A 21st Century Education

There is growing debate around what education in the 21st century should look like and there is certainly a lot of dissatisfaction with the current model. This debate is predominantly taking place outside of Ireland, in the US, the UK, Australia, Singapore and in many Scandinavian countries. Organisations such as Futurelab’s 2020 project, The Metiri Group, and The Partnership for 21st Century Skills are doing some really interesting and ground breaking work in this area.


In recent days I received a link to The Pearson Foundation and Mobile Learning Institute film series “A 21st Century Education”. This series of films profiles individuals who embrace and defend fresh approaches to learning and who confront the urgent social challenges that are part of a 21st century experience. “A 21st Century Education” compiles, in short film format, the best ideas around school reform and innovation. The series is meant to start, extend, or nudge the conversation about how to make change happen.

Take some time to watch the videos and consider the messages presented. The big question is do you agree that we need a new education paradigm for the 21st century? If, like me, you believe we need to change our education paradigm then what needs to be changed? Others such as Don Tapscott in his recent book, Grown Up Digital, echo many of the sentiments shared in these videos. The issue for me is why are we not discussing these issues in Ireland, is our system working fine and do we believe we don’t need to change? So join the TeachNet discussion and let us hear your views.

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