“Our mission is to promote innovative solutions to education challenges
and inspire action that creates positive, sustainable futures for children and youth worldwide.”
Every child in every nation will have access to a quality education. This education will prepare children to become responsible and engaged citizens, ready for life in a changing world.
ACEI's Guiding Principles
The following guiding principles serve as a compass to direct our programs and activities.
Nurturing children’s growth and development must start early in their lives
Early childhood education is the key to the betterment of society. —Maria Montessori
Nurturing children’s growth and development must start early in their lives in order to maximize their future well-being.
Evidence indicates that a person’s life successes, as well as their health and emotional well-being, have their roots in early childhood. We know that if we foster children’s development in the early years, we can expect to see them thrive throughout school and their adult lives. Focusing early on children’s emotional, social, physical, and cognitive development has a direct effect on their overall development and on the adults they will become.
Caring, responsive, and supportive environments that promote optimal development greatly increase children’s chances of a successful transition to school. This increases children’s chances of achieving better learning outcomes while at school. Children who engage positively with learning opportunities have better self-confidence, which in turn increases their chances for overall well-being and improves their employment opportunities after they have completed their schooling.
ACEI believes that ensuring the healthy cognitive, social, emotional, and physical development of young children merits the highest prioritization by every responsible government, organization, community, family, and individual dedicated to raising healthy children worldwide. While ACEI programs address education issues and concerns from infancy through young adulthood, we recognize the particular importance of the early childhood years.
Collaboration is the key to achieving larger social impact
Alone we can do so little. Together we can do so much. —Helen Keller
Collaboration is the key to achieving larger social impact and education can be a significant beneficiary of increased and more meaningful collaborations, both within the education sector and with other sectors.
Civil society organizations focused on child well-being and education, with their capacity for increasing accountability and promoting participation, can play a critical partnership role with both governments and businesses. By sharing information, resources, activities, and capabilities, they can achieve things together that they could never achieve alone. Working together enables schools and organizations to fill the gaps in areas of specialization and achieve better learning outcomes for children.
Collaboration can unleash innovative ways of working, mobilize expertise and resources, and create shared accountability. Each sector has a valuable role to play, but it is through collaboration that real transformation happens. Collaborative relationships in education that are sustainable, scalable and ensure increased cooperation, collaboration, and coordination among schools, school systems, governments, businesses, and NGOs, and between other supporting sectors as well, create value beyond measure in advancing education.
ACEI believes it is collaboration, and not competition, that is the future of global progress in education. Our Education Diplomacy program focuses moving agendas forward through cooperation, coordination, and collaboration across sectors, stakeholders, and borders to overcome challenges together.
Innovation is essential to education transformation
If you always do what you always did, you will always get what you always get. —Albert Einstein
Most traditional schools were designed for a different time and purpose—the industrial age. However, the time has come for us to modernize schools, enrich curriculum content, and improve delivery methods to better prepare children for the world of tomorrow.
Innovation is essential to this education transformation. At its core, innovation is the process of making lives better by finding new and effective ways of doing things, whether it be a small improvement for one person or a breakthrough for society.
While opportunities for learning through computers and the Internet hold great promise, innovation in education goes beyond technology. Innovation in education happens when we look beyond the horizon for creative ideas about practices, policies, and projects that have the possibility to positively re-shape education and learning.
Many innovators are already hard at work in schools, classrooms, education systems, communities, governments, businesses, and civil society organizations, using creativity and ingenuity to design new and unique ideas for teaching and learning that will reach students in more effective and exciting ways.
Through our Innovation Exchange program, ACEI works to share new ideas and approaches and thereby have a positive effect on transforming education worldwide.
We must act with a global mindset
Be a global citizen. Act with passion and compassion. —Ban Ki-Moon
To ensure bright futures for every child in every nation, it is not enough that the scope of our work extend to all corners of the world. We must also act with a global mindset.
Our lives are interconnected and interdependent. What happens in one place affects what happens in another. Recognition of this interconnectedness is key to embracing our common humanity and shared responsibility to each other and our planet. It helps us empathize with the most vulnerable and marginalized children.
Such a global mindset not only guides the work we do, it also defines the kind of education we want to provide to all children—education for global citizenship. Given the complex human challenges that jeopardize our future, such as poverty, inequality, conflict, and climate change, the children of today must learn to respect one another, work together to identify new and innovative solutions, and take action to create a more peaceful, just, and sustainable future for all.
Through our Global Schools First program, ACEI improves schools’ capacity to implement an integrated, whole-school approach to educating young children as global citizens. We work to link schools, communities, and nations, and promote a global mindset among the world’s children.