|Dr. Roland Meighan (rt)|
We have to point out to people that we are not talking dreamland here. We do have public libraries; they have been going for over 100 years operating on exactly this principle. We just have to adopt those principles to the other places of learning. I do think this means that we have to, eventually, recycle all our schools into better learning places. Places that are learner-friendly, places that invite people to come and learn rather than command them to come and learn.
Now that takes a big shift in thinking, but the idea that we cannot do it is nonsense when you think the public library does it without even blinking. We can do this, but it does mean that we have to abandon some of the ideas that currently operate within the system. [...]I regard schools as day prisons, a really unimaginative and dull and anti-democratic kind of idea. As John Holt put it, school is not a good idea gone wrong, but a bad idea from the start. The best we have achieved so far is a national chain of day prisons in the name of education. Why are we fooled into thinking this is a good idea? Well, as Everett Reimer observed, some true educational experiences are bound to occur in schools, but they occur despite school rather than because of it.