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UNESCO forum on education for sustainable development underway

Released at: 20:11, 02/07/2019

UNESCO forum on education for sustainable development underway

Photo: The Ministry of Education and Training

July 2 and 3 forum focusing on learning and teaching for peaceful and sustainable societies.

by Le Diem

The UNESCO Forum for Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship Education is taking place on July 2 and 3 in Hanoi.

The forum is being organized by UNESCO in cooperation with the Ministry of Education and Training and the Vietnam National Committee for UNESCO, under the sponsorship of Japan’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. It welcomes over 350 delegates from some 100 countries and territories, including policy makers, educationists, representatives from non-government organizations, and members of the private sector who work in the field of education for sustainable development and global citizenship education.

The theme of the forum is “Learning and Teaching for Peaceful and Sustainable Societies: From Early Childhood to Primary and Secondary Education”.

The main focus is on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) and Global Citizenship Education (GCED); two key programs necessary to achieve Target 4.7 of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4 on Education.

On the occasion, UNESCO launched a conference-ready version of its study on how the three learning dimensions of ESD and GCED - cognitive, socio-emotional and behavioral - are reflected in curricula at pre-primary, primary education and secondary education levels in ten countries and territories around the world.

The forum provides a platform in which participants can exchange experience and innovative approaches on how best to address gaps in curricula. Attendees will also be able to learn how to fully harness the potential of the three domains of learning across all levels, in order to support sustainable development and global citizenship.

Every two years, as the lead agency on ESD and GCED, UNESCO brings together stakeholder groups and experts from both areas at the UNESCO Forum on Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship.

ESD aims to improve access to quality education on sustainable development at all levels and in all social contexts, to transform society by reorienting education and helping people develop the knowledge, skills, values, and behaviors needed for sustainable development. It is about including sustainable development issues, such as climate change and biodiversity, into teaching and learning. Individuals are encouraged to be responsible actors who resolve challenges, respect cultural diversity, and contribute to creating a more sustainable world.

GCED is UNESCO’s response to these challenges. It works by empowering learners of all ages to understand that these are global, not local, issues, and to become active promoters of more peaceful, tolerant, inclusive, secure, and sustainable societies. GCED is a strategic area of UNESCO’s Education Sector program and builds on the work of Peace and Human Rights Education. It aims to instil in learners the values, attitudes and behaviors that support responsible global citizenship: creativity, innovation, and commitment to peace, human rights, and sustainable development.

Both ESD and GCED require that learners develop the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes that are needed to contribute to a more inclusive, just, peaceful, and sustainable world.

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