Educational institutes have formed an integral part of our society since ancient times, and continue to evolve as civilisation progresses. Global education, which teaches that which is necessary in a growing multicultural and international community, is education adopted to serve the needs of today’s world. Global students are equipped with the tools required to adapt to their intellectual environment, pursue opportunities and utilise their exposure to excel. Yet, despite the merits of global education, critics point out that its goals are not attainable for everyone. The global community is diverse in nature, with member countries ranging from developed to underdeveloped to the completely undeveloped, and while certain nations can employ the principles of global education, many cannot offer every child the right to even a basic education. Their claim is that fundamental needs must be met for all before we pursue the lofty goals of global education.
Proponents argue that education is failing its students. The change and revolution which our society craves has dissolved into over-cautiousness, corruption and stagnation of ideals. global education offers a solution. This system offers radical thought and an innovative outlook to its students. Through the spread of global education, modern moral views can be propagated. Discrimination based on race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and other orthodox beliefs can be eradicated to form a welcoming and literate society. In the long term, global education will contribute to the resolution of international tensions, exploitation and non-cooperation, war, and other problems that plague our society. The ultimate goal is to train all students to be more aware and respectful of the myriad of cultures that surround them, creating a system of equal opportunities, social acceptance and peace.
“Education is the most powerful weapon for changing the world.”
– Nelson Mandela
A major obstacle is that of ensuring children with difficult economic circumstances or those who are differently abled receive the same opportunities as others. These children either do not receive the same academic experience as the majority or are subject to an extreme social lag, and thus the infamous concept of privilege seeps into an otherwise promising model for global education. Some say that the adoption of this model in urban, rural, developed, underdeveloped, and culturally diverse communities is the answer. Distribution of academic resources in equal proportions, without discrimination, is the only road to progress. Of course, this same overarching solution could be used to alleviate concerns over any issue that offers the scope for unequal opportunity, but in reality, is extremely hard to implement.
The Global Education First Initiative (GEFI) was a programme organised by the United Nations in September 2012. It was concerned with the promotion of education through the fields of economy, politics and social aid, and involved a group of sixteen Member Countries. This step was taken by the Secretary General to spread “knowledge, skills and values”. The three objectives of this programme were: “First, putting every child in school, second, improving the quality of learning, and third, fostering global citizenship.” The list of nations supporting this endeavour includes advanced countries like the United States of America and China, as well as gradually evolving nations such as Brazil and Bangladesh, and while this seems to be a great place to start, there is still a long way to go before illiteracy can be checked off the ever-growing list of things that need to be fixed.