There is perhaps no greater tool that may be utilized to escape, war, poverty, strife and sickness than education. A good education can take a child born with nothing, to heights of great power, when no other tool could have made this dream a reality. Hence, this is observed when simply assessing our current U.S. President. In addition, the advancements in healthcare and the birth of cutting edge treatments are tied to the development of knowledge gained through diligent practices of education. Education is also able to stem the tides of war, as individuals that are given great power may employ education to understand that there are diverse groups of people in this world and that it is possible for us all to co-exist and live in harmony on the same planet. This brief report will address how education may be utilized as a tool to overcome inequality, and how programs to spread education may be implemented at the global level. It is noted that to transform someone’s life, it may be as simple as providing them the resources to educate themselves and the result may be astounding. Hence, this report will also address a few important programs that are implemented on the global scale. These programs provide accessibility to education in parts of the globe where this valuable resource is lacking, and the overall goal of these programs is to achieve “universal education,’ (Unicef, 2005).
The Power of Education – Learning about the Underserved
In order to address situations where education is not easily accessible, organizations have teamed up with major non-profit organizations, with the common goal of spreading education to the underserved portions of the globe. One company known as onelaptopperchild, has innovated a product which can be purchased even by some of the poorest nations in the world (NewYorkTimes, n.d). This company has designed a rugged laptop, which may be able to withstand, rain, and rugged environments (that may cause the laptop to be dropped often), at an affordable price. The laptop may be purchased for approximately $100 and contains all of the essentials that are required for students to access the internet and perform searches, as well as run critical programs such as Microsoft word, PowerPoint, excel, project, and more (NewYorkTimes, n.d.). The underserved regions of Africa may benefit from a product such as this because these schools often do not have the resources to purchase items that have great value. In addition, the laptop is more difficult to damage than other comparative products, and this will allow for teachers and student body professionals to have piece of mind knowing that they are purchasing a product that will have an extended lifecycle. During the research leading up to this report, It becomes apparent that specific geographic locations are at a very high-risk for deficient educational practices. Hence, it is typically areas where geopolitical and/or religious conflict make it difficult for leaders to focus on the educational aspect for citizens. In these “war-torn” areas such as African nations, leaders would rather focus on obtaining power, as it corresponds to party or ideological beliefs, than they are concerned for furthering education.
Addressing the Challenge – Private and Public Sector Roles
The issues that face these nations are best addressed when outside organizations shine light on the difficulties facing these nations. Organizations such a onelaptopperchild, are great for dual aspects such as raising awareness and for diverting resources to areas where they are needed, to further education. School programs within underserved nations are usually not robust by any means. However, if public leaders make these programs a priority it is likely that they may be built-up to substantial levels comparable to the systems within developed nations. This is certainly a long-shot belief and the history of many of the underserved regions highlighted within this report, do not provide any signs that this will occur soon.
Some of the issues that also make it difficult to spread education in these underserved areas of the globe are actually environmentally, and/or geopolitically related (Moojiman, 2012). The high-cost and difficulty of getting basic resources such as clean water to these regions creates a scenario in which a school cannot be created in one particular region, where it is desperately needed. In addition, corruption at the highest levels of political leadership makes it even more difficult to steer rare resources to these areas. It appears that a unified global effort will be needed in order to truly spread education to the most desperate parts of the globe.
Conclusion – The Solution, Professional Leadership
Although the reality of the situation seems that it is nearly impossible to spread education to all areas of the globe, it should be noted that it is possible. An article published by author D.B. Reeves highlights a strategy termed “90/90/90” (Reeves, 2002). This strategy helps to identify schools in which high-levels of poverty and difficulty passing tests (i.e. Inability to learn) are at a level of 90% or more of all students. Although the program was implemented in the U.S. it can be transitioned to different areas of the globe where schools are already established. In these regions, it then becomes possible to identify which schools are most in need for additional resources and/or special attention. Regardless of the process and/or need it remains the task of the inhabitants of this globe to realize how important education is, and to make it a priority to spread it where it is lacking. In order to solve problems related to education as well as nutrition in these underserved nations, school programs should be designed like the format built within developed nations (Leitch, 1999). Students may be provided daily meals of high-value nutrition at low/no-cost. The fact that schools provide meals will actually function as a double-edged sword. Students may end up going to school simply to obtain a meal, and will learn in process. The benefits of a good education cannot be overlooked, when also considering the impact it may have on social problems within the region. Children that are allowed to experience high-levels of education are less likely to grow-up as future leaders of violent wars. In contrast, they may learn (within schools), that diplomatic solutions are often very effective means for solving conflict. Furthermore, students are less likely to embrace lives of crime due to the fact that they may grow to become professionals, and therefore find other means of making money when they grow older (InSight, 2014).