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Education and Values for Development:
The System of Tutorial Learning
(SAT) in Colombia and Honduras
Importance of values in education
• UN statements on values in development
• WSSD: call to identify constraints to
Agenda 21 implementation
• How to change values? Education
• Importance of values in education:
UNESCO, Poverty Reduction Strategies
World Declaration on Higher
Education for 21st Century, 2000
• Calls for radical reform of higher education
“so that our society, which is currently
undergoing a profound crisis of values, can
transcend more economic considerations,
and incorporate deeper dimensions of
morality and spirituality.”
What is SAT?
• System of non-formal secondary education
for rural life and sustainable development
• Aim: to develop attitudes, knowledge and
skills for more self-reliant development
• Origins in Colombia: FUNDAEC
• More recent replication/adaptation in
Honduras & other Latin American countries
Origins of SAT in Colombia
• Early 1970s: group of university professors
formed FUNDAEC - Cauca Valley
• Diagnosis: failure of development projects, caused
dependency and inequity; negative ‘social’
attitudes of teachers & students contributed to
social/moral disintegration in rural areas; weak
• Knowledge and organisation as 2 main elements failure of learning process and institutions
Concept of participation in SAT:
“it could be claimed that people were in
charge of their own development only if
they were learning systematically about the
changes that occurred in their society, and
were consciously incorporating in their
continuous learning process appropriate
elements from the universe of knowledge”
(Arbab, 1984)
Learning process
• Formal education system: urban bias, migration,
rote learning, drop out problem
• Fragmentation of knowledge
• Difficulties of linking theory and practice
• Local populations must take central role in
knowledge generation, verification, diffusion
• Need to integrate knowledge & understanding
• Link to community development processes
• Omission of values and moral development
Appropriate structures
• Appropriate institutions vital for participation in
knowledge generation and learning process
(a) universe of knowledge
(b) regional learning process
• Role of universities?
• Rural university: purpose to set in motion learning
processes and develop human resources
• SAT groups: village level learning institution
• Solidarity credit groups
Characteristics of SAT
Non-formal: evenings/weekends
3 main levels - 6-7 years of study
Tutors from communities: continuous training
Practical, process and development-oriented:
focus on community development processes
• Action or research - reflection - learning
• Conceptual development, problem solving
(contrast to rote learning, fact memorisation)
SAT curriculum
• Based on ‘capabilities’ not disciplines
• Capability: a developed capacity to think and act
in well-defined sphere of activity and purpose
• 5 main areas of capabilities
• Example: language capabilities
• Individual and social capabilities
• Integration of disciplines: examples
• Agricultural technology
• Credit and micro-enterprise development
Progress of SAT in Colombia
• 45-50,000 students (65% female), 50 institutions
(35 NGOs), 2,300 villages, 500 municipalities in
19 Departments
• Works mainly through civil society but Ministry of
Education programme/costs
• Rural University: 5 year degree, MSc level
• European EXPO 2000 Jury verdict
• Club of Budapest 2002 Terra Award
SAT in Honduras
• Bayan Association for Indigenous SED
• 1996: Mosquitia - indigenous groups, 80%
girls or women, remote & difficult area
• 1997-2002: grant from DFID; also supported
by CIDA, BWC, Kellogg Foundation
• Hurricane Mitch 1998; desertion/problems
• New Director appointed 1999
Increasing government interest
• Constant communication with central,
Departmental, District education authorities
• Regional demand led to Agreements with 3
Departments in 2000: 950 students, 48 groups
• Salaries paid by Departments
• Ministry evaluations showed quality of SAT
• Full recognition in March 2002
• National expansion plan requested by Ministry
Morality if
addressed at all
as discreet
subject matter
The moral or spiritual element
• Consequences of formal education: , apathy,
negative social attitudes, etc.
• Role of education to reveal and develop human
potential and qualities for service to humanity
• ‘Moral development’ integrated into all materials
• Service to the community: health, literacy,
community organisation, education (e.g., helping
primary school children), environmental projects
Purpose of education and
• Human being is “a mine rich in gems of
inestimable value. Education can, alone, cause it
to reveal its treasures.” Bahá’u’lláh
• “Education should be recognised as a process by
which human beings and societies can reach their
fullest potential.” Agenda 21: Chapter 36.3
• “the real purpose of development … is the
cultivation of the limitless potentialities latent in
human consciousness.” BIC, 1998
Role of values (cont.)
• Two levels of human development:
(a) individual moral/spiritual development
(b) contribute to societal welfare/transformation
• Belief that service releases creative powers latent
in human nature - key to motivation
• Need to combine with intellectual development
• Reinforcing community values and identity
• Role of consultation
• Wider context of SAT
Conclusion: importance of SAT
for ESD:
• Importance of participatory learning process
and supporting institutions
• Education must focus on developing full
potential of human beings
• Service to the community: motivation
• Moral education needs to be integrated into
curriculum, and result in practical actions
• Development solutions ignoring moral or
spiritual values likely to fail