Shaping Dynamics of Transformed Learning: Inclusive Education in a Changing Europe


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Keynote presentation at TRANSit Summer School, Heraklion, Greece (30 June 2013)

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Shaping Dynamics of Transformed Learning: Inclusive Education in a Changing Europe

  1. 1. Be Creative, Play Digitally Creativity. Discovery. Games. Learning Summer School Heraklion, Crete, 30 June 2013
  2. 2.  Transformed planet  Transforming educational systems  The Inclusion Imperative  Policy to best practice – innovation and sustainable values
  3. 3.  Globalization – accelerating and pervasive  Crisis and re-structuring  Devaluation of the public sphere  Stratification and inequity  Labor market transformation  Rights and inclusion – token or real?  Access, quality and innovation in education
  4. 4.  Patterns of constant change  Permanent migration mobility  Outsourcing  Flexible structures and modalities  Obsolescence of job norms  Knowledge economy  Ecological pressures  End of certainty
  5. 5.  Innovation supporting learning  Innovation supporting work  Re-evaluation of traditional methods and structures  Changing needs  Analyzing and responding to impact of globalization  Change without changing – innovation with precedents  Facing new realities – using evidence
  6. 6.  12 m.: numbers with more than $1m. to invest (9,2% increase since 2011)  $46,2 trillion: aggregate wealth of this group (10% increase since 2011)  Ultrarich (>$30m.) surged 11% (now 35,2% of all millionaires) WorldWealth Report RBCWealth Management & Capgemini Financial Services June 2013
  7. 7. We are increasingly becoming a winner takes all economy… over recent decades, technological change, globalization and erosion of the institutions and practices that support shared prosperity have put the middle class under increasing stress
  8. 8.  Decreasing workers’ share in national income in all countries  Labor productivity (up 85% since 1980) not reflected in wages (up 35%)  Declining social mobility  Rising income inequality reflected in declining equality of opportunity GlobalWage Report 2012/13, ILO Prof. Miles Corak, Journal of Economic Perspectives 2013
  9. 9.  Persistence and increase in inequality  Permanent hopelessness of excluded  Embedded violence  Internal underclass  Social polarization  Stripping away rights  Invisibility, ethnic difference and the retreat to denial
  10. 10.  End of old certainties  No return to ‘normal’  Polymorphic media and postmodernism  Planet of Slums (Mike Davis): hypercities of the future  Informal economies  The normalization of brutality
  11. 11.  Mythology of the ‘normal’  Defining the mainstream: what have we become?  Robust probing of social structure required as a preliminary to defining mainstream  Masking power, relationships and inequity  Need to avoid cliché and assumptions  Learners are immersed in and emerging into this changed constellation – of which the gatekeepers know little
  12. 12.  Education is both structure and process  Aims and goals vary considerably  Education systems mirror world, society and relationship-matrix of which they are part  Education systems are as much constraining as liberating  Forum for ideas or market for products?  Or both….?
  13. 13.  Traditional schooling in the spotlight  Learning systems both reflect and lead society  Information…wisdom…understanding  Critical enquiry - back to Illich  Reflection and inquisitiveness  Engaging with difference
  14. 14.  Commodification of knowledge  Impact on education systems (Freire, Illich, Field)  Impact on work (Braverman, Haraszti, Davis)  Impact on community - alienation and anomie  From community to networking  Knowledge and learning now centrally linked as product and process dimensions
  15. 15.  Miller (2003) fundamentally optimistic about transformational potential of new knowledge architectures  Carneiro (2007) identifies Paradigm shifts (industry-globalization-utopia) Delivery modes (role-access-customized) Driving forces (State-market-community)
  16. 16. Into the nothingness of scorn and noise,
Into the living sea of waking dreams,
Where there is neither sense of life nor joys,
But the vast shipwreck of my life's esteems;
And e'en the dearest--that I loved the best--
Are strange--nay, rather stranger than the rest. John Clare (1793 – 1864)
  17. 17.  Conservative  Strict  Hierarchic  Inflexible  Memorization and recall focus  Examination-driven  Resistant to application of new technologies
  18. 18.  Pupil/learner centered  Competence driven  Community focused  Technologically enhanced  International engagement focus  Learning process (application modes)  Individual value (humanistic approach)
  19. 19.  Disruptive classroom behaviors  Absenteeism  Early school-leaving  Teacher burnout  Migration, integration and sustainability  Literacy, numeracy, basic skills  Languages  Quality and governance DG EAC (2008) European Education andTraining Systems in the Second Decennium of the Lisbon Strategy, NESSE and ENEE.
  20. 20. Five key issues: 1. Measures to reduce early school leaving 2. Priority education measures in relation to disadvantaged pupils and groups 3. Inclusive education measures in relation to pupils with special needs 4. Safe education measures in relation on the reduction of bullying and harassment 5.Teacher support measures.
  21. 21. ‘I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member.’
  22. 22. Social inclusion can be defined as a number of affirmative actions undertaken in order to reverse the social exclusion of individuals or groups in our society INCLUSO (EU 7th Framework, 2009)
  23. 23. A multidimensional process of progressive social rupture, detaching groups and individuals from social relations and institutions and preventing them from full participation in the normal, normatively prescribed activities of the society in which they live. H. Silver, Social Exclusion: Comparative Analysis of Europe and Middle East Youth, Dec. 2007. (Wolfensohn Center for Development, Dubai)
  24. 24.  Not necessarily benign  Not necessarily desired  Not necessarily valued  Inclusion or conformity?  Exclusion often seen minimally as lack of access  Exclusion is a systematic policy of inequality and denial of rights  Hugely different implications
  25. 25.  If learning, working and production are controlled inclusion is at best token, at worst sinister  At the core of inclusion must be ability to assess critically and express freely  Fundamental to inclusion is ability to ask questions that challenge existing relations  Inclusion re-examines existing reality while posing viable alternatives
  26. 26.  Youth and mass unemployment  Demographics: ageing and life expectancy  Women and labor market participation  Immigration, cultural and religious difference  Disability  Conflict, stress, anomie  Urbanization, dissent and democratic deficits
  27. 27.  Legacies of segregated schooling  Gender  Disability  Religion  Ability  Language  Class  Not always negative  Protection and nurture  Resistance to assimilation  Hotbed of innovation  Risk takers in ’the murder machine’ (Pearse 1916)
  28. 28.  Positive and proactive decision – policy and practice  It is achievable  Risks: stigmatization and discrimination  Requires whole-school and community commitment and support  Demands resources (personnel and training)  Demands facilities to UD level throughout  Support, review, standards
  29. 29.  Inclusion changes both sides – the act of mainstreaming is to change the mainstream not the ‘excluded’  From objects to subjects  Narratives of adaptation and discovery  From target group to citizen  Critical role of teachers  Inclusion and the dialectic of rights
  30. 30.  Transformational learning and the sociology of innovation  Educational systems as networks of actors who reinforce each other in stable configurations  Stable configurations prevent change  Vested interest acts against innovation and inclusion - seen as threat
  31. 31.  It is possible to have incremental change  Systems react to change even if they do not initiate it  The promising path is through disruptive innovation which produces irreversible change (Christensen, Disrupting Class, 2008)
  32. 32.  Acceleration  Collaboration and networks  Collaboration with knowledge production centers  Increasing domination by market realities  Towards competence  Integrated learning for integrated learners
  33. 33.  On-line courses  Pilot school innovations  Project based learning  Experimental schools in degraded social communities  Non-formal learning  Abolition of the teacher
  34. 34. να το νι κι Για ... λει δες να ‘ναι στους ς λει μα τους. A Solitary swallow and a costly spring, for the sun to turn it takes a job of work, It takes a thousand dead sweating at the wheels, it takes the living also giving up their blood. Elytis, Axion Esti
  35. 35.  Community development  Social solidarity  Environmental management and conservation  Arts, culture and creativity  Sports and leisure  Health and well-being  Social inclusion and demographic change  Advanced technologies
  36. 36.  From oppression to emancipatory learning  Insights of the excluded - voices of the invisible  Learning to think – and teach – anew  Creating benefit for all  Critical thinking distinct epistemologies of science and engineering Science explains what exists; engineering creates what never existed (Von Karman)  Disability and learning: from Louis Braille to Ken Robinson
  37. 37.  Innovation and creativity as starting point not destination  Responsiveness to permanent change  Staff competence and empowerment  Engaging with excellence  Doing the unexpected - better!  Content validity and academic rigor  Customer delight
  38. 38.  Increased application of new knowledge  Open and distance learning technologies facilitating learners and staff competence  Transformation of traditional teaching role to mentoring, guiding and facilitation  Development of network of inclusion best practice at European level  Adopting UDL  Inclusion not as destination but starting point
  39. 39.  Removing barriers - mind and heart  Asserting imagination and creativity  Limitless potential of the inclusion focus  Learning for all as foundation for transformation  From the core of crisis – new directions or the abyss?
  40. 40. Dr. Alan Bruce ULS Dublin