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GESS: Pride in Excellence

by Eddie Rayner

Education UAE is proud to be a category sponsor and media partner at this year’s GESS Dubai Exhibition, Conference and Awards. We are all very excited to support this fantastic event, and we look forward to engaging with our readers, clients and partners. This promises to be a magnificent three days for the education community, and we hope to see as many of you there as possible!

Held Sunday 14 – Tuesday 16 November 2021- in Zabeel Halls 4-6 of the Dubai World Trade Centre, the 14th edition of GESS Dubai is free to attend to anyone working in the field of education. The exhibition provides educators access to the products and solutions that meet the needs of the modern classroom and transform the way students learn. Alongside the exhibition runs an extensive conference programme and awards ceremony, highlighting the best and brightest educators, suppliers and products within the global education industry.

Incorporating inspiring and creative content for all levels of educators, this is a must-attend event for those looking to expand their presence in the region and meet with over 10,000 educational professionals, including key buyers and decision-makers, from 87 countries. The event’s internationally recognised, free-to-attend conference, which includes seminars, live case studies, workshops, and panel discussions, runs concurrently with the exhibition.

This year the conference runs under the theme of ‘Innovate Today, Celebrate Tomorrow’, and will feature a range of renowned keynote speakers and educationalists, including Dr Ali Almatari, Head of Department of Educational Technology, Ministry of Education, Oman; Dr Hamed Al Suwaidi, Founder, Abu Dhabi Arts Society; Dr Helen Wright, International Education Advisor and Executive Leadership Coach; and Dr Rana Tamim, Professor of Educational Technology and Dean of the College of Education, Zayed University.

Some of the Education World’s Most Respected Names

The 8th annual GESS Awards, taking place on 15 November, have seen a record number of high-quality entries from educators, educational bodies and companies across the globe, all of whom provide products and solutions that meet the needs of the modern classroom and transform the way students learn.

Recognising and celebrating the excellence and diversity of educational products, resources, services, and people, as well as the finest schools and universities, it is a tremendous honour just to be counted amongst the finalists, which this year include some of the biggest and most respected names in the industry.

The GESS Awards encompass eight separate categories: 

  • Ambassador for the Environment;
  • Best Initiative for Inclusion and Well-Being 
  • Best Use of Digital Learning in the Classroom 
  • Best Use of STEAM Learning in the Classroom 
  • Community Award for Citizenship 
  • Innovation in Education Award 
  • Outstanding Contribution in Education Award 
  • Lifetime Achievement Award.

Over 10,000 educational professionals, including key buyers and decision makers, from 87 countries

The last category, Lifetime Achievement Award, will be selected and judged by Taaleem and their independent panel of judges. This award is announced at the ceremony, and no nominations will be given out beforehand.

However, for the other seven categories, the nominations are in, and to give a taste of the quality of all of the nominations, we can reveal the following names in the Outstanding Contribution in Education Award:

  • Sunita Gandhi
    City International School
  • Rashmi Nandkeolyar
    Delhi Private School, Dubai
  • Habeeb Quadri
    MCC Academy
  • Thomas Blakemore
    Kent College Dubai
  • Maria Victoria Angulo Gonzalez
    Ministry of National Education, Colombia
  • Emily Hollis MBE
  • Dominic  Whelan
    Sandwell College
  • Chaudhry Faisal Mushtaq
    The Millennium Education Pakistan
  • Mohammed Abdul Salam
    The Oxford School
  • Olly Lewis and Mark Anderson
    LearnLiveUAE
  • Craig Hansen
    University of Applied Research & Development

Entries will be evaluated according to rigorous judging criteria by an esteemed panel of judges that include some of the most respected names in the education, business and technology industries. 

The gala event, which will be open to anyone who wishes to attend, will include a pre-dinner drinks reception, a three-course dinner with beverages, an awards presentation ceremony, and entertainment. It is a unique opportunity to network with the best suppliers and educators not just in the Middle East but worldwide.


This year the conference runs under the theme of ‘Innovate Today, Celebrate Tomorrow’


GESS, which stands for Global Education Supplies and Solutions, is the leading education exhibition and conference in the Middle East. Over the years, it has helped teaching and learning become more effective, helping shape the education sector to become what it is today – robust, dynamic, and forward-thinking.

Click here to view the full list of award nominees