Nationality: Global Citizen

Source: GlobalGiving

Source: GlobalGiving

No matter what global problem you are dreading, whether it’s the elimination of poverty, whether it’s the creation of peace, whether its solving environmental energy problems, the solution- whatever it is- multiple solutions, the solutions always include education, never is it without an education component and sometimes cannot be done without education.

– Nicholas Negroponte

Growing up, my parents constantly affirmed, “Education is the passport to the world of opportunities.” I believed them, and I still do. As a teacher today, I tell my students the same thing.

In a privileged country like Singapore, education is a determined right of all citizens. The moment we step into Primary One, an EduSave account is set up in the student’s name by the government. Every year thereafter until the students reaches the age of sixteen, SGD 200 is credited into the account annually. The fund can be used by the student to pay for tuition fees and any other government-approved co-curricular activities and school trips. As of 2015, according to Organisation of Economic Co-Operation and Development, Singapore tops the global school ranking.

This is all well and good for the small city-state. My bigger concern today is, how do we get this world-recognised education to every student on the planet, especially when we constantly demand that education is a basic human right. How is it possible that in today’s globalised and technologically advanced world, that the right to education is based on a handful of pre-determined factors? Factors that include; where the child was born, their ethnic affiliations and even what their last name is.

Currently, more than 124 million children and adolescents are out of school. UNESCO predicts that this number is on the rise. This is a clear indication that the system we have in place, is not working and must be changed.

It is time to rethink the system because obviously, the global education system we have set for ourselves no longer serves today’s world. If we continue to demand from governments whose priority is not their citizen’s education, then, we must acknowledge that a clear violation of a right has occurred and must be amended.

It is time to hand out those passports in order that all children, regardless of their race, nationality, place of birth, or social creed, get access to a basic primary education. We, as the youths and adults, have the obligation to at least do one thing right – to provide our children, the future of the world, with opportunities to make this planet a better place.

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Sara Andi Djohar

Sara was born in the small city-state of Singapore, but like most people, her heritage webs out to different corners of the world. She identifies herself as a global citizen and strives to inculcate its values. She is an English teacher by profession, and spends her free time scheming for world peace. She believes that while our world is in chaos right now, it is not too late to make the necessary changes. It is only through a conscious collective action that we can begin to create a world that we can proudly welcome our children into. Her favourite motivational quote is by the Persian poet, Hafez: Even after all this time, the sun never says to the earth, "You owe me." Look at what happens with a love like that. It lights the whole sky. Sara is an International Relations graduate from the University of Queensland, Australia. She also enjoys netball and floorball.

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About Sara Andi Djohar

Sara was born in the small city-state of Singapore, but like most people, her heritage webs out to different corners of the world. She identifies herself as a global citizen and strives to inculcate its values. She is an English teacher by profession, and spends her free time scheming for world peace. She believes that while our world is in chaos right now, it is not too late to make the necessary changes. It is only through a conscious collective action that we can begin to create a world that we can proudly welcome our children into. Her favourite motivational quote is by the Persian poet, Hafez: Even after all this time, the sun never says to the earth, “You owe me.” Look at what happens with a love like that. It lights the whole sky.

Sara is an International Relations graduate from the University of Queensland, Australia. She also enjoys netball and floorball.

2 thoughts on “Nationality: Global Citizen

  1. Interesting article Sara,.
    Hope you wiil become a person who ,can create a better education for all the kids. Minimal for singaporean kids who knows…
    FYI. Ind students also gets allowance frm goverment for 600k to 1 mil rp a month. Its a lot, goverment credited into debit card. But unfortunately they uses not for important think like tuition but they spend for buying unnessary stuff or food, this iis maybe because they are never get so much money.

  2. This is a great piece. Makes you think of the faults possible in our education system. Definitely needs to be worked on, even a do-over. We must find a way to start fighting for basic human rights, it’s as if the world has lost its way.

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