The government [update: actually it is an unelected group, NB2026, consisting of a variety of people, including several serving and past politicians] is asking how New Brunswick can be the learning province of Canada. Similar questions have been asked before, so I’m just going to amalgamate some of my responses.
Learning at School
Public Education: The problem is not that we don’t teach enough math or science or English. The problem is the structure itself. Until the structure is addressed, I don’t imagine that any fine-tuning of our current system will address the systemic problem that our schools promote childishness and discourage learning. Curriculum is the confinement of the human experience. It is a blunt tool that winds up bullying someone.
There is no shortage of good information on how we can improve public education.
Education’s three conflicting pillars – this shows the fundamental weakness of the system.
Learning in the Workplace
The major shift needs to be toward network thinking and supporting informal learning in the workplace. Each worker needs to take control of his or her own learning (e.g. personal knowledge management) and be given the opportunities and support to do so. My response to CCL’s question:
The overwhelming majority of the learning needs of Canadian adults are not addressed by formal training and education. In this post-industrial era, adults today require self-directed learning skills to thrive in the unstructured work environments outside of school. Efforts should be focused on the development of practical tools and strategies for adults to learn in a networked information society.
Learning in the Community