What I know

I consider myself an informed system leader who understands the complex issues of providing relevant schooling in today’s world for all students.  Over the past few years I have used this blog as a way of expressing my views about learning and teaching and some ideas around a way forward.

A few days ago an idea popped into my head uninvited, which has really intrigued me. I was thinking of my next blog post when I thought “why do I think the way I do about schooling and when did I learn the things I know about 21st century schooling?”  I naturally assumed that I had always known these things but I realised that wasn’t the case.  Everything I know is being updated, challenged, enriched and stretched on a daily basis.  Your expertise changes every day as the connections strengthen.

On Friday evening, I saw the most remarkable and uplifting performance at the Seymour Centre in Sydney by over 30 young secondary students from our Captivate program.

It was an improvised dance performance work-shopped over three years in partnership with the talented Shaun Parker and his team of collaborators who brought to life the very best of what we can expect from young people when they are taught well.

How often are we brought back to earth by such experiences!  We can easily assume that we know everything there is about schooling and just when we think we do, our teachers and students challenge our thinking (again).

The performance on Friday night was Richard Elmore’s instructional core in action – the relationship between student and teacher in the presence of content. It was a powerful learning experience for the student, teacher and the audience. As Elmore says ‘if you can’t see it in the core, it’s not there.’  It’s what I saw and what I know.

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