Rethinking Education

COVID-19 has demonstrated how turbulent times we live in. Suddenly, kids can’t go to school, tens of millions are losing their jobs and millions are severely sick or have died. The societies around the globe also face other steep challenges since inequality, intolerance, and various conflicts tend to increase especially in the most vulnerable countries due to climate change and other global crises such as COVID-19.

Everyone needs high-quality education to learn to live in a rapidly changing world and do it sustainably from social, economic, and environmental perspectives. Education must continuously renew to foster the skills and competencies needed in the dynamic world. There is a lot of debate internationally on what kind of skills and competencies are needed today and tomorrow developing the right mix is essential for any individual to become e.g. employable. But could education be even more? A great equalizer maybe?

The humanist vision of education is that it is an essential common good. This vision has been acknowledged for decades but it is probably more accurate and needed than ever before. Social responsibility, accountability of education are gaining importance and digital learning can deliver high-quality education to almost everyone on the planet. In many cases, access to different forms of formal and especially informal education digitally is a life changer. Learning to read, acquiring a new entrepreneurial skill, or finding a mentor overseas are great examples of modern, digital, and very accessible learning.

We at Claned feel that education is the greatest way to equalize global inequality and do something good with impact. In Ng’oswet province in rural Kenya, we delivered on a pro-bono basis a professional teacher training program to teachers who had never used digital tools before. As a result, 87% of them reported being able to use the core competencies learned in their daily work in classrooms. During COVID-19 we have helped a school in Pakistan to go digital and continue operations. In Mexico, we kicked off an initiative together with MY World Mexico to mobilize and engage people and organizations to support the implementation of Sustainable Development Goals in practice. We support entrepreneurship programs in Latin America, Africa, and Finland and plan to expand our reach globally. We are still a small company but even small things can make a huge impact especially on an individual level.

Doing business is important. Especially when it can be done common good in mind.

About the Author

Vesa Perälä, Claned CEO and Founder is a serial entrepreneur and natural-born business developer with decades of corporate and start-up know-how.