Women leaders in education complete action plans to take forward in their home countries

3 April 2014

Dushyanthi Thuseetharan from Sri Lanka, Elizabeth Marahora from the Solomon Islands, and Janet Sarker from Bangladesh, have spent this week reflecting on their exciting and varied programme in the UK.

Since mid-February the three women leaders in education have spent time with schools, governing bodies and local dioceses, to experience the education sector in the UK and share learning on key elements of their work.

A bespoke short course at the University of Nottingham was a particularly valuable time of learning and insight. 

Penny Bentley has mentored the group throughout the programme, and has encouraged them to reflect on their leadership skills and styles, as well as the development of teaching and education in their home countries.

Penny said, “Of all the people I have ever worked with, these three Fellows have been the most fulfilling and delightful. The programme has enabled them to learn, to think and to reflect.”

The scheme, which is funded by the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission, has enabled the three women to experience education in the UK, to develop their own skills and to inspire them to further influence the education sector in their own countries. 

In their final day of sessions the women scholars reflected on the experience as a whole, and made action plans for their return home.

Common focuses for the fellows are: sharing learning with teaching staff; introducing a solid leadership model; reviewing classroom management and providing teacher training; and the development of student-centred learning.  

Janet Sarker said, “I would like to give thanks to the Anglican Alliance for the Commonwealth scholarship.  It was really a wonderful experience for me and I have learnt many new things from this programme. I hope that this learning will help me a lot to do better in my home country.”

Dushy Thuseetharan said, “It has been a unique learning experience.  The whole programme had been tailored to suit our requirements and we are happy and proud that we were able to complete it successfully.  Our sincere thanks to the Anglican Alliance and the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission.”

And Elizabeth Marahora said, “It has been the best opportunity and I have learnt a lot.  I would like to quote the leadership model, as I have learnt: “To listen acutely with my ears, eyes, heart and undivided attention.”  Thank you.”

The Anglican Alliance have had a fantastic time learning from the three women leaders and hearing more about their own contexts.  

It has been a wonderful opportunity to further build our connections across the globe, and to encourage relationship across the Communion.

Dushy, Elizabeth and Janet all agree that some of the highlights of their time have been to meet Anglicans across the UK and to build such significant relationships with them.

Many thanks go to all of the placement providers and hosts who have given such excellent opportunities to the three scholars.  And to the dioceses and parishes who hosted one or more of the fellows for a weekend visit.  

It has been a highly successful scheme, and the third of the Anglican Alliance’s Commonwealth Fellowship Schemes.