Capacity Development Workshop for Education System Transformation through Policy and Sector Plan Revision and Reform (South-East Asia)



Date and Location: 
8 - 12 May 2023
At Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel in Bangkok, Thailand

Type of event:


UNESCO Multisectoral Regional Office in Bangkok (UNESCO Bangkok) in collaboration with the ASEAN, SEAMEO Secretariat, the HEAD Foundation

Group Photo of TES Follow-up Workshop


Since the adoption of the SDG4-Education 2030 agenda, countries have made considerable efforts to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education for all and provide lifelong learning opportunities. While overall, progress continued to be made in access to, and participation in education in the Asia-Pacific region, progress towards SDG 4 targets differed between and within countries, and many countries were are off-track towards achieving the SDG4 targets in terms of learning and equity and inclusion even before COVID 19[1].

While the situation varies between and within countries of the region, the impact of COVID-19 on education has reversed progress made in education in the last decade, exacerbating the pre-existing learning crisis and further deepening inequities in education, exposing important weaknesses and the overall fragility of current education systems. With only eight years left to achieve SDG 4, there is an urgent need to not only recover learning losses and accelerate action to achieve SDG 4 targets, but to rethink and transform education systems to address weaknesses, and become more equitable, inclusive, relevant and resilient to withstand future shocks.

This need has been confirmed through the commitment of education ministers of the Asia Pacific Region in the Bangkok Statement 2022 of the Second Asia-Pacific Regional Education Minister’s Conference (APREMC-II), held in June 2022 in Bangkok and importantly through the Transforming Education Summit (TES), convened by the UN Secretary General held in New York in September 2022.

Preceding TES, the meeting of the G20 Education Ministers held in Bali, Indonesia, under the Indonesian G20 presidency  on 1 September 2022, committed to reimagining and rebuilding more resilient, effective, equitable, inclusive and adaptive education systems and reaffirmed their commitment with the United Nations to transform education by integrating approaches, learning resources, and methods in education policies and practices and to open greater opportunities for international cooperation, solidarity and partnership. Furthermore, in the Fifth ASEAN Plus Three Education Ministers’ Meeting, held on 1 October 2021, the ASEAN Education ministers highlighted the importance of the need for transformative education systems in the Member States.

Priority policy areas for education system transformation have been identified by Member States in their national statements, and the UNSG vision statement proposes levers of transformation (rethinking the purpose and content of education, learning environment, teachers, digital, and financing) and the global initiatives further support these.

Translating the UNSG’s vision into reality and implementing TES national statements of commitment as well as commitments made at the Education Ministers’ G20, the ASEAN Ministers’ meeting and through the Bangkok Statement 2022 will require a review and revision of existing policies, plans, and strategies in light of the commitments made and investing more, more equitably and more efficiently in education. The vast and complex nature of the education system and its interconnectedness with other domains of society calls upon policy makers and planners to understand not only education per se but also its role within the broader social context.

In this perspective, UNESCO Bangkok in collaboration with the ASEAN, SEAMEO, the HEAD Foundation and other relevant regional partners will organize a technical capacity development workshop to is support Member States in the South-East Asian region in reviewing their education plans and strategies in light of their commitments in the Transforming Education Summit and the Bangkok Statement 2022 through a systemic change approach.


Workshop Goal and Objectives

The workshop is framed by the question: What does it take to create transformed education systems that are resilient and more equitable, inclusive and relevant?

The overall goal of the workshop is to build knowledge, develop capacity and support Member States in the process of translating their national commitments and other commitments to transform education systems into action.

More specifically, the workshop aims to:

Enhance policy makers and planners’ knowledge and understanding of education system transformation in view of their national statements of commitment for education transformation, also drawing on global TES initiatives and the Bangkok Statement 2022;

Identify main gaps and priority areas for further in-depth review and revision/improvement of education policies, plans, strategies and budgets as well as curriculum and assessment frameworks of ASEAN Member States in view of implementing priority areas indicated in their TES national statements of commitment, as well as in the Bangkok Statement 2022;

Support the development of draft indicative national action plans/roadmaps going forward;

The workshop will also:

  • Take stock of and showcase good and innovative practices in education policy development and planning for system transformation in the Asia-Pacific region

  • Facilitate South-South exchange and cooperation on state-of-the-art conceptual knowledge and approaches to developing systemic, holistic and transformative education policies, plans and strategies;


Education planners and senior ministry officials from departments representing key TES policy priorities such as curriculum development, teacher training and digital transformation from the following Member States: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste, and Viet Nam.


Note: This meeting is not open to the public. Attendance is by invitation only.

For more details, please contact


[1] See: SDG 4 Goal Profile SDG 4 Profile.pdf ( developed for the 9th Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development (APFSD) that took place at ESCAP, Bangkok, on 28 to 31 March 2022