On October 23, 2014, the representatives of Institute of Sustainable Education prof. Anita Pipere, assoc. prof. Dzintra Iliško and the researcher Ilona Mičule were invited to present a lecture and to deliver workshops at the seminar for the UNESCO associated schools’ teachers “Sustainable development – from knowledge to action: Networking, technologies and modern teaching methods” organized by the LNC UNESCO in Riga, Competence Centre “Lielvārds".
The UNESCO Associated schools serve as laboratories of ideas on innovative approaches for quality education for all and translate the four pillars of education for the 21st century – learning to know, learning to do, learning to be and learning to live together – into good practices of quality education.
At the beginning of the seminar UNESCO LNC general secretary Baiba Moļņika introduced the Global Action Program (GAP). She highlighted the aim of the GAP: to generate and scale-up ESD action and to make a substantial contribution to the post-2015 agenda in all areas of education and learning to accelerate progress towards sustainable development. She also pointed to the reorientation of education and learning so that everyone has the opportunity to acquire the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes that empower them to contribute to sustainable development – and make a difference; to strengthen education and learning in all agendas, programs and activities that promote sustainable development. GAP focuses on 5 priority actions: advancing policy, integrating sustainability practices into education and training environments (whole-institution approaches); increasing the capacity of educators and trainers; empowerment and mobilization of youth, encouragement of local communities and municipal authorities to develop community-based ESD programs.
At the seminar prof. Anita Pipere and assoc. prof. Dzintra Iliško presented the book designed for the schools “Sustainable development – from knowledge to action” authored by Anita Pipere, Dzintra Iliško and Ilona Mičule and organized two workshops for the teachers and the experts of ESD “Whole school approach to education for sustainable development at my school: SWOT analysis” and “Principles of heritage education, human rights and value education in the context of sustainable education”. The process and results of these workshops were highly evaluated by the audience and these activities professed the beliefs expressed by many researchers and scholars that the idea of sustainable development and sustainable education will survive and be promoted in society mostly because of altruistic efforts, inspiring enthusiasm and synergetic activities of handful of teachers, school administration and educational researchers.
At the seminar teachers were also provided with the opportunity to learn the latest ICT innovations that are applicable for the educational process at schools. Teachers were also acquainted with the interactive materials about UNESCO days of remembrance.
We express our deepest gratitude to UNESCO LNC for the provided opportunity to be part of this event organized in Latvia in promoting sustainability in schools of Latvia.