Philosophy

What are schools for?

Doreena, a contributor at the London Festival of Education, asks about the aim of school.

Emeritus Professor John White, co-author of ‘An Aims Based Curriculum’, considers various ways of answering this deceptively simple question.  Is school about fostering democratic values, supporting the individual to lead a fulfilling life or preparing them for the world of work?

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Philosophy

Who builds character in children, parents, teachers or both?

At the London Festival of Education, Jenna, a primary school teacher, asks about the responsibility for building character in students.

Dr Judith Suissa questions whether character formation is anyone’s ‘job’.  She discusses how values shape our education system and asks whether more attention should be given to encouraging students to debate moral and political questions in the classroom.  She is suspicious of the current emphasis on character building by politicians as it masks, she argues, an ideological agenda which would prefer us to concentrate on building resilience for ourselves and our children rather than taking collective action to change inequities in society.

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