To shape the future one must be prepared for “Lifelong Learning”

It’s not only about changing the schools. It’s about changing life. Accompanying children requires a willingness to change oneself. Schools can develop if the people in and around them are actively engaged in their own development and self-reflection. The schools of the future will continually develop on the basis of cooperation with each other and in response to new scientific insights.

In the daily work with the children we are constantly challenged to question and develop the existing structures and concepts of the school and its environment. Children’s peculiar behaviour is an expression of their psycho-spiritual state and reflects back dissonance in their living and school environments. They challenge the adults to look closely, to identify blockages and unhelpful patterns and to continue developing themselves. This development work is an important part of the Escola da Esperança.

We aim to be in a good partnership with all parents to generate a coherent underlying vibration for the school. We want them to be strongly involved in the process of school development. The ongoing training of the entire teaching staff is also a very important factor for the progression of our school.

“The world needs new ways of teaching and learning, with not only the treasures of the past being guarded and conveyed over and over again. Rather, it’s about asking how we can fulfil our commitment today to encourage young people in the growth of their own personality (…) in regard to tomorrow’s society.”  (Margret Rasfeld; principal of the school community ESBZ in Berlin)

A school can only be sustainable and enduring if it constantly renews itself as life does. We live in a time of rapid development in which the jobs of the future will make fundamentally different requirements on today’s young people. The capacity for lifelong learning is being correctly identified by the ‘European Education Programme (LLP)’ as a basic social skill.

The life of the society is evolving towards ever stronger networks and greater complexity. The Escola da Esperança is the first international school in Alentejo and will cooperate with the other schools in Portugal and the Alentejo region. We are particularly interested in close collaboration with the Escola Basica in Colos, our neighboring school. We are also in dialogue with international reform schools and pedagogical experts to transform schools into ‘future workshops’ worldwide.