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Plenary Session II: Reorienting Teacher Education for Sustainable Development

Not for Want of Trying: Strategies for Re-orienting Teacher Education for Education for Sustainable Development
Annette Gough, Head, School of Education, RMIT University, Australia

Since the earliest formulations of the UN goals for environmental education at the Belgrade Conference (1975) through to the reconceptualisation of education for sustainable development at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg (2002), teacher education – at both pre-service and in-service levels and across primary, secondary and TVET education – has been regarded as being essential if sustainable development is to be achieved.

However, there is recurring testimony to the almost universal lack of success in introducing coherent or consistent programmes of environmental education/education for sustainable development into teacher education courses. This is not for want of trying. In the late 1980s, the UNESCO-UNEP IEEP published prototypes for teacher education at elementary and middle school levels. In 2005 UNESCO published Guidelines and Recommendations for Reorienting Teacher Education to Address Sustainability and in 2007 UNESCO-UNEVOC held an international consultation on TVET Teacher Education towards Sustainability. This paper will discuss strategies for re-orienting teacher education through pedagogy and whole school approaches.

Download the paper (pdf, 85kb) and presentation (pdf, 180kb)