Education for sustainable development: Connecting the dots for sustainability

Sushita Gokool-Ramdoo, Anwar Bhai Rumjaun

Abstract


Critical pedagogy, practitioner experience and a regulatory perspective are employed to scrutinize the notion of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) as it occurs in the literature. They promote understanding of the challenges impeding the completion of unfinished ESD businesses. In response to practitioner-expressed needs, this paper innovatively proposes a Sustainable Development-compliant National Qualifications and Credit Framework (SD-NQCF) as the instrument to finally connect isolated ESD ‘dots’ and scaffold their sustainability.

Informed by a systems approach, this framework encourages repositioning educational activities within the UN Agenda 21 to ensure the suffusion of SD principles. ESD becomes the backbone of NQCFs, while critical pedagogy provides the adequate instrument to foster 21st Century sustainability competencies that are embedded into curricula as learning outcomes. The SD-compliant framework resolves tensions between formal, non-formal and informal education. It provides connecting bridges and pathways to sustainably suffusing socio-economic fabrics with SD principles that will shift paradigms.


Keywords


Education, Sustainable Development, Accreditation, Quality Assurance, Benchmarking, Lifelong Learning, Qualifications and Credit Transfer Systems

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