It’s about time..!

The only person who is educated
is the one who has learned
how to learn and change.
(Carl Rogers)

It’s about time we cease complaining about education problems and look seriously for a real solution. The actual status does not seem to meet today’s requirements nor learners’ expectations.

00 Education-Header
Image Courtesy: Growth & Justice

I know this statement may look simplistic, one may say “Why change it as long as it works!” , it sounds in appearance right, however we cannot ignore the increasing rates of dropouts from schools, the number of students who cannot afford college and universities fees, etc. I also agree things would appear complex and complicated due to the various geo-political and social situations of each place, location and nation.

Maybe this is the opportunity to stop considering education as a commodity or a piece of goods public and private organizations have, for a long time, took for granted they could own education and manage it for their own profit.

If human intelligence is capable to make space travel possible, if humankind is capable to make amazing discoveries what does it take to make Education a universal given right to all populations regardless of any other considerations?

It is very unfortunate to notice that education is handled as any other piece of goods, I mean making profit of it “selling” education under many (often mistaken) excuses. The ownership of education has shifted to profit oriented organizations rendering the access to its richness available to people who are enough fortunate (or indebted) to collect it.

Regardless of how “complex” educational issues may be, it is also time that people regain ownership of education, teachers must be given their true role and not just to apply what bureaucracy decides for something they have less knowledge, parents must regain not only their role but their responsibility towards their children (schooling is not responsible of what happens at home), politics must stop using education during election campaigns (knowing what happens once they get in power). Education is a matter of people and not a matter of establishments!

I find it very sad when some experts criticize new initiatives that promote free education through new technologies. Lately the new MOOCs phenomenon was hit by these experts’ opinions stating they were, in a way, less efficient than claimed by the various organizations offering these massive online open courses (MOOC) for free. It is normal for every new initiative to go through a growth process, MOOCs are becoming better and more available every period of time, and besides it these courses can reach more people who could learn something for their wellbeing, then why should experts see these as inefficient?

To promote and share education and knowledge does not require a sophisticated equipment or futuristic technologies. When I was coaching newly graduated instructional designers, I used to ask them if they could design the course with a piece of paper and a couple of crayons, and hand-sketch their scenario, then the e-learning or online course would be successful. The reason being, designing educational modules the way people would view and understand these courses!

If our mindset is more focused on people learning from people then education will regain its true and real purpose!

Michel – November 17, 2014

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