Australian pupils will step through the doors of a new type of school next week, a school that doesn’t have classrooms, exams or levels.

Lindfield Learning Village located in Sydney’s North Shore is the first of it’s kind in Australia and this year the new facility, which cost the NSW Government $40million to build, is offering places to kids from kindergarten age through to Year 10, shared Daily Mail.

The ‘school of the future’ teaches children through project-based activities and aims to give them the skills to solve ‘real world problems’.

This means instead of learning subjects in a single fashion, a child will learn in a collaborative way about multiple disciplines.

There will be teachers, but children will be also be mentored by others who are older than them as well as learn from mixed aged peers.

There aren’t assessments either – at least not in a formal sense.

Principal Stephanie McConnell told the ABC pupils will be evaluated ‘but perhaps not in the way we understand assessment in a traditional environment’.

‘A student might choose a particular point in time when they feel they can demonstrate the learning required to meet a particular learning outcome.’

There is no classrooms with teaching instead being done around ‘waterholes’ which are spaces dedicated to big groups, ‘campfires’ – spaces for small groups working with a teacher and ‘caves’ – spaces for children who want to work on their own.

Not everyone loves the concept though

Many people weren’t convinced this type of educational system was a solution to current learning problems.

One woman wrote: ‘I sort of cringed while watching this. I think giving kids real life problem solving skills is great but there’s so many aspects of this model that are unrealistic.

‘Wouldn’t this model be better if it was paired with traditional learning, particularly English and maths so they actually have the foundational knowledge to be able to solve the problems?’

Another questioned the school’s model of progressing children by ability rather than by age and assessment.

‘The problem with these educational fads is that they think they have to abandon everything that is ‘old’ when in reality the answer is somewhere in the middle.’

Another said, ‘I taught in a school with a similar approach/philosophy. It was beneficial for some students, but for many, it failed the students, which is why I had to leave after 2 years.

‘Let’s hope this new school has done their research. I hope it works well and is a great success because our current education system needs an overhaul.’

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  • Wow I don’t think this is such a great idea I wouldn’t be putting my children in a school like this each to there own but if it suits your children that’s great just not for me

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  • I know a girl who went to a school similar but with classrooms and year numbers. She was way behind what other schools were teaching as far as things such addition and subtraction were concerned. The alphabet instead being proper basic writing looked similar to a object that started with that letter. e.g S had like and head and tail on it like a snake does. During High School she swapped to a public school. She was so far behind that she got bored and dropped out of school. I don’t know how long it took her to get a job. She is now a hairdresser.

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  • I don’t see it developing students into young adults who would be able to cope in the world. You do need basic reading, writing and maths skills and if these have been ignored through teaching then you are disadvantaging the children later in life. IT says to help children learn “real world problems” but it does not say what they are… most “world problems” are to do with money, religion and politics. I am also not convinced at why stop at year 10 – does that mean they then have to adjust to mainstream. i don’t feel this has been properly thought though long term.
    However I do believe that this type of school could be extremely helpful for a few individuals who cannot cope in the main stream and perhaps have sever learning difficulties and the emphasis is taken off classroom style learning. And I also think this would be good for the early years kindy, pre school or as a holiday camp but not as the only means of educating a child. I am interested to see what the outcomes are and if they change their teaching and style over the years.

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  • Interesting but what happens when they finish year 10? Do they get put into conventional schooling and have trouble adjusting to HSC/VCE? What happens when it comes to university? I like the idea but I am not sure about the reality

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  • It is very different to our sculptured system!

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  • This is interesting, let’s see what the results are like in a few years.

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  • Not to sure this is a good idea. After all we all need English and Maths for day to day living.

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  • Would love to think the students will still learn English grammar, how to spell, and basic mathematics – strangely after 70 years I still use these from my school years. I changed work models quite a few times, but I still need to know how much I have spent before I arrive at the check out [mental arithmetic] and how to write a grammatically correct letter to my friends, not all of whom use a computer.

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  • Would need more info before I could make an opinion on it

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  • They could have a few problems organising this. Not sure how it will go.

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  • Yeah, but they do need some very specific skills to obtain qualifications.

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  • Different study ways suit different children. We do not all learn the same. Lucky for me I work from home so can help out any of my children who have trouble at school. I think this type of school would be idea for my youngest son as he can not cope with what normal schools are like. Home schooling him does have its fun bits but prefer him to attend school with his twin sister.

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  • I feel that this type of education would be beneficial if coupled with traditional schooling. Giving a mix of formal education and life skills


    • I agree with you! Benefits from both so put them together and it sounds great

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  • Interesting educational concept, would be interesting to see the children’s progress after this schooling

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  • Interesting but does no assessments exclude them from going on for further study or is that why they don’t offer year 11 and 12.

    Reply

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