According to Kieran Egan, education is founded on three conflicting principles:
- Societisation: Being educated on the values of your society and being given a ranking.
- Acquisition of Platonic Knowledge: Ironic understanding of the ways the world works, via mathematics, physics and psychology etc…
- Self-Actualisation and Personal Development: The growth of the student as a person and the progress towards their interests.
Any attempt to try and combine any of these principles ends up with them undermining each other.
A potential solution is to try and keep these ideas in seperate institutions. Societisation can be kept in traditional schools. Self-actualisation can be encouraged in hack-centre like groups. However, the platonic acquisition of knowledge is still a difficult problem to solve. Hopefully explorable explanations, as described in Seymourt Papert’s “Mindstorms: Children, Computer’s and Powerful Ideas” would be up to the task.