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Learning Sustainability- The Revolution of Education

Education systems are often built on the exploitation of human and natural resources for the sake of capitalist ideals. Whilst in many cases, companies and individuals in the global north benefit from profit and wealth, there is the looming crisis of climate change that has the potential to make plutocratic gain null and void by imminent destruction. The school to workplace pipeline has created a people that is solely consumed by material success that they have failed to look beyond themselves and examine the wellness of the life source of humanity and all living species- Earth.

As the world advances there lies a widening gap between traditional learning and curriculum development, one that does not ultimately seek to produce well-rounded global citizens that understand sustainability and survival but rather a population who believes in the dominance of the human race. This challenge does not only pose a threat to our education systems and development, but also to the existence of all life above land and underwater. The root of this distraction and ignorance is not solely on students but the systems that their knowledge is built upon. Rebuilding and restructuring these systems to become one that is gender and ecologically transformative requires a complete overhaul of the current workings of these systems.

The new goal of education systems should be one that shifts the school to workplace pipeline in a way that fosters meaningful learning. Reducing inequalities is not simply about ensuring that the human species are seen as equal to each other and deserving of human rights but also ensuring the Earth is treated with respect, as a living and breathing thing who is deserving of ecological rights as we work to develop a future that is inclusive, sustainable and unified. We must move beyond the need to care for the Earth simply because it is needed for the survival of the human race. Instead we should care for the Earth because the Earth is living and breathing, too.

We must ask ourselves how we can make learning something that people can access but also enjoy. Education should be designed in such a way where it caters to various learning abilities and learning styles. Our current systems unfortunately are deeply ableist and exclusive, creating additional barriers for a large amount of our global population. This much needed transformation is not hard to come by. We have the brain power, the resources and the people but in executing this, it will mean that there is a possibility where less people will be ignorant to their inequalities and what they deserve. World leaders who are agents of oppressive systems rely on this ignorance.

When we reimagine sustainability and the route to achieve it, we must ask ourselves who and what is in the way. The process of removal cannot be one where we act as “bamcee flies”, it has to be deliberate, bold and inclusive. There is no neutrality in the revolution of education.

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