The Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) and the Research for Equitable Access to Learning (REAL) Centre convened a roundtable discussion on the 1st of June, 2017 entitled “Reimagining the Education School of Tomorrow”.
The roundtable brought together experts and academics from a range of institutions across the UK who work on education and international development, with the aim of envisaging what a new School of Education would look like that aims to have an impact on the education ecosystem of Pakistan in particular, but also the implications for Schools of Education with an interest in international development globally.
The goal of the Roundtable was to utilize the launch of a new graduate school of education at The Lahore University of Management Sciences, Lahore, Pakistan to think of innovative ways of research, teaching and institutional collaborations. It provided a unique opportunity to enrich and shape the dialogue by engaging internationally reputed academics based in the UK who have produced research on education in relevant comparative contexts around the developing world, and are involved in teaching programmes with potential synergies to those being proposed at LUMS.
The development of the new School of Education (SoE) at LUMS is taking place at a time when there is a change in the educational landscape of Pakistan in recent years. Established narratives are changing, offering opportunities for evidence to help shape policy reforms: there is high parental demand and aspirations with respect to education, governmental spending on education is on the rise, and there is a confluence amongst policy-makers, donors, education providers and practitioners as they try to reform education. But there is a dearth of people with the expertise and leadership skills to understand the education ecosystem, and how to reform it. Thus, Pakistan is at a critical juncture for reform. It could capitalise on this momentum or look back at it as a missed opportunity a few years later.
The roundtable discussion focused on three key themes:
- Outlining and clarifying the ethos and objectives of the SoE;
- Discussing its curriculum and programming and;
- Identifying potential collaboration strategies for establishing institutional partnerships both at home and abroad.