Education provides us with knowledge about the society, the world and ourselves. It helps build character, the unique individual. It leads to enlightenment.  It paves the way for a good career. Education makes a man complete. It is the foundation of a strong nation.

Borne Without Culture

Culture is the characteristics and knowledge of a particular group of people, encompassing language, religion, cuisine, social habits, music and arts. Culture refers to the cumulative deposit of knowledge, experience, beliefs, values, attitudes, meanings, hierarchies, religion, notions of time, roles, spatial relations, concepts of the universe, and material objects and possessions acquired by a group of people in the course of generations through individual and group striving [1].  Culture is learned from the people you interact with as you are socialised. Watching how adults react and talk to new babies is an excellent way to see the actual symbolic transmission of culture among people.

Culture encompasses religion, food, what we wear, how we wear it, our language, marriage, music, what we believe is right or wrong, how we sit at the table, how we greet visitors, how we behave with loved ones, and a million other things. The word “culture” derives from a French term, which in turn derives from the Latin “colere,” which means to tend to the earth and grow, or cultivation and nurture. [2]

Indian spices. Seasonings in bowls. Photo: dmitr1ch

Education can be thought of as the transmission of the values and accumulated knowledge of a society. In this sense, it is equivalent to what social scientists term socialisation or enculturation.

Children—whether conceived among New Guinea tribespeople, the Renaissance Florentines, or the middle classes of Manhattan—are born without culture. Education is designed to guide them in learning a culture, moulding their behaviour in the ways of adulthood, and directing them toward their eventual role in society. In the most primitive cultures, there is often little formal learning—little of what one would ordinarily call school or classes or teachers. Instead, the entire environment and all activities are frequently viewed as school and classes, and many or all adults act as teachers. As societies grow more complex, however, the quantity of knowledge to be passed on from one generation to the next becomes more than any one person can know, and, hence, there must evolve more selective and efficient means of cultural transmission. The outcome is formal education—the school and the specialist called the teacher.[3]

The Transfer of Culture and the Education Moves Towards the Digital Cloud

As society becomes ever more complex and schools become ever more institutionalised, the educational experience becomes less directly related to daily life, less a matter of showing and learning in the context of the workaday world, and more abstracted from practice, more a matter of distilling, telling, and learning things out of context. This concentration of absorbing in a formal atmosphere allows children to learn far more of their culture that they can do by merely observing and imitating. As society gradually attaches more and more importance to education, it also tries to formulate the overall objectives, content, organisation, and strategies of teaching. Literature becomes laden with advice on the rearing of the younger generation. In short, there develop philosophies and theories of education. [3]

The Internet has delivered an explosion of learning opportunities for today’s students, creating an abundance of information, knowledge, and teachers as well as a starkly different landscape from the one in which our ideas about school were born. Traditional educators, classrooms, and brick-and-mortar schools are no longer necessary to access information. Instead, things like blogs and wikis, as well as remote collaborations and an emphasis on critical thinking skills are the coins of the realm in this new kingdom. The national dialogue on education reform focuses on using technology to update the traditional education model, failing to reassess the fundamental model on which it is built.[4]

Photo: filipefrazao

Education Transfer the Culture and Creates Opportunities

Education is a fundamental human right and is essential for the exercise of all other human rights. It provides individual freedom and empowerment and yields essential benefits. Education is a powerful tool by which economically and socially marginalised adults and children can lift themselves out of poverty and participate fully as citizens.

It is the foundation of our society. Education helps to stimulate our minds and mould inquisitive minds into intellectuals. Broader learning takes the intellect to the next level, providing a deeper understanding of the world around us. It forms the very essence of our actions.

What we do is what we know and have learned, either through instructions or observation. That is the cultural idea. What we learn is from our own culture, where we live. Education is a rope that can carry us to greatness. It is one of the most important things because, without training, you cannot contribute to the world or earn money, and lack knowledge. Knowledge is power.

Education is supposed to provide students with the necessary skills that prepare them for the world of work later in life. The education system also serves to teach individuals the values and morals of society. Students must be equipped with knowledge and skills which are needed to participate effectively as a member of a community and contribute towards the development of shared values and collective identity; the education system serves this purpose.

Education represents a short-term investment for a very long-term, hard-to-observe return. Unlike a pizza, an education doesn’t fully pay off until many years later, in the overall sweep of your career and life. Since schooling has effects that can persist across generations, the total social reward may never be known. Many of education’s effects may be hard to observe — did you get a job because of the skills you learned in school, because of your credentials because you’re a good worker, or just because you happen to look like the person doing the hiring? And since education can have positive side effects, such as the synergy that comes from having a society full of well-educated, well-socialised adults, the real social benefit is not even fully observable, even by the most careful economists.[5]

Will the Education the Coming Years Move Out of the School?

Education is traditionally seen in many quarters as a means of societal reproduction, and of cultural preservation, achieved by the imparting of the latter to each successive generation. However, a culture is a living thing which constantly changes and educators must respond to the new circumstances created by those changes by encouraging our students to reflect on the cultural elements as they exist, and from that process of reflection to evolve their refinements or developments which will make the culture relevant to them, rather than to us. [6]

Schools were built upon the fundamental premise that teachers and knowledge and information were scarce. That is no longer the reality. Now, as so many more of us gain faster and broader access to the Web, all of those things are suddenly abundant. That means that the traditional role of school, to deliver an education, is quickly becoming less and less relevant. If we continue to see schools as the place where our children go to master a narrow list of content, knowledge and skills that were initially defined almost 150 years ago, we risk putting those kids out into the world with little idea of how to take advantage of the explosion of learning opportunities that now exist. .[4]

The problem, however, is that most “reform” efforts are aimed at simply doing what we’ve been doing better, almost exclusively in the form of raising test scores. But doing “better” on measures that don’t account for this vast shift we’re in the midst of is the absolute wrong emphasis. Instead, we need to think very differently about the experiences, outcomes, skills and literacies we desire for our kids when they come to school.[4]

Kids in school. Picture Robert Kneschke

Move the Education out of the Classroom to reach the Global Goal

Over sixty years ago education was declared a fundamental human right for every person and enshrined in the Universal Declaration on Human Rights in 1948. Since then, it has been reaffirmed in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966), the Conventional on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (1979) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989), among many other international human rights instruments.[7]

In 1990, over 150 governments adopted the World Declaration on Education for All at Jomtien, Thailand to boost efforts towards delivering the right to education. Ten years later, the World Education Forum in Dakar, Senegal reaffirmed this commitment and adopted the six Education For All (EFA) goals that run to 2015:

Goal 1: Expanding and improving comprehensive early childhood care and education, especially for the most disadvantaged and vulnerable children.

Goal 2: All children, particularly girls, children in difficult circumstances and those belonging to ethnic minorities have access to free, quality and compulsory primary education by 2015.

Goal 3: Ensuring that the learning needs of all young people and adults are met through equitable access to appropriate learning and life skills programmes

Goal 4: Achieving a 50 per cent improvement in levels of adult literacy by 2015, especially for women, and equitable access to primary and continuing education for all adults

Goal 5: Eliminating gender disparities in primary and secondary school by 2005, and achieving gender equality in education by 2015, with a focus on ensuring girls’ full and equal access to and achievement in primary education of good quality

Goal 6: Improving every aspect of the quality of education, and providing their excellence, so that recognised and measurable learning outcomes are achieved by all, especially in literacy, numeracy and essential life skills

In 2000 as many as 180 countries signed up to make these goals happen, committing to putting legal frameworks, policies and finance in place so that everyone, no matter what their circumstances, could have an education – one that is available, accessible, acceptable and adaptable. The wealthiest countries pledged to help make Education for All a reality by committing to principles of international cooperation towards those countries with fewer financial resources.

In 2015, world leaders agreed to 17 goals for a better world by 2030. Goal four is about education: Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all. This goal has got ten targets to create an action to ensure quality education. These ten targets should be reached by 2030. The objectives are:

 

FREE PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION

EQUAL ACCESS TO QUALITY PRE-PRIMARY EDUCATION

EQUAL ACCESS TO AFFORDABLE TECHNICAL, VOCATIONAL AND HIGHER EDUCATION

INCREASE THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE WITH RELEVANT SKILLS FOR FINANCIAL SUCCESS

ELIMINATE ALL DISCRIMINATION IN EDUCATION

UNIVERSAL LITERACY AND NUMERACY

EDUCATION FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT AND GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP

BUILD AND UPGRADE INCLUSIVE AND SAFE SCHOOLS

EXPAND HIGHER EDUCATION SCHOLARSHIPS FOR DEVELOPING COUNTRIES

INCREASE THE SUPPLY OF QUALIFIED TEACHERS IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES

 

The goals for a better world are essential. Within those goals, education is essential. However, building classrooms and educate teachers enough to reach the targets may be hard. Today we have less than 15 years left to 2030. Now, as so many more of us gain faster and broader access to the Web, we can use that opportunity to educate all. That means that we may reach our goals if we leave the traditional role of school, and use the approach the new possibilities have created.

Go Digital Futuristic Circuit Board Technology Concept. Illustration: Rawpixel.com

Education for All

Education is an important aspect that plays a huge role in the modern, industrialised world. People need good training to be able to survive. Fortunately, more and more people realise how important education is for future generations. At the same time, governments all around the world are spending money on a good education system, and people are actively encouraged to win scholarships and continue their studies.

Each of us spends a big part of our childhood in education. People need a high level of education to have a better life in the future. Parents are also eager to send their kids to school and hope that they succeed in life. Everyone knows that people who have higher studies are very likely to get professional work in the future. Therefore, education carries greater importance than ever in today’s society. It does not only allow people to read or write it also offers them the opportunity to have a good life, communicate better, develop new technologies and support the economy.

We need to re-think about the experiences, outcomes, skills and literacies we desire for our kids.  The Internet has delivered an explosion of learning opportunities, creating an abundance of information, knowledge, and teachers as well as a starkly different landscape from the traditional one. Will these opportunities create education for all?

 

References

[1] Larry A. Samovar, Richard E. Porter: Communication Between Cultures (1991)

[2] Cristina De Rossi, an anthropologist at Barnet and Southgate College in London, Live Science (2017)

[3] Oskar Anweiler, Robert F. Arnove, James Bowen, et. al. What is Education? The Value of Education. (Academic Room)

[4] Jim Daly. Why School? TED ebook author rethinks education when information is everywhere. (2012)

[5] Noah Smith. Value of Education Isn’t Measured Only by Earnings. Bloomberg (11. April 2018)

[6] Paul R. Terry. Habermas and education: knowledge, communication, discourse. (2006)

[7] http://www.campaignforeducation.org

 


Lucubrate Magazine, Issue 45, November 2nd, 2018

The photo on top: Tropical studio

 

 


 

 

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Karl Skaar
Karl Skaar

Is a highly successful professional, with a high degree of entrepreneurial flair. Among the many different roles, he is the chief editor of the Lucubrate Magazine.

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