Two African girls in gingham school uniforms write on paper at a desk with a radio in front of them that says X-Bass

The Future of Work is rapidly changing

It is characterized by uncertainty and complexity and influenced by fast-evolving technology and constant shifts in how we live, work, and learn. While all children have enormous potential, education systems around the world are failing to provide many with the learning opportunities that will prepare them for the future they’ll soon inherit.

This is especially true for students from disadvantaged backgrounds who are less likely to take part in career development activities and access STEM and financial education than students who have access to more resources and opportunities.

An Asian female teacher smiles as she hands a test tube to an Asian boy in a school uniform who is also smiling. There are more test tubes in a rack on the table

Research tells us there’s a mismatch between education and career readiness

  • Young people across the world aren’t able to identify or acquire the skills needed for today’s job market, contributing to a global skills gap and exacerbating youth unemployment.
  • It is likely that less than half of 15-year-olds have spoken to a career counselor in school, visited a job fair, or participated in an internship.
  • Students from disadvantaged backgrounds are less likely to have access to career development activities than students who have access to more resources, magnifying gaps and inequities.
  • Schools need to do more to prepare students to solve major global challenges such as climate change and growing social inequality and fragmentation.

The Future of Work Initiative

Through ongoing conversations among our growing network of teachers, alumni, and students across the globe, we have surfaced a key question:

How are we supporting students so they are prepared to thrive in and lead the future of work?

Teach For All's Future of Work Initiative aims to answer this question and support teachers and communities to adopt a holistic and inclusive approach to the development of children and youth, and prepare students to grow as leaders who will tackle the future’s most pressing global and local challenges, from pandemics to xenophobic intolerance to climate change to resource shortages.

To develop into leaders of a better future for themselves, their communities, and ultimately all of us, students need to develop:

Learning to feel healthy, secure, and loved enough to be themselves and take risks in ways that foster deeper learning. They are joyfully taking risks and working together.

Learning to be aware of inequity and opportunity in the world around them, and of their unique strengths and identities as assets for navigating challenges in pursuit of their growing sense of purpose. They are exploring their own assets, strengths, and identities, as well as systemic injustices that may devalue or inhibit them.

Learning to understand not only how to use, but also to analyze, evaluate, and create knowledge and skills as a means to discover new opportunities and solutions to challenges. They are eagerly and productively struggling with challenging and relevant tasks, at the edge of their abilities.

Learning to take independent or collective action toward shared goals to create positive change in their own lives and the lives of others. They are finding their voice, leading work, and connecting daily efforts to their aspirations for themselves and their communities.

Learning to feel healthy, secure, and loved enough to be themselves and take risks in ways that foster deeper learning. They are joyfully taking risks and working together.

An overhead shot of five students seated around a desk. A girl with a ponytail writes on a piece of paper as the others watch intently.

Our Future of Work Vision

All children, particularly those in low-income communities, deserve access to the education, support, and opportunity that will equip them to not only navigate that world but lead it.

In the coming years, we envision Teach For All bringing together educators, students, business leaders, and key stakeholders to reorient education towards students’ holistic development, and incorporate career readiness into learning and curriculum to foster students’ growth and equip them with the knowledge, skills, and mindsets to succeed in the world of work while helping it become more equitable and sustainable.

Our Strategy

Teach For All is launching the Future of Work Initiative to support teachers and communities to adopt a holistic and inclusive approach to developing students as leaders who will thrive and shape meaningful careers in an evolving economy. We will accomplish this in three key ways:

The Future of Work Initiative will support teachers to develop students for the future of work through the following strategies:

  • Share the Teaching as Collective Leadership framework for developing students as leaders who are prepared for the world of work in different contexts
  • Launch the Future of Work Learning Community to engage teachers and alumni in conversations with industry experts and diverse stakeholders
  • Foster teacher collaboration through the Global STEM Learning Community to share STEM education solutions
  • Create two new learning communities for teachers to engage in the topics of Financial Education and Digital Learning
  • Develop learning experiences for network partners to support teachers with incorporating employability skill-building, STEM learning, financial education, digital literacy, and career exposure into curriculum
  • Share STEM, financial, or digital skill-building content for teachers on our online portal
  • Leverage existing network partner communities, such as our Heads of Training and Alumni Communities to support network staff with teacher development and system-level impact

To prepare students for existing and future work opportunities, The Future of Work Initiative aims to increase students’ exposure to industries and jobs and expand students’ access to STEM, digital, and financial education.

  • Coordinate global partnerships to engage volunteers with network partners and their students through career guidance workshops, coaching, and mentoring to build students’ excitement about future careers

  • Provide students access to internships and volunteering via global partnerships to expose them to diverse industries so they can make informed decisions about their education and careers

  • Invite corporate partners to deliver STEM, financial, or digital literacy content to students and school communities

The Future of Work Initiative will also elevate locally rooted knowledge from teachers, students, and communities to contribute to the global discussion on how to reorient education towards students’ holistic development and prepare them for the future:

  • Connect students, teachers, and communities to learning opportunities such as World Youth Skills Day, Financial Literacy Month, International Women’s Day, and STEM Day to share best practices
  • Invite students, industry leaders, educators, and policy stakeholders to join the Future of Work Advisory Board to build awareness of Future of Work solutions
  • Share local stories of transformation and impact through our website, blogs, and videos
  • Engage in global events such as the UN’s Transforming Education Summit and IBM and the UN’s Call for Code Global Challenge to share insights and influence the global conversation

Supporting Students to Thrive

In countries around the world, Teach For All network partners are supporting students to build the skills they need to thrive in the Future of Work. Building multi-stakeholder partnerships creates opportunities for students to be inspired by and connected to future career pathways.

EmployEd Chat

EmployEd Chat is a student-led conversation that brings together students and leaders from diverse sectors to discuss their careers and industries. These discussions introduce students to the world of work and help them make informed decisions about their future.

Contact Us & Get Involved

This initiative requires the collective leadership of many people, pioneering solutions and working together across sectors, to rethink the way education can prepare children and youth to create meaningful careers in a rapidly changing world. We will continue to evolve this initiative based on what we are learning about the future of work, which is why we would love to hear from you. 

If you're a development partner, business leader, teacher, student, or changemaker interested in shaping this initiative together with us, please reach out to Tarek Chehidi at @email to learn more.