Johannesburg, South Africa, July 25, 2012 --(PR.com
)-- A record +6000 education professionals and learners attended this year’s African Education Week and Career Indaba, organised by Cape Town based, Spintelligent, which took place at the Sandton International Convention Centre from 2-4 July.
“This year we made sure that we catered to everyone involved in education: from the teachers, principals, the education departments, to the suppliers of books and technology and of course, the learners. Seeing one packed school bus after another arrive at the Career Indaba was a real highlight,” says Claire O’Connell, African Education Week’s programme director. “It was the first time we organised Career Indaba as part of Education Week and more than 4000 learners from all over Gauteng attended the expo, excited to meet with educational institutions and prospective employers.”
According to Claire the additional Career Indaba expo meant a 191% increase in visitors and a 33% growth in exhibitors.
Diamond sponsor Macmillan South Africa spearheaded some 90 educational institutions and industry suppliers that exhibited in the Learning Expo and Career Indaba. More than 10 local and international universities had stands with Edudome’s onsite planetarium a firm favourite amongst the visitors. While education professionals apprised themselves of the latest technological teaching aids, school leavers attended free workshops on career orientation, including talks by celebrities like Jamali singer Jacqui Carpede and 5fm DJ, MC and model Poppy Ntshongwa. Many lucky visitors also went home with big prizes such as DSTV decoders, iPads, E-readers, kindles and printers.
The 6th African Education Week is now recognized as one of the largest education events on the continent with 80 education experts and professionals that addressed this year’s conference sessions. Says Claire O’Connell: “discussions went beyond the critical issues effecting education and rather looked at solutions through information exchanges, sharing ideas and tested strategies and open panel debates.”
The opening keynote session hosted by independent education expert Graeme Bloch featured the Deputy Minister of Higher Education and Training, Mr Mduduzi Manana, KwaZulu Natal’s MEC for Education Senzo Mchunu, and Anne van Zyl, Head of the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls.
What some of African Education Week and Career Indaba’s valued partners said about this year’s event:
- “What a great conference and even greater participants. With the commitment of all those educators, surely we can change our country and our education system? We have to!” - Graeme Bloch, independent education expert
- “The organisers of this conference understand that the challenges facing education systems across the continent cannot be addressed solely in isolated national policy contexts.” - Deputy Minister of Higher Education and Training, Mduduzi Manana
- “The platform you create through the African Education Week for opportunities to discuss what really needs to be done is wonderful. I would like to congratulate you on the holistic approach of the conference that brought so many facets important to education together. - Antoinette Du Plessis, Macmillan Teacher Campus
- “An excellent networking opportunity. CoZa Cares Foundation was able to make connections with many organisations interested in collaborative interventions in schools.” - Fiona Wallace, Co.za Cares Foundation
- “It really is an event that is growing from strength to strength and we commend you all on a job Very well done.” - Lauren Bright, ARGO
- “Thank you very much for a well-planned Education week. I really learnt a lot and gained lots of information from Exhibitors that will assist us as the district to empower our educators. My son Letsatsi also indicated that he really learnt a lot from Career Indaba and he now knows exactly what subject to choose for FET and also learnt about new causes he was not aware of. “ - Matladi Moloi, Gauteng Department of Education
- “The conference was very comprehensive & covered a range of very interesting topics.” Dr. Logan Athiemoolam, Nelson Mandela University
African Education Week and Career Indaba will return to the Sandton Convention Centre next year from 4-6 July.