Australian Classical Education Society Inc.
The Australian Classical Education Society Inc. is an association for students, parents, educators, politicians, experts and like-minded individuals who wish to see classical education introduced within the Australian educational landscape.
It seems abundantly clear that progressive education over the past century has aimed, and continues to aim, towards moulding young people into useful servants of industry. Intensive interest in developing job-ready skills through the completion of certain tasks and the belief that memorising content alone is the epitome of knowledge, is fast becoming the sole focus of many progressive schools today. However, this framework takes as its cue the pragmatic exigencies of industry and thus creates a chasm between the sciences and the humanities; furthermore, it is a one-dimensional utilitarian approach to education that directs itself to what is useful as opposed to what is true, good and beautiful. The Australian Classical Education Society believes that this progressive model diminishes the value of education and cannot be sustained if young people are to flourish as human beings.
Instead, the Australian Classical Education Society affirms that education must communicate to the spiritual, intellectual, moral and physical dimensions of all people. Therefore, we seek to encourage the implementation of a classical education that nurtures the future citizens of Australia to be individuals of faith, wisdom and virtue, whose souls are nourished by truth, goodness and beauty. We aim to achieve this through an integrated and holistic approach to education, where the study of art, music, literature, language, history, mathematics, science, philosophy and religion, prepare our children to think both rationally and creatively, to appreciate and develop faith in transcendent realities, to contribute positively to society, and to promote a culture that values and celebrates life.
Moreover, we are unashamed of the wellspring of classical education, namely, the richness of the Western tradition. It is sorely needed in the 21st century classroom, whose focus on job-ready outcomes has failed to inculcate in young people the requisite virtues and wisdom to live a fulfilled human life. We therefore advocate the use of the great literary works of the Western tradition in the classroom and make no apologies for exposing students to both the valuable and venerable of this tradition.
With this in mind, our vision is to implement a classical and liberal arts curriculum in primary, secondary and tertiary settings in Australia by achieving the following goals:
- To establish classical education schools and homeschooling throughout Australia;
- To develop resources and professional development opportunities to assist in delivering classical educational curricula; and
- To inform educational discourse and promote public dialogue regarding classical education.
Thus, in addition to promoting classical education among relevant stakeholders, we seek to assist in the foundation of liberal arts academies in existing schools, the transition of current progressive schools towards a classical model, and establishing new schools dedicated solely to classical education. With this in mind, we are committed to offering workshops, professional development days and in-services to all stakeholders and other interested parties. We recognise the importance and need to have full-time professionals of the liberal arts and will also work towards this end.
We will strive to seek financial support from businesses, organisations and individuals who are also committed to the principles of the Australian Classical Education Society. Furthermore, we desire to work towards establishing an institute for the classical and liberal arts so as to support and serve schools that adopt a classical and liberal arts model of education.
The creation and effective functioning of classical schools is imperative to the renewal of education in Australia and in building a culture that is virtuous, reasonable and wise.