Vicky Colbert

Vicky Colbert

alternative education models, reducing school dropout, policy making, equal opportunities
Foundation Escuela Nueva, UNESCO consultant, formerly Secretary of State and Deputy Minister for Education
almost 40 years in policy making and advocacy for the right to relevant education

About Vicky Colbert

Colbert is a Sociologist from Javeriana University in Colombia and pursued her graduate studies in Sociology of Education at Stanford University in the United States.

Vicky Colbert is founder and director of Fundación Escuela Nueva. She is co-author of the worldwide renowned Escuela Nueva model and was its first National Coordinator. Colbert has pioneered, expanded and sustained this educational innovation from many organisational spheres: as Viceminister of Education of Colombia, UNICEF´s Education Adviser for LAC and now from Fundación Escuela Nueva (FEN), an NGO she founded to ensure its quality, sustainability and innovation.

A key element of the Escuela Nueva school is that children learn at their own rate by using Learning Guide, which Colbert describes as “a combination of a textbook, workbook and a guide for the teacher.” These guides suggest hands-on activities for students to do both in school and at home. Students work their way through the guide at their own pace, with teachers serving as advisers, and students who have mastered a lesson often helping those who have not. The model is highly empowering for children and youth, while making learning relevant to their needs and flexible in terms of schedule and availability of resources.

She has been recognized with several awards and distinctions in the fields of leadership and social entrepreneurship, such as the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship, the Clinton Global Citizenship Award and the Kravis Prize. She has also been recognized as Outstanding Social Entrepreneur by the Schwab Foundation, Ashoka and the World Technology Network. She is laureate of the first edition of the Yidan Prize for Education Development (2017) and 2013 WISE Prize for Education Laureate.