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Our Students Need to Identify "Fake News"
Posted 04/17/2017 08:47AM

Our Students Need to Identify "Fake News"

Andreas Schleicher, the OECD's Director of Education and Skills, recently said schools need to teach students how to think critically and analyze what they read on social media and news sites. Schleicher argues young people should be taught to recognize" fake news".

"Exposing fake news, even being aware that there is something like fake news, that there is something that is written that is not necessarily true, that you have to question, think critically. That is very important. This is something that we believe schools can do something about."

Mr Schleicher said that whereas in the past "when you needed information, you went to an encyclopedia", today, anyone using social media or even news sites has to be able to assess, evaluate and reflect on the information they are given. "Distinguishing what is true from what is not true is a critical skill today," he said.

He also said social media creates an "echo-chamber" in which users only hear from viewpoints similar to their own, and argues that schools have a role to play in making sure that young people have a chance to debate different views and opinions."Social media is designed to create an echo chamber. We are likely to talk with people who are like us. Who think similarly to us," said Schleicher.

The OECD plans to test "global competencies" in the next PISA worldwide tests, the results of which will be published in 2019. The global competencies which it will test include young people's attitudes to global issues and different cultures, their analytical and critical skills and abilities to interact with others.

On the next PISA test, he said: "This assessment is about the capacity of young people to see the world through different perspectives, appreciate different ideas, be open to different cultures, which is an increasingly important dimension in a more interconnected world - both economically and socially."

This week, groups of our teachers have been working with Pam Harper to develop the Nishimachi International School "2035 Graduate Statement". Using information form the parent and alumni surveys done in November, and ideas generated by parents, students and staff when Pam worked with us back in October, we have drafted a very important document. This document identifies some significant qualities and characteristics our graduates should develop, and what we will be focusing on as a school in the next few years.

Valuing different perspectives, appreciating different ideas, and being open to different cultures are important parts of the draft Nishimachi 2035 Graduate Statement.

Nishimachi International School
2-14-7 Moto Azabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo 106-0046 Japan Tel: +81- (0)3-3451-5520

A well-recognized, independent, and coeducational K-9 international school in central Tokyo.

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