Driven to despair by how my smart and sensitive eldest son was suffering from increasing stress and depression by the mind-numbing rote-learning and non-step testing regime at his apparently top secondary school in the Netherlands, I googled in Dutch “education without tests”. Up popped the page of a tv documentary about a school in Roermond called Niekee where they had been experimenting with an approach called Agora. As I read the interview with one of the co-founders, Sjef Drummen, my eyes filled with tears as I recognised the secondary education of the future that truly honours and liberates the wholeness and potential of our children. The old system is broken and it’s breaking our kids. I was determined to do what I could to bring it to my home town and so earlier this week I visited Sjef and his amazing school. I feel immensive gratitude for the vision and courage he and his team have shown in actually manifesting a working example of how it could be done differently. As he repeated a number of times to me, “what we care about is what is good for the development of the child”. Below is some more information about Agora that I have translated from various Dutch sources, and some photos of the children’s working spaces (that they get to design themselves).
Intro note: I actually wrote this back in 2000 when we were establishing Engage!. I came across it just now and was struck by how relevant it is to the work I am now doing with Ubiquity – nearly 15 years on! Gosh I was smart back then – I wonder what happened…
Open Source Learning
A Key to Multiculturalism, Citizenship, and the Knowledge Society
Exploring the Problems and Challenges
- Multiculturalism, Diversity and Difference
- Citizenship, Participation and Motivation
- The Knowledge Society
The Foundations of Open Source Learning
- Skills, Qualities and Values
- Beyond Certainty and Control
- Systems Thinking
- Think Subtly, Act Simply
- Love your Enemy
Open Source Learning in Practice
- Critical Thinking for Conscious Action
- The Role of the Educator
- Structures and Methods
- Why “Open Source Learning” ?
An introduction to an integral evolutionary approach to education (published in Educare magazine).
Download the PDF here.