Why School? A visioning workshop about the future of education
The Swedish LiFT workshop took place about a month before the Swedish national elections. Election advertising was therefore omnipresent in the capital. One of the most debated topics in the Swedish election campaign was the subject of education and schooling. However, our partners of the Initiative for co-development (Initiativ Samutvekling) felt that the political and societal debate was somewhat superficial while basic questions regarding the meaning and purpose of good education, not to mention more fundamental visions, were widely absent. We therefore chose “Why School?” as LiFT’s workshop topic.
Unlike in Trondheim, for the Stockholm workshop a facilitation team consisting of Jonathan Reams (NTNU Trondheim), Christiane Seuhs-Schoeller (Center for Integral leadership, Vienna) and Anne Caspari (Mindshift integral, Basel) had done some fine-tuning on the Collaboratory, offering variations and enrichments to the format by numerous specific methodological stimuli.
Among the stakeholders, participants and invited experts of this workshop were teachers, parents, students, politicians and business people (as future employers). Building on this variety of perspectives, the issue was addressed in an integrative way, with facilitation helping to move from a debating mode to deep dialog.
Particularly impressive was the exchange between the CEO of a big Swedish company and a school dropout. While the latter turned out to be a highly intelligent, motivated and socially committed “high potential” who was looking for a meaningful place to invest his energy, the former was in search of genuine personalities and praised the dropout’s out-of-the-box thinking.
The feedbacks we received from participants were predominantly enthusiastic. For examples see here.