Twenty-one years ago I co-founded the Institute for Humane Education (IHE) with three goals:
- to train people to bring the interconnected issues of environmental preservation, human rights, and animal protection to people of all ages;
- to spread humane education far and wide;
- to provide humane education directly to young people.
For many years, IHE focused on the first two goals, developing the first graduate and certificate programs in humane education in the U.S.; offering workshops and online courses; creating what has become an award-winning online resource center; and writing and speaking about the importance of educating a generation of solutionaries.
Two years ago we were ready to focus on the third goal and develop a program that serves students directly: our Solutionary Program.
We are now entering the third year of a three-year pilot, partnering with teachers to bring the pressing issues of our time into their classrooms, and to develop students’ compassion and essential thinking skills, along with their academic skills, so that they can work to directly solve these problems in ways that do the most good and least harm to people, animals, and the earth. Students are connecting their learning to the real world and solving problems of concern to them.
We have received resoundingly positive feedback from both students and teachers: “We need this in our school,” said Fartun, a 7th grader in our 2017 pilot. “I’ll remember what I learned from this program. I forget what I learned from other projects as soon as we move on,” shared another.
What could be more important in today’s world?
The Solutionary Program is a win for students, a win for schools and teachers, and a win for their communities and for societies that need their good ideas put into practice.
It’s also a win for all life.
Now is a great time to support our Solutionary Program! We have launched a crowdfunding campaign, and we welcome your help to grow and spread the program.