CWEIC Announces a Commission on Private Sector Engagement in Commonwealth Education

At the Commonwealth Business Forum, the CWEIC announced a Commission on Private Sector Engagement in Commonwealth Education, to discuss and promote best practices regarding the involvement of the private sector in education provision.

This two-year programme is designed to explore the most progressive and innovative private sector contributions to education provision across the Commonwealth. It will address misconceptions surrounding the involvement of the private sector in education, and share best practices between nations, civil society organisations, social organisations and businesses.

The purpose of this Commission is not just to challenge the idea that governments should be burdened with the sole responsibility of delivering education to citizens through state bodies and tax-funded systems, but also to better understand how the private sector can improve and develop education delivery.

Over recent years, education provision has advanced, digitised and changed. Whilst education delivery has long been considered purely a concern of governments, the role of the private sector in education has been increasing, be that charitable, for-profit or through social entrepreneurship. This is understandable, as non-governmental organisations will often create some of the most innovative and progressive approaches to education, and education of poorer citizens in particular.

Chaired by Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Paduka Lim Kok Wing, founder of the LimKokWing University of Creative Technology, the backbone of the Commission will be a series of high level seminars in several Commonwealth countries, held by a distinguished panel. The Commission will bring together leaders from across the Commonwealth in the education sector who will present case studies, promote discourse and explore new best practices. The Commission will be transparently funded by Strategic Partners of CWEIC.

60 per cent of Commonwealth citizens are under 30, which makes this Commission hugely relevant to promoting an inclusive and innovative approach education across the 53 nations. Supporting the next economic generation is of fundamental importance to ensuring that the Commonwealth is well equipped to meet its Sustainable Development Goals, and economic targets. We want to share ways which can both improve the efficiency and cost of education, but also its impact in less developed countries.

CWEIC Chief Executive, Richard Burge said “Whilst private sector involvement in education has rapidly increased in recent years, some still view this with inherent suspicion. The reality however is that the private sector can contribute a wealth of pioneering approaches to education delivery. CWEIC recognises that these practices can have a huge benefit for the young people of the Commonwealth, be that through sharing the financial burden of education for governments, or modernising outdated and obsolete methods, and we want to create a proper platform to ensure their promotion.”