Education is a unique business. What we do in schools today continues to have an impact on our pupils’ lives in 10, 20 even 50 years’ time. For educators today this is proving even more complex. We are preparing pupils for a world we can barely imagine.
At the recent IB conference, held in the Hague World Forum, I listened to lecturers from universities around the globe illustrate how quickly the world was changing, as they gave examples of products and services we could not conceive of ten years ago when our current Sixth Form joined us. These included a microchip in your blood stream that can detect infection and tackle it before you were aware of having an illness; and a toilet not only programmed with different flush sounds, deodorisers and a temperature controlled seat, but with sensors that monitor what goes through the system to give you feedback on your body nutrients outlining where you are deficient. These sensors are linked to your fridge to advise you on what you need to eat – It’s a very different world to the one I was born into.
In this fast changing world, content increasingly becomes less relevant to the skills needed. As educators we have to ensure we not only give our pupils, but a skillset that is highly valued in a competitive global market but a skillset that has a shelf life of at least 50 years.
The conference articulated this very clearly but also showed how the IB Learner Profile is an important step towards attaining it. By encouraging our girls to be open minded, flexible thinkers who are prepared to take risks, will help to ensure that they have the skill set to be able to create jobs rather than just get jobs. That they have the confidence to go out and make a difference and be future smart for the world they will be moving into.
IB is all about educating pupils to make a better future, at BGS we are trying to do the same. Why wouldn’t you?