October 24, 2008
I remember when I first read the book Summerhill, which is about a school in the North of England. It describes a school with many rules democratically generated by the students and teachers in a non-sham direct democracy system. And the students learn of their own accord, with untampered wills. When they seek knowledge teachers facilitate. They are never coerced by the teachers into learning a subject. If the child does not wish to attend classes, he or she doesn’t. The people who think it would be a never ending summer vacation of apathy underestimate the ability of a person to self direct and the desire to learn about the world when the passion of curiosity strikes.
Part of why it’s hard to fix the system is that the system breaks so many. If we get disheartened by the slowness of educational change, it’s because every repair of the education system must align with a personal repair to ourselves.
Here is an interesting video on the disconnect between the classroom and the student: