World Education Forum 2015 (Incheon, Republic of Korea)

world education forum 2015

Participants of the World Education Forum after the Closing Ceremony 

The World Education Forum 2015 took place in May 18-21, in Incheon, Republic of korea. More than 1,500 participants were invited by the UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova, with more than 100 Ministers of Education, heads and members of delegations, heads of agencies and officials of multilateral and bilateral organizations, and representatives of civil society, the teaching profession, youth and the private sector. Along UNESCO, the Government of Korea, UNICEF, the World Bank, UNFPA, UNDP, UN Women, and UNHCR, made contributions to lead this milestone event for Education 2030.

On this historic occasion, we reafirm the vision of the worldwide movement for Education for All (EFA) initiated in Jomtien in 1990 and reiterated in Dakar in 2000 – the most important commitment to education in recent decades and which has helped drive significant progress in education. Having taken stock of progress made towards the EFA goals since 2000 and the education-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) as well as the lessons learned, and having examined the remaining challenges and deliberated on the proposed 2030 education agenda and the Framework for Action as well as on future priorities and strategies for its achievement, the participants have adopted the Incheon Declaration “Education 2030: Towards inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning for all.

Before the official start of the World Education Forum 2015, the 2015 NGO Forum took place with civil society represents from all the world, where was asopted the “2015 NGO Forum Declaration: Towards the Right to Inclusive Quality Public Education and Lifelong Learning Beyond 2015.

During the press conference celebrated after the Open Ceremony of the World Education Forum 2015, UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova, and the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, they expressed the important role of building a global citizenship to be succeed with the educational targets of the Sustainable Development Goals for 2030.

World Education Forum. 19-22 May 2015, Incheon, Republic of Korea, Global Education Magazine from Global Education Magazine

kailash satyarthi, javier collado, world education forum 2015javier collado, Kailash satyarthi, world education forum 2015

Javier Collado Ruano interviewing Mr Kailash Satyarthi, Laureate of the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize 

The presence of Mr. Kailash Satyarthi (avobe), 2014 Nobel Peace Prize along Malala Yousafzai, was highlighted in the World Education Forum 2015. Javier Collado had the opportunity to interview him for the next edition of Global Education Magazine, with occasion of the International Youth Day.

ministros de educacion de america latina y el caribe, foro mundial de la educacion

Representatives and Ministers of Education and Culture of Latin America and the Caribbean gathered at the World Education Forum 2015 during the May 21 joint statement.

In harmony with the new educational agenda 2030, the Ministers of Education and Culture of Latin America and the Caribbean prepared an official statement in which they compromised to advance in quality education systems, reaffirming that education is a fundamental human right, the basis for ensuring the realization of other rights, and is essential for prosperity and peaceful, inclusive, equitable, and sustainable growth in the region. During the meetings, we also had the opportunity to interview the Minister of Education of Brazil, Mr. Renato Janine Ribeiro (left) and Minister of Education of the Plurinational State of Bolivia, Mr. Roberto Aguilar Gomez (right).

 javier collado e renato Ribeiroroberto aguilar, Bolivia, javier collado ruano, foro mundial de la educación

The World Education Forum 2015 was a meeting point between the different educational agents worldwide to promote participatory contexts and including cultural diversity to achieve the targets of post-2015 sustainable development agenda. A commitment fixed in Rio+20 where the Open Working Group led by Prof. Jeffrey Sachs has been working in the last months to elaborate the objectives and indicators of the new Sustainable Development Goals (ODS) for 2030, where education is the SDG4 and seeks to ensure an inclusive, equitable and quality education promoting lifelong learning for all.

javier collado ruano, jeffrey sachs, world education forum 2015

Javier Collado Ruano along Jeffrey Sachs, coordinator of the Open Working Group

The Question of Palestine

In many parts of the world, where apart from food, water, medicine or homes, rights are also scarce, including education. This is not only limited to the right to go to school or pursue university studying and the formation of each individual’s professional potential, gaining the opportunity to live a better life, but also the opportunity to receive a secular education where there is lifestyle individuality, where each person is able to make their own decisions, and where neither government nor society control civil life. A clear example is Palestine, located in the Middle East.

In Palestine, there is a team member from Education for Life. Our colleague Ruth works as a volunteer teacher at An-Najah National University located in the city of Nablus, in the northern West Bank. She is teaching the Spanish language to Palestinian university students of varying academic background (from linguists to engineers); in which all students have access and the chance to learn Spanish. But apart from that, her and her colleagues share with students other customs or ways of life that exist in other parts of the globe. They transmit other perspectives from different cultures, and they inform them of places where perhaps there are more job opportunities than they can find at their country.

Ruth Marjalizo, Palestina, Educar para Vivir

Ruth Marjalizo with a children from Palestine

“My work ideology is based on mutual respect, respect for others and respect for the doctrines. We are not putting our ideas before those of them neither trying to convince anyone of the opposite of what they think or feel, just we want to share our knowledge and releasing of the wide range of possibilities that exist outside of the land of each population, where their eyes do not reach to see and their ears do not reach to hear. We opted for a secular education, where every person is free to think whatever they want and to choose what they see fit for their future. Far from attempt against religion, secularism in public education provides a framework of coexistence and respect between different religious and belief systems, without imposing any binding way. “

Palestine is a territory quite complicated in terms of where education is concerned. As in many other countries, religion is the most important pillar of society, which controls education and culture. Although this does not mean that the education system is religious, everything is governed and controlled by religion.

This where religion and culture are mixed into a single weapon, creating a society that disenfranchises many people and putting obstacles onto others. This is a great challenge, considering that teaching in a society governed entirely by religion is a very difficult job. It is a very religious country and what makes this unique is how Palestinians are still quite skeptical about the future that awaits them.

Another important role that Education for Life has in Palestine is the help and cooperation in voluntary actions, such as the olive harvest (which takes place now until the end of November). We also want to contact refugee camps both locally and throughout the West Bank, to examine their daily lives, the possibilities that they have and they do not, etc. We want to show the world what they do not know, neither see.

Our goal is to return to Palestine as the country that was before the occupation and war, a country with a more open-minded and more opportunities for growth, which it now has. Where people have the opportunity and the right to a quality education and teachers are merely the means to knowledge and not the only real source of information and wisdom, where youth learn by them-selves in seeking and investigating knowledge. Not a passive society that receives information, and only regurgitate it. They are the future and it is to them that we want to outreach.