Talk:Blue skies visions

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I am so pleased to have found this site (accidentally, really, as I am on the ICT Research Network mail list and saw the email from Peter Twining about wanting writers for schome).

I come to this discussion from, I believe, an unusual perspective, as I am Home Educating my son who is 14, on much the same basis as described by John Adcock in "Teaching Tomorrow: personal tuition as an alternative to school" except I don't get paid for it!

I work part-time in a support role at Loughborough university (supporting the use of elearning).

Our Home Education educational philosophy takes from KPM and John Dewey, but ICT has a great influence on my son's learning, as he is what Mark Prensky would call a 'Digital Native' whereas I am, despite my degree in Mathematical Methods for Information Technology and many years working in IT, a 'digital Immigrant. My son's first port of call to find answers to his questions is the Internet, and he learns to use new software seemingly effortlessly.

I am very excited about this project. I definitely think that we need the Blue Skies vision, and that we need some input from the kids themselves about their view of how learning could be - preferably before they have had their imaginations limited by the current school system.

We are talking with young people - definitely agree we need their input - perhaps you and/or your son would like to write a Blue Skies Vision? PeterT 11:36, 26 Jun 2005 (BST)
Hi Peter, I will suggest this to my son. I'm actually really interested in trying to put into practice something like John Adcock's vision with a group of home educators, but I don't know if this is at all feasible. Cczseh 22:13, 27 Jun 2005 (BST)
I think that what we really need is for the government to provide us with real parental choice - rather than just having a choice of which McDonalds to go to wouldn't it be great if we could choose to go to McDonalds or Burger King or (and I'm getting radical here) Pizza Hut. At present all state funded schools are much of a muchness - largely cos of the constraints of the National Curriculum and the assessment regime. If we could open up choice in state funded schools so that the folk running the school could choose how to operate it then we would be part way to solving the education problem - cos you could work with your local school and use the funding to run and Adcock type model. PeterT 20:15, 28 Jun 2005 (BST)

I actually think that John Adcock's model could work, if the funding were there to pay the parents. Parents in the Home Education community have found their own ways of making this work against all the odds (you get zero financial help from the LEA if you decide to home educate), and I am sure a great deal of them would embrace John Adcock's ideas.

I suspect you are right that current home schoolers could make this work - given the funding for the 'teacher panels' - but without significant additional funding, which I don't think we will get, I don't think this model would work for most folk (cos they want/need to go out to work). PeterT 20:17, 28 Jun 2005 (BST)

I'd like to quote Roland Meighan's excellent comparison of the assumptions of the current school system with that of what he calls the 'Next' learning system, as I believe these are principles that we must bear in mind when imagining the education system of the future.


The mass schooling system assumes that: Learning is preparation for life, so at some point learning stops and living starts. Learning occurs mostly in school. Specialists are needed to impart knowledge. Education takes place in a school and requires a prescribed curriculum. People do not and cannot learn on their own. People with a large quantity of memorised information are better people than those with less. Schools are needed to socialise and civilise.

The next learning system, on the other hand, assumes that: Learning is life, because humans are learning animals, and whilst we are alive, we are learning. Learning occurs everywhere and anywhere. People can direct their own learning. Education is a lifelong activity that needs to be personalised using a catalogue curriculum. People can learn to make decisions on what and how to learn. Everyone is important regardless of how much they have memorised. People are socialised and get civilised in their communities

Have you read Hargreaves David H (2004) Learning for Life: The foundations for lifelong learning, Bristol: The Policy Press. ISBN 1861345976 - makes point that lifelong learning is cradle to grave and that schools either set you up with the necessary motivation and skills or (at present more often) don't. PeterT 13:38, 26 Jun 2005 (BST)
I haven't actually, and have not been able to find it in the University or Public libraries in this area, so I will have to request it. Cczseh 22:13, 27 Jun 2005 (BST)

I'll be watching this discussion with great interest.


if you put four tildes (~) the system will replace that with your username and the date and time PeterT 13:39, 26 Jun 2005 (BST)
Cheers Peter :) Cczseh 22:13, 27 Jun 2005 (BST)