That the school system, as it has developed into its present form, is far from being ideal has been observed widely. The fact that it constantly undergoes reforms is a clear indicator that even on a political level there exists awareness of this issue. However, so the claim of the author, none of the reforms is far stretching enough and that fundamental changes only might bring about a more acceptable solution.
This paper addresses three issues in the context of a school reformation proposal. These issues are a) school management b) teaching staff c) competition versus team work.
It is a known fact that a business director does not necessarily have to understand the nature of the business nor production procedures and marketing if (s)he can relay on the advice by consultants who do understand these aspects. In this case, the director becomes more of a coordinator. However, ideally, the director does understand the business (s)he is running. At the present time, directors and trustees of school do not necessarily have to have an understanding of school procedures, teaching and developmental psychology. Additionally, directors of schools generally do not have consultants and hence much of school management is unprofessional bordering at times onto the unethical. The paper proposes to introduce a regulation of school management.
Teaching staff in the main is recruited from universities and colleges. It can be assumed with great reliability that the majority of teachers have never been part of the work force nor gathered experiences outside a closed environment which too often is regulated via bullying. Additionally, the majority have no or little understanding of developmental and cognitive psychology and in case of special needs knowledge about abnormal psychology. The paper proposes that teachers should be recruited from various industries given some training in psychology and classroom teaching. Particularly, primary schools need to be furnished with the best teachers available.
Our school system is based upon competition. This does reflect somewhat the structures of our markets at first glance. However, at closer scrutiny it becomes clear that this is not the case. Competition as found in our markets is based upon competing teams not competing individuals. The question what exactly one person did within a team is irrelevant and only the overall performance is relevant. Thus, our school system fosters bullying and aggressive individual competition instead of proactive team work. The paper proposes that the school system ought to be reformed in such a fashion that children are grouped into teams with increasing team members and team tasks. Children according to their abilities ought to be given tasks within the team and should they experience difficulties ought to receive support.
Further, the prevailing teaching style is old fashioned and out of date. In simple terms, the prevailing teaching style may be described in the following fashion: The teacher presents the student with a set of tasks which the student has to complete. The more conformist the student follows the teacher's instructions the more (s)he will be rewarded. The more non-conformist a student is the less will (s)he be rewarded with the ultimate threat (punishment) of exclusion. It does not matter whether the behavior of the student is non-conformist in form of creative and critical thinking or unwillingness to co-operate, both activities are punishable. A modern teaching style in contrast sees the student as a service user and the teacher as a facilitator. The learn tasks and objectives will have to be agreed upon by teachers, students and parents (care takers). Individual learn plans (ILP) need to become the norm. Each lesson ought to open with a short reflection on the previous lesson and concluded with an evaluation and target setting for the next lesson. Each evaluation needs to address errors as performed by the teacher who is in need of constant professional development.