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Saturday, January 16, 2021

Education needed to win the future

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The education system in The Gambia requires special focus. This is because the country has set itself on an ambitious path. There is no denying the fact that the sector will be useful in our march towards greater progress. In fact, in order for any country to stand the test of time, it must first place more emphasis on education.

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It is true that the sector will continue to evolve given a complex and dynamic global environment. There is going to be an increasingly tectonic shift to innovation and creativity. The reasons for this are not far-fetched. After all, while resources can yield so much that is finite, knowledge, creativity and innovative ideas can generate enterprises worth billions of dollars.  


Meanwhile, with the Millennium Development Goals closing this year, MDG2, which sought to achieve Universal Primary Education, is under critical scrutiny. Figures indicating the success or failure of this important goal vary globally due to a myriad of issues concerning public health, resources, infrastructure and human resources. Education experts in the country are simply aware of the challenge that lies ahead.


There is, of course, widespread belief that the quality of education in The Gambia still needs leapfrogging, with many arguing that simple literacy and numeracy, as well as attaining MDG2, was not enough. And while we take this to be true, it is also vital for us to craft a route towards attaining this. But any effort should foster the thirst for knowledge, creativity, innovation, solutions, and a growth-oriented mindset for the country to progress. 


If anything, we should be serious about changing the existing paradigm to an appropriate educational system. The Gambia belongs to a community of nations whose response to change is mutually reinforcing. This is why it is of utmost importance to foster existing collaboration between stakeholders for greater impact.  


Clearly, putting education at the heart of the government’s activities is critical. Ignorance should no longer be an excuse. It is learning how to innovate and create something new that will drive the world. This is what is needed now in order for The Gambia to win the future. 


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