Sunday, November 21, 2010

And I'm not saying "There Is Only One Way"

You may be shocked to learn that I am an idealist.  (Take a moment to collect yourself.)

I wish I could pin it down and say THIS is the only way to do education.  But that's the problem we are having right now.

I am currently auditing a course offered by AERO called School Starting 101.  In the course I get to interact with people from around the U.S. and the world who are passionate about education reform and who are - you guessed it - starting schools.   Thanks to Jerry Mintz, founder of AERO, for facilitating such a tremendous opportunity!

All that to say that, through the course, I have had the amazing opportunity to have a brief discussion with Chris Mercogliano, long time, highly respected alternative educator, about trying to pin down "a way" because I so desperately want to have a formula.   He kindly told me that, well, you just can't do that.

Not every school is for every child.

Precisely my own thesis!  I was at risk for becoming a fundamentalist alternative educator!  Conventional schools may not be for everybody (probably not for most bodies), and the various methods of progressive education are not for everybody either.  Wow.  What a concept.

If I had the power to flip a switch and make a universal change to education - it would be that ever person involved in facilitating it would come to the awareness that all children are NATURAL LEARNERS who WANT to learn; that children are Whole People with basic human rights equal to those of their adult counterparts - so hey, let's design education around that!

The Village School isn't saying we are the answer, we're saying we're AN answer.  So is The Dunmore School in Harbour Island, which doesn't necessarily share the same methodology as The Village School.

So while there isn't any One Way to do school, there certainly is One Truth around which to build it -

Every thing is not for every one.

We must continue to seek diversity in education.

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