Education is a wide field that encompasses knowledge and skills acquisition and attitude and character development. It comprises processes and activities tailored to mold, shape and develop the human mental, social and physical traits. Educational policies are the principles, laws, rules and regulations that govern and guide the operation of education systems around the world.
Ancient education was concerned with teaching survival skills and imparting cultural beliefs and practices. Over time, as territories and empires were conquered, invaders began to learn from new education systems they encountered and imposed their systems on others. Education systems of Egypt, China, Greece, Islam and others were thus learnt, imposed and replaced.
Rapid technological advancements have made the world a global village. What happens in one corner of the world reverberates across the globe. The emergence of human rights and the proliferation of national, multi-national and international organisations with interest in education inevitably influence educational policy around the world.
Millennium Development Goals, Vision 2030 and Sustainable Development Goals provide a conceptual framework upon which countries must base their educational policies or come to naught. Millennium Development Goal 2 and 3 are crucial to the development of education policies around the world. A country’s performance is gauged by the way it handles inclusivity and gender parity in all aspects of its operations.
This necessitates that countries develop policies that ensure children of school going age from all parts of the country; male and female; people with disability; the marginalized; disadvantaged; the vulnerable and minority access education. Sustainable Development Goal 4, 5, 9 and 10 emphasize quality education; gender equality; industry, innovation and infrastructure and reduced inequalities respectively. Concerted efforts to increase women in STEM causes is influenced by human rights and efforts at inclusivity and gender equality.
Failure to comply leads to bad listing and the risk of facing crippling economic sanctions. Educational policy is not a national matter but a vital international one.