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Thursday, 20th September 2018
 
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Global Educators for All Initiative: An Introduction
The desire for education is global, as everyone without exception needs to be educated, in order to attain the desires for happiness in life, which obviously comes through our understanding and utilization of our understanding the world – understanding ourselves, others and the huge resources in the world. Despite the global desire for education, human beings are born into the world relatively ignorant of self, others and the environment, even though each of us have a huge salient potential within us, others and in the environment.

Throughout human history, the fundamental challenge and threat to the realization of global happiness has been human ignorance of the world, which involves both internal and external ignorance. However, ignorance can be likened to darkness, implying that human beings have lived in darkness for several generations, not knowing fully the strategies to achieve global happiness through effective utilization of their potentials. Therefore, the greatest need at this time is to dispel human ignorance at a global level and develop the inherent potential in each person to become useful global citizens, who is useful to self, others and our common environment/resources.

Education is simply the process of dispelling human ignorance and developing the inherent human potentials in order to become useful persons and to attain happiness in life. This process usually involves teaching, learning and practicing in order to perfect our attitude, knowledge and skills. For this reason, no society has been able to grow beyond the scope of its education system and no society can grow beyond the quality of her educators.

As humanity has passed through several dispensations in education of the citizens of the world in order to attain happiness, there have been challenges and issues that tend to make educators not capable of educating the people as expected. In the age we live in now, educators seem to have lost the vision of education that meets the challenges of the moment. We are traumatized by the spread of “educationally transmitted diseases” manifesting through all forms of anti social behaviors and societal ills like corruption, bad governance, poor performance in examinations, unemployment, moral degradation among youths, kidnapping, terrorism, etc.

At the same time, educators have become so disempowered, disconnected from information, each other and resources, and educators are not accorded the respect and recognition that they deserve. In the 20th century, nations of the world existed on the principles of national independence and this guided the vision of education to be centered on “education for self reliance” making each educator seeking to be reliant on self only and educating for the sake of self. Today, the emergence of all forms of selfishness around the world points to the fact that we are harvesting the fruits of our investment in education for self, making educated persons live and think more of self and not for others. In the passing age that we live, educators are no more united with each other. The education divide between education in character and education for career needs to be resolved. The gaping divide between spiritual education and science education needs to be addressed too. The relationship between formal, non formal and informal educators need to be complementary rather than competitive. The consequence of this trend are glaringly clear that our education is failing to produce the required citizenship needed at this time.

Toward the end of the 20th century and entry into the new millennium, the global aspiration moved beyond existence of nations on the basis of independence to the consciousness of the need for mutual cooperation, and this has called for international relations in the realm of interdependence. At the same time, the educational slogan seem to have changed from “education for self” to “education for all”, though diversely interpreted to mean education of all persons. I have differed slightly and rather looked at education for all to possibly include both providing access to education for all people as well as educating each person (and in fact all persons) for the sake of all and not just for self. Herein comes the new challenge. We need a new vision of education, a new generation of educators as well as new ways of educating/new tools for education.

The new vision of education should be able to bring together the diverse contradictory views on education, reveal the true heart of educators, the origin and future of education, harmonize educational practices and bring together formal, informal and non formal educators. The new vision of education must be global and should explain clearly, the ideal principles of education, identify the reality of the state of education around the world as well as the new future of education.

It is this understanding that has guided my decision to begin a movement for educators – the Global Educators for All Initiative. The initiative will seek to create a global culture of education, raise a new generation and global community of educators as well as promote the effective utilization of technology and other resources to advance the creation of access to quality education for all citizens.

In seeking to achieve this, the Global Educators for All Initiative will:

  • Inspire educators with a new global vision of education which will raise educators who will educate for the sake of all and facilitate learning and generate learners who will not learn for self only but for the sake of all.
  • Empower educators with the professional development initiatives that will create a new sense of commitment and right attitude toward the profession, have the required knowledge to educate for all as well as develop and utilize their skills to contribute toward education for all in local places.
  • Connect educators (parents, teachers and leaders) to relevant information, to each other as partners for education as well as to tools and resources that will facilitate quality education for all.
  • Celebrate educators and educational agencies and institutions that are making a commitment to this initiative as well as other professionals for their outstanding contribution to education

This initiative is a commitment to:

  • Creating a new global culture of education where educators (parents, teachers and leaders) all work together to ensure access to both quality and quantity in education and where educators will educate with the heart of parents and learners will see each other as members of a common family and therefore brothers and sisters.
  • Building a global network of educators who will make a commitment to educating for the sake of all and will facilitate institutions of education that are mutually interdependent and collectively reliant. Such educators will have their classroom connected to each other and the partnership between the family, school and community will be strengthened for the sake of education.
  • Developing and utilizing technologies for global education in a manner that resources are effectively utilized for all. Care for tools and the environment will be high in the heart of educators and technology will be utilized more positively for education. The initiative will advance access to education of all people beyond primary and secondary levels, and possibly advocate for globalization of tertiary education through technology in order to create access for all.

It is my hope that colleagues around the world will join in this effort to move from education for self to education for all. There is no way that education for all can be realized without educators for all. Herein lies the calling to this humble path of renewal and commitment to global happiness. In the days ahead, I will devote my heart, head and hands to advancing this initiative and will the support of many other colleagues around the world, we shall bring this dream to reality.

We shall begin with a focus on Membership, Partnership, Programs and Projects by educators around the world. Wherever you may live and whatever you may be doing, as long as your effort is making or contributing to making someone a better and well informed global citizen, I believe that you are a global educator. Even though the globe is our home, school and community, our real room for action is our daily local activity. Join me in this new endeavor to make the world a better and possibly the best place for all.

Dr. Raphael Ogar Oko, International Coordinator, Global Educators for All Initiative

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