Arbeit Macht Frei
By Karen Schumacher
Translated, Arbeit Macht Frei means, “Work Will Free You”. It is the iconic sign at the entrance of Auschwitz and many other concentration camps during WWII. Many may not realize the sign was designed by the camp’s iron-worker and mounted by prisoners themselves, the letter “B” turned upside down in protest against the slogan. At some locations, concentration camp prisoners were used as forced, slave labor to meet the needs of the German armaments industry. Aside from turning the American flag upside down, what else can Americans do to protest the takeover of our education system solely for serving industries?
In September, 2018, at the G20 summit, the United Nations (UN) held its first ministerial-level meeting on education, and affirming its commitment to SDG 4, “quality education” for all. It called for education that will keep pace with technological development, and the “need to educate and train people with the necessary skills for the future of work.” U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos attended this summit. Ms. DeVos supported this education agenda, stating it closely aligns with President Trump’s agenda by having education closely aligned with workforce skills and industry demands. This means specifically educating not only youth, but adults as well, based on industry workforce needs.
For some unknown reason, this document, G20 Education Ministers’ Declaration 2018, has been removed from many websites. It outlines the global education plan which Ms. DeVos signed. Some highlights include:
- Affirm the unique role of education as a key driver for sustainable development for all nations, recognize the need to place education at the centre of the global agenda and call for collective action
- Educate and train people with the necessary skills for the future of work
- Education keeps pace with societal and technological innovations such as Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and Internet of Things; skills should be considered in curriculum development; curricula should be highly responsive to future employment trends
- Have robust and comprehensive assessment systems and data to measure progress and learning outcomes; important role of existing international assessments
- We commit to facilitating the internationalization of education
- Promote quality education in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM)
- Foster the inclusion of non-cognitive skills such as socio-emotional skills across the curriculum
- Strengthen the use of digital and e-learning technologies
- Promote education with strong connections to industry…to facilitate the transition from school to work
- Encourage cooperation with ministries of labour and employment to generate comprehensive skills policies that prepare citizens for future market needs
- Support collaborative research…international cooperation and information exchange
Under the G20 Ministerial Meeting section on the U.S. Department of Education website, Ms. DeVos expounded further about her support of the G20 Education Ministers agenda, and “adopting curricula that are highly responsive to evidence-based practices and future employment trends.”
There is also another document listed, G20 Joint Education & Labour and Employment Ministers’ Declaration 2018 Mendoza Joint Meeting, that basically reinforces the Declaration more strongly.
The United States educational system is officially under the United Nations, the plan is in effect and has been for years, our children are being taught for future workforce needs of industries. As long as our government continues full engagement with the UN, we will never be free from UN atrocities, it is the same lie as Arbeit Macht Frei.