On 20 February 2008, the OECD’s governing council formally approved the mandate for the OECD Group of National Experts on Education Facilities Evaluation. Following that approval, Barbara Ischinger, Director of Education, invited OECD ambassadors to nominate experts from their countries to participate in this group.
In recent years, PEB has undertaken much work in this area (see www.oecd.org/edu/facilities/evaluatingquality). The Group will build on this past work, seeking to maximise its relevance and impact in the Organisation’s member and non-member countries.
The Group’s mission is to lead activities aimed at raising the physical learning environment’s responsiveness to the changing needs and demands of the knowledge economy, in which users of educational facilities play a central role. Its mission will be guided by the PEB Organising Framework on Evaluating Quality in Educational Facilities, which explores the importance of quality facilities in increasing access and equity for all in education, improving educational effectiveness and promoting the acquisition of key competencies, and optimising building performance and operation.
The objective of the Group is to assist countries in improving the physical learning environment by providing information and tools to better manage the process by which educational facilities are procured and managed, the planning, design and construction of those facilities, and the performance of the buildings to meet current and future user needs.
Its tasks are threefold:
- to oversee the Facility Performance Evaluation pilot project;
- to guide data collection and analysis related to educational facilities;
- to develop new proposals for consideration by the PEB Governing Board in the next mandate.
The Group’s first meeting will be held later in 2008.