Have you asked yourself, “What REALLY IS sustainability?”
Since the late 1960’s, sustainability, which initially had an environmental focus, expanded to include economy and later social and cultural considerations.
In 1987 the approach to conservation brought together environmental conservation and development and so came the term ‘sustainable development’. This represented the first formal recognition that “development should meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”, suggesting development, progress and growth had to take account of their environmental impacts.
So wider ethical issues such as human rights, in support of values, justice and fairness are integral to education for sustainable development. Intercultural understanding strengthens respect for equality. Peace and resolving conflict foster the values of empathy and cooperation. A rights based education encompasses the concept of education for sustainable development and reinforces the awareness that we share a common destiny with others. (OHCHR 2006).
Sustainability has become a vast social, political, economic and educational concern. The UN has devoted a decade to Education for Sustainability. The Australian Curriculum considers sustainability important enough to be delivered across the curriculum.
Watch out for more posts on this topic.
Part 2 “In what ways could sustainability enhance the learning areas in my curriculum?”
Part 3 “How could I amplify sustainability throughout my school?”
Cartoon by Nicholson from “The Australian” newspaper: www.nicholsoncartoons.com.au – See more at: http://nicholsoncartoons.com.au/reproduce-a-cartoon#sthash.eni7rgBN.dpuf