Ken said that we need to recognise that where we are with education, learning and schools, the initiatives we are involved in and the people we are... they are all the consequences of the journeys we have been on as individuals over the last however many years. I have been doing this for over 33 years and if we collect together the talent, the wisdom, the experience, the knowledge and understanding and the insight we have across Leeds we can build brilliant learners, brilliant learning places and brilliant learning communities.
Ken highligyhts that we are travelling through difficult and troubled times and that many of us have struggled over the years against a national framework... a potential straight-jacket which has in many ways limited and constrained learning rather than liberating and enabling it. This is an important time, they always are I hear you say. But it is an important time for those of us who are passionate about learning and how we create brilliant learners, briliant learning places and brilliant learning organisations. Ken syas that we simply can't continue to tinker, to fiddle, to refine and to adjust the controls every five minutes... the current systems simply aren't fit for purpose!
Ken's fundamental challenge is that the world is becoming increasingly complex, increasingly diverse and how we connect and communicate in this new conceptual age is critical to our success as individuals, as communities, as a city and as a country. Everything is changing and we had better wake up, stop looking backwards and start looking forwards. Looking forwards to a digital world, a world driven by abundance, automation, technology and global skills. We must understand that intelligence is everywhere... it is rich and diverse, it is dynamic and it is unique to each and everyone of us and not restricted to a priviledged and special few. As Dirk would say everyone is bright and everyone has a talent... it's the educators job to find it and to nurture and grow it.
We have missed the point with our never-ending focus and attention on testing and data and accountability and we must refocus our collective energies on creating a more personal, a more vivid, a more engaging and more stimulating offer for ALL our children, our young people, our families and our communities. If we are going to succeed in this challenge we must develop three things in our children, our families and our communities... creativity, capability and confidence. We must re-imagine our learning places and build.. brilliant leadership, brilliant teaching and intelligent assessment and accountability systems. We must work together to invent pathways to learning, pathways to excellence, pathways to success.