Principal's Blog - 12 September 2019

10 Sep 2019

+ “I begin with an idea and then it becomes something else.” ~ Pablo Picasso

A new global movement

In a world of rapid change, young people need the right mix of skills to thrive. Access to information is increasing, and the need for memorizing facts is less important today than in the past. Although literacy and numeracy will continue to be the building blocks on which all learning rests and remain fundamental, they are not sufficient enough to foster thoughtful, productive, connected and ethical global citizens. Young people everywhere need to develop a greater breadth of skills to evaluate and apply knowledge in ways that meets the demands of a new world environment.

While there’s no doubt that climate change, artificial intelligence, automation, technologies and the need to accommodate an ever-expanding global population will remain key issues, it’s hard to foresee what else we’ll be dealing with by the time today’s school age students enter the workforce. The World Economic Forum (WEF) has argued that, “In many industries and countries, the most in-demand occupations or specialties did not exist 10 years ago.”

Rapid advances in technology are transforming the world of work, and by 2020 the McKinsey Global Institute estimates 83 million jobs around the globe will go unfilled due to lack of skills.

While the previous industrial era demanded that nations provide one-size-fits-all mass education, the fourth industrial revolution demands personalised, holistic education that will prepare humans to identify and develop their own talent, competencies and character strengths to thrive in a new world driven by machines and technology.

In the Foundation for Young Australia’s (FYA) 2016 report, The New Work Mindset, they identified seven job clusters in Australia’s workforce. Exhibit 6 (image) highlights the seven job clusters and their future prospects in terms of growth and impact as a result of advancements in automation.

This requires all education sectors to adopt a new mindset for schooling, today, as we support the growth and achievement of young people for this new world of work.

I have previously written about The Age of the Human. My article focused on the need to have an increased emphasis on including ‘human skills’ for life in Australian schooling. One element of these human skills is the prioritisation of Social and Emotional Learning (SEL). In a Salzburg Statement for Social and Emotional Learning education leaders, influencers, researchers and practitioners from 31 countries call for prioritisation of SEL in education reform.

Today’s schools need to focus more on not just the technical knowledge and skills but the necessary social (human) skills and the ability to create and collaborate to solve real life problems and better prepare each young person for the work of the future.

At Marcellin we believe that Polaris strongly positions the young men in our care to emerge, growth and thrive in this new world environment. With it’s strong emphasis on foundational literacies, capability skills and character attributes our new learning ecosystem aspires to foster the necessary confidence, competence and character to help each young man to flourish in 2030 and beyond.

Throughout Term 3 our academic staff have been designing curriculum programs that are rich in foundational knowledge and skill while ensuring self-determined learning opportunities across all one hundred Depth Stage courses.

My perspective is that all educational communities, systems and organisations are home to ideas and innovation. These innovative ideas need to be given the breathing room to evolve naturally. Polaris is the beginning of a great “idea” for a new direction in schooling:

  1. Polaris is our vision for faith, learning and life for a new world environment.
  2. Polaris is highly disruptive and calls for all in our community to learn, unlearn and relearn their role in learning - students, teachers and parents.
  3. Polaris is fundamentally a human ecosystem that is personal and born from the Gospel construct of hope and love.
  4. Polaris understands the duality of each young man’s immediate needs, while having a lens on the bigger picture of their world of work from 2030.
  5. Polaris is inherently beautiful, it launches up from the pedagogy of encounter with self, place, God and the other.
  6. Polaris is in it for the long game. It requires high support, high expectations and a trusting endurance as we set a new direction about what is possible in learning and schooling.

Commencing in 2020 I invite you to join us on this remarkable journey called Polaris.

Adriano Di Prato
Acting Principal

 

References

McKinsey Global Institute. (2012). The world at work: Jobs, pay, and skills for 3.5 billion people. Retrieved via: https://tinyurl.com/y4fh94um.

The Foundation for Young Australians. (2016). The New Work Mindset. Retrieved via https://apo.org.au/sites/default/files/resource-files/2016/11/apo-nid70701-1164546.pdf

World Economic Forum. (2016). The Future of Jobs. Retrieved via http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_Future_of_Jobs.pdf