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K-12 in 2040: KnowledgeWorks Examines Possibilities for Liberatory Education in New Forecast
[June 23, 2022]

K-12 in 2040: KnowledgeWorks Examines Possibilities for Liberatory Education in New Forecast

National education nonprofit KnowledgeWorks has released its newest report envisioning the future of K-12 education and what it may look like over the next 20 years. The forecast, "Imagining Liberatory Education Futures," provides four future scenarios as possibilities for education, policy and community leaders to consider.

"In our newest forecast, we grappled with two critical uncertainties - the level of social cohesion we may have over the next two decades, along with the level of responsiveness of public institutions to the needs of students and communities," said Katherine Prince, report co-author and KnowledgeWorks' vice president of strategic foresight. "The forecast takes into consideration how accelerating technologies, climate change and social justice efforts are impacting education, and we make a strong case for supporting a care-based, liberatory education model."

Every three years since 2006, KnowledgeWorks has released forecast reports that look at trends in education, and the latest forecast is the organization's sixth report. In addition to describing four future scenarios, "Imagining Liberatory Education Futures" defines and outlines six current forces affecting the future of liberatory education - entenched poverty, structural mortality, an attention economy, new K-12 educational models, postsecondary alternatives and demographic plurality.

"I am impressed by how the KnowledgeWorks team has delved deeply into these areas to provide insight and hopeful possibilities for the future of education," said Holly Brinkman, interim CEO and president of KnowledgeWorks. "Beyond looking to how we can enable more students to graduate, this forecast examines trends and possibilities that relate to student learning, motivation and engagement."

As with KnowledgeWorks' previous five forecasts, it asks readers to take a fresh look at how we might design education systems so that they truly enable each learner to thrive. "Imagining Liberatory Education Futures" was created by Jason Swanson, Maria Romero, Katherine Prince and Katie King of KnowledgeWorks and Andrea Saveri of Saveri Consulting, along with 12 collaborators. The report can be downloaded here.

About KnowledgeWorks

KnowledgeWorks is a national nonprofit organization advancing a future of learning that ensures each student graduates ready for what's next. For 24 years, we've been partnering with states, communities and leaders across the country to imagine, build and sustain vibrant learning communities.

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