Expansive Education: what it is and how it could help UK IT to thrive (24 September 2013)

The current English educational system is dominated by a political obsession with testing and curriculum reorganisation.

Many believe Government and educators have stopped thinking intelligently about what the broader goals of education in the 21st century are and how these can be best be delivered by schools.

This is particularly evident for computing education in schools, which currently seems destined to fail to produce sufficient (any?) sufficiently educated students to become the next generation computer programmers so desperately needed for the UK economy to grow and thrive.

What could be done? Created by Prof. Bill Lucas and Prof. Guy Claxton, the Expansive Education Network – a global coalition of schools, universities, businesses and charitable bodies – aims to solve all education’s current woes.

It is gaining international recognition and their book – Expansive Education: Teaching Learners for the Real World – is to be published in September 2013. Is this the start of something great in education? Or is it perhaps just another experiment? This dinner-debate will give you the chance to find out more and decide for yourself.

At tonight’s dinner-debate Bill Lucas will outline his vision of education illustrating what this currently means in schools and describing some of the work of his international and national pioneering partner organisations. This will be put in the context of current computing and IT education and how an Expansive Education programme could help us grow UK – and, indeed, global – computing, IT and technology talent.

Bill Lucas

Bill Lucas is a Director of the Centre for Real-World Learning at the University of Winchester, chairman of the Talent Foundation and a trustee of the English project. Bill is a serial social entrepreneur having played a significant part in the creation of the Campaign for Learning, Learning through Landscapes, The Talent Foundation and the English Project. While CEO of the Campaign for Learning, Bill created Family Learning Week, Learning at Work Day and set up the first research project exploring learning to learn approaches in schools and colleges.

Bill is a prolific author, including: rEvolution; how to thrive in crazy times (UK Management Book of the Year, 2010: Innovation) and, with Guy Claxton, New Kinds of Smart: how the science of learnable intelligence is changing education.

Bill is much in demand as a speaker and his latest research report – written with Guy Claxton and Ellen Spencer – is How to teach vocational education.