So much reform… so little change

A brief blog post today to share a video of a presentation by Valerie Hannon at [Re]Learn2020: The Learning Innovation Festival. (see below) It seems to be a timely reminder, a year since first aired, of the things we as educators and system leaders, need to be focused on in our work.

In her keynote, Valerie argues that education innovators across the world need a sharper theory of change to make our actions more impactful. She says that progress towards education systems and institutions that are fit for the conditions of the new era has been glacial. Too many children are still being badly failed by inequitable, outmoded, irrelevant and just plain boring schools.

Valerie has been at the forefront of challenging our thinking for some time now. In her talk she references the framework for change from her book, Thrive, which identifies four levels at which we ought to be focusing our efforts. She argues that de-schooling is not the answer, despite the claims of edtech post-COVID. Yet building a movement for change that captures the interest of parents, the enthusiasms of learners and the attention of politicians is still in a primitive state. She says we need to stand back, and ask what are the priorities and where should we be placing our energy?

So – one year on, and with the ongoing experience of the profound disruption of the global COVID-19 pandemic, Valerie’s keynote is a timely prompt to reflect again on what job we want organised learning to do – what is its purpose?

There was a live Q&A that followed this session that can be viewed here:

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