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Student Support Systems in Distance Education (Sewart, D. 1993)

The relationship between philosophy and education is that they both consider the concept of thinking and the mind. They are very related but different subjects.  Education is more focused upon the idea of learning whereas philosophy focuses upon how we view the world we live in. The concept of philosophy requires more of a person that is steeped in education and capable of depth of thought e.g. Plato, Socrates, Pythagoras etc. Education focuses more on the acquisition of knowledge by the concept of learning. Education may start at a young age whereas philosophers tend to be elder sages steeped in wisdom and learning.

David Sewart is a Director of the Open University in England. In his report, he illustrates the philosophy of distance education and how this has evolved from the technological advancement of the internet and computer technology.  He contrast this with the traditional concepts of formal education in a classroom setting.  The philosophy of Education has changed the learning process and revolutionised our way for gaining knowledge acquisition and learning.  We are now capable of learning in a virtual environment with the use of advanced computer software and advanced communications technology.

School Leadership Study | Developing Successful Principles (Davis, S. 2005)

Many schools have learnt from past experience, the importance of effective school leadership.  The principles play a pivotal role in charting the future direction of the schools but many of these educational leaders lack adequate knowledge in the theoretical concepts of effective leadership.  Studies at Stanford University have investigated the key components for effective school leadership. The School Boards look towards the Principles as being visionery leaders capable of setting out the strategic planning for the schools and including such items as curriculum development, building the community relations, obtaining the highest quality teaching staff and establishing / monitoring high performance school standards.  In 2005 it was stated that there was a leadership crisis in schools. This report takes a critical examination of this problem and puts forward multiple pathways for sound leadership development practices.

Philosophy of Education (Johnson, J.  2010)

The underlying purpose of obtaining a good education is to establish the foundation for adult development.  Education helps you to grow as an individual person and develops both your character and personality.  The concept, however, has to be taken seriously by the student and involves a passion for learning and self-improvement. Self-actualization can only be achieved by a learning commitment that drives you towards fulfilling your highest potential. Communications and Technology have opened up new pathways for individuals to obtain effective learning and growth.  An educated person is better equipped to take his / her place in society and make a valid contribution in the development of humanity and the social world that we live in.  The opposite path to enlightenment is ignorance that in turn leads towards lack of social acceptance and poverty.  A prime reason for the educational gap between the third and modern world.

Teacher Quality: Equalizing Educational |Opportunities and Outcomes (Sunderman, G. 2010)

The ‘ No Child Left Behind’ policy was instrumental in defining teacher quality and the importance of driving equity in the teaching process for all children.  This meant provisions for dealing with minority groups and excluded child situations.  The Harvard study examined teacher quality over six states and the barriers imposed in the raising of teacher qualities and standards.  The report made a number of key findings including: (i) Teacher quality unevenly distributed across regions (2) Lack of funding and inability to collect and assess data in different states (3) NCLB encouraged teachers to transfer out of schools tagged for improvement.  The comprehensive report put forward a series of recommendation consolidated for coverage across the six identified states.

References

Davis, S. D.-H. (2005). School Leadership Study | Developing successful principles. Stanford CA: Stanford University.

Johnson, J. (2010). Philosophy of Education. Retrieved 8 31, 2011, from Philosophy of Education: http://www.franklincollege.edu/pwp/jjohnson3/philosophyofed2004.pdf

Sewart, D. (1993). Student Support Systems in Distance Education. Open Learning, 8 (3), 3-12.

Sunderman, G. a. (2010). Teacher Quality: Equalizing Educational opportunities and outcomes. Boston MA: Harvard University.

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