Resource Summary

What's worth teaching is perhaps the most central question of education. Choices about what's worth teaching made by educators, school boards, and governments fill up the schooldays of students. However, many educational leaders today feel that this fundamental question does not get enough attention. Too much effort goes toward doing the same job better and not enough toward rethinking what the job is. In this spirit, educational leaders in many independent schools and some public schools have introduced new themes, such as 21st century skills, digital technologies, interdisciplinary learning, world citizenship, global perspectives and global problems. While mastery of reading and mathematics remains a tremendously important agenda, the universe of what's deemed worth teaching by one or another advocate is expanding dramatically.

This white paper offers a broad but brief overview of trends in that expanding universe.