Dani Trimble, Superintendent

In 2020...

In 2016, The World Economic Forum produced a report called “The Future of Jobs.” The report forecasted the employment skills that would be needed in 2020, and pointed to a definition of a Fourth Industrial Revolution characterized by developments in genetics, artificial intelligence, robotics, nanotechnology, 3D printing and biotechnology. The report described the new industrial revolution as “more comprehensive and all-encompassing than anything we have ever seen.”

As I write my annual article on my hopes for the coming year, I find myself drawn to review the 2016 Future Jobs Report. With this report as my measuring stick, in 2020, I hope we have been and will continue to adequately prepare our youth to become the workforce that is needed today and into the future. As I look to the current workplace, I recognize the accuracy of the 2016 report. In the graphic below, we can see the changing top 10 workplace skills. While many skills remain on the list from 2016, the order of importance changes significantly. Do you recognize the need for these evolving skills in your own workplaces? While complex problem solving remains at the top of the list, items such as quality control and active listening fall off the top ten list for 2020. They are replaced by the need for emotional intelligence and cognitive flexibility. Critical thinking moves to number two, and creativity moves all the way from number ten to number three.

In response, schools look different today. We strive to design instruction that meets these needs of the evolving workforce. Moving forward, we will continue to evolve our educational practices to align to the changing needs. My 2020 hope is that we guarantee Alburnett graduates are college, career, and life ready when they leave their PS-12 school experience.

So once again, with the new year before us, I’m feeling excited. And optimistic. And grateful for the way we are able to constantly stretch our thinking as a school district and community.