Saturday, November 12, 2005

Education White Paper Elephant

For most Home Educators, the government's current White Paper on educational reforms is just so much fiddling at the margins. The emphasis on extending parental choice and personalized learning leaves us thinking that this kind of reform could provide for some very slight improvement, but that since we are still left with classrooms of between 15 to 30 pupils, the real chance of personalized learning (where learning actually happens, ie: in the minds of individual children), is extremely remote.

It is acknowledged in teacher training courses that only some 30% of the class will actually derive any benefit from any one lesson. Our guess is that this figure will not change that much with these titivations.

How does the schooling meme get away with it? How many industries would find themselves in business whilst running with 70% wastage?

The major problem contributing to poor educational outcomes in schools has little to do with the structure and organisation of schools, and much more to do with the fact that schools are effectively coercive institutions in which children are not in charge of their own learning. Until children are allowed to enact theories that are active in their minds in the situations of their own choosing, learning will always be suboptimal.

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