Introduction

 

Human-Centred Education (HCE) respects the whole human beings in all educative processes. HCE radically rethinks the aims of education, the nature of learning and the relationships between students, teachers, school administrators, parents and other stakeholders in the learning community.

Human-Centred Education intends to build a bridge between, on the one hand, the ever-changing principles and policies of state secondary education in England and beyond, and on the other, the myriad forms of alternative or progressive education. HCE is not a simple synthesis of both traditions, instead, we have been both critical and appreciative with regard to different forms of education, whilst recognising that romanticism and cynicism are equal failures to wed vision with reality.

In working on the values and concerns that ideally ought to motivate a secondary educational system, we found that the phrase ‘human-centred education’ captured the essential meanings at the core of our thoughts, and distilled the innovative practices that we had observed. However, in adopting the phrase of ‘human-centred’ is by no means to suggest homocentricity. It is therefore important for us to clarify that human-centred education focuses on cultivating those qualities that can be described as human, such as interest, curiosity, care, responsibility, persistence and so forth.

National education policies tend to ignore deeper educational processes, such as the cultivation of qualities that are central to living meaningfully and well, because they solely focus on high-stakes testing of academic performance. In this way, HCE provides an effective antidote to an obsession with testing, and brings to the fore a holistic well-being oriented approach without sacrificing educational standards and school’s interests in academic excellence. In fact, as our current pilot case study shows, the more a school adopts a human-centred approach to teaching and learning, the more the students can aspire to unfold their holistic potential.

For more information on how to integrate Human-Centred Education in your schools or learning centres, please contact us.

For more on Human-Centred Education, please see the books on Human-Centred Education.