By Suzanne Perkowsky, Neil O’Toole, and Bradley M Kremer
The world of education is currently awash with well-intentioned solutions to transform education: technology is being thrown at every problem, and a wide range of experimental models have been implemented without sufficient supporting research. Nevertheless, has the education world truly diagnosed its biggest problem yet? This scattershot approach addresses many of the symptoms but neglects the common root cause.
Plato once stated,
“The cure of many diseases is unknown to physicians, because they are ignorant of the whole. For, the part can never be well, unless the whole is well”
We have known before and since Plato’s time that the human body is an interconnected system and yet, more often than not, we treat its component parts separately.
In some cases, we address the symptoms, while neglecting the root cause. We at New Nordic School believe that fragmentation is education’s biggest problem: fragmentation in curriculum, fragmentation in professional development, fragmentation in quality assurance and above all, fragmentation in implementation.
Existing curricula bear such titles as ‘systems, programs, and syllabi’. These curricula are by definition system-centered, not student-centered. They’re static, not dynamic and flexible. They emphasize what is already known instead of how to learn something unknown. They focus on the external, not the internal, causing a disconnect between learners and learning. As a result, students’ fundamental question of ‘Why am I learning this?’ only ever has a short-term answer. Existing curricula don’t prepare children for their future.
The Nordic Baccalaureate overcomes this disconnect by providing a seamless educational journey from early years through high school. The Nordic Baccalaureate leverages 7 Key Competencies from the Finnish National Core Curriculum, through which all planning, teaching, and learning are integrated. We believe that by focusing on students’ mindsets as well as skills which transcend traditional subject areas, we have unlocked the integration enigma that has stumped educators for centuries.
Oscar Wilde once said,
“The play was a success, but the audience was a disaster”
So often in the past, new curriculum initiatives have sailed forth with great content, but without the tools to implement it, their delivery has fallen flat. Our 4 values permeate everything we do: our journey of learning, our professional development and our quality assurance mechanism. These 4 values are; Be Bold, Innovate, Collaborate & Empower.
We know there will be those who say that our mission of transforming education is impossible. We say that it is necessary.
Join us on our journey of integration. Join us in the evolution of education.
Join us in shaping the future,
Suzanne Perkowsky, Neil O’Toole, and Bradley M Kremer
New Nordic School