The Education Workshop of YEA 2016/17 took place at the office of Teach for Austria on 10 November 2016 from 18:30 until 20:00. After a successful cooperation in the previous year, our partner Mr. Toni Kronke once again agreed on holding a workshop about education – this time with a specific focus on SDG 4. On the day of the workshop, fourteen out of sixteen students were present. The YEA team, represented by Fiona, Sanam, Victoria, Billy and Ian, was in charge of observing and taking pictures of the workshop as well as discussing important administrative matters.
Toni started off his workshop with a group discussion about the extent to which the SDG 4 is implemented in Austria. Through this approach, the students were encouraged to think about the meaning of the SDG dedicated to the provision of quality education for all. The brief introduction of the topic was followed by recent statistics regarding the level of education among the Austrian states as well as the districts in Vienna. By explaining the graphics in detail, Toni could give the students an insight into how education is related to social class and status, raising their awareness of the issues with the educational system of the country. With the background information provided, Toni emphasized that it is, therefore, the general aim of Teach for Austria to tackle that challenge by training fellows who will be working in schools with lower quality in order to raise the educational level of children coming from deprived families. The students were then encouraged to split up into groups and choose one of the targets in relation to the SDG 4. They had to think carefully about the barriers which may stand in the way of achieving the SDG 4 and what has to happen in order to implement it successfully. Moreover, they should discuss in which areas Changemakers in Austria must become active to achieve that goal and what each of them can do individually to help realizing it. All YEA participants were very committed to the given task and came up with a lot of creative and realistic ideas of how to tackle the issue and raise the quality of education in the country.
After having an open discussion about the students’ ideas and suggestions, T
oni closed the workshop with the statement that the steps towards the achievement of quality education for all may be very little; however, with people committed to taking such steps one after another, they can succeed in making a change in the educational system and thus in finding a solution for one of the global challenges of the 21st century.