Session with Catherine L’Ecuyer at IESE Business School

Have you ever wondered what lies behind the educational methods used in schools?

For example, are you one of those who defend an education based on training in basic skills and blind acceptance of what is transmitted by authority? Do you prefer your child to construct his or her own learning because he or she is a seed that does not need guidance and is therefore autonomous to learn by doing? Do you think that school is a place for the socialisation of its pupils but that there should be no intermediation since learning takes place through cooperative or project work, with the tablet as a tool to find answers? Do you believe in bilingualism and multiple intelligences above the subject/content? Do you choose the school for your children because of the social trends of the moment or do you prefer an education of unilateral direct instruction?

The answers to these questions are not simple; we are not talking about buying skimmed or whole milk, we are talking about a fundamental right. We are deciding for our children the philosophical stream in which they will be educated with its own methods of application. Therefore, finding answers requires reflection and discovering what lies behind these methodologies that may seem traditional or innovative but which lead us to a complex educational eclecticism.

At a meeting organised by Prof. Nuria Chinchilla at IESE, the Education expert Catherine L’Ecuyer presented a brief summary of the two philosophical currents that mark the current educational panorama: the behaviourist-mechanistic and the romantic-idealist based on constructivism. She suggests a third theory, realist-classical, centred on virtues that will allow us to achieve wisdom, in which the pupil undergoes a true transformation as a result of learning in which he or she is a co-protagonist alongside a teacher who is an authority insofar as he or she educates from truth and freedom.

To this end, the quality of teachers must be above all, advocate guided knowledge with prior instruction from the teacher and be based on the reading of the classics, and on a responsible use of technology. Her book ‘Conversaciones con mi maestra’ delves into the different currents explaining their origins and clears up doubts and certainties about education, at a time when the absence of reflection has given free rein to the witticisms of educational gurus who are allowed to play with such a transcendental reality as the school.