“Last September, the United Nations (UN) ratified 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to serve as benchmarks for every nation to ensure global prosperity, protection of the planet and an eradication of poverty.” (1) Goal four of the SDGs is the first time such a standalone education specific goal has been set and ratified. It is supposed to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning.
What exactly does Quality Education represent? I came across this stunning data: “170 million people could be lifted out of poverty if all students learned basic reading skills!” (2)
Let that sink in for a minute…
170 million – Population-wise, that’s equivalent to 30 countries the size of Serbia.
Moreover, higher education has the potential to be one of the most effective tools of public diplomacy to the world. “The most far-reaching way to link societies across the world is through education.” (3) The cherry on the top is that it is 100 percent self-sustainable inducing a neverending butterfly effect.
These statistics seriously left me dumbfounded, provoking thoughts of how I can more actively contribute. “A quality education is supported by three key pillars: ensuring access to quality teachers, providing use of quality learning tools and professional development, and the establishment of safe and supportive quality learning environments.” (4) In short, it prepares the child for life, not just for testing. Even my own country, which is kind of in development phase, is a far cry from this ideal state. Indeed, this is the goal the whole world should be involved in and work on more rapidly than ever before.
What do you think? Better still, how will you contribute to this goal? Do you consider it relevant?
Written by Petra Cvetanovic