Education/Wikipedia Education Collaborative/Kickoff meeting in Prague
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On March 8th and 9th, representatives from various education initiatives and the Wikimedia Foundation's Global Education Team met in Prague to discuss the future of Wikipedia in Education. The fourteen attendees were from various parts of the globe including Nepal, the U.S., Ukraine, the Czech Republic, the U.K., Serbia, Canada, Israel, the Arab World, and Mexico. The goal was to bring together the experience of varied efforts related to having students and educators collaborate with Wikipedia and brainstorm how best to expand efforts.
The first day was dedicated to sharing what has been done to date, what has worked well and what could be improved upon. The Global Education Team has identified more than 60 education programs and other initiatives so far with the aim of being able to provide some support for all. Most participants seek to sustain and scale up their programs, along with better communication and more support, in the next three to five years.
The second day was dedicated to developing goals for the Education Cooperative, a collaboration between international program leaders from the education community, dedicated to supporting the varied outreach efforts in the world in a more localized way. Areas of focus identified were communications, global recognition for programs and participants, resources and mentoring, with action items including a revamp of the education portal on outreach wiki, a unified newsletter, interviews of program leaders to determine needs for mentoring programs, and a survey of the education community to help define a means of giving education programs greater recognition. The last goal will take advantage of the upcoming Wikimania conference to interact with the wider Wikipedia community about goals and strategies.