by Marianna Spiliotaki
Note from the ICONHIC team:
According to statistical data published by UNESCO, school closures in over 180 countries from February to October, 2020 have affected over 1.6 trillion students worldwide. In ICONHIC, we believe that within the global effort to overcome this major disruption lies a unique opportunity for fundamental rebuilding of educational systems.
We asked Marianna Spiliotaki, a 17 years old student from Athens, to share her vision, aiming to trigger a dialogue that will draw the construction lines of a resilient and inclusive post-COVID education.
rounded education is a sine qua non requirement of a functional society. If there is something that should be included in a conference dealing with the resiliency of our cities, that is ideas on constructing an educational system with adapting capabilities. In a time of crisis and political instability where the human resourcefulness is called to face complicated problems, lacking resilience, education -and the society on the whole- will not manage to lift the weight of climate change or a conflict. We link education with societies as we must admit that a resilient educational system leads to resilient people. The type of education an adolescent has is largely depicted in their role and behavior in the community later. Accordingly, a youth indifferent towards the social matters, which is characterized by its difficulty in adapting to constantly changing conditions, will become a hindrance to the well-being of the society. In contrast, it is common ground that a resilient educational system raises resilient people and these people will make resilient societies. Given that the world is functioning under the law of “cause-result”, we have accepted that everything is part of a chained reaction. This fact makes it impossible to deny our responsibilities when it comes to any malfunction, but at the same time it enables us to design the future. Therefore, it is of vital importance to make sure that the values and qualities promoted in our school are the ones that we wish to see in the societies of tomorrow.
Considering that all the educational institutions are combinations of people from different backgrounds, in the making of an inclusive education, we should create a system of exchanging information and opinions.
ith that said, we need to realize that our education has to be redesigned. The creation of an educational system that will be able to guarantee that right the next day of the crisis the educational institutions as well as the students themselves will succeed in adapting to the new situation, is not a utopic scenario. This specific initiative opts to propose an effective and feasible solution. Considering that all the educational institutions are combinations of people from different backgrounds, in the making of an inclusive education, we should create a system of exchanging information and opinions. A virtual platform where educators and students will be given the ability to write about their experiences and provide feedback on changes and new situations. In parallel, they will have access to other people’s feedback and answer on surveys. The goal of such a platform will be to give to the institutions that design education access to a bank of data. This way, educators and students will be provided a ‘podium’ from where they could express openly whether possible changes work in a beneficial way.