Under the Leadership and Direction of the Honorable Angel Ferdinand Marcos, GIDIFA is implementing a great many programs to provide education and opportunity to students around the globe. Some of these are actual GIDIFA Projects while some are GIDIFA Sponsored Projects but all of these programs are designed and implemented with the student in mind. The provision of viable educational opportunities is paramount, but like so many solutions for completely eradicating poverty, it requires a more adaptive and integrated approach. As much as it would be nice to believe, there is no guarantee of any equality in results. It is however, with a focused, adaptive approach, possible to fully customize the educational opportunities for each and every individual student while at the same time encouraging their scholastic, technical and even vocational growth and expansion. In most cases, the students will still be young and impressionable, in many cases, the students will be older and will be more set in their ways, but in all cases, providing the student with the incentive and motivation to advance their studies will be paramount to the ultimate success of the Educational Program described here.
The educational system that will be discussed here is one of the many programs approved by the Honorable Angel Ferdinand Marcos through GIDIFA though it is important to note that it is a GIDIFA Sponsored project and not necessarily a project that will be implemented, run and/or operated by GIDIFA itself. It is focused on many different areas, but primarily one giving any and all of its students the ability to learn viable, global skill sets no matter where they may be studying from and at the same time, giving them every opportunity and incentive to open their minds to the potential for a future wherein their studies will be free from charge and results-oriented. Wherein most current educational institutions focus on teaching to the test and have limited exposure to “real-world” environments, this approach focuses on an intrinsic combination of scholastic, vocational, technical and hands-on education.
An entire curricula is being established that will be fully customized for each and every student based on their individual aptitude battery results. While many people may think only about the children when they think about schooling, the focus here, given the prevalence of the formerly homeless, indigent and other underclass citizens, will be on both children and adults. If the people over at MENSA are to be believed, only two percent of the population are geniuses. Depending on which independent surveys that you follow, in the Philippines alone, some twenty-five to forty million people have never been able to afford a proper education. Going by the numbers from MENSA and adding in a little dose of basic math, that means that there are … rounding the numbers off a little … somewhere between a half million and a million geniuses here who have never had any opportunity to obtain an education. Who is to say whether the next great idea is going to come from an adult or a child? How many of these people could be the one to come up with the next great improvement or the latest and greatest invention? This may raise some questions about the way students are taught though, and where they will study, given such a diverse and multi-faceted student body.
Each and every one of the students will be issued a laptop with their curricula pre-loaded. Additional files and support will be hosted on “the cloud” and live support will be available no matter what kind of center they are learning in, so there is at least some modicum of structure and discipline established. However, not all of the learning will be conducted in the proverbial school house. Keeping students trapped in a classroom and teaching them to the test … no matter what that test may be … has failed miserably. Not only has it failed the students though. The current educational systems have failed society as a whole.
In the current educational system, the occasional opportunity arises where the students get to spend a couple of hours in the occasional “real-world” scenario through field-trips. Unfortunately, even the students who do have some interest, or even skills in the selected area, are going to be surrounded by numerous classmates playing, laughing and carefree as they do not share those interests. When everything is said and done, the student may get to ask a couple of questions and may even retain some of the experience but it is certainly not going to be enough to motivate the average student. Given the lack of need for the proverbial classroom and basing the actual studies on a variation of the educational approaches initially implemented by Sociologist Rudolf Steiner, this educational system will take a different approach.
In the traditional system, students spend most of their time studying in classrooms and venture out into the world on the occasional field-trip as noted above. With this approach, something of the opposite is more true. Students who have shown an aptitude and an interest in a given field will be grouped with other students with similar interests and similar aptitudes and have the opportunity to study while traveling. This should not be to say that their life will be some great big vacation, but rather, under the careful supervision of tutors and support staff, these students will have the opportunity to experience, for weeks on end, areas of interest that hold a special place in their hearts. Even more appealing, is the fact that they will be surrounded by peers who share their interests. In this way, it is possible to foster and encourage the growth of the student in areas where they have already expressed an interest, in which they have already shown an aptitude and in which, they are not restricted by the high-cost of traditional educational systems or institutions forsaking them and robbing them of any hope for their future.
A portion of the day will, by necessity, set aside for the students to have supervised time (and support) to participate in scholastic studies. Any students who show signs of falling behind in their scholastic studies, will be “punished” by losing time that would otherwise be spent with the professionals working in selected and related fields. Thus, children who had an interest in … just for the sake of argument … manufacturing and design, would be able to spend time in a location, and quality time with people who work in manufacturing and design. Should they fall behind in their scholastic pursuits, they would be able to spend a bit less time with their friends and with the professionals in their fields of interest until such a time as they caught up to the requirements for their scholastic pursuits*.
Such an approach will ultimately, provide not only an exceptional tool for the purpose of scholastic educational pursuits, but also help to foster and encourage the educational development of the student and give them the opportunity not just to dream about a future, but to select the future they desire without current restrictions. Teaching the students to follow their dreams is great, but it must be done in such a manner that those dreams are not shattered and lost. Random thoughts become ideas. Those ideas can become dreams. Once the dream has been established, encouragement has to be given to the student to turn their dreams into realistic goals in addition to the tools, education and opportunity that they need to turn those goals into a reality.
* Among the Scholastic Pursuits will be a substantially increased focus on Problem Solving and Critical Thinking skills and even introductions to “common” logic.