Engineering the Future School


The responsibility for improving learning opportunities lies in the hands of all educators, teachers and school leaders together. With input from the plethora of opportunities from social networking the information shared delves deep into the world of online learning as a key vehicle for engaging students in their learning.

The integration of information communications technology into the learning environment was seen as the most significant element in raising student engagement with their learning. With a myriad of digitally based applications incorporating social networking, online projects, linking with other schools and even connecting with experts in other online environments students have the opportunity to be active learners.

Implications for school leaders centres on the redesigning of the 20th century classroom environment to accommodate this rapidly developing 21st century learning environment. Discussion on how students learn, the ways teachers work with students and the relationships with the physical environment is urgently needed.

Developing curricular directions for learning will be one of the major stumbling blocks for educators as they wrestle between system/government accountability and the skills needed to be citizens in 21st century. The narrowing (or providing a prescriptive curriculum) of student learning though naive accountability measures will inhibit learning rather than enhance it.

The growing online learning organisations such as Coursea and MOOCs are leading the discussion through the development of online interactive learning programs and how schools can be supported in re-aligning learning experiences.

Such discussions will no doubt lead to some common assumptions. One major assumption is that all children can learn. The second is that the learning is not always at the same time; the same way or even at the same place. How we address these assumptions is the question.