 1st, 2022, at 11.45pm GMT.