The four – from Bangladesh, Pakistan, Solomon Islands and Sri Lanka – will come to the UK in February for a Commonwealth Professional Fellowship scheme for women leaders in education run by the Anglican Alliance.
During their time in the UK they will have meetings with national education authorities and agencies, will work shadow church and local authority education officials, and visit schools in London. Their programme will be overseen by a senior academic in gender and development studies.
The four, whose applications were approved by the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in a rigorous selection process from a global field of applicants are:
- Dushyanthi Thuseetharan, the Principal of Chundikuli Girls College in Jaffna, Sri Lanka, who will bring a particular focus on education in rebuilding of society after conflict. She comes from the Church of Ceylon.
- Jennifer Dean Gill, Vice Principlal of Piggot Memorial Higher Secondary School in Hyderabad, Sindh Province, Pakistan, who brings extensive experience in Anglican education for girls as part of the Church of Pakistan.
- Elizabeth Marahora, of St Nicholas School, Honiara, Solomon Islands, who will also look at the importance of community links in the educating of girls. Her school is part of the education service of the Anglican Church of Melanesia.
- Mrs Janet Sarker of the Church of Bangladesh. She is the education co-ordinator for the province, and has oversight of a wide number of Anglican schools.
This is the third Commonwealth Professional Fellowship Scheme run by the Anglican Alliance. Previous schemes were for education administrators, with fellows from Nigeria, Ghana, the Windward Islands and Solomon Islands, and this year the a scheme for health administrators was run for Kenya, Pakistan, and two from Tanzania. This year's scheme aims to address the Millenium Development Goals on education and women's empowerment. It will run from February to mid March in London. The scheme is funded by the UK Government through the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission.