What do you tell your kids about the future?

How do you advise them about options for education, careers, and living?

As parents, we all strive to create learning opportunities and environments that promise ‘success’ for our children. But, when the very definition of success is a moving target how do we make the optimum choices?

We recently came upon an informative article in Fast Company where the author, Stephane Kasriel, observed, “The future isn’t written in stone. It’s not inevitable. It’s yours to shape–and that gives me reason to be hopeful.”

Some studies suggest that 65 per cent of children entering primary school today will have jobs that do not yet exist and for which their education will fail to prepare them. – World Economic Forum (WEF)

The road to a productive future is no longer linear. It is complex. It requires flexibility and agility. It requires our children to remain constantly curious and adaptable. They need basic skills which will allow them to pivot when new opportunities are presented and when unforeseen challenges pop up.

Reason number one to be hopeful is that the future promises more choice. Rather than viewing new technologies as limiting factors, Kasriel writes, “…past technological revolutions, from the automobile to the ATM, have ended up creating more jobs than they destroyed.” Our kids will have the opportunity to learn how to embrace technology and employ it to open up additional avenues of work.

A second reason revolves around the notion that “as automation advances, the most prized skills are those that can’t be performed by a robot.” The WEF’s report, referenced by Kasriel, on the Future of Jobs states, “Overall, social skills—such as persuasion, emotional intelligence and teaching others—will be in higher demand across industries than narrow technical skills. In essence, technical skills will need to be supplemented with strong social and collaboration skills.”

A third reason, also outlined in Kasriel’s article, suggests that our children’s ability to work in more entrepreneurial arenas will be enhanced. “A little over half of the working-age population worldwide are traditional employees. But that’s changing because working for yourself has never been easier, thanks to technology that enables greater collaboration.”

It is on these fronts that private and independent schools excel. Because of smaller class sizes,  the introduction of advanced learning technologies, alternative approaches to curriculum content and delivery, and the ability of teachers to be more aware of each student as an individual, the road to the future may well be smoother.

If you’re interested in how our member schools can contribute to this hopeful future, you can learn more about each school here Our Member Schools.

Photo by Lina Trochez on Unsplash