International Baccalaureate Appoints Olli-Pekka Heinonen as eighth Director General
Geneva, Switzerland - 3 March 2021 - It is with great pleasure that the International Baccalaureate (IB) Board of Governors announces the appointment of Mr Olli-Pekka Heinonen as its next Director General of the IB. Mr Heinonen will commence his appointment on 1 May 2021.
Mr Heinonen most recently served as the Director General of the Finnish National Agency for Education. The core tasks of the Agency are to develop education and training, early childhood education and lifelong learning. It prepares the national core curricula for general education and early childhood education, and the requirements for vocational and competence-based qualifications. The Agency also takes part in preparing education policy decisions and supports the development and promotion of internationalisation within the Finnish education system.
Prior to leading the National Agency for Education, Mr. Heinonen held various positions in the Finnish Government, including State Secretary and Minister of Education and Science, as well as senior commercial roles in the Finnish National Broadcasting Company.
Widely recognized globally in education, Mr Heinonen brings a wealth of experience and knowledge of educational systems development and innovation to the IB. He is engaged actively with the OECD and other international organisations in contributing views on the future of education, including the sharing of best practices, personalised and lifelong learning, the impact of technology and the development of educators. He is a regular speaker in global educational forums.
His vision for global education is strongly aligned with the vision and values of the IB. He brings broad leadership and team-building experience and a focus on developing organisations to operate effectively in a changing environment.
Commenting on the appointment, Dr Helen Drennen, the Chair of the IB Board said “The IB Board is delighted and privileged to welcome Mr Olli-Pekka Heinonen as the new Director General at a time of great change across the world. He will bring a leading, influential voice to shaping the future of international education and to the next era of the IB “
“I am honoured to join the IB community to further develop the mission of creating a better world through education. It is clear that we are suffering from a global learning and teaching crisis, and COVID-19 has magnified these challenges. I am looking forward to working together with schools and educators to develop solutions to address these challenges and find ways to develop a strong future for our students”, Mr. Heinonen commented.
About the International Baccalaureate:
Founded in 1968, the International Baccalaureate (IB) pioneered a movement of international education, and now offers four high quality, challenging educational programmes to students aged 3-19. The IB gives students distinct advantages by providing strong foundations, critical thinking skills, and a proficiency for solving complex problems, while encouraging diversity, curiosity, and a healthy appetite for learning and excellence. In a world where asking the right questions is as important as discovering answers, the IB champions critical thinking and flexibility in study by crossing disciplinary, cultural and national boundaries. Supported by world class educators and coordinators, the IB currently engages with more than 1.4 million students in over 5,300 schools across 158 countries. To find out more, please visit www.ibo.org.
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