Tuesday, June 21, 2005
Souless standardization or creativity?
Knowledge society -learning schools
Our latest newsletters, posted on our site, features a summary of challenging ideas from the above book.
A few quotes will give you a taste.
At a time we need to re-invent education for a knowledge society, ‘schools are becoming obsessed with imposing and micromanaging curricular conformity …. and soulless standardization’ and, as a result, teachers are becoming ‘the drones and clones of policy makers anemic ambitions.’
Teachers have been ‘sidelined and are suffering from eroded autonomy.’
The ‘knowledge society’ has replaced the ‘industrial age’ but schools are ‘still run by clocks and bells, period and classes…the regulations of factories, monasteries and self perpetrating bureaucracies provide young people with poor preparation.’
The reforms we have all been through have had no place for ‘the experience of spontaneity of joy, of lives lived in ways that are vibrant and fulfilling’…’those distant from the classroom tend to neglect emotional dimensions…no time is given to creativity, imagination, and relationships'. 'For all those things that fuel the passion to teach.’
‘Schools have become obsessed with keeping up appearances’. ‘In such energy draining climate teachers work in fear of the next capricious soulless initiative and suffer from performance anxiety’…and too often this ‘reaches into teachers’ health’.
Teachers have a choice 'to be a catalyst…or a causality of change’
Instead of ‘top down’ changes schools need to be more flexible and ‘free the talents and energy of the teachers.’
Teachers are not 'delivers of curriculums' but 'developers of learners'.
'All students should have the opportunity to reach their highest and most creative levels.'
If we don’t reinvent schools for a learning society ‘insecurity or worse will be all we have and no less than we serve’ he concludes.
Good stuff but who is listening at the Ministry?