This set of 17 goals is follows the Millennium Development Goals MDG) – eight global goals for the 2000-2015 period which sought to address long term problems such as poverty, illiteracy, infant mortality and access to water.
Unlike the MDGs, which focused primarily on the needs of the developing world, the Agenda 2030 SDGs are intended to address all aspects of global development and to provide a set of overarching targets for all countries to aim towards.
Australia is a signatory to the SDG agenda, but our current government is lagging behind many other countries in adopting the goals in any practical sense, or in laying out a path towards meeting its obligations and targets. There is however great opportunity for educators here and around the world to use the Goals to frame and focus their teaching and for current and future generations of students to engage meaningfully and constructively with Agenda 2030.
Education itself is an integral element of the Sustainable Development Goals agenda. The fourth SDG (Quality Education) focuses on the resourcing and delivery of safe, universal and inclusive education, and along with Gender Equality (Goal 5) and Decent Work and Economic Growth (Goal 8), is a priority campaigning focus for Education International, the global federation of education unions of which the IEUA, the AEU and the NTEU are members.
For the purposes of teachers and curriculum developers, however, educational priorities are woven through the whole SDG agenda – providing a powerful and coherent framework for a curriculum which encourages and empowers our students to imagine and to actively participate in a healthy, peaceful, sustainable and prosperous future for our planet and its people.
Simon Schmidt is an Officer of
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