This week I was honored to participate as a speaker at UNESCO’s 2016 Mobile Learning Week in Paris. The theme for this year’s event is “innovating for quality,” reflecting the need for students around the world to develop the skills and competencies necessary to succeed in today’s knowledge-based economy.
UNESCO estimates that 130 million primary school students can’t read basic sentences or solve simple arithmetic problems. These problems are not limited to early grades but at all levels of education. A large number of learners are not acquiring the skills they need to transition to work, realize opportunities in the information age, and participate in their communities as global citizens.
The ubiquity of technology is changing the world we live in at an ever-increasing rate. As a result, new industries are emerging and new jobs are being created. These changes, while exciting, also put growing pressure on youth to develop the skills that will prepare them to keep pace with the evolving opportunities and needs.
At Intel we are committed to solving critical, global problems through the power of technology—driving the way to a better, brighter future for our youth. A critical piece of this is helping young people learn the must-have skills of critical thinking, problem-solving, digital literacy, communication, collaboration and creativity.
Our approach is holistic and collaborative. We are collaborating with governments, multilateral organizations like UNESCO, civil society, public-private alliances, academics and educators to power student achievement. Our framework for education transformation addresses all vectors – from vision and leadership to policy, professional development, curriculum and assessment, research and evaluation, ICT and sustainable resourcing.
For a systemic transformation of countries’ education system, it requires first and foremost innovative policies led and assessed by government leaders. That’s why I am excited about our joint launch of the ICT in Education Policy Platform to support governments and education decision makers in their planning and reform implementation by providing access to interactive tools, templates, a comprehensive library of key policy and research documents, and a communications platform for policy makers. This new platform is just one of many initiatives UNESCO and Intel lead together globally as part of our strategic partnership to design, drive and share experiences of innovation in education.
By partnering with world leaders like UNESCO, we are helping governments equip today’s youth with the right skills and opportunities to reach their potential—regardless of economic status, gender or race.