Planning Meeting on the Reorienting Education and Training Systems to Improve the Lives of Indigenous Youth
June 26-28, 2017, the Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia (CAREC) hosts a Planning Meeting on the UNESCO's global project “Reorienting Education and Training Systems to Improve the Lives of Indigenous Youth”.
The project intends to generate academic research into how schools and formal education systems could change to better meet local education needs of the indigenous youth in traditional communities and to develop recommendations to assist education leaders worldwide.
The meeting in Almaty is supported by the UNESCO Chair for the reorientation of teacher education for sustainable development of York University, the UNESCO Cluster Office in Almaty and the UNESCO Regional Office for Asian-Pacific region (APR) in Bangkok, as well as the USAID project "Smart Waters".
During the meeting, the following issues are discussed:
• specifics of the project implementation, site selection and engaging local schools and communities
• protocols regarding establishing sites and engaging communities
• project communication: online tutorial on project digital communication platform
• establishing a base line and monitoring progress
• creating the Central Asian organizational structure, professional development
Taking into consideration CAREC role as facilitator of regional cooperation on environment, sustainable development and ESD in Central Asia, CAREC has been invited by UNESCO to become a sub-regional coordinator of the project in six countries: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
CAREC will bring to the project its regional expertise in ESD, water, climate change, energy and SDGs education and capacity-building, involve exiting regional networks of the USAID Smart Waters academic societies, CA Leadership programme alumni, experience of work on pilot territories and best practices in research.
2015 and 2016 have seen remarkable changes to education at the national and international levels. The SDGs and Education 2030 which is the implementation program for SDG Goal 4 define the following objective for all UN member states: “By 2030 ensure that all girls and boys complete free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education leading to relevant and effective learning opportunities”. Countries will now be reporting their individual progress regarding this ambitious goal and its seven targets periodically to the United Nations. Country and regional statistics will be published annually in the Global Education Monitoring Report (GEMR). Inter alia, SDG Goal 4.5 – one of the seven targets – states: “By 2030, eliminate gender disparities in education and ensure equal access to all levels of education and vocational training for the vulnerable including Indigenous people and children living in vulnerable situations”.
The first thrust of education for sustainable development (ESD) is Access to and retention in a quality education. Thus it is imperative that those who work in ESD try to address the issue of the millions of undereducated who are disenfranchised by their lack of education. More information on education for sustainable development is available here.
Project coordinator: Dr. Charles A. Hopkins, UNESCO Chair in Reorienting Teacher Education to Address Sustainability at York University, email: CHopkins@edu.yorku.ca