Journal of Basic Education

Concepts of Primary Education — Principles into Practice

1993.第3卷第2期(Vol. 3 No. 2).pp. 1–13

Concepts of Primary Education — Principles into Practice




This paper is a slightly expanded version of the keynote speech given at the conference on 'Facing Up to Challenges in Primary Education', held at the Chinese University of Hong Kong Faculty of Education on April 8, 1993. In response to Education Commission Report No. 5, it seeks to identify some of the important decisions which need to be made in relation to planning the development of the Primary sector of schooling. It argues that a democratic society demands a system of education which goes beyond the provision of vocational training and even the transmission of culture and seeks to support the full personal development and thus the empowerment of all its citizens; and that the planning of such a system, if it is to be effective, requires a sound theoretical base of a kind which can only be provided through the expertise of professional educators. It then seeks to demonstrate that recent developments in our understanding of children's thinking, especially in the early years, reinforces the case for the provision of a development curriculum in the Primary school and necessitates a complete reconceptualisation of education at that stage. Finally, it identifies the implications of this concept of Primary education for the preparation of teachers and for the notion of the graduate Primary teacher.