We recognize that the world our learners live in – and will eventually work in – is rapidly changing. Many historians have labeled the 20th century the “American Century.” However, at the dawn of this third millennium, America is finding herself wrestling with the changing demands of an interconnected, increasingly diverse, and technologically-rich workspace. Globalization has forced evolving workspace skill demands that require both a strong foundation of traditional content knowledge, as well as increased competencies in collaboration, communication, problem-solving, creativity, and digital literacy. Now, almost 15 years into this new millennium, this century has already formed its own history and complexities, which will shape the way learners and the schools that serve them interact.
According to the Center for Public Education, new forces are reshaping the workspace —automation, flattening of organizations, and demographics. Technology has automated routine tasks and provided unique ways to supervise and structure management within organizations. As well, an increasingly diverse America has provided new challenges to education as society becomes more mobile and as the income gap continues to widen.
Our student body is more diverse today than ever before with more than 1,000 of our students coming from homes where a language other than English is spoken, a 69 percent increase when compared to five years ago. There are more than 50 languages other than English spoken in our students’ homes including Chinese, Arabic, Korean, Hindi, Spanish, Japanese, Guajarati, Punjabi, Urdu, and Romanian. With such diversity in our student and community populations, students are learning to be increasingly open-minded and reflective as they bridge cultural differences to build understanding and listen to one another.
As the explosion in technology brings the world close together, we at Northville Public Schools strive to ensure that students today – and all those who come after them – will be ready to compete in a global society by unleashing the potential of our young people as engaged learners, and contributing, passionate and compassionate world citizens.