Nobody can ever accuse Stephen Heppell from stepping back from the brink...or avoiding difficult subjects. And reading through the Partners in Learning 2007 Progress Report (page 102) I noticed that he's at it again. His first two sentences under the heading "Moving Beyond the Factory School Model" grabs attention:
Looking back, it is likely that we will view the era from 1950 to 2000 as something of an aberration in the history of learning. The "factory schools" built around the world of during that era saw learning confined to rigid boxes.
And then, when the heading changes to "New Learning Strategies Fueled by Technology", he says:
In the 21st century, education is embracing a new, exciting, engaging, effective future. New technology has played a huge part in this, not only because of the new opportunities it brings to the classroom through personalisation, but also because it allows students and teachers to quickly and effectively swap great ideas with one another.
His last paragraph concludes:
Like Dorothy and Toto in The Wizard of Oz, learning is being whisked away on a whirlwind of change and imagination. When it touches back down to earth in another 10 years, the education landscape will certainly look significantly different than it does today. This report provides some intriguing clues as to what we might see instead.
You can download the full report, or just read sections. Stephen's views are in the "Innovative Learning" section of the full report, on page 102, but the whole report contains a global insight into projects which are supporting the changing model of learning we're seeing everywhere.