Science is defined as “the intellectual and practical activity that encompasses the systematic study of the structure and behaviour of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment”. Science relies on the accumulation of previously acquired knowledge. Scientists collaborate and learn from one another. They observe, test and experiment so that new knowledge can be obtained.
Now contrast that with Education. When it comes to Education, dogma trumps evidence and strongly held beliefs win over testing, experimentation and innovation. Whereas in Science they tinker, tweak and fix, in Education we prefer to say “if ain’t broke, don’t fix it”.
As a result, it is very sad to think that whilst Science is taking us on a marvellous and unceasing voyage of knowledge and discovery, Education remains stuck somewhere in the 1940s.
In my view, Education needs to take a leaf from Science’s book: we need to encourage research and experimentation so evidence can be obtained on which to base our practice. There really ought to be no room for dogma or belief, however strongly held. We can do better than this. We have to do better than this.