Global Education Initiative

Globlal Education CoverGlobal Washington’s Global Education Initiative set out to improve global education in the State of Washington, gathering feedback from more than 1,000 parents, educators, and business leaders from all over the state.  Through interviews, community meetings, and a summit on global education in November 2011, the Initiative identified 36 recommendations and ideas to increase global education in Washington State. These ideas were then grouped into six major recommendations to guide the development of a comprehensive approach to global education in Washington State.

The work of the initiative is outlined in our 2012 report Global Education in Washington State.

Support for Global Washington’s education report

“Language acquisition and an understanding of cultures is one of the major things that is going to make this world a better place… Just learning from other people from other cultures has expanded the knowledge of not only our students but of our teachers and (given us) a better understanding of who we are and how this world actually will operate together in a global economy.  I believe that the recommendations found in Global Washington’s ‘Global Education in Washington State’ paper represent a clear vision for how we need to move going forward. By working together, we can make a difference and improve global education in Washington State.”

Randy Dorn, Washington State Superintendent for Public Instruction

“NAFSA: Association of International Educators, the world’s largest nonprofit association dedicated to international education, wholeheartedly endorses this excellent report. By bringing together stakeholders from the education, business, and development communities, Global Washington has rightly identified as its ultimate goal a comprehensive commitment by the state to global education ‘to ensure that all students in Washington State receive an education that prepares them to inhabit the world as knowledgeable citizens, as competent global leaders, and as supporters of positive corporate, community, and social innovation around the globe.’ This impressive report and initiative should serve as a model and blueprint for other states to follow.”

Marlene M. Johnson, Executive Director and CEO, NAFSA: Association of International Educators

“To ensure our young people are prepared for career success requires they have an understanding of our globally interdependent world, and the cultural competencies to respond nimbly in the workplace of the 21st Century.  This report makes a strong case for Washington to focus our attention on global education and lays out a clear road map of next steps.”

Eleni Papadakis, Executive Director, Washington Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board

“Associates in Cultural Exchange (A.C.E.), the largest non-profit organization dedicated to providing world language and culture education services to K-12 children in Washington state, fully endorses the Global Washington’s ‘Global Education in Washington State’ report. From 30 years of experience introducing over 30,000 elementary and middle school children to a global perspective via our World Language & Culture Ambassadors initiatives, A.C.E. has demonstrated the crucial role this exposure plays in preparing our citizens for their future. The simple fact is that without global education, the members of our society will be left behind as the world integrates further and expectations of language and culture sophistication continue to rise. Our state is in serious danger today of becoming a socioeconomic backwater unless we make global education a top priority.”

David Woodward, President & CEO, Associates in Cultural Exchange

Global Education is an approach to teaching and learning that provides students with the skills, knowledge, and attitudes necessary to understand the way the world works and prepares them to participate in an interconnected society

Hope’s Definition of Global Education. Referenced from: https://sites.google.com/site/ntlsfolder/Home/participatory-media-language-arts-social-studies/hope-s-definition-of-global-education.


Global Washington launched the Global Education Initiative in March of 2011, with contribu­tions from more than 1,000 parents, educators, and business leaders from all over the state. The Initiative found that although the state of Washington is one of the most globally connected in the U.S. and many admirable indi­vidual projects exist, the state currently lacks a comprehensive commitment to global education. There is a significant gap, in other words, between the state’s economic pillars and its educational foundation.

Washington State’s diverse economic sectors—from aerospace to tech­nology to agriculture—have one thing in common: they are all tied heavily to international trade. Washington’s economy is one of the most globally connected in the country and 40% of all jobs in the state are related to international trade. Washington’s economy ranks 2nd in the country in the “New Economy” (knowledge-based, global, entrepreneurial, and innovation-based).  Seattle Public Schools enroll students from more than 98 coun­tries, and teachers support students and families who speak more than 208 languages. Global connections are the fundamental driver of Washington State’s economy, yet, as this study by Global Washington has found, our students are not sufficiently prepared to succeed and contribute in the dy­namic and rapidly changing global environment.

During interviews, community meetings, and a summit on global education in November 2011, the key stakeholders involved in the Initiative identified 36 recommendations and ideas to increase global education in Washington State. These ideas were then grouped into six major recommendations to guide the development of a comprehensive approach to global education in Washington State.

  • To read a executive summary (PDF) of the report and recommendations.
  • To read the full report (PDF) on the State of global education in Washington State.
  • Framing Articles: background materials (PDF).
  • Global Education Resources:  One of the recommendations coming from the Initiative is a common online resource hub for global education. The K-20 Global Education Initiative has been gathering favorite resources from individuals working in global education. This is a draft and we need your feedback to grow this list. Please review when you have the chance and send an email to info@globalwa.org if you have any suggested resources or comments about current resources. Thank you for contributing!
  • Video: “Global Education Is”: A short video helping us define what “global education” means.

Support for Global Washington’s education report in the media

  1. Education News
  2. 360 Education Solution
  3. All Voices
  4. PLU Wang Center for Global Education
  5. NAFSA
  6. Humanosphere
  7. FIUTS

Other Resources