“Future of knowledge” was one of the last sessions of this year’s Dhaka Lit Fest, where disruptors in the country’s education sector came together and talked about what the future of learning looks like. The panel was moderated by Syeed Ahamed, and panelists included Asif Saleh, Anir Chowdhury, Maimuna Ahmad, Korvi Rakshand, and Sumana Biswas.
The future of learning is experiential. Asif Saleh asked what roles schools can play in the future if knowledge is so easily accessible. Stressing not on the tech but the pedagogy, he said people have to be able to cultivate the skill sets to go forward when the world as we have known it changes completely in the next 20 years with global climate change taking effect. New collective action is required to prepare education and skills systems for the future.
Transitioning from a controlled knowledge repository to now being able to access vast amounts of information at any time has its pros and cons. How do young people perceive knowledge in times as restless as these? Rakshand’s experience with Jaago illuminated that young people are not without hope, even though school curriculum does not match employers’ expectations. They are losing out, but they are keen to find solutions.
Ahmad, the founder of Teach for Bangladesh, stressed on broadening the understanding of knowledge. Acquiring knowledge that bears utility is one aspect, but we can’t ignore other aspects – instrinsic knowledge – which come from cultivating empathy and connections with one another.
The panel included topics on assessment, and Chowdhury presented something insightful: That from first to third grade, students will not have any tests. The panelists all agreed that education in Bangladesh has come far, but it has a long way to go.