Our world is characterized by rapid changes, increasing globalization and increasingly complex economic, social and cultural relationships. Like any vital activity for the development of society, education must always take into account these social challenges.
When we say cultural education we mean that way of promoting culture, creativity and interculturality through education. In this sense, art, culture, creativity and interculturality are key elements, indispensable to a complete lifelong education.
Cultural education aims to achieve the best possible development of each individual as an active member of the community and society through forms of cultural expression, the arts and play. To achieve this objective, artistic and cultural organizations, educational institutions and local authorities must collaborate to promote a common artistic and cultural offer, to exchange resources and to provide a coherent and effective cultural education.
Cultural education actively contributes to defining the discourse on cultural diversity and arts education for social inclusion.
Cultural education can take the form of cultural self-knowledge, to which is added the acquisition of cultural learning skills and intercultural development.
An individual’s social environment is composed in part of education and social interaction. In particular, cultural education is crucial in terms of integration into society. Different types of cultural education programs go in this important direction.
Ongoing partnerships between the education, culture and creative industries sectors need to be integrated into public policies. Government together with cultural organisations, artists and funders must consider cultural education as a basic right and an essential skill with educational, social and emotional implications.
The power of cultural education to engage individuals and communities far exceeds that of formal education and institutionalized culture, inspires civic engagement, which determines both personal, social and community benefits, leading to the growth of the creative economy.
Another important component of cultural education is the ability to reflect, the one that facilitates the process by which we learn to reflect on our own culture, that of others, but also on culture in general. Forms of cultural expression, visual arts, digital media, history, literature, film, photography, music, dance, theater, sciences, philosophy, civic education, etc. they provide us with a stable connection to time, places, events, people, tangible and intangible heritage and allow us to experience, evolve and develop as a society.
Cultural self-awareness is the cornerstone of cultural education, but also of society in general, representing an essential competence in such a diverse and divergent world.
The importance of educational programs is recognized and recommended internationally. For example, at the following link you can find the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, which also includes specifications related to Cultural Education: