I became obsessed with devising an effective education system that was fair and respectful and one that worked better than that vicious sausage machine.
I wanted enlightened education.
I was sure that most parents did not really want their children to go to institutions that terrorised them and trampled their spirits into blind compliance. They wanted their children to be liberated, inspired, loved, filled with self-esteem, and raised to their potential.
They did not want a factory that churned out exam results but reduced their children’s personalities to mindless automatons.
I was also sure that (particularly the parents of students who would not get into selective grammar school system) they would not want a system that wrote off ninety percent of kids so that the esteemed ten percent could prosper.
I believe elitism creates resentment and failure.
I believe it could be done in a different way. My vision is of a comprehensive system with mixed ability teaching that promotes equality and breeds success.
A teacher could run a classroom with authority and respect without having to become a bully.
We could provide a loving, caring, respectful environment based around awe-inspiring lessons and creativity in which the whole child could develop into a beautiful adult.
Human beings have a history of cruelty, viciousness and destruction.
The world we have created is fuelled by aggression, violence, selfishness and greed. It is a world of exploitation, war and power largely dominated by psychologically damaged males.
It is my belief that the bullying environment we bring our children up in contributes to this.
If human beings, if nature, has a future we have to become civilised; we have to learn to live together in harmony and peace; we have to look at the bigger picture and put things right on the small stage. Schools are instrumental in changing the world. Without an education system based on love, compassion, empathy, tolerance and the development of the whole child I really believe we have no future on this planet. In thirty years time 7 billion of us will become 14 billion, nature will be consumed and we will then destroy each other with our own hatred as we compete for ever dwindling resources.
There is an alternative.
Enlightened education is the only answer.
The basis behind everything is philosophy. You have to start there. You sort out your philosophy and everything else evolves from that.
The philosophies I applied in my career were simple and basic. They stemmed from my upbringing, my beliefs and my experience. Above all my experiences in the world of education have added spice to my views. They are the same values I bring to all of my life: I did not need any religious moral code to arrive at it. It is pure common sense:
Everything should be fair
All people are equally valuable
Living things should be respected
Everything can be made better
Education should be fun and expanding
In the UK:
In the USA: