The origin of the world SCHOOL is from the Greek word skhole which was the word used for leisure; spare time, rest. A very different notion to what we would envision for today is set as the expectation of school. So where did the concept of school come from, and how has it changed?
The origin of community was a group of peoples living together supporting the existence of the community itself, both the current generation and the next. As we see in nature itself, an ecosystem of life that depends upon each component before and after it for its own survival. Although we witness this in nature, we have moved away from the concept as humankind; as many (most) build for self. Yet, if nature is our example of the way that things are, is building for oneself in and of itself a path that leads to our ultimate demise?
Learning is a lifelong journey for us to travel together leaving no one behind, leading no one to their demise, with a destination where all will thrive. Not a system, not a method; it’s a path that we take no matter what language we speak, nor what colour our skin, nor where on earth we may find ourselves, to unite in the greater good for all.
As the roles of the our urban community components are changing, so are society’s expectations of school. What was originally naturally available in our communities has been disconnected and isolated, leading to the expectation that schools will provide the holistic environment to cover the learning deficiencies.
The day to day pressures on the family unit have in many cases caused for both parents needing to work, leading to the roles and responsibilities of parents to be placed on others. This has led to children being sent to school earlier.
The cost of urban living has made it difficult for the extended family to remain close and impacted the ability to help support the early years of the young children.
Both time pressures and societal concerns have led to limited interaction with our neighbors. Relationships are harder to establish now a days.
Security concerns have raised the level of fear in letting our children engage and interact with the greater community. As more of community is isolated, experiences of children are being severely reduced.
The urban environment has changed the ability for children to explore nature & play outside.
Media has become the new social learning environment forming new cultures amongst the younger/newer generations. As we move away from written words and fill the space with visual media, we grow our generations in knowledge, but begin to shrink in creativity as our imaginations are full of what we have seen, and not what we can dream.
The business of education becomes the doorway of options and services available for students, however the financial objectives of the organisations dictate the purpose of the institution and ultimately frame the capacity of educational application.
The dilemma of the educational ecosystem is found in the framework of educational policy established by any government. With public expectations that education is a fundamental right, the pressure for the provision of education for all can overshadow the provision of the ecosystem that supports the needed diversity of services.
From the traditional role of the school to guide learning development and to spark critical thinking, the role of the rest of the disappearing community components has been placed upon the institution. As organisations try to meet these expectations, the time available for the original learning needs are becoming diluted.
We envision MindSpace as a community meeting point, where needs are addressed and solutions are formed. The result of identifying a great need in the community is a place where people with diverse needs are welcomed and embraced. This is how CSNE was born. We believe that we all have special talents and needs, that when assembled together form a strong network for growth.
thinking differently... needs different thinking
Changing our mind-set in our approach to different minds. The meeting of minds spanning the spectrum requires creative translation of differences on the road to an inclusive & integrated community.
The MindSpace Education Division is a demonstrative educational model that is taking a bi-directional, proactive approach to inclusive education in which students at CSNE are included into mainstream lessons and activities; but also, one in which students from our mainstream centre and other community volunteers come and participate.
If we focus solely on educating a child without providing support for the child’s family, then our influence will only go so far. If we support a family without reaching out to their neighbors, then we cannot provide a platform to impact an entire community. If we do not engage with enterprise and government, we cannot transform a nation.
Let us unite in the learning of today for the benefit of the nation tomorrow.