Photos: Global Education & Skills Forum 2017March 21, 2017, 5:25 am GMT
The Global Education & Skills Forum 2017, an initiative of the Varkey Foundation, highlighted the values of global citizenship and inclusiveness.
More than 2000 delegates from 140 countries attended the two-day event, which culminated with the presentation of the Global Teacher Prize.
Opening the event, Varkey Foundation founder Sunny Varkey highlighted the need to create real global citizens.
He said: "Each of the 130 million children born every year are completely innocent; they have not learnt suspicion, hatred or violence. They are lives of endless possibilities; the dividing lines of nation, culture and religion are yet to be imprinted in their minds. It is only later they realise that they have inherited the heaviest burden that their parents and grandparents lacked the will to solve."
This generation of young people, Varkey said, "are the first true global citizens," who are special, born at a time when technology has put power in their hands. "They live in a global playground. We need the collective intelligence and moral leadership of young people from every country, culture and faith to address the world's problems."
Varkey added: "We must educate children from every country, culture and faith that there is more that unites us than divides us, more that bonds us than breaks us. We must open their minds that people everywhere share the same values, dreams and disappointments. If we do this together, they will become powerful forces of peace and find the strength to solve many of today's pressing problems."
"If we teach today's children, only what we taught yesterday, they will never be prepared for tomorrow. We must give them the inspiration and tools to make a positive impact on lives of others. If we do this now, we will succeed where we failed, build what we destroyed, and stand united where we are divided."
The opening plenary featured a call to #BringBackOurGirls, as two Chibok girls - Sa'a and Rachel - who suffered atrocities under the Boko Haram militants, shared their stories, and put the world's attention on the 195 girls still missing.
Other speakers at the event included Indian mystic and yogi Sadhguru, former prime minister of Australia Julia Gillard, New York Times columnist and Pulitzer Prize winning author Thomas Friedman, UNESCO director general Irina Bokova, and OECD director for education and skills Andreas Schleicher.