OCC2011 Keynotes: Alan Bruce


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OPEN CLASSROOM: Vision, Challenges, Perspectives

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OCC2011 Keynotes: Alan Bruce

  1. 1. Dr. Alan Bruce EDEN Open Classroom Conference Athens: 28 October 2011
  2. 2. D’où venons nous? Que sommes nous? Où allons nous?
  3. 3. Contours of crisis <ul><li>Schooling at the crossroads: the obsolete template and the 21 st century </li></ul><ul><li>Economic meltdown: globalization and neo-liberal ascendancy </li></ul><ul><li>Seeking vision: significance, relevance, meaning </li></ul><ul><li>Technological Tantalus: ICT, communications and potential </li></ul><ul><li>Innovation imperatives </li></ul>
  4. 4. Method and rationale <ul><li>Need to: </li></ul><ul><li>re-visit key questions on purpose and reason for education and schooling </li></ul><ul><li>question assumptions and presuppositions underlying knowledge transmission systems </li></ul><ul><li>investigate power, access and control </li></ul><ul><li>challenge strategic policy directions </li></ul><ul><li>assert transformative potential of ICT </li></ul>
  5. 5. Gauguin’s question: 1 <ul><li>Psychoanalytic: Erikson in Childhood and Society </li></ul><ul><li>Philosophy: purpose, value and social utility </li></ul><ul><li>History: the development of institutions and the politics of control </li></ul><ul><li>Sociology: Rousseau to Illich and the shaping of systems </li></ul><ul><li>Pedagogical: learning to learn and exponential change </li></ul>
  6. 6. Gauguin’s question: 2 <ul><li>Autonomous learner or social being </li></ul><ul><li>Critical thinker or passive recipient </li></ul><ul><li>Empowered or victim </li></ul><ul><li>Production, autonomy and control </li></ul><ul><li>Citizenship, economy and rights </li></ul><ul><li>Emancipatory dialectic or return to barbarism ( Kargartlitsky ) </li></ul>
  7. 7. Gauguin’s questions: 3 <ul><li>Proclaiming excellence in chaos </li></ul><ul><li>Setting strategic goals in times of uncertainty </li></ul><ul><li>Purpose and meaning in the learning matrix </li></ul><ul><li>Creating and sustaining value </li></ul><ul><li>Shaping potential and defining hope </li></ul><ul><li>The courage to challenge </li></ul>
  8. 8. The impact of change <ul><li>The old world is dying. </li></ul><ul><li>The new world struggles to be born. </li></ul><ul><li>Now is the time of monsters. Antonio Gramsci </li></ul>
  9. 9. Change dynamics <ul><li>Sustained and systemic </li></ul><ul><li>Accelerating </li></ul><ul><li>Multidimensional and simultaneous </li></ul><ul><li>Structural incapacity to incorporate required modifications and adjustments </li></ul><ul><li>Deep uncertainty in terms of future options </li></ul><ul><li>Unprecedented levels of challenge </li></ul>
  10. 10. Globalization as norm <ul><li>Flexible structures and modalities </li></ul><ul><li>Ever-increasing emphasis on competitiveness </li></ul><ul><li>Ruthless focus on profitability </li></ul><ul><li>Ruptured communities and helpless individuals </li></ul><ul><li>Structural imbalances </li></ul><ul><li>Limitless opportunities </li></ul>
  11. 11. Globalized work <ul><li>End of job norms – flexible multitasking to meet market transformation </li></ul><ul><li>Shifting production patterns </li></ul><ul><li>Outsourcing and permanent migration </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge economy and lifelong learning </li></ul><ul><li>Adaptability and creativity </li></ul><ul><li>Concentrated wealth, access and power </li></ul>
  12. 12. Globalization: the threats <ul><li>Persistence and increase in inequality </li></ul><ul><li>Permanent hopelessness of excluded </li></ul><ul><li>Embedded violence </li></ul><ul><li>Internal underclass </li></ul><ul><li>External invisibility </li></ul>
  13. 13. Globalization: the opportunities <ul><li>Time warp of nation state </li></ul><ul><li>Integration and participation </li></ul><ul><li>Learning without borders </li></ul><ul><li>Global communication and dissemination of knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Collective effort not collective answers ’ ( Therborn ) </li></ul>
  14. 14. Impact of crisis <ul><li>End of certainties </li></ul><ul><li>Explosive social tensions </li></ul><ul><li>Systemic policy paralysis </li></ul><ul><li>Spiraling indebtedness </li></ul><ul><li>Rupture with past assumptions on linear progress </li></ul><ul><li>Inadequacy of traditional learning and schooling systems to meet new needs </li></ul>
  15. 15. Anticipating the future ( OECD 1994 ) <ul><li>Future learning and employment needs ( Jobs Study ) </li></ul><ul><li>Policy change </li></ul><ul><li>Flexibility </li></ul><ul><li>Entrepreneurship </li></ul><ul><li>Internationalization </li></ul><ul><li>Technology </li></ul>
  16. 16. The future is now… <ul><li>Potential provision of universal schooling is now realized </li></ul><ul><li>Internationalization is the norm </li></ul><ul><li>Technology is pervasive but unevenly accessible or applied </li></ul><ul><li>‘Flexibility’: weapon or tool? </li></ul><ul><li>Entrepreneur: leader or false god? </li></ul><ul><li>Policy: shaping or copying? </li></ul>
  17. 17. School and community
  18. 18. Leadbetter’s insights <ul><li>Critical issue of motivation (extrinsic and intrinsic) </li></ul><ul><li>Centrality of innovation </li></ul><ul><li>Instilling purpose: </li></ul><ul><li>education + technology = hope </li></ul>
  19. 19. Defining directions <ul><li>Excellence </li></ul><ul><li>Innovation </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership </li></ul><ul><li>System change </li></ul><ul><li>Reform </li></ul><ul><li>‘ The chemistry of widespread improvement’ (Michael Fullan) </li></ul>
  20. 20. Comparative analysis ( McKinsey 2010 ) – 20 countries <ul><li>Key interventions: </li></ul><ul><li>Revise curriculum and standards </li></ul><ul><li>Set appropriate pay for teachers/principals </li></ul><ul><li>Enhance technical skills for teachers </li></ul><ul><li>Improve student assessment systems </li></ul><ul><li>Quality data systems </li></ul><ul><li>Improve policy and laws </li></ul>
  21. 21. Evidence of improvement <ul><li>Pattern of improvement is independent of geography, times or culture </li></ul><ul><li>Interventions are mutually reinforcing </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative practice works best </li></ul><ul><li>There must be an architecture of leadership </li></ul>
  22. 22. Michael Fullan 2010 <ul><li>The power of collective capacity is that it enables ordinary people to accomplish extraordinary things – for two reasons. One is that knowledge about effective practice becomes more widely available and accessible on a daily basis. The second reason is more powerful still – working together generates commitment. </li></ul>
  23. 23. Developing school leadership <ul><li>OECD 2008 : </li></ul><ul><li>Support, evaluate and develop teacher quality </li></ul><ul><li>Goal setting, assessment and accountability </li></ul><ul><li>Strategic financial and HR management </li></ul><ul><li>Collaboration with other schools </li></ul>
  24. 24. Reactions to crisis <ul><li>Effort to establish status quo ante </li></ul><ul><li>Denial and paralysis </li></ul><ul><li>Rage and frustration </li></ul><ul><li>Cut, cut and cut: the marketization of thought </li></ul><ul><li>Copy ‘success’ stories </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunity to learn: the innovation imperative </li></ul><ul><li>Creativity unbound </li></ul>
  25. 25. From crisis to renewal <ul><li>“ School systems that have successfully ignited reforms and sustained their momentum have all relied on at least one of three events to get them started: </li></ul><ul><li>they have either taken advantage of a political or economic crisis, </li></ul><ul><li>or commissioned a high-profile report critical of the system’s performance, </li></ul><ul><li>or have appointed a new, energetic and visionary political or strategic leader.” </li></ul><ul><li>McKinsey 2010 </li></ul>
  26. 26. Innovation <ul><li>Holy Grail of crisis resolution </li></ul><ul><li>Imperative for future restructuring </li></ul><ul><li>Linked centrally to: </li></ul><ul><li>policy </li></ul><ul><li>knowledge production </li></ul><ul><li>information explosion </li></ul><ul><li>ownership </li></ul>
  27. 27. Constraining innovation <ul><li>Commodification of knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Institutional resistance </li></ul><ul><li>Reward, patents and ownership </li></ul><ul><li>Community resistance </li></ul><ul><li>Outcomes and results </li></ul><ul><li>Incremental and disruptive dimensions </li></ul><ul><li>Planning for innovation? </li></ul>
  28. 28. Creativity and ICEAC Study (IPTS 2011) <ul><li>Form of knowledge creation </li></ul><ul><li>Product or process that demonstrates balance of originality and value </li></ul><ul><li>A thinking skill </li></ul><ul><li>Ability to make unforeseen connections </li></ul><ul><li>Based on learner empowerment </li></ul><ul><li>Innovative teaching supports creative learning </li></ul>
  29. 29. Creativity and innovation: finding evidence <ul><li>Conceptualized in different ways even if universally mentioned </li></ul><ul><li>Teachers: 91% agree ICT enhances creativity </li></ul><ul><li>Theory stronger than practice: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Only 46% of teachers use play </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Only 41% use multidisciplinary work </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Only 50% believe creativity can be assessed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Only 58% had training in ICT classroom use </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Only 25% claim ICT quality in their schools is excellent </li></ul></ul>
  30. 30. Creativity: stakeholder evidence <ul><li>Expert perceptions of rigidity and inflexibility on curricula and assessment </li></ul><ul><li>Institutional resistance to change: ethos of control, discipline and hierarchy </li></ul><ul><li>Innovation only exists in pockets – not generalized </li></ul><ul><li>Mindset shift critical </li></ul><ul><li>ICT quality use suggests partnership with students, not authoritarian control </li></ul>
  31. 31. Creativity: conclusions <ul><li>Curricula: holistic, supported and exploratory </li></ul><ul><li>Pedagogic practices: not rigid and inflexible </li></ul><ul><li>Assessment: impact of central exams </li></ul><ul><li>Teacher training: need for CPD, guidance, vision, exchanges </li></ul><ul><li>Culture: leadership, tolerance and diversity </li></ul><ul><li>Technology: vast potential </li></ul>
  32. 32. Th e Creanova project (2008-11) Key findings: school and work Collaborative learning Experimental design Innovation as policy Discovering Vision 2010
  33. 33. Embedding creativity <ul><li>Organic, reflective evaluative follow-up </li></ul><ul><li>Analysis and modification </li></ul><ul><li>Lasting partnerships between research units and schools </li></ul><ul><li>Labor market transformation impact </li></ul><ul><li>Organic link to work and community </li></ul><ul><li>Professional passion - out of the strait-jacket </li></ul>
  34. 34. Mapping educational innovation <ul><li>Improve (formal/sustain axis) </li></ul><ul><li>Supplement (informal/sustain axis) </li></ul><ul><li>Reinvent (formal/disruptive axis) </li></ul><ul><li>Transform (informal/disruptive axis) </li></ul>
  35. 35. Mapping vision <ul><li>Re-appropriate a sense of human values and personal worth </li></ul><ul><li>Re-envisage purpose and intention of learning </li></ul><ul><li>Accept the full impact of globalized society </li></ul><ul><li>Multidimensional futures </li></ul><ul><li>Stratification has an impact </li></ul><ul><li>Learning is not simply learning: it is communication </li></ul><ul><li>Instilling awareness that change is possible, alternatives are viable </li></ul>
  36. 36. Crisis impact: system change
  37. 37. Shared challenges <ul><li>Demographic changes: ageing and life expectancy </li></ul><ul><li>Women and labor market participation </li></ul><ul><li>Immigration </li></ul><ul><li>Cultural and religious difference </li></ul><ul><li>Conflict and stress </li></ul><ul><li>Hyper-urbanization </li></ul>
  38. 38. Shared opportunities <ul><li>Increased application of new knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Open and distance learning technologies facilitating learners and staff competence </li></ul><ul><li>Transformation of traditional teaching role to mentoring, guiding and facilitation </li></ul><ul><li>Development of network of innovative best practice at European level </li></ul>
  39. 39. Solutions are possible <ul><li>Regeneration and renewal </li></ul><ul><li>Restructuring based on quality, meritocracy, equal opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>Processes that trigger innovation, creativity, initiative </li></ul><ul><li>Diamatopolou 2011 </li></ul>
  40. 40. From science to wisdom <ul><li>The strangeness of reality consistently exceeds the expectations of science, and the assumptions of science, however tried and rational, are very inclined to encourage false expectations. It is a tribute to the brilliance of science that we can know such things. And it is also an illustration of the fact that science does not foreclose possibility, including discoveries that overturn very fundamental assumptions, and that it is not a final statement about reality but a highly fruitful mode of inquiry into it. </li></ul><ul><li>Marilynne Robinson, Absence of Mind (2010) </li></ul>
  41. 41. Charting vision <ul><li>Courage and leadership </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Imagining the impossible </li></ul><ul><li>Asserting rights </li></ul><ul><li>Access and inclusion </li></ul><ul><li>Redefined roles – end of the factory school </li></ul><ul><li>Community and transformation </li></ul>
  42. 42. Linkage and creativity
  43. 43. Directions <ul><li>Innovation based on questions, not answers: avoiding mantras and clichés </li></ul><ul><li>The poetry of open discovery and delight </li></ul><ul><li>Constructing schools as critical spaces </li></ul><ul><li>Connecting science and discovery through technologies of emancipatory practice </li></ul><ul><li>Rediscovering community in a fractured continent </li></ul>
  44. 44. Σας ευχριστώ πολύ <ul><li>Dr Alan Bruce </li></ul><ul><li>ULS Dublin </li></ul>