Thomas J. Lasley II
Throughout the early 20th century, progressive educationists argued for more child-centered and educationally relevant experiences for young people. Progressive educationists were countering a system of education that was often teacher centered, didactic, and controlled. Schools were organized with teachers at the front of the classroom and the students' desks in rows. There was limited flexibility because in many cases the students' desks were actually nailed or bolted to the floor. Open education emerged in the 1960s as a wide variety of educational critics such as John Holt and Herbert Kohl began to argue for more humanistic goals and classroom structures that would permit more individualization and personalization. Some suggest that the beginning of the open education movement can be traced to 1967 when a parliamentary commission in Great Britain asserted the need for more child-centered educational practices, including open classroom structures. Also working at this time were psychologists such as ...