Journal of Educational Change

, Volume 1, Issue 2, pp 135–154

Powerful Learning, Powerful Teaching and Powerful Schools

  • David Hopkins

DOI: 10.1023/A:1010077007233

Cite this article as:
Hopkins, D. Journal of Educational Change (2000) 1: 135. doi:10.1023/A:1010077007233


This paper is a personal reflection on the purpose and scope of school improvement. In explaining why in education the more things change the more they stay the same, I clarify the focus of educational reform as being powerful learning on the part of students, and then demonstrate that this occurs in contexts where content is conceptual rather than particular, where learning is constructive inquiry not passive reception, and where the social climate is expansive instead of restrictive. Such classrooms exist in schools whose organisational conditions and cultures are characterised by high expectations, collaboration and innovation. Finally I argue that equity and high standards require a coherent policy framework that emphasises process as well as substance.

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Hopkins
    • 1
  1. 1.University of NottinghamNottinghamUK

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