LifeSkills Values Education
LifeSkills Values Education has the following goals:
- To assist Mongolian children in developing good character
- To strengthen families through building understanding of good values in children
- To benefit wider Mongolian society through developing a generation of good citizens who will contribute to the development of their country and the establishment of a functioning and prosperous society
- To supplement the Mongolian national education curriculum through providing ethics education
During the communist era in Mongolia, there was a focus on good citizenship and working for the common good. However, the economic collapse of the 1990’s fostered an ‘every man for himself’ mentality, where values and consideration for others were abandoned in the struggle to survive. In the 20 years since the economic collapse, families have predominantly been too busy struggling to make ends meet to take time to teach their children appropriate values. As the country regains economic stability, many have become aware that a generation has grown up with no sense of working for the common good, personal integrity or ethical behaviour in business or personal life. This has become a concern for many, including the nation’s leaders, government officials, teachers and family members.
History and current trends show that the development of any country is hindered by corruption and dishonesty. Mongolia has been developing economically, but much of the wealth has been siphoned off. Despite its impressive natural mineral resources, unless there is a change in basic values in society Mongolia is at risk of becoming like many other developing countries whose wealth is squandered through greed and corruption.
In response to this need, the Mongolian national education guidelines, laid down by the Ministry of Education stipulate that ethics be a part of the national curriculum. However, no material or curriculum is provided to teachers to enable them to inculcate values in the children in their care. In 2013, the Upright Citizens Initiative was launched by the Mongolian government; however, a lack of funding has seen the initiative flounder.
LifeSkills Values Education materials have been developed by Mongolian teachers to address the issues that they see as most relevant for developing values in children. The character values are modelled on the Judeo-Christian character values, with stories illustrating characteristics derived from Scripture.
The program has already been taught in Mongolian state schools as a part of the curriculum in Non-formal Education Classes. Schools that host Non-formal Education Classes are now requesting that the Values Training material be taught throughout the school.
School Social Worker Professional Development
This project benefits children by increasing the capacity and expertise of social workers in the education sector. Most Mongolian schools have social workers, but they are currently under qualified and under skilled. The majority of their working time is diverted away from the children under their care and into administrative duties. This professional development project helps school social workers up skill in order to have a greater impact in the lives of the children they are responsible for. This project also educates school workers, parents, teachers, and the children themselves as to the role and responsibilities of a school social worker.