Why Do Schools All Have To Be The Same?

From what I’ve been hearing lately, this is a bit of a rhetorical question.  A couple of weeks ago, I was lucky enough to sit in on an online conference from ASCD, and heard presentations about neurodiversity and multiple intelligences. There was discussion of building trust in education, of giving educators more say in how their classrooms were run. Examples were cited in which other countries showed greater flexibility in size, format and curriculum.  It was pretty exciting.

It occurred to me that we may already be seeing the beginnings of a shift toward greater diversity in education.  Alternative schools have been around for quite some time, but the movement towards individualized education seems to be picking up speed.  And why not?  We now have greater awareness of diversity than ever before, and the technological means to support and nurture it.  Perhaps now that “bare facts” aren’t such a hot commodity in education, we’re dying to see new and innovative ways of thinking.

Here are just a few examples of emerging non-traditional schools that are presenting both educators and learners with unique opportunities to really think outside the box. I hope to see many, many more.