Head of Global Education at Shell – Henk Van Hout
Henk Van Hout has been at the forefront of Global Education for over 20 years, instrumental in the development of the IPC curriculum in the 1980’s Henk has driven Shell’s education programme across multiple jurisdictions.
As one of the pioneers of a globally recognised curriculum Henk has a wealth of experience to share with us about the future of education and where he sees it heading. It’s clear he is pushing boundaries and his manifesto for the future of education is a wonderful example of that drive to improve education.
The COVID-19 crisis has created opportunities for radical changes in the ways we organise our lives. To improve education worldwide and build resilience into our schools and education systems, to lower the carbon footprint and to reinforce the learning triangle between students, parents and schools, we invite schools and colleges to take the following actions:
- Reduce the time students spend in school by delivering lesson content through remote, personalised learning programmes with online tutoring, monitoring and support;
- Maintain high teacher visibility, remotely and face-to-face, for all learners and take account of the greater need for face-to-face contact that younger children and students with exceptional needs may have;
- Enthuse and motivate disengaged students with individualised blended learning programmes, peer coaching and mentoring;
- Recognise that remote learning programmes will release many students from their inhibitions and the pressure to conform and thereby allow them to become more creative and freer in their learning;
- Think of and organise schools as vibrant and stimulating learning experience centres whose key purpose is to provide students with rich opportunities to enjoy collaborative learning and teamwork;
- Re-structure the curriculum so that on the days students attend school, they engage actively and reflectively, developing key skills and understanding, in practical, social and emotional learning, for example through project-based, inter-disciplinary approaches;
- Listen more carefully to all students, encourage them to become solution-finders and develop holistic approaches to the measurement and celebration of their learning;
- Engage with all stakeholders in and around the school community and strengthen the home-school partnership by enabling parents, with training if necessary, to help their children and give them support, direction and encouragement in all their learning;
- Build stronger learning connections with the wider world through community service programmes, workplace learning, webinars with learners from other countries and real time virtual visits to major cultural and scientific centres;
- Create innovation networks of students and adults from the wider community to share and develop new ideas about learning and new approaches to the environmental, social and economic challenges we face;
- Take bold measures to ensure that the school’s carbon footprint, including that of all travel to and from school, is reduced as closely as possible to zero;
- Use school buildings that have become surplus to these new requirements for carbon-reducing initiatives and community projects.
Manifesto compiled by an International Think Tank of Educators, led by Henk van Hout and Paul Andrews. We warmly welcome comments and discussion arising out of these proposed Actions.