Australia-Asia BRIDGE School Partnerships Program

Kathe Kirby1

1Director, Asia Education Foundation, University Of Melbourne

The Australia–Asia BRIDGE (Building Relationships through Intercultural Dialogue and Growing Engagement) School Partnerships Program builds people-to-people links across the Asia region. BRIDGE is a blended model of face-to-face teacher professional learning and online engagement that connects teachers, students and school communities to increase awareness and understanding of contemporary Australia and Asia.

The inaugural Australia-Indonesia BRIDGE School Partnerships Program was implemented as a pilot in 2008. The program has since expanded to 764 schools and over 1,125 teachers across Australia, Brunei, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand and Vietnam.

BRIDGE is a teacher professional learning program that builds teacher capacity to:

  • strengthen global competence
  • develop intercultural understanding
  • enhance ICT skills
  • establish sustainable school partnerships
  • contribute to a community of learners.

In Queensland, 76 schools currently participate in the BRIDGE program.  This workshop is an opportunity for BRIDGE school educators to come together to discuss their school partnership and share learnings about connecting successfully to schools in our region. Educators who are interested in forming technology enhanced school partnerships will have the opportunity to learn how its working in these Queensland schools.


Biography:

Kathe is an experienced education professional who has worked nationally and internationally over a career spanning teaching, teacher education, policy development and leading innovation in schools and education systems.

Kathe is the Director of the Asia Education Foundation. AEF’s goal is to ensure that all young Australians are equipped for their future with global competence.

Kathe has worked as a policy advisor in Victorian Education, a teacher educator at Melbourne University and a secondary teacher. She is currently a Board Director of the Foundation for Young Australians, Education Services Australia and Executive Director of the Global Education Leaders Partnership.

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