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Country Reports

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Country Reports

The education system is currently undergoing modernization. However, what can we see today? Considerable percentage of population living in poverty, while there more and more commercial educational institutions including pre-school and supplementary education. Class-and-lesson system is archaic and inefficient. The existing knowledge evaluation system is insufficient. The professional level of teachers is low, sometimes totally divorced from the most advanced methodological and scientific developments. Morbidity rate, specifically among school-age children, is very high. Low status of teachers and scientists results in mass exodus of young professionals. The level of occupational guidance among pupils and school leavers remains very low.

Issues and Trends

The key issues in education result from low level of income of the most Russian population, while the number of paid pre-school and other educational institutions including supplementary education is constantly growing. Archaism and low efficiency of class-and-lesson system is another big problem.  This system that appeared during the rise of the industrial epoch responded totally different requirements. It was aimed to develop elementary literacy skills on a mass scale bringing up disciplined industrial employees that can follow the instructions without any initiative. Today, we live in a totally different world with another values and needs, and the old approach doesn’t respond them.    

Non-efficient disciplinary approach and knowledge evaluation system - Our traditional educational technology is based on a desire to get a good grade memorizing or sometimes simply guessing the right answers. Such approach doesn’t reflect actual level of knowledge, and obviously it doesn’t allow evaluate the quality and comprehensiveness of knowledge. The outdated curricula don’t provide for an individual approach to a child and don’t allow reveal all the skills and talents.     

Lower teacher competences and limited access to the most advanced pedagogical and scientific research results – The children that will live and work in a world of new technologies and scientific achievements are now receiving the education based on last century concept. Surface learning of an array of different subjects results in incomprehensive knowledge and doesn’t provide for a complete worldview. Such knowledge is often irrelevant to the real world.   

Poor technological infrastructure and limited use of hi-tech and research results – Insufficient funding, as well as low level of teachers’ IT competences significantly reduce the possibilities to introduce ICT in educational institutions.    

High level of morbidity specifically among school-age children – Strict discipline, a lot of lessons and home tasks, too much information, no healthy eating habits and little leisure time – all these result in worsening physical and emotional health of children.

Low social status of teachers and scientists – This leads to the mass exodus of young professionals from research and educational institutions. In the aggregate with staff aging, this trend might result in personnel disaster.

Insufficient supplementary education – Poor technological infrastructure, low salaries and absence of motivation are closely related to the current state of the supplementary educational system.  Mass commercialization of pre-school and supplementary education makes the situation even worse.     

Low competences of parents – Lack of minimal knowledge of children’s psychological development is hidden behind of shifting responsibility for upbringing and education to the educational system.  

Low level of career guidance - Young generations are not prepared to make an adequate occupational choice relevant to the skills, talents and interests. Today, schools are not capable to reveal the talents of each child and help him identify his suture occupation.

Agenda:

A human being of the future is a creative, dynamic and independently thinking personality that quickly responds to the changing technologies and makes efficient decisions. The speed of social development depends on creativity and other capabilities of people. That’s why it is necessary to mobilize efforts of scientists and teachers to reveal children’s intellectual potential and integrate them into the modern hi-tech world based on a holistic approach “science-technology-innovation”.   

It is necessary to revise principles of commercialization of education to ensure equitable access to knowledge (including supplementary education, summer camps, etc.) for every child regardless social status of its family.

Transition from standardized and unified education to individual trainings – the modern educational system must become special environment for exchange of knowledge. Education should be based on children’s personal experience taking into account their requirements and interests.   

Transition from “completed to continuous” education – The school or university are obviously not the only places to receive knowledge. There also should be different real and virtual educational centres providing knowledge through the use of ICT.

Sufficient education – every child should have access to an array of educational tools, including text-books, online knowledge centers, literature, Internet and other information resources, as well as ability to interact not only with teachers but also professionals in various fields. Such approach can satisfy the needs and interests of every child.

Improve teachers’ competences – A teacher must serve not only as a source of knowledge, but also as a communication partner. Any child is a developing individual that needs to be well respected and accepted. The concept of a ‘delayed life’ should be finally abandoned. Children must be involved “right here and right now”. The relationships between children and teachers should be built on partnership, equality and mutual respect.