Over the course of many lectures given between 1993 and 1994, the conflict between what Education 2000 was recommending, and the increasing pressure to work to the prescriptive requirements of the National Curriculum, encouraged the Trust to define learning as … “a reflective activity which enables the learner to draw upon previous experience to understand and evaluate the present, so as to shape future action and formulate new knowledge”.
Education 2000 had become sufficiently well-known by 1987 for me to be invited to address the Annual Conference of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) which was televised live with a studio audience of 1,800. This represented a massive step from a standing start of only two years before.
The adolescent brain, being “crazy by design”, is a critical evolutionary adaptation that has built up over thousands of generations, and is essential to our species survival. Adolescence forces young people in every generation to think beyond their own self-imposed limitations and exceed their parents’ aspirations1. Adolescents are not just over-grown children, or immature […]
The early 1960s were for Britain a rare moment of opportunity; post-war prosperity had created a more homogenous, more socially ambitious and optimistic people, yet culturally and educationally the country still remained divided by an education system designed at other times to serve a very different kind of people. The provision of technical schools […]
“Our education, like our civilisation, is penetrated with an unintelligent utilitarianism, which makes us feel that we ought to be doing something ‘useful’; useful subjects are indispensable, but the prior task of education is surely to inspire, to give a sense of values and the power of distinguishing in life, as in lesser things, what […]
Our opinions about adolescents are deeply contradictory; inquisitive yet confrontational, sometimes energetic yet frequently infuriatingly laid back, we don’t know if we love them or despair of them. No longer children to be told what to do, they lack adult powers of judgment, and are as uncertain as to how to behave as are adults […]
To educate is to open people’s minds to endless opportunities, but without a moral ‘lens’ with which to evaluate the appropriateness of these, much mischief can result. It is not simply that the devil finds mischief for idle hands to do, it is because “if we are to have criminals in our society, then pray […]
“This word-teaching, rote-learning, memory-loading system is still dignified with the name of ‘education’; … need we wonder that many scholars have so little practical or useful knowledge, or that the greatest block-heads at school often make brighter men than those whose intellects have been injured by much cramming?”1 Wealth and comfort lull people into […]
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