Augustine Veliath Proposes the Consortium and Communities Approach to Life Long Education (C-CASE )
Life long education? We have run out of excuses. Nation wide and world wide life long education is now possible.We have the reach, the technology, the know how, the arguments, the consensus and the conviction.
I will not bother you with the merits and advantages of of life long education. Nor will I remind you the dozens of international, national and constitutional commitments, laws, strategies and programs for education.
All those, we have gone over several times in several meetings like this and bigger summits and conferences. We are the converted, each one of us. Let us not waste one another’s time going all over again on all of those.
We have run out of excuses. We used to say we have no money and resources. Now our governments say that we are over flowing with money. We used to say we cannot reach people. Now we have such penetrative technologies we are reaching out to people and vice versa. With the penetrative technologies like the mobile phone and apps and the increasing access of radio, it is time we just got together did what we need to do and what is within our capacity to do.
I would like call this the C-CASE approach to life long education- The Consortium and Communities Approach to Societal Engagement.
Here again I will not give homework to others. Let me tell you what you and I can do together.
ABCD of Education for All
Remember E.F. Schumacher, the man who wrote that trendsetter of a book Small is Beautiful. http://www.centerforneweconomics.org/. He once said “Nothing succeeds until the ABCD takes it over and make it their own. So who are the ABCD?
- Business people
- Communicators and
- Democratic institutions, networks and processes.
These four categories of people are a must for the success of any major societal effort. Absence of any one category can make it a failure.
An Administrative Consortium for Education
(1) I will first aim at an administrative consortium. I will target every administrator, everyone who calls himself a manager or a director, but first of all and most of all target the district collectors.
Every administrator will have a specific geographic focus and a demographic focus.
But managers by nature are busy. But your job and my job therefore is to develop the apps, the tool kits, the advocacy arguments and the talking points for every kind of administrator and first of all and I repeat the district collector.
The verb manage ends in a capital E, Education and the noun manager is not complete without an ER education results.
A Business Consortium for Education
My second Consortium will be a Business for Education Consortium. To begin with I will have an inventory everyone who can invest, everyone who will invest. Because Education is the best investment.
Once again it is our job to tell our business people what happens if we invest in education and what happens if we do not. It is again for us to work out what are the most cost effective education opportunities and what the per rupee returns are.
This sound what if exercises and the advocacy arguments thereof a great service to education. So are tools developed for cost effectiveness.
Creatives Unite for Education
I will also go for Communication Consortium bringing into the fold all the creative people I know. Writers, Singers, the print media, the electronic media, the singers, the lyricists, the script writers, radio, television, the folk and traditional media. The performing media, the theatre, the street plays and the katha vachaks will have a great place in the consortium.
You know what a good photograph or visual can do to our messages. A picture is worth a thousand words.How a good film maker can dramatize it and make it more memorable. You know how constantly a community radio can educate and remind people with closer home experiences and contexts.
I would like every communicator and creative person be a champion of life long education and make learning easier, exciting and fun.
I would want them to change behaviour and attitudes. I would like them to make education memorable. I would want them to be content makers, or the king makers.
I will want them to make education an individual and societal habit. I want them to play individual and collective pride in attaining education.
Your job and my job is to bring all communicators together and facilitative an on going creative explosion and continue to streamline and disseminate the out pouring creative work far and wide.Our job is to make the communicators around us abreast of all advances and all opportunities in the education field.
Leadership Consortium for Education
The fourth Consortium will be a Leadership for Education Consortium. We will have all the democratic processes converging on education , once for all repositioning education and life long education as right and as an entitlement.
We should interact with all political parties, all elected representatives and all voluntary organizations and movements to back education. I want every elected representative to fight for his or her constituents education rights. I want every leader to monitor and facilitate the educational work in their area, and make sure that quality education reaches the last and the least.
Your job and my job is to unite them and sometimes to shame them into action. Every political leader should have geographical and demographical responsibilities. Keeping in touch with and give them talking points, monitoring formats and enough disaggregated data is all our job.- Let us join together create inventory of all leaders and develop the tools for them.
Beyond ABCD — EFGHIJ
Educators stand up for Education
E of course stand for Education. All schools and colleges, all teachers and students should educators and champions of education. They all should become spokesperson for education.
Teachers should expand their capabilities and reach everyone possible. Teachers should support and mentor each other. We should have teachers who are intense and maximum.
Students can reach out students and non students. In teaching they learn. In uniting they add power and confidence to themselves. The best gift we can give to our children is a educated society, a society where education is the norm, education is an environment and a habit.
Inter-faith Consortium for Education
Faith based groups can position education as a moral obligation. Many interfaith groups run schools and colleges. They dedicated professionals working with “missionary zeal for education.
An Interfaith Consortium can once again take on geographic responsibilities and complement one another in reaching out to the poorest of the poor. What we need to do is to bring them together on a common platform, share with them quality standards, unite them in providing life long education.
Grassroots Network for Education
The thousands of front-line workers, the teeming self help groups, the youth clubs, the women’s groups all have a vested interest in education. The can add power and reach to our mission. For once I am not even saying consortium. I am saying network. A vast network that reaches out to the villages and hamlets, to the unauthorized colonies in urban areas. The front-line can be the real mentors.
Our job is make this network alive give them the apps and the tools and and help them to stand out and be counted.
All For Health All for Education.
In a life long education scenario, health is the first thing they want to know. Every health provider is also and must also be an education provider. The Twinning of these sectors is natural. Health Education and Education for health can both be life saving and life sustaining. Timely education in health can win you friends and gratitude.
IT Consortium for Education
As the digital power unfolds that any one with It know how and prowess must be drafted in to support education. They will develop apps and tools which can take education to furthest corners. With IT we win the youth, we empower the field worker. We also make education exciting and engaging, and access and reach a lot easier.
Consortium of Justice Seekers.
Last but not least I want every rights activist, every justice seeker be part of the education efforts. They should keep the government and all of us on our toe. Education is the absolute entitlement and the fundamental right. Let no one be deprived of it. Let no education provider fail in his duty.