This short monograph was written by Neil Richards, a Trustee of the 21st Century Learning Initiative in response to the publication of Tony Little’s book, An Intelligent Person’s Guide to Education.
Battling for the Soul of Education
Moving beyond school reform to educational transformation:
The findings and recommendations of 3 decades of synthesis
Download from battlingforthesoulofeducation.org
“Am I just thick”, asked a thirteen-year-old girl, “or am I only good at those things that really interest me?” Her friends grinned; “She’s very good at annoying the boys”. And then, “Does my brain get better through use?”, quizzed a third. “What sort of use?”, interjected a fourth1. What makes us the thinkers […]
To educate is an act of social commitment both to children as individuals, and to the future society of which they will be part. It is also a personal transaction between teacher and child that has to be based on trust and integrity. So, who has the primary responsibility ─ the parent, the community, local […]
“You are all of you in this land brothers”, Plato told the Greeks, “but when God formed you he added gold in the composition of those who were qualified to be Rulers; he put silver in the Auxiliaries; and iron and bronze in the farmers and the rest”.1 The mid-Victorians thought differently to […]
“Doing it for your self” is a deeply engrained human instinct, something built up in the human genome over millions of years that increases our ability to survive. It’s about resilience, the determination that the more you can do for yourself, the more in control of your future you believe yourself to be. As […]
The Industrial Revolution was the most fundamental transformation of human life in the history of the world. The British have been profoundly marked by the experience of our economic and social pioneering, and remain marked by this ─ even, it seems, in genetic terms ─ to the present day.1 The cotton industry2 best exemplifies […]
Our bodies and minds are not of recent origin. They are the direct consequence of millions of years of surviving, and evolving, in landscapes and in climates different to present-day England. The preferences of our distant ancestors, and their ways of looking at life, still condition many of the decisions that we, and our most […]
The most complete statement of the Initiative’s ideas
Good evening. It is both an honour and a pleasure to be invited to give this lecture. I do so with some trepidation. I know I am easily carried away with my enthusiasm! Some years ago my wife and I were on a Sunday afternoon walk with our three sons. Our youngest, Tom, who was […]
Based on diverse research in cognitive and neurological science available in the mid-90s
An incomplete, but most interesting paper, challenging the structure of schooling
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