Paradigm shift needed in curricula design: Namwandi

14 Nov 2013 09:50am
WINDHOEK, 14 NOV (NAMPA) – Education Minister David Namwandi says there is a need for a paradigm shift in the manner in which curricula in schools are designed.
The minister is heading the Namibian delegation to the 37th session of the United Nations’ Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco)’s General Conference in Paris, France.
Speaking at the conference on Friday last week, Namwandi said the salvation for Namibia lies in exposing young people to vocational and technical training.
“Education must generate wealth and work for the nations of the world,” he stated.
He noted that 21st century’s education should be embarked on by all Member States, as it enhances the quality of life and deals effectively with complex planetary issues and societal sustainability.
Namibia, the minister indicated, supports the role of Unesco in water resource management; the development and implementation of science, technology and innovation policies; capacity-building in the sciences, technology and engineering; and the management of natural disasters.
The country also underscores the importance of activities aimed at strengthening ethics’ systems, the promotion of democracy and human rights and the fight against racism, discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.
Namibia also supports the promotion, protection and conservation of cultural heritage through the effective implementation of cultural conventions, and priority should further be given to the promotion of dynamic cultural and creative industries as tools and enablers of socio-economic development.
“We applaud the focus on the safety of journalists, the strengthening of community media and the promotion of freedom of expression and free and pluralistic media.
Namibia further encourages Unesco to assist Member States in developing policy frameworks to facilitate equitable access to information and knowledge,” Namwandi stated.
Namibia, being a product of international support and solidarity, will thus continue to cooperate with Unesco because of its values and principles of creating a better world.
Meanwhile, in his contribution to the Leaders' Forum at the Unesco General Conference, which focused on Unesco mobilising for and contributing to the post-2015 agenda through education, the sciences, culture and communication and information, Namwandi said many developing countries - those in Sub-Saharan Africa included - lag behind in achieving all the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and Education For All (EFA) aims.
In view of this, MDGs and EFA goals should thus be the starting point in developing the post-2015 development agenda, he said.
The deadline for the attainment of the MDGs is 2015.
The development and implementation of science, technology and innovation policies to address contemporary ethical issues, including the management of natural disasters, oceans, disaster prevention, preparedness and mitigation should also find their rightful place in the post-2015 development agenda.
The Unesco general conference started last Tuesday, and ends on 20 November.