I vividly remember how now the late Dares Kankongoliro laboured to convince my grandmother to allow me go to school. The man toiled to explain to the old woman about the significance of education for the future of her children but it was all Greek to her. She could not imagine someone shunning a traditional career of herding to holding books all in the name of a good future.
Well, as he was sweating to see me in school, many other parents out there had the same perception about education, and they would really find it hard to connect education and the future that was being proclaimed by government authorities, and as a result many young able children were not able to attain education.
Much as some parents really didn’t value education, there are those who had breathed modern renaissance and were able to connect the relationship between education and the future but could not educate their children due to economic reasons.
However it is mind disturbing, even in the contemporary time, the ant-education theorists have continued to raise their ideas about education and to them education is not actually the sanctuary of a good future. They explore the ideas advanced by educationist and point out the aspect of social development and cognitive growth and that these bring about material wealth and how they have been the benchmark for emphasizing education over the years.
The same idea my grandmother had in the twilight of her earthly existence is what many others still advance, “the biggest buildings in town are owned by non-educated people and they are employing the educated” imagine they were not educated people who would effectively manage those buildings? Thousands of cows can perish in a week if they are not treated by well educated veterinary doctor but your education will remain even when the academic documents get burnt in the house
A point to note here is that of Human Development Paradigm that is purely based on the view that all human beings are born with innate abilities and have got all the rights to develop them and this can effectively be executed through education regardless of how much wealth one has, education is needed to maintain or else the wealth can be brown away in a brink of an eye.
Throughout the world, educationist continues to make similar mistakes of linking the concept of development of nations to economic growth, it should not be limited to that only, and it’s primarily the reason people look at education as a waste of time especially in developing economies where agriculture remains predominantly at the helm of the economy.
Education and development are inseparable; education broadens the scope of people’s freedom and develops their potentials thus making vibrant, developmental and situational changing choices.
In the march of 1990 in Thailand’s capital city Jomtien, during the conference on the declaration of education for all, resolutions were made and these marked the new era in the history of Education in the world especially in regards to meeting the basic learning needs of all individuals.
While in the conference, which was coordinated by Jacques Delors, they established new guidelines to change the face and the perception of education throughout the world. Over the years especially after the industrial revolution, education has been predominantly dominated by “market-based fundamentalism”, a concept that must change in line with fostering development according to deeply humanistic bases because it is exactly what is needed to address the problems of today.
Let’s educate not only the children but all humans who still think education can benefit them, it will equip humanity with the capacity to control his or her own development.
All communities should be empowered to understand the significance of education, politicians, local leaders, clergies and other religious groups should put more light on the concept of Education and be able inspire parents to educate their children regardless of their economic muscle and their perception of the matter.
It is pretty necessary to involve all society members, parents, teachers and local leaders to change the minds of the people about the whole concept of education for “education has no equal”.
The writer is a PhD student of Comparative Education at Beijing Normal University