Better Education for a Better World
In recent years, Education International has been devoting a lot of time and effort to “de-professionalisation”. Factors that undermine the professional role and status of teachers include the employment of unqualified teachers and poor quality training, the erosion of professional autonomy, and the excessive use of standardised methods of evaluating students and teachers.
De-professionalisation, with its myriad of ingredients, makes teaching less satisfying and more frustrating. Combined with other sources of stress, it contributes to stress-related diseases, including depression, sleeping problems, and cardio-vascular diseases. Such problems often get worse over time and can become irreversible.
The Executive Board of EI submitted a Policy Paper on Human and Trade Union Rights to the Congress in Ottawa. It complements the Policy Paper on Education approved by the 2011 Congress in Cape Town.
The rights policy paper covers a wide range of human and trade union rights including rights related to teachers’ unions and to education. It states, “human beings are not merely considered as passive beneficiaries of human rights, but as active and assertive holders of rights.”
The International Bill of Rights and ILO and other Conventions enshrine cherished human rights principles and define much of we consider to be liberty. However, the effective exercise of those rights by “rights holders”, necessary to make them real, is often problematic.
The EI Executive Board proposes to the Congress a “Resolution on the Promotion and Protection of Standards and Values in the World.” The factors that challenge our values outlined in that resolution are the liberalisation of the global economy, the failure to respect global standards by many governments, the geo-political situation in many regions (for example, Eastern Europe and the Middle East) and the rise of extremism.
The integration of the world economy has carried with it some important ideological baggage. Too often, today, unchecked market forces take precedence. The free market dogma is the fig leaf that covers a massive shift in the global world order. Would anybody have imagined that the hard-fought victories, on all continents, of democracy over dictatorship in the 1990’s would have been usurped, subsequently, by a shift of power from the elected to the un-elected?
To prepare for Congress, participants may now download documents, containing material for decision by the Congress. These have been issued in accordance with the requirements of the Constitutional deadlines.
For further information, please contact the EI Secretariat.
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Following up on their in-depth study on the commercialisation of education, Stephen J Ball and Carolina Junemann share their thoughts on how business and education policy converge to influence what it means to be educated.Read more