The challenges facing education demand responses that are genuinely transformative. But how should we understand transformative education and what can we do to promote it, asks Katarina Popović
caused by the COVID-19 pandemic inspired a wave of new and revived concepts, ideas
and practices in education. The need for a new approach had been highlighted in
response to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and our likely
failure to deliver against Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4 on
education by 2030. Continuing educational disparities and exacerbated gaps and
setbacks underscore the urgent need to promote adult education and lifelong
learning for all.
One of the
ideas born out of this sense of urgency is ‘transformative education’, which
UNESCO defines as teaching
and learning ‘geared to motivate and empower happy and healthy learners to take
informed decisions and actions at the individual, community and global levels’.
The concept dominates discussions about post-crises education and is perceived
as a panacea for many of today’s problems in education.
Without robust, high-quality and relevant adult learning and education programmes, we are in danger of neglecting our workforce and reducing the chances of a sustainable future, argues Paul Comyn of the International Labour Organization.
Adult learning and
education (ALE) serves multiple
purposes in many different local and national community contexts, one of which
is to support adults to develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes that will
enable them to look for and find work, either in paid employment or through
other livelihoods. Employability is a key concept that underpins the work of
the International Labour Organization (ILO), which it defines
as the ‘portable competencies and qualifications that enhance an individual’s
capacity to make use of the education and training opportunities available in
order to secure and retain decent work, to progress within the enterprise and
between jobs, and to cope with changing technology and labour market conditions.’
As we mark International Youth Day, David Atchoarena reflects on the challenge of ‘transforming education’ for young people and on how we can gear their leaning not only to employment but also to sustainable development
‘Transforming education’ is the theme of International Youth Day 2019, celebrated on 15 July. The focus is on making education more inclusive and accessible for all youth, in particular young women and young people from disadvantaged groups. Taking place within the framework of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4 to ‘ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all’, the theme chosen for this year’s International Youth Day goes beyond the usual meaning of education to embrace a vision of learning throughout life, so that youth can fully take part in a lifelong journey for sustainable development.
there are variations between countries and between different categories of
young people, work continues to constitute an important dimension in the way in
which young people see their future. However, beyond their individual
situation, young people also increasingly express a concern for the future of
the planet. This is reflected in their attitude and participation in society,
as citizens and as workers. The meaning of work and its contribution to a
sustainable path are important considerations in the way in which youth see
employment. Hence, the debate about youth skills is not only about skills for
work and life, it is about skills for sustainability and social participation. Continue reading →