ASPAM IIS is charged up with a mission to deliver inclusive and quality education for a new decade.
As a facilitator when I went to the US with my vision of doing something for society, I understood that education is the source of society as it passes from one generation to another. The main goal was to know more about the SDG goals and how those 17 targets ranging from healthcare and education to the environment will provide inclusive and equitable quality education for all by 2030.
As educators, we need to invest more in our missions and visions. And we need to embrace innovation and set new standards that can harness the best of data and information to deliver change while protecting the privacy of children. All of this will require us to be more transparent, accountable and collaborative – and redirect more energy and resources from talk to action.
With 10 years to achieve this ambition, the challenge could not be greater. On current trends, one out of every two young people will be left behind by the end of the decade, lacking even the most basic skills needed to join the workforce.
My Question has always Been Are Schools and Teachers Ready?
At one of the Schools in Sharjah, we know that investments in early childhood education can be a great equalizer in society –Likewise, once young people leave education systems, we need to make sure they have the relevant skills for the workforce. Investing in these bookends of the educational process will greatly reduce not having proper skills for the new decade.
Like their students, teachers will need to be prepared to work in rapidly changing and unpredictable environments where knowledge is built from many different sources and perspectives. The traditional roles for teachers operating in a conservative environment of content-focused curricula, with them as controllers of information are already inappropriate.
Students, through television, the Internet and the opportunities for interacting in an increasingly diverse community are learning, and learning effectively, well beyond the classroom. The teacher must evolve into a new facilitative professional. It may be that ‘evolution’ is too slow a process, such that a‘re-invention’ of the front-line professionals – teachers and administrators – may be more appropriate. Traditional responsibilities will change for these new professional
To start the ten-year countdown to 2030, the scale of the global education crisis is so large that everyone has a role to play. We have become a much stronger sector because of a sense of inclusion – from people with physical disabilities to learning needs and other challenges. And it’s time to practice in the workplace and support what we say is important in the classroom: including everyone.
We know how to get every child into school and learning. What happens next – we know how some countries are making rapid progress: a focus on performance, inclusion and innovation were the key ingredients to accelerating progress.
As being part of the education system we need to create our own early warning system. Don’t expect others to spot trends, or to recognize threats and opportunities for you. Instead, we must all get better at looking, thinking and acting ahead of the curve. I call this process managing the future, as it combines the tools of technology, forward-thinking, competitive intelligence, strategic thinking, and scenario planning.
We need to think like a futurist so that our students think systematically and explore predictions and possibilities about the future and how they can emerge from the present.
We need to see that they have sufficient skills to manage the future proactively, ponder how the trends interrelate, and focus on recognizing patterns. How they can “connect the dots,” and make connections between bits of information requires that you hit “refresh” and maintain an open mind as you consume information. Challenge your own assumptions about where emerging trends are headed, and the implications broadly, and on how you and your organization might best respond. They need to understand that “The best way to predict the future is to invent the future.”
Every action you take today shapes the future tomorrow. We must be purposeful in realizing that our individual actions – and time perceptions – create the future. This “spot a change, create a response” mindset will become the touchstone of innovation for the vast majority of individuals over the coming decade.
The biggest challenge over the next ten years will not be “the future,” but how you navigate your future, and the steps you take to remain relevant.
But as we enter this new countdown, as an educationalist, we need to take decisive and transformative action – otherwise the likelihood of progress will rapidly diminish.
Our one of the Best Schools in Sharjah believes that this is our opportunity to be bold and unlock big change that the next generation needs. We need to be “Schools of Future”.
Coordinator Gr 1& 2
ASPAM IIS, Sharjah