Fundació Jaume BofillUniversitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC)

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We are celebrating the 10-year anniversary of Debats d’Educació by giving the educational community the opportunity to air its views

Pilar Ugidos
Pilar Ugidos
Head teacher of the Miquel Bleach School

I am currently the head teacher of the Miquel Bleach school in Barcelona. I am also a trainer in the fields of diversity, behavioural change management, teamwork and communication.

The three things I’ve learned

There is a need for social awareness of the importance of each and every one of us in education
1

From a social perspective, we must begin by accepting that we are all responsible for education.

In human interactions it is impossible not to convey a message. All social acts have an educational element. TV, cinema, the press, websites, networks, virtual games, radio, advertising, architects, politicians, family... Behind every decision and every social act there is an implicit message, which in reality carries an educational message. When it comes to what we say and what we do, boys and girls take the actions as a model and forget the words. They take good note of the underlying and invisible values and principles in the behaviour of the adults they observe, and in their minds they draw on these to build their models of how the world operates. They learn which tools they need to function in this world and what is useful for their survival. 
I have learnt that without this social awareness of the importance each and every one of us has, tomorrow’s school will not be possible.

2

With respect to schools, we need to break with all the educational models of the past. We need to unlearn in order to learn again

1. On the whole, when we teach we reflect the way that we learnt ourselves; we have retained many of the values that were transmitted to us, and furthermore, our training followed specific models of educational utility and efficacy. When thinking about tomorrow’s school, it is worth evaluating the usefulness of all this baggage we carry. We will surely have to open our minds to new vistas, which in many cases we could not have imagined existed or we would ever have the opportunity to see.

2. Expand the idea of leading or managing, identifying it with serving. The basic task of the management team and the teacher in the classroom is to pinpoint the needs, smooth the way so that everyone can focus their efforts on their work and give the best of themselves.

3. Individual work must be replaced by collaborative teamwork. In this context, dialogue becomes the most effective tool in tomorrow’s school. We must enter into dialogue to come to an agreement, to make decisions and to evaluate. I have learnt that we have to learn a lot about communicating with each other and with other players as we set about building tomorrow’s school.

3

In the classroom, listen and recognize that the true guide is not found at the front, but at the back, making sure that no one is left behind.

It is important to realise that the key agents in learning are the pupils themselves, most of whom use what they already know as a base for learning. We need to stimulate their curiosity to prepare their brain for learning, and they will only be able to concentrate on this learning if their basic physical and emotional needs are covered. As teachers, we have the important task of helping and guiding the pupils along the path of learning. We must listen to them, observe them and listen to them once again, in order to understand what they know, what they want and what they need. And by doing this, we can identify the routes on which we need to accompany them and the new paths that need to be opened up.
Tomorrow’s school must be full of joy, creativity and beauty. It must be bathed in light and permanently open. With few walls and plenty of open areas in which to meet, talk and do things together. 

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