Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsTuisk, M
JournalProblems of Education in the 21st Century
Start Page217-225
Date PublishedMay/2008
Type of ArticleOriginal article
Other NumbersICID: 860168
Keywordsindependent thinking, school environment

The interest of Estonian society has been focused on Estonian education with its various contradictory messages. On the one hand, the PISA study indicated that we can be proud of the results of the cooperation between our teachers and students. On the other hand, however, we must admit that our drop-out rates are high and the students’ health is deteriorating. Has the price for success been too high?
At the time when the entire world has come to an understanding of the importance of life-long learning and the necessity to develop as a self-guiding subject, an unacceptable proportion of Estonian students have negative attitude towards school and studying, or are either exhausted or overworked due to their positive attitude towards studying. Studies claim the same about teachers.
The general context of this article is the contradiction between the needs of a dynamically developing society and an old-fashioned and comparatively authoritative school environment.
This paper focuses on how to encourage the students’ and teachers’ independent thinking and subjective choices in order to create the best possible environment for development at school.
The study is based on 48 narrative essays. The processing of data was based on the grounded theory methodology. The author has interpreted the outcomes relying on the works of P. Sartre, V. Fränkl, V. Peavy, R. Fischer and M. Fullan.
The most significant conclusion is that innovative teachers value their own, as well as the students’ independent thinking, which is the most promising strategy in the circumstances of fast changes and strenuous explorations.

Refereed DesignationRefereed
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