7 Reasons Decolonizing Education is Essential for 21st-Century Learners

7 Reasons Decolonizing Education is Essential for 21st-Century Learners

Words by Omnis Education, who is graciously sponsoring this post

The hardest sell to most (white) folks is why and how their kids benefit from decolonizing education and being anti-racist – the age-old focus on “what’s in it for me?”.

After more than two years of working with hundreds of families, we stand firmly behind decolonizing education and discovered seven reasons this is essential for 21st-century learners.

Large scale representation matters

Presenting diverse perspectives and larger scale representation of the Global Majority in education promotes awareness, understanding, and connectedness to others, which is key to overcoming the fractured, divided societies that dominate. We want them to celebrate differences and not fear them. 

Makes anti-racism more achievable

Decolonizing education offers the opportunity to move closer to anti-racism. Raising generations aware of their colonial past, what this has resulted in, and how this has damaged everyone is an opportunity to do it differently. 

Examines the impact racism has on everyone

An understanding of how EVERYONE suffers from racism drives change. Today, racism puts us all in roles we did not choose – white oppressors, Black & Brown ‘victims’. Anti-racism releases us all from the positions we did not choose and the oppression and harm this perpetuates.

Raises awareness to prevent ongoing and potential harm 

Preventing further harm is the goal. Through encouraging an ongoing understanding of how white people and legacy systems that prevail continue to inflict damage, we can see the unseen and continue to dismantle systems that support and uphold racism.

Prepares children for working on a global level 

It’s vital preparation for a global world of work. The globalization of the economy & explosion of remote work requires working far more cross-culturally than ever before. Understanding other societies & cultures promote collaboration + connection vs. othering differences.

Teaches children to embrace differing perspectives

Developing the ability to hold multiple perspectives and truths is powerful. The telling of history needs to include various views, facts, and versions. Maintaining this more nuanced and inclusive approach is a powerful social/emotional skill for all people of all ages to develop.

Offers the chance to learn from the forgotten cultures

We gain from (re)learning from “advanced” cultures, typically thought of as ‘ancient’ or ‘traditional’ or even ‘foreign’ and shunned for centuries in favor of ‘Western” thinking. There’s an overdue and growing recognition of these approaches and what we can learn from them.

Learners in the 21st century will become the parents, the grandparents, and the elders of those who come after them; dismantling centuries and generations of colonial history and trauma has to begin somewhere. Why not now?

Want to learn how to give your kids a diverse and decolonized education? Visit Omnis Education.

One response to “7 Reasons Decolonizing Education is Essential for 21st-Century Learners”

  1. Love this, thank you! We loved reading “This Book is Anti-Racist” with our kids, it opened up lots of great conversations in a non-confrontational way for our (very white) kids. It dovetailed nicely with our conversations about women’s rights and LGBTQ rights.

    Liked by 1 person

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