Today’s children will most likely have to work until the age of 100 at 40 different jobs, according to a leading British futurologist.
Rohit Talwar, one of Britain’s top experts on the future, told a large conference of school principals Tuesday that secondary schools should prepare today’s students for a very different world than the one experienced by their parents, the London Times newspaper reported Wednesday.
Talwar suggested that schools should teach students more relevant skills, including how to relax, boost their memories and get more sleep, in order to cope. Talwar, CEO of Fast Future, which predicts future trends, was speaking to the Headmasters’ and Headmistresses’ Conference — a gathering of British school principals — in St. Andrews, Scotland, the Times reported.
Talwar said new drugs and other medical advances mean people are living five months longer with each passing year. And in Britain, at least, he said research suggests that the number of jobs in the economy will shrink between 30 and 80 percent.
An 11-year-old child today might live to 120 and work until 100, working at up to 40 jobs spanning ten or more careers, he said. Talwar predicted a “portfolio” approach to working, which would involve a range of different employments.
“You might be driving Uber (taxis) as part of the day, renting out your spare bedroom on Airbnb, renting out space in your closet, doing delivery for Amazon, renting out your driveway for somebody who wants to park their car there,” Talwar said, the Times reported.
Talwar suggested that new “soft” skills should be taught in schools then, including meditation to help relaxation and productivity, as well as guidance on managing stress through healthy sleep patterns.
“We are losing the context of the world we are moving into,” Talwar said, according to the paper. “We have got this abstract myth that underpins the education system and the exam structure. That myth is that we are going back to the 1950s, and, if we replayed that structure, everything would be fine. It is just not true.”
A British headmaster, or principal, chairman of the independent schools’ conference, was quoted by the paper as saying that schools cannot continue on the educational road they’re on. “We are going to have to innovate in the way we educate,” Christopher King was quoted as saying.