In 2015, the world came together to create the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Climate Agreement. At the heart of this new agenda is the need for education—to create a better, more sustainable future for all people.
In order for these plans to succeed, education must become a basic human right and a transformational force for poverty eradication, an engine for sustainability and a driver of dialogue and peace. Lack of education will place the future generations in jeopardy.
UNESCO’s most recent data shows that the poorest children are four times more likely to be out of school and five times more likely not to complete primary education when compared to the richest. 50 percent of refugee children have no access to education.
So how do we make the change? First and foremost, we must have political intervention and commitment, including the resources to match the magnitude of the task at hand. Furthermore, the focus on teachers needs to change. An emphasis has to be made to recruit, support and train teachers throughout the world. We must empower these educators to keep up with the ever-evolving world and build sustainability in the face of climate change.
It’s estimated that by 2030, global warming could shift 122 million more people into poverty. Creating green industries will rely on high-skill workers with specific training – yet, by 2020, the world could have 40 million too few workers with tertiary education relative to demand.
This means green and transferable skills must be taught in schools, higher education institutions and the workplace. We must support the transition by investing in on-the-job training for low and medium skilled workers; lifelong learning and training will be key.
Klaus Schwab, founder of the World Economic Forum, said that the world seems engulfed in a “sea of pessimism, negativity and cynicism”. Education is our deepest source of hope – we must plant the seeds now for a better future tomorrow.
Read the entire article on weforum.org. The original piece was part of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting agenda.