As long as we are not aware
of the ritual through which school shapes
the progressive consumer - the economy's
major resource - we cannot break the spell
of this economy and shape a new one.
by Ivan Illich
After screening of the documentary “Schooling the World” (directed by Carol Black, link to the trailer: schoolingtheworld.org/), I facilitated and filmed a conversation with postgraduate students of Holistic Science and Economics for Transition at Schumacher College in April 2012 (Juliana Schneider, Ruth Potts, Megaia Beyer, Adriana Puech, Chris Tittle, Denise Curi and Brigita Laykovich).
The equipment was basic, hence the quality of this first video I have made. Captured stories, related to education that you have heard (or you will hear) are based on personal experiences of 6 inspiring individuals who have been and still are on a very interesting journey of exploration, discovering what is possible beyond the mental constructs and brick walls.
Many relevant issues have been raised; such as systemic problems of education, standardization, indoctrination and institutionalization of education, disconnection from reality and surrounding environment, abstraction, education becoming a business, needs for alternatives (example of Efecto Mariposa and principles of Steiner School), reconnection to the land and a need for a more holistic way of learning, which gives equal opportunities to all. Most important; creating an environment for individuals where they can learn from each other, from the land, surrounding environment, from their ancestors and to further develop their own, unique way of thinking, doing and being.
Personally, I feel I was being robbed of my own experience too often, while being at school. For example, having to read the poem and interpret it the way it was suggested at the end of the book, or the way my teacher wanted the poem to be interpreted, instead of having the freedom to share my own experience of the poem. I found that very disturbing.
Sir Ken Robinson puts it very well; saying that schools today are still being organized as factory lines on ringing bells, with separate facilities, specialized into separate subjects. Children are being educated in batches, depending on their age group. This story brings a cold image of an assembly line, while the whole schooling process appears like a standardized manufacturing process. I’m sure this “rings a bell”!
To start changing the way people think, we first have to start with the process of awareness rising among educators and those connected to education; either students, parents or policy makers. This video is a first step of inquiry, which will further develop through the process of dissertation.
Few words about the people you have just seen, or you're about to see in this video:
Ruth Potts, current MA student on Masters of Economics for Transition, from UK
an activist, writer, nature and art lover, an absolutely inspiring being;
Ruth Potts is a co-founder of the radical collective, Bread, Print & Roses, and is completing an MA in Economics for Transition at Schumacher College. She was the Campaign Manager of the Great Transition at nef (the new economics foundation) from 2009-2011 where she co-developed a new model of campaigning designed to kick-start the decade -long transition to a new economy. Before that, she did time in the press offices of nef, Amnesty International UK and Christian Aid, and in public affairs for the National Federation of Women's Institutes. She is a Trustee of the Pioneer Health Foundation.
Adriana Puech, current MSc student on Masters of Holistic Science, Colombian French
Adriana Puech, current MSc student on Masters of Holistic Science, Colombian FrenchBorn in Bogotá, Colombia in 1980, Adriana is an Environmental Engineering graduate of la Universidad de los Andes and l’Ecole de Mines de Nantes in France. She has worked in olfactory research in Veolia Water, in waste water treatment consulting in GES in France and Spain and in adaptation to climate change at UNICEF for a joint program of the United Nations. Fond of improvisation and the depths of sound, Adriana has been part of various choirs as a soprano soloist and regularly performs in jazz groups and as a singer of soul.
In 2010 she co-founded and continues to co-direct Efecto Mariposa ,a non profit organization that aims to awake new ethics based on the wonders of life through deep ecology and holistic education. Passionate about the interconnectedness of the challenges we face, she is currently completing the MSc in Holistic Science at Schumacher College.
Adriana is a life-long lover of landscapes, music and beauty, with a particular interest in the invisible dynamics that touches, connects and transforms us
Chris Tittle, current MA student on Masters of Economics for Transition, from US
an adventurous traveler with an open heart and brilliant mind, used to work as an educator in Japan, is currently Katmandu in Nepal. Link to his blog... oaktreegarden.wordpress.com/.
Megaia De Beyer, current MSc student on Masters of Holistic Science, South Africa
at the moment busy setting up a transition tow outside Cape Town with Joe Stoedgel and Charles Hutchinson.
Megaia runs parenting workshops Internationally, work with all forms of group facilitation and raise ecological awareness and has written many articles on related topics. She participated in numerous international conferences on psychotherapy and holistic healing and she's also an amazing Yoga teacher. (iafrica.com/article/70573.html)
Juliana Schneider, current MSc student on Masters of Holistic Science from Brazil
Currently a master's support coordinator at Schumacher College, Experienced in communication and sustainability in non profit organizations and the private sector (Co-Director at Universo TXT), specialized in trans-formative development, Eco-Facilitation. Juliana's an amazing person, full of life, joy, creativity and ability to generate a positive atmosphere.
Denise Curi, hold a BA in Chemistry · PhD in Science - Organic Chemistry, from Brazil
Denise used work as a teacher, a coordinator for the project Education for Sustainability; Supervisor in projects for introducing high school students to scientific research and is currently working as volunteer coordinator at Schumacher College. She is person with great passion for life itself in all its forms.