Last year I was invited along to a meeting about the Global Citizenship Diploma (GCD). I had no idea what it was and I was sceptical that it was adding even more work onto our busy students schedules. However, after attending the meeting, with GCD coordinators and those involved in the GCD from around the world, I was really sold on the idea, what is stands for and how it goes about asking it’s students to demonstrate their international mindedness.

The GCD defines a global citizen as:

A person who conducts their daily life with a commitment to understanding others; who makes decisions with an awareness of how they affect communities locally and globally; and who advocates and holds themselves accountable for social and environmental sustainability.

As such, I would hope that all international schools strive for their students (and their teachers) to be described in this way. Students show their proficiency towards becoming global citizens by reflecting on the amazing experiences they already have in their current education, such as the outdoor education adventure trips they take part in, the opportunities they have to serve a community, their public communication experiences and so much more. The different elements that students need to demonstrate experience in and the different levels of recognition for the GCD can be found in the one page doc here. In order for students to demonstrate an understanding of an element, students are expected to reflect on their learning in a public digital portfolio which can be shared with high education institutions, others schools or anyone else interested in getting to know the students and their education a little better.

This year, I have been on a team of five teachers as a GCD coach for one class in Year 10 and one class in Year 11. Our goal is to have all students, by the end of the Year 11, complete a Global Citizenship Certificate and hopefully inspire them to take a shot at getting a full diploma in their final two years of school (the differences between a certificate and diploma can be found on the GCD one page doc). As a result, all of the coaches have agreed to also get their Global Citizenship Certificate, so over the coming months, expect more content from me on a range of different GCD elements.