Who We Are

The Soul of Education Initiative is a global collaboration and network, bringing together educational experts, scholars, policy makers, researchers, innovators and activists from diverse countries and cultures - to share, explore, and redefine the essential core and purpose of education.

At the core of the initiative is an invitation to envision a more holistic and humanistic integrative education paradigm, and to realize the culture, practices and implementations needed to help create a more responsible, connected, sustainable, and ethically based society.

The quest for soul in education can move forward only in communities where educators, parents, and civic leaders are willing to air their deepest differences in a spirit of dialogue and collaboration. Rachel Kessler, 2000

As we all know, the world is becoming more and more overloaded, polarized, and unstable. Education has a crucial role to play in helping create a more mindful, connected, sustainable, and ethical society. Yet current mainstream education does not meet these deeper needs, for our children or our planet.

The field of education is in slow transition, in a search of a deeper and wider model infused with more holistic and humanistic perspectives. Mindfulness in Education, Social Emotional Learning, Positive Education, Gross National Happiness in Education, Contemplative Pedagogies, 21st Century Skills, Holistic Education, and Transformative Education are some examples of efforts to shift the focus of our educational systems and reclaim a more balanced approach to developing our human capacities.

We come to education again and again, looking for its goal, hoping to discover its soul. The way of education is an invitation to investigate the heart of our role as educators, and to discover the soul behind our role. There is no other way.Thakur S Powdyel, Bhutan's former Minister of Education

As our planet faces multiple, complex challenges, the Soul of Education Initiative is dedicated to exploring how we can work together - to redefine, envision and re-design education from the inside out.

We believe in uniting our knowledge, wisdom, and creativity, and envisioning the vital global shifts needed in our schools, universities and educational communities.

We feel strongly that it is our collective responsibility to respond, gather our numerous educational perspectives, and ignite a world-wide inquiry into how to bring more wholeness, wisdom, heart, and human-beingness into all levels of education.

Education has a vital role to play in developing the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values that enable people to contribute to and benefit from an inclusive and sustainable future.

To navigate [in the future] students will need to develop curiosity, imagination, resilience and self-regulation… they will need to cope with failure and rejection and move forward in the face of adversity… they will also need to care about the well-being of their friends and families, their communities and the planet.

Education can equip learners with agency and a sense of purpose, and the competencies they need, to shape their own lives and contribute to the lives of others. [Education should be] committed to helping every learner develop as a whole person, fulfil his or her potential and help shape a shared future built on the well-being of individuals, communities and the planet.

Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Directorate for Education and Skills. (2018). The future of education and skills: Education 2030.

Education in the true sense is helping the individual to be mature and free, to flower greatly in love and goodness.