Who Am I?

014 smallMy name is Jason.  One of my pet peeves is the tendency of some people to define a person’s worth based on what they do, rather than respect their individual sovereignty.  My interests have always been of the intellectual pursuits, in the arts and the sciences equally.  I have studied philosophy, languages, biology, history and psychology in particular depth, but always enjoy being enriched by the knowledge and experiences of other people.  What I think is most particularly important is that I am a publicly-funded school survivor.

A few years ago I found myself in a terrifying situation of being forced to change careers. Not wanting to depend on state welfare I decided to take whatever job I could get. I found a job helping children with learning disabilities, which, although terrifying at the time, proved to be extremely challenging and rewarding. Later I found myself working in a primary school and often visiting other schools. Finding myself increasingly concerned with the nature and quality of state funded/managed education programs, I decided to do some research into this and found that people had been talking about the same issues that I had noticed for over one hundred years.

For over one hundred years.

People haven observed how quickly change and innovation happens in the consumer electronics industry, whereas some industries never seem to make any progress. Education is one of those industries that never seems to grow or change. It is philosophically and professionally stagnant with practices and myths about education still being taught as though they were fact decades after they were discredited. However, my research uncovered that instead of getting better, the education systems of Western countries were getting progressively worse.

Years ago, I met someone who changed my viewpoint on many topics, unfortunately she can not be part of Four Birds Education. However, thanks to her I have discovered just how deep the rabbit’s hole actually goes: people everywhere struggle with feelings of worthlessness and secret shame. The source of this epidemic of low self-esteem seems to be from the state run education system which was historically based on the military schools designed to make people feel so worthless and personally insignificant that they would willingly obey orders they knew would result in their physical harm and even death. They would obey these orders not because they wanted to protect their families or their country, but because they wanted the approval and praise of their commanders.

After much soul-searching I have resolved that this system needs to be challenged. The education sector needs to be revolutionised much like the computer industry moves through innovation after innovation. We need to open the education market up and start taking control of how and what our children learn so that they not live their lives thinking their worth depends on how much tax they can pay, how much of their life they can devote to their employer, how much they can sacrifice for others while they themselves starve for any stable feeling of worthfulness.  Yes, I just invented that word “worthfulness”, which is another pet peeve of mine: the idea that language is dead and us ordinary folk can not add to it with our own inventiveness.

Four Birds Education is the embodiment of my personal ambition to make the nurturing, education and raising of children a legitimate field of study and a cultural tradition controlled directly by the people and not influenced by the interests of power hungry political elites. I try to keep my politics out of my work as much as possible, but my politics is essentially making sure that political interests are kept as far out of education as possible. Parents are the final authority on what education their children need, not the state.  Children certainly need to learn all about politics, but they need to learn how to understand it, not be force fed political ideologies so they will obediently vote for bigger and more powerful governments who take away more of their income, freedoms and pleasures in life.

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