Author David Price writes: «If schools are coming into direct competition with the learning opportunities available in the informal social space, it has to be said that this is a pressure, which barely registers within the political discourse.
In the following pages, Price describes three cases across the globe — in London, Sydney, San Diego — that have mapped a vision that answers the questions above. Here’s what they have in common:
— By insisting that their teachers and mentors share their learning, all three have de-privatized teaching and learning.
— By opening up the commons, and by designing workspaces without walls, they have brought Edison’s ‘machine-shop culture’ into education.
— By bringing into the commons, experts, parents and investors, they have given an authenticity to the work of their students that is impossible to simulate in an enclosed classroom.
— By modelling collaborative working to their students they have fostered the peer learning which is at the heart of ‘open’.
— By emphasizing adult and real-world connections, they ensure that students are preparing for the world beyond school by being in that world.
— By making their expertise and intellectual property freely available, they have created high demand from their peers and ensured that knowledge travels fast.
— By seeing technology not simply as an aide to learning but as the imperative for change, they ensure that their programs are relevant to societal needs and societal shifts.
— By trusting in their staff and students, and by giving them freedom and responsibility in equal measure, they have fostered a culture of learning that rewards respectful challenge, shuns unnecessary deference, and therefore constantly stays in motion.