Dear Parents and Students
Do schools kill creativity?
Two weeks ago, I attended Nord Anglia’s annual Senior Leadership Retreat where we discussed the family of schools’ values and the future direction of education. The importance of promoting creativity in schools was central to many conversations that took place. The keynote speaker at our conference was Lord David Puttnam. He is an Academy Award winning filmmaker who has produced films such as Chariots of Fire, The Mission, The Killing Fields, Midnight Express, to name a few. In addition to his work in Hollywood, he has a well-established track record in education. Lord Puttnam was the President of the UK chapter of UNICEF. He founded the National Teaching Awards in the UK (aka the Oscars for teachers). Amongst his many accomplishments in education, he was Chancellor of the Open University. He has worked with Sir Ken Robinson, who did one of the most interesting TED Talks that I have ever watched, which takes a critical look at the impact schools have on creativity. If you have not watched it, I strongly encourage you to watch this video.
Following his speech, our CEO, Mr Andrew Fitzmaurice, announced that Nord Anglia Education is creating an Education Board and that Lord Puttnam will be its inaugural Chairman. This is very exciting news for our organisation, as he is very informed and influential with regards to the future of education. This development is particularly well aligned with our partnership with The Juilliard School. As you will read below, we had Jessica Meyer from Juilliard visit us last week. I would like to thank the parents who attended the Parent Workshop she led, as well as the students who worked with her throughout the two-day visit. Jessica was extremely enthusiastic about continuing to work with us and we anxiously await her second visit in the new year. A special note of gratitude to our Head of The Arts, Ms Laura Opperman, who coordinated the visit and left a very positive impression of the work that we are undertaking within the department.