Thinking Allowed on Schooling is crammed with down-to-earth common sense observations and advice, formed from exhaustive research and vast experience of all levels in the education system.

As a Cumbrian colleague, I could be accused of bias in my comments about this book, but Mick Water’s track record speaks volumes.  He started as a primary school classroom teacher and moved on through to headship, a spell as deputy CEO in Birmingham, CEO in Manchester, both cities with plenty of challenging schools, head of QCA and lately as inaugural president of the Curriculum Foundation. His passion as a campaigner for high quality learning experiences for all young people, regardless of their backgrounds, shines through this book.

Mick’s holistic approach takes the reader beyond questioning and evaluation with a pace that demands action while still being enjoyable reading that emphasises the joy of schools and teaching.  To clarify our thinking there are specific chapters on most aspects of education including a detailed review of how we drifted from the era of “Plowden” and the many freedoms to be in charge of learning processes, to our present confines and the dubious strategies we need to employ in order to survive.  It’s no accident that Mick is one of NAEE’s Vice Presidents, for his vision of education is ours too.  The world around us is full of interest and change. We need to seize the opportunities to enjoy and understand it.  Find time somehow to read this book. It will underline why we should hold on to the principle that much of the best learning should be stimulating.

David Fellows

Thinking Allowed On Schooling. Mick Waters; ISBN 978-1-78135-056-0; Independent Thinking Press; Crown House Publishing Ltd; Printed & reprinted 2013. 384pp £11.99 – £14.99. Kindle £8.99

All royalties from sales go to Shelter Box: the international disaster relief charity supporting families made homeless.  There’s a 20% discount to NAEEEUK members for orders placed here using the promotional code Think20.

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