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									      Fifth EDEN Research Workshop
             20-22 October 2008,
               UNESCO, Paris

Attaining quality education for all:
      A UNESCO perspective

            Mariana Patru
     Division of Higher Education
              UNESCO                   1

“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who
 cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn,
                 unlearn, and relearn.”

“Knowledge is the most democratic source of power.”

         Alvin Toffler, American writer and futurist
                   UNESCO’s functions

• laboratory of ideas, including foresight: try out new
  approaches and innovative ways
• standard-setter: determine what is good practice; spread
  that practice around the world
• clearing house: inform ourselves about new things going on
  and share that knowledge as a help to innovation
• capacity builder in the fields of competence: help countries
  develop the capacities to train human resources
• catalyst for international cooperation

                 UNESCO’s global lead
• Lead UN agency for a number of UN decades such as the
  UN Literacy Decade (2003-2012) and the UN Decade of
  Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014)

• Lead role for Education for All (EFA) and its Global
  Action Plan

• Shared responsibility for the follow-up to the World
  Summit for the Information Society (WSIS) - assists
  countries to build knowledge societies by offering a
  platform for access to and the use, dissemination and
  sharing of knowledge

              Global landscape and challenges

• Globalization, largely driven by ICTs - coincides with a
  fundamental transformation to knowledge-based

• Education is increasingly crossing borders – national,
  sectoral and institutional.

• New training demands and new competitive challenges
  bring about profound changes in terms of governance,
  organizational structure and modes of operation.

           Global landscape and challenges

• Exponential growth in knowledge and technology that is
  transforming all aspects of global society and economy.

• Lifelong learning has become critical for sustainable
  economic development.

• New challenges for countries to develop strategies,
  policies, and resources to prepare and retain the teachers
  necessary to meet the educational demands of the 21st
  century society.

         Global landscape and challenges

• Increasing shortage of qualified teachers in both
  developing and developed nations

• Challenges of updating the knowledge and skills of
  the existing teaching force (new content; new
  pedagogies and technology tools for learning).

               Not everyone in the
                  driver's seat

• Global progress has been made in literacy rates, from
  871 million (1985-1994) to 774 million adults (2000-
  2006); more than 75% of the 774 million live in only
  15 countries
• Over 100 million children are estimated being out of
• Some 18 million more teachers needed to achieve the
  goal of universal primary education by 2015; an
  additional 3.8 million teachers for Africa alone

Teacher training is key to
   quality education

2008 e-readiness by regions
        (EIU, 2008)

        Bridging the digital divide…

• Digital exclusion is part of a broader divide
  contributing to social and economic exclusion of

• Multiple aspects: economic, geographic,
  languages, gender, etc.

               and the knowledge divide

• The digital divide helps widen an even more alarming
  divide - the knowledge divide.

• Closing the digital divide will not suffice to close the
  knowledge divide for access to useful, culturally
  relevant knowledge is more than a matter of
  technology access.

• Growing concern over the commoditization of
  knowledge (knowledge for sale).
              Good practice at international
                   and national level

   Education policies and strategies informed by good
    practice in using new technologies to achieve inclusive
    and equitable education for all

   Improving access, equity and quality of teaching and

    Major actors….

                 European Commission

The Lifelong Learning Programme (2007-2013):

• Four sectoral sub-programmes (schools; higher education;
  vocational education and training; adult education)

• Four transversal programmes (policy cooperation in
  education and training; languages and language learning;
  development of ICT-based content and services;
  dissemination and exploitation of results)


• Places a high priority on forecasting emerging issues and
  identifying policies shaping education

• Conducts strategic analyses to identify good practices and
  make policy recommendations at national level

• Relevant studies that inform policy making: e-learning in
  tertiary education; Open Educational Resources; tertiary
  education for the knowledge society

          The Commonwealth of Learning

• The world’s only intergovernmental organisation
  dedicated to promoting distance education and open

• Encourages the development and sharing of open
  learning/distance education knowledge, resources and

• Helps developing nations improve access to quality
  education and training


• International educational association open to institutions and
  individuals dealing with e-learning, open and distance

• Promotes policy and practice in e-learning and distance
  education across Europe and beyond

• Fosters networking, cooperation and professional
  development in the open, distance, flexible and e-learning

                  France: Internet pour Tous:
                  Micro-Portable Etudiant

A large-scale public-private initiative, launched in 2004 :
 free Internet access offered in all universities with Wi-Fi connection
 from 8% of students with laptops in 2004 to 52 % in 2007
 access to quality educational resources and student-support services
                 21st century Learning –
               Recommendations for Policy

   Core subjects
   Learning skills
   21st century tools
   21st century context
   21st century content
   21st century assessments
                           (Source: Partnership for 21st Century Skills)

              UK: Home Access to Technology

• A £300 million project to provide computers and broadband
  internet access to families so that children can enhance their
  learning at home

• An initiative intended to bridge the digital divide: more than
  1 million children still do not have a computer at home and
  35% of the families have no access to the internet

• To be piloted in early 2009, with universal home access
  attained by 2011
                 UNESCO’s global strategy
                    in the use of ICTs

The strategy focuses on the following main tasks:

• to ensure wider access to, increased equity and equal
  opportunities for, quality education for all at all levels

• to harness the potential of ICTs for building
  sustainable, equitable and inclusive knowledge societies
  and for reducing the digital divide

              World Summit on the
              Information Society
Main Lines of Action:
• Enhancing capacities for e-learning in education
• Communication and learning tools
• E-learning policies and strategies
• Digital content within learning and education
• Legal and institutional frameworks
• Multi-stakeholders partnerships
• Research and development in e-learning

            Examples of UNESCO initiatives

  Kronberg Declaration on the Future of Knowledge
  Acquisition and Sharing (Kronberg, Germany, 22-23 June

• The role of knowledge acquisition and sharing in social and
  economic development
• The contribution of ICTs to this process
• The evolution of knowledge acquisition and sharing over
  the next three decades
• Political and institutional changes needed

          UNESCO ICT Competency
           Standards for Teachers

• To improve teachers’ practice through ICTs

• Developed in partnership with Intel, Cisco, Microsoft,
  International Society for Technology in Education, and
  Virginia Tech

• Three booklets: policy framework; competency
  standards modules; implementation guidelines

Curriculum framework

             The 2008 Education Leaders
                    Forum, Paris,
                    6-7 July 2008
• Success and Sustainability: Tertiary Education’s
  Global Challenge; in cooperation with Microsoft
• Provided important inputs to two UNESCO major
  Conferences: the World Conference on Higher
  Education (Paris, 6-8 July 2009) and the second
  World Conference on Science (Budapest, November
• Explored issues, shared insights, long-standing
  experience and proposed solutions to the challenges of
  higher education in the 21st century
         UNESCO King Hamad bin Isa
         Al Khalifa Prize for the Use of
              ICTs in Education

• Set up in 2005, following a generous donation made
  by the Kingdom of Bahrain
• Rewards innovative and creative use of ICTs to
  enhance teaching, learning and overall educational
• Prizewinners: 2006 KERIS (Korea); Kemi-Tornio
  Polytechnic (Finland); 2007: Claroline Consortium
  (Belgium), Curriki (USA)

ICT resources for policy makers
         and teachers





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