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July 11, 2020

Virtual School of Tomorrow conference begins

Lahore

July 11, 2020

LAHORE:Beaconhouse’s first fully virtual three-day School of Tomorrow (SOT) Conference: “A World of Tomorrow: Negotiating a Better Future” was inaugurated Friday.

The 11th full edition of SOT seeks to understand how COVID-19 is patterning significant global conversations about safer and more balanced futures, as well as pushing educators to re-imagine the future of education at various academic levels. The event was inaugurated with a special message by Director General of the World Health Organisation, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. "It's an honour to join the opening session of the School of Tomorrow Conference. I want to recognise the government of Pakistan for its comprehensive response to COVID-19, Dr Tedros said acknowledging the efforts of Pakistan in countering the pandemic. Federal Minister for Education Shafqat Mahmood, Head of the OECD's Directorate of Education & Skills Andreas Schleicher, Senior Counsellor, OECD Dr Dirk Van Damme, and The Baroness Mobarik CBE from UK House of Lords, a former member of the EU Parliament were among the key speakers of the virtual event.

Featuring over 60 global leaders in 22 diverse and engaging sessions streamed live, the conference aims to structure a response, based on historical contingencies, to the global pandemic. Talking about the reopening of educational institutions in Pakistan from September, Federal Minister Shafqat Mehmood ensured strict compliance of all SOPs to prevent the spread of COVID-19. He said any sort of negligence in this regard would lead to immediate closure of the institute.

The event also featured a special address by Omar Bin Sultan Al Olama of UAE, world’s first minister for Artificial Intelligence. The UAE minister highlighted how COVID-19 has accelerated adoption of technology at a rate never seen before.

Day one of the three-day event included a series of panel discussion, debates and workshops, featuring thinkers from around the world speaking live to global audiences. It was packed with sessions with young trailblazers such as Nighat Dad, digital rights activist, and Jibran Nasir, civil rights activist.

The first day of the virtual event concluded with a panel discussion on issues surrounding environment and climate change with nature conservatives like Hammad Naqi, CEO WWF-Pakistan.

The non-profit School of Tomorrow event series was launched in 2000 and was organised by Beaconhouse as part of its ongoing commitment to its social responsibility.