Sector Voices: the biggest challenge facing education



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We asked prominent people from within the sector what they perceived to be the biggest challenge currently facing New Zealand education. Here is what they had to say.


EDR supplement 2014 cover

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  • Is impressive to read the knowledgable comments from eminent education leaders in this review. There seems to be a general premise that the purpose of education is to prepare people for the workforce. There is also an unspoken belief that work is defined by what produces profit and financial wealth. In addition,there is an assumption that education and work should be dominated by technology skills.

    But we need to question this view of the purpose and practice of education plus the narrow spectrum of activity that is valued as 'real work' according to the current economic system, that education is purportedly serving.
    We need to question whether early primary school age children should become fixated on computer technology before they have even learned to read, write or do maths.

    I think the purpose of NZ education in the 21st century is to develop balanced human beings, who are supported in learning how to achieve physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual and social well-being. This holistic approach is grounded in a pedagogy for a lifetime of learning and cultural development.

    Surely in our technological age of increasing unemployment, competition for coveted jobs, environmental degradation and social inequity our focus should be on producing people who truly value what it means to be human. This also means creating new definitions of what is monetarily valued in society as work.
    Let us educate, inspire and prepare our youth for developing their hearts and minds in service to humanity.

    Posted by Laurie Ross, 31/01/2016 8:47pm (4 years ago)

  • What is the biggest challenge?

    It's to bring back democratic and developmental learning into NZ schools.

    That's what our international reputation is built on.

    We need to reconfigure this for the twenty first century, to bring a refreshed model which will be a model for global education.

    Kelvin Smythe the strongest promoter of democratic and developmental education has the model for today. Find him on networkonnet.

    Posted by catharina, 26/06/2015 4:44am (5 years ago)

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