Jacques Delors

Education The Hidden Value Within Publication date : April 1, 1996

The world has changed, and not only in matters of technology and our perspectives on it. The population is younger and larger, and inequalities are becoming dramatically accentuated. The magnitude of new risks is unprecedented; interdependence is becoming an ever stronger factor in our daily lives. In the face of this evolution, economic reforms will not suffice. We must invent and instill an approach to education that truly prepares men and women to take their own futures in hand, and such a feat implies not only economic efficiency, but also an adequate preparation for everyday life. To contribute to this reform, former European Commission president Jacques Delors agreed to direct a study group created by UNESCO, comprised of a prestigious panel of teachers and researchers. This report identifies the new stakes of educative politics, taking into consideration geopolitical problems and social bonds, as well as economic factors. Our planet can not continue to develop without a better global qualification for its population; we must attain an improved understanding of the relationships that link human groups to their neighbors and to their environments. In this book, Delors specifies the educational objectives we should strive for: competence is vital, but it is equally necessary to prepare people to master knowledge, to teach themselves, to live together and, most simply, to be. The panel also provides an analysis of the reforms necessary to our educational systems, including the redefinition of the place of education throughout a lifetime, improving conditions of access to education for all societies, the coordination and orientation of university systems worldwide, the improvement of teaching conditions and the redefinition of the bonds between politics and educators. Shouldn't the mastery of education be the next challenge taken up by the global community?