5th International Summit on the Teaching Profession focuses on implementing highly effective policy and practice

BANFF, AB, March 30, 2015 /CNW/ - The 5th International Summit on the Teaching Profession (ISTP 2015) concluded its deliberations today, bringing to a close a highly successful meeting that drew over 400 educators from 17 countries. The event was co-hosted by the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada (CMEC), and The Learning Partnership, in partnership with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and Education International.

"We are delighted that the ISTP organizing committee chose Canada as host country for this year's summit, which has become one of the most important forums in the world for education," said Gordon Dirks, Chair of CMEC and Minister of Education for Alberta. "Our role as host reflects the high regard in which our education systems are held, as well as the commitment of the provinces and territories of Canada to international dialogue and cooperation in education."

Delegates focused their attention on three key areas during the summit: developing and promoting effective leadership; advancing recognition of teachers and strengthening their sense of effectiveness or "self-efficacy"; and encouraging innovation in the 21st-century classroom. Their discussions centred on practical rather than theoretical considerations, with a strong emphasis on sharing best practices that can enhance measurable results.

"Discussions at ISTP are guided by evidence," noted Andreas Schleicher, Director of the Directorate for Education and Skills (EDU) at OECD. "We use results from studies like the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) and the Teaching and Learning International Study (TALIS) to see where education systems are performing well or registering big improvements. We then get the chance to meet some of the very people who have brought about those results and ask them: How did you achieve your success? What techniques are you using? What kinds of things didn't work along the way? ISTP really is about the "nuts and bolts" of excellence in teaching."

Excellence in teaching is the driving force behind ISTP. It is also the driving force behind student outcomes, as great teachers know how to get the best out of their students. "We are dedicated to supporting the teaching profession and enhancing its status around the world," said Fred van Leeuwen, General Secretary, Education International, one of the partners supporting ISTP. "It is the linchpin of every quality education system, and promoting the teaching profession is a critical investment in our collective future. ISTP is an important and valuable part of that investment."

Bringing together educators from so many countries, the summit was an excellent showcase for the value of international collaboration. It was also an important showcase for collaboration between the public and private sectors. "As a co-host of ISTP 2015, we are very pleased to have shown what cooperation in the sphere of education can achieve," said Akela Peoples, President and CEO of The Learning Partnership, a national charitable organization dedicated to the advancement of public education in Canada. "A wide variety of partners helped make ISTP happen in Canada in 2015; and their contribution is recognition of how important excellence in public education is to business, labour, government, and to society as a whole."

"We have to work together to ensure education systems remain relevant for today's students," continued Minister Dirks. "Enhancing the teaching profession is a collective responsibility that provides collective rewards. ISTP is the leading forum for doing that internationally, and we are very proud to have been able to work with so many partners to make ISTP 2015 a success."

CMEC and The Learning Partnership are pleased to acknowledge financial support for ISTP 2015 from the Government of Alberta, Samsung, the Government of Canada, Pearson Canada, SMART Technologies, TD Bank Group, Deloitte, TES Global, and the Canadian Teachers' Federation (CTF).

About CMEC

Founded in 1967, CMEC is the collective voice of Canada's ministers of education. It provides leadership in education at the pan-Canadian and international levels and contributes to the exercise of the exclusive jurisdiction of provinces and territories over education. For more information, visit us at www.cmec.ca. Visit the summit Web site at www.istp2015.org.

About The Learning Partnership

The Learning Partnership is a national charity dedicated to building stakeholder partnerships to support, promote, and advance publicly funded education in Canada. We do this through five key deliverables — innovative student programs, executive leadership for educators, knowledge mobilization and policy, tribute celebrations of excellence, and ongoing collaborations across Canada. Since 1993, more than 5.7 million students have participated in The Learning Partnership's programs. For more information on The Learning Partnership, visit www.thelearningpartnership.ca.

SOURCE Council of Ministers of Education, Canada

For further information: Colin Bailey, Director, Communications, CMEC, Cell: 416-938-1911, Tel.: 416-962-8100, ext. 259, E-mail: c.bailey@cmec.ca, Twitter: @CCMEC; Bernadette Celis Clarke, Communications Manager, The Learning Partnership, Cell: 416-894-0551, E-mail: bcelis@thelearningpartnership.ca, Twitter: @TLPCanada

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