As I listened to the descriptions on how this school plans to create passionate, life long learners through inquiry based learning, as well as through technology, I felt the excitement of a child opening a much wanted Christmas present on Christmas morning.
The Inquiry Hub differs from simply taking online classes. Instead, students will be required to be at school for 'typical' hours yet to be determined and will work both independently and collaboratively with other students within the school hub and around the world, supported by their teachers who will guide them in their personal inquiries. The teachers will assist the students to use technology as a tool for learning through various avenues such as personal learning networks.
For a long time I have felt that our Educational Paradigm is changing. We are continually being told from employers that they are seeking to hire people with 21st century learning skills. When I viewed the new BC Education Plan a few months ago, it discusses how the world is changing and how education needs to keep pace. In a rapidly changing society, educators have the difficult and complex task of preparing students for the future; a world none of us can truly envision. Although excited with the BC Education Plan, I wondered how we would arrive at accomplishing this massive feat. Many educators believe in 21st century education but have wondered how it would look at the school level, as it would certainly require some big changes. My accolades go out to the Inquiry Hub team, because as they work collaboratively with researchers from SFU, the Ministry of Education and others in designing this program, we will undoubtably be able to learn from them.
I thought is was aptly put when a member of the audience referred to Mr Wiffin and Mr. Truss as "pioneers of 21st Century Education in BC". I would agree! 21st Century Education is here and it is exciting!