Last week, our Digital Leaders from across our global community came together in Dubai to work on our Artificial Intelligence in Education Framework, drawing on world-leading research and practice. Andy Perryer, Head of Digital Learning for the Middle East, shares some insight into their week and the positive impact of this in-person opportunity for knowledge animation and strengthening global mindsets. 

I recently had the privilege of spending a week, in Dubai, with Cognita’s global digital leaders, hailing from all our regions: Asia, Europe, and South America. While we’ve done remarkable work online together, there was something uniquely powerful about being in the same room. There was a tangible spontaneity and deeper connection that came from face-to-face interactions. 

 Our purpose is crystal clear—to leverage the transformative potential of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to empower our students and teachers, helping them thrive in this rapidly evolving world. 

 These digital leaders are system leaders in the truest sense. They work across boundaries and schools, bringing expertise that can reshape an entire educational landscape. The focus of our time together was twofold: to deep-dive into creating an AI framework for our teachers and to begin the groundwork for AI masterclasses aimed at our students. This isn’t just innovation for the sake of it; it’s an intentional move to bring our global community closer to becoming a highly interconnected, effective system. 

 The AI framework is particularly exciting. Designed to be quickly accessible, it’s a curated set of resources targeting specific, research-backed areas in teaching and learning where AI can be most impactful. The objective is straightforward but ambitious: to equip every teacher across Cognita schools with the tools and understanding they need to bring AI to life in their classrooms. 

 What truly distinguished our week in Dubai was not just the groundbreaking projects we initiated but the lasting impact of our collective endeavours. This manifested in two significant ways: 

  1. A Culture of Inclusivity: We cultivated an environment where every idea, regardless of its origin, was given the space to grow. This inclusivity fostered a level of creativity that we hadn’t tapped into before.
  2. Forward Momentum: Our collaborative spirit and the projects we embarked upon gave us a sense of direction and pace. We departed with not just plans but a timeline, clear steps, and roles that will make our vision a reality.

Mike Galligan, Education Programme Manager in Asia said of the week: “The work we did together only reaffirmed my feelings that AI in the realm of education is going to be very big. While it is impossible to predict how things will evolve, it is important to facilitate discussions, and this effort has proved incredibly fruitful” 

Valeria Capetillo, Digital Learning Adviser in Chile added: “Understanding our schools and our regions allowed us to add unique value to the conversation that has led to a richer framework which will support more colleagues in using AI in their teaching and learning.”  

 The energy created by our shared mission was invigorating. Each leader has returned to their home region not merely with a project plan but with a spirit rejuvenated by the collective aim of driving educational excellence through technology. 

 This meeting may have been brief in the grand timeline of our organisation, but its influence will undoubtedly shape our approach and impact across the Cognita educational landscape for the foreseeable future. Together, we are not just stronger; we are transformative.  

 And we are just getting started.