Bio -Peter Hartkamp

I was faced as a parent with the adverse effects of the education system on my children and have founded a democratic school and two Sudbury schools. To be able to do this I have developed an in depth knowledge of education, Dutch education law and Human Rights, over the past 15 years. I have been active on the Council of EUDEC and have given presentations on education and human rights in different countries. At the request of the Dutch Ministry of Education I co-organised a course on fundamental innovation in Education for senior policy makers. Recently I did a Tedx talk on ‘Do school treat Children as humans at TedxBratislava. Next to education I am active as a strategy consultant to accelerate transitions in Companies, NGO’s and transitions in society at large, such as the Energy Transition and the transition in Education.



Talk Description –
Children are humans too: Human Rights in a Sudbury school

Many children and parents experience problems with school and in politics education is an often recurring subject. The discussions on how education can be improved did not change over the last 100 years. They focus on the details of the educational practice and do not result in the necessary and fundamental change. The underlying assumptions of education are almost never discussed. It will show that the essence of the current education system is based on the needs of the society of 200 years ago. Traditional education is based on a number of Myths, such as: more education is better, teaching is learning, tests lead to better education, and children need guidance. These myths cause great suffering for children and inhibit learning and development. It seems the Rights of the Child stop at the front door of the school.

Realising the rights of the child in our schools is critical to the well-being, learning and development of children. A Sudbury school is a proven alternative which shows how children’s rights can be realised in education. The essence of a Sudbury school is respect for children as full human beings.