Former Australian Prime Minister Aids South Africa's SchoolsOn Feb. 8, Julia Gillard, former Prime Minister of Australia, visited several of South Africa’s schools. In addition to being the current Chair of the Board of Directors of the Global Partnership for Education, Gillard has worked numerous times with the Dūcere Foundation, an organization that works with local governments to improve education in South Africa’s schools.

During her recent visit, Gillard sat in with classes of several primary schools in honor of the foundation’s African Children’s Stories Program initiation. The program highlights the Dūcere Foundation’s mission of improving literacy and education within South Africa, facilitating the dispersion of stories “written by African children for African children.”

The Dūcere Foundation’s collaborator, Monash South Africa (MSA), hosted much of the trip, arranging in-class visits, meetings and panel discussions, during which Gillard was able to work with South African leaders on the agenda of academic and professional opportunities for students.

The Dūcere Foundation takes business related concepts and strategies to governments to bring about change within local communities. The School Improvement Program, one of the three focuses within the organization, supports literacy and mentorship, encouraging personal literary capabilities as well as the acquisition of skills from peers and mentors. The executive method to success, they maintain, is in-classroom delivery.

In February 2015, Gillard was appointed Chancellor of the Dūcere Business School, a partnership with Australian and other international universities with online coursework for undergraduate and postgraduate degrees, focused on social consciousness and global leadership. Her experience in education policy and her vision for social and academic change made her an invaluable candidate. Her continued moves toward childhood education reform in South Africa are indicative of her plans for growth.

As Chancellor of the Dūcere Business School, Gillard guides inquiring minds toward higher education. As an activist and prominent figure with the Dūcere Foundation, she betters academic practices as early as possible. Gillard and the Dūcere Foundation are leading South Africa to the next level in education.

Nora Harless

Sources: The Dūcere Foundation, The Dūcere Business School, Global Partnership for Education, Times Live
Photo: Flickr