This month, I continued my conversations with leaders from around the world on today's pressing issues in education -- from the challenges of graduates seeking jobs to the psychological burden of bullying, from the Japanese academic community's protests for peace to the International Baccalaureate's commitment to multiculturalism. Meanwhile, locally in New York, I learned how BAM (Brooklyn Academy of Music) and other Arts organizations are helping to complete the comprehensive Cultural Plan for New York City, which aspires to bring arts education to every school in the city. BAM is using new technology to bring their work into classrooms worldwide, making their platform accessible to young audiences and students anywhere at any time.
The Global Search for Education's core mission is to promote sustainable change through global discourse, and so I couldn't be happier than to talk with George Rupp (former President of Rice University, Columbia University, and the International Rescue Committee) about his new endeavor as Chair of the International Baccalaureate's Board of Governors. This program, offered in 146 countries, is among our favorites as it gives students the perspectives of other cultures, societies and countries through its rigorous criteria for graduation: students must take six interdisciplinary courses, write a research paper, and complete community service.
In Rupp's new position, I learned that he's working towards fostering multicultural competence and building more relations with underrepresented regions of the world. His goals are ones that all institutions should aim for. As he says, "Education that is academically rigorous, deliberately multi-cultural, and concerned with developing personal values that include a commitment to community service, is an invaluable resource for any and all of us."
I received many emails in the past few months from scholars appealing Japan's attempt to lift the constitutional ban on collective self-defense (CSD). If CSD is lifted, this could reignite participation in war for a country that has had its fill of battle. As I looked more into it, I was happy to support this cause, which grew to include over 9000 scholars. I talked to Dr. Manabu Sato (Professor Emeritus, University of Tokyo), who co-led the initiative called Association of Scholars Opposed to the Security Related Bills. Sato calls the bill "not simply unconstitutional but also an attack on the key principles of constitutionalism and the rule of law," adding that we also need to "challenge the hypocrisy exhibited by many Western governments, including the US, that generally welcome the Abe government's attempt to lift the ban on CSD, under the name of 'pro-active contribution to peace' through which Japan plays a bigger role in defending the 'rule of law' in the context of Asia's maritime and territorial conflicts."
In July, I asked our global teacher bloggers about a pertinent and poignant issue: bullying. Dr. Tracey C. Burns, a Project Leader at the OECD in Paris and a global expert on bullying, confirms that "a huge amount of political attention is being paid to the issue." Statistics repeatedly show the prevalence of bullying in American schools, and new research suggests that social media has brought school bullying into the home. Many bold recommendations were offered from teachers, all of whom brought their personal experience to tackling this difficult issue. Guest blogger James Alan Sturtevant recommended reaching out to bullies -- noting that "harsh consequences don't always work, can make bullies worse, and sometimes evoke retribution for unfortunate victims." And Pauline Hawkins cautioned that anti-bullying programs in schools will have little influence on students if the adults in their lives are not teaching and modeling respect." We also heard from Australian expert Lisa Currie (Creator of the Ripple Kindness Project), who recommended the practice of fostering kindness in schools and offered many real world examples of how to do this.
While many think of New York and California as the go-to places for post-college jobs, a recent report has shown that actually Massachusetts, Delaware, and Washington have the most job openings per college graduate. I got to talk this month with Anthony P. Carnevale, the report's lead author and the director of Georgetown University's Center on Education and the Workforce. For parents and students anxious about the meagerness of today's job market, Carnevale has given a report, which as he says, has "the ability to connect real people with real jobs in real time." His report has remarkable findings that will be a boon to anyone who wants to know about the reality of post-college life. One of many insights this report provides is that "software developers, registered nurses, and managers are among the most in-demand professionals in every state."
For more information, visit cmrubinworld.com.
Join me and globally renowned thought leaders including Sir Michael Barber (UK), Dr. Michael Block (U.S.), Dr. Leon Botstein (U.S.), Professor Clay Christensen (U.S.), Dr. Linda Darling-Hammond (U.S.), Dr. MadhavChavan (India), Professor Michael Fullan (Canada), Professor Howard Gardner (U.S.), Professor Andy Hargreaves (U.S.), Professor Yvonne Hellman (The Netherlands), Professor Kristin Helstad (Norway), Jean Hendrickson (U.S.), Professor Rose Hipkins (New Zealand), Professor Cornelia Hoogland (Canada), Honourable Jeff Johnson (Canada), Mme. Chantal Kaufmann (Belgium), Dr. EijaKauppinen (Finland), State Secretary TapioKosunen (Finland), Professor Dominique Lafontaine (Belgium), Professor Hugh Lauder (UK), Lord Ken Macdonald (UK), Professor Geoff Masters (Australia), Professor Barry McGaw (Australia), Shiv Nadar (India), Professor R. Natarajan (India), Dr. Pak Tee Ng (Singapore), Dr. Denise Pope (US), Sridhar Rajagopalan (India), Dr. Diane Ravitch (U.S.), Richard Wilson Riley (U.S.), Sir Ken Robinson (UK), Professor Pasi Sahlberg (Finland), Professor Manabu Sato (Japan), Andreas Schleicher (PISA, OECD), Dr. Anthony Seldon (UK), Dr. David Shaffer (U.S.), Dr. Kirsten Sivesind (Norway), Chancellor Stephen Spahn (U.S.), Yves Theze (LyceeFrancais U.S.), Professor Charles Ungerleider (Canada), Professor Tony Wagner (U.S.), Sir David Watson (UK), Professor Dylan Wiliam (UK), Dr. Mark Wormald (UK), Professor Theo Wubbels (The Netherlands), Professor Michael Young (UK), and Professor Minxuan Zhang (China) as they explore the big picture education questions that all nations face today.
The Global Search for Education Community Page
C. M. Rubin is the author of two widely read online series for which she received a 2011 Upton Sinclair award, "The Global Search for Education" and "How Will We Read?" She is also the author of three bestselling books, including The Real Alice in Wonderland, is the publisher of CMRubinWorld, and is a Disruptor Foundation Fellow.