Highlights from the Global System Change Conference

Faolan Jones

From April 3rd-5th 2014, members of the Teach For All network gathered in Chile to discuss the topic of System Change and celebrate Enseña Chile's 5 year anniversary. This event advanced thinking across the network around what needs to be done to accelerate alumni impact and system change. This event exposed and engaged attendees in some of the most relevant issues in four primary areas, including:

  • Fostering student leadership to fuel system change
  • Leveraging strategies employed by fast-improving districts and states
  • Effectively training and supporting teacher and school leaders
  • Community engagement to galvanize system change


Sharing the Learning

Visit our conference Vimeo channel to experience the conference online and watch keynote addresses from Kaya Henderson, Mike Feinberg and Tim Daly as well as panels exploring Student Leadership, Community Engagement and Teacher Training.


Reflection from Maria Ortiz van Meerbeke, Director of Alumni at Enseña por México

I accepted the position as Head of Alumni just weeks before the System Change Global Conference and had just started to hear phrases like “theory of change” and leadership pathways. The conference was a best-in-class onboarding experience. I learned what Teach for All meant, the challenges it faces, the success it has had around the world and the many problems it tries to resolve all at the same time. I learned that “systemic change” means different things to different areas, but ultimately each of them need to be linked so as to move towards the same goal. I learned the importance and power of information. We need to be fast at getting data from the different stakeholders, and then sharing that data back with the community.


Given that I’m new to my role and the network, especially as someone who comes from outside the education sector, I was impressed by the complexity of what it takes to achieve our mission. Nevertheless I was inspired by the sense of possibility and the real “light house” examples that demonstrate that this is by no means impossible.


Three things that will inform my work:

  1. The power of connectivity- I will keep in close contact to those working in the same area as me to learn from them and share my own ideas. The network is a powerful tool to build bigger opportunities for our participants and future alumni.
  2. The power of data- I will start thinking of a way to track all the information I start to gather and how to make use of it
  3. The power of understanding the BIG picture- The conference was a perfect example of seeing everything with perspective. I will need to do the same with my own country. I first need to understand the context to then build a vision for our alumni.


After watching these keynotes and panels, what are you taking away from this event?