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Leadership & Innovation Program for School Principals (PLIE), an initiative of the Varkey Foundation

A training program for empowering school leaders to being an effective change agent

There is a gap in the education system, an eternal debt. We have invested in teacher training all over the world, as it has been proved it is the key factor to improve learning. But the role of Principals, crucial for school transformation, has not received enough focus. This is why we designed the PLIE with the goal of providing new tools and strengthening the skills of LATAM school leaders.



HundrED shortlisted this innovation

HundrED has shortlisted this innovation to one of its innovation collections. The information on this page has been checked by HundrED.

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February 2021
Our program empowers school leaders. They are the crucial factor that enhances community life in schools and creates an environment of excellence to improve educational outcomes.

About the innovation

Why did you create this innovation?

School leadership, by influencing educator’s motivation, improves the teaching and learning process, the student’s outcomes, and the institutional environment. Our program develops the essential skills school principals need to become masters of real change within their schools, by promoting their staff motivation, commitment, pedagogical practice, and teacher leadership.

How does your innovation work in practice?

As one of the participants says: ‘The PLIE provides us tools that we can easily implement and improve our pedagogical practices. It helped me to get in touch with colleagues, exchange strategies, and improve my performance’. The program is designed to be practical, challenging, and intellectually engaging. It focuses on educational leadership, technology, curriculum, teaching practices, innovation, and relations with the community. Each topic has its own assessment tool, which integrates theory with practice. The methodologies used to promote the exchange between participants are based on a socio-constructivist pedagogical framework. The different strategies (problem-solving, case studies, debates, role play), encourage the construction of knowledge based on participant’s previous experiences. The program promotes rethinking the school in a way that combines the social and organizational realities. In consequence, each school designs an Innovation Project to be implemented right away.

How has it been spreading?

The PLIE continues to grow every year. Since its beginning in 2016, we have trained 7,000 Teachers and School Principals of more than 3,700 institutions, reaching more than 1,000,000 Latin American students.

Harvard Graduate School of Education did a case study of the PLIE. Professor Andrés Alonso from Harvard University portrayed the experience and impact in this case that is now part of the Certificate of Advanced Education Leadership professional program. Also, The World Bank, the Organization of Ibero-American States for Education, Science and Culture, Inter-American Dialogue, the Development Bank of Latin America, and the Organization of American States selected PLIE as one of the most innovative educational experiences in teacher education in Latin America and the Caribbean.

If I want to try it, what should I do?

Anyone who is interested in our programs can access the Varkey Foundation website: fundacionvarkey.org or our social media channels and contact us directly. We are at full disposal and always available to answer the requests we received.

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