A framework for education strategy

We must address the high incidence of early school leavers and increase participation in adult learning, and promote and raise levels of student attainment in further, vocational and tertiary education and training.

What is education? In the general sense it is imparting and acquiring knowledge from teacher to student, from student to teacher, from generation to generation and the most important form of learning - both in school and beyond it. But most importantly, education is the base for everything; it is the key to development and success.
Like anything else, we have to move with the times and education is no exception. We recognise the challenges of an ever-evolving world and we must plan ahead – we must ensure that today’s students will be well prepared for the world of tomorrow. To do this, we need a strategy that will build more effective synergies between education, the economy and civil society and that will provide present and future generations with the necessary skills and talents for employability and citizenship in the 21st century.
We have taken the first step by recognising that there is a problem. We are now actively working on a solution to the problem. Over the years there have been several strategies for the improvement of education in Malta, some with greater success than others. It seems however that an overall strategy, linking the various strategies and initiatives, was lacking.
We feel that we need the input of all stakeholders and have embarked on a series of consultation meetings with educators, policy makers, administrators, teachers and students as well as with members of the economic sector and civil society in general. It is no coincidence that the Framework for the Education Strategy 2014 – 2024 was launched at a meeting with MCESD last February.
Since then, we have held several meetings. We have held consultation meetings with Heads of Schools and Colleges, with teachers at both primary and secondary level, with MCAST, Higher Education providers and the University of Malta, as well as local councils and the general public. Consultation meetings with heads of Church and independent schools were also held. Other key players such as the teachers’ union, professional bodies and parents will all be actively engaged in the process.
An education strategy would require the feedback of all those involved in Education and consultation meetings will be held through 31st May. While proposing this strategy, we are making it clear that we do not want to impose a one-size-fits-all on educational institutions in Malta and Gozo.
The Ministry has prepared the framework for facilitating this consultation process. We must have an updated educational plan for our nation. We are proposing a coherent strategy for lifelong learning opportunities from early childhood education to adult learning.
We want all the people of Malta and Gozo to have the opportunity to obtain the necessary skills and attitudes to be active citizens and to succeed at work and in society. Through this strategy we hope to encourage creativity, literacy, entrepreneurship and innovation at all levels.
This framework has four goals in line with European and International benchmarks. We should ensure a widespread knowledge of basic skills, reduce the gaps in educational outcomes between boys and girls, decrease the number of low achievers and increase competence in science and technology.
We must also address the high incidence of early school leavers and increase participation in adult learning. We must also promote and raise levels of student attainment in further, vocational and tertiary education and training.
We have launched a number of other programmes and initiatives. These, together with European policies and International initiatives, will all be implemented in the framework of a comprehensive Education Strategy for Malta 2014 – 2024 to ensure that they will all complement each other and guarantee best practices and policies in the development of Education in Malta.

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