A highly interactive workshop in Dubai brought together over 40 educational leaders looking to learn more about the impact of climate change on education from Dr Alex McTaggart, The University of Manchester's academic lead for transnational education and senior lecturer in educational leadership at the Manchester Institute of Education.
The workshop explored the crucial role that educational leaders play in addressing the climate crisis. Through interactive discussions and group activities, participants gained valuable insights and practical strategies to make a positive impact on the environment and inspire change within their educational community. All participants were awarded a certificate from The University of Manchester.
According to Dr McTaggart, International Schools and their cosmopolitan pedagogy, outlook, staffing and students appear to offer a renaissance for teaching and teachers, invoking a new hope for professionalism at global scale. Education is a formidable tool for influencing society, conveying cultural principles to future generations of students and shaping social change.
“The question I always ask myself is how do (we) teachers and educational leaders start bringing this subject into our teaching and to our students, and essentially to the world. Never forget the leadership role that you have in the international space because the children you teach are more empowered and they will go on to be more influential. It is extraordinarily interesting to be here connecting with local teachers and educators in this area and joining up the dots between climate change, education, youth and our futures.
Alex was supported at the workshop by a current student on the Part-time MA Educational Leadership in Practice (ELiP) programme, Mohammad Al Habbal, who shared his experiences. Mohammad is an enthusiastic and versatile team player with a diverse background in science and education and he recently created a STEM curriculum for middle school students, reflecting his passion for making a meaningful impact on young learners. “This was a fantastic event where I had the opportunity to share my experiences as a current ELIP student at the University of Manchester.”
Alex was one of the University's official delegates attending COP28 in Dubai, working towards completion of his Routledge book on educational leadership and the climate crisis in 2024. During his visit, Alex also found time to join a panel of experts for a discussion hosted in Dubai by the IET (Institution of Engineering and Technology) on the findings of its latest skills survey, linked to climate change resiliency.
Alex McTaggart is the University of Manchester's academic lead for transnational education and senior lecturer in educational leadership at the Manchester Institute of Education. His current work focusses on the crises of knowledge and climate and the role of education in preparing a sustainable world. Alex is also specialised in international schools' educational leadership and recently edited a special issue titled 'Can the IB make the world a better place?' in Globalisation Societies Education. Alex combines the skill of having learned to teach leadership in practice both as Senior Lecturer at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and as creator and Programme Director of the Award-winning Manchester Masters degree Educational Leadership in Practice. As a result, he is a popular invited speaker in schools around the world and is constantly in demand from educational leaders due to his hands-on leadership teaching aligned with theoretical and critical background.