Next Meetup

“What is secondary education for?” with Sir Anthony Seldon and Melissa Benn
Join us for a discussion with Sir Anthony Seldon and Melissa Benn about the purpose, values and philosophical basis of secondary education and how it needs to be radically rethought for the 21st century. Please note to attend this event you will need to register on our Eventbrite site at in order to ensure a place. Both speakers will challenge the outdated ideological consensus that has dominated our educational thinking for the last three decades. Their presentations will be followed by questions and comments from the audience, and this will provide an opportunity to address issues concerning the breadth and nature of the curriculum, the pressures of assessment and inspections, league tables etc. This is one of a series of events gathering evidence to enable us to formulate a new educational ethos and infrastructure for widespread dissemination. The emergence of the digital age, the growth of artificial intelligence, and the huge social disruption that these entail have had fundamental effects both on our relationship with knowledge and on the world of work. Yet school-based education has hardly acknowledged this disruptive change. Sir Anthony Seldon is a political historian and commentator on British political leadership as well as on education and contemporary Britain. He is Vice-Chancellor of the University of Buckingham, and was previously a transformative head teacher of Wellington College. Melissa Benn is a writer and campaigner. Her journalism has appeared in numerous newspapers and magazines and she is currently a regular contributor to The Guardian and New Statesman. Her books have included School Wars: The Battle for Britain’s Education. This event is free for members of GlobalNet21 and the Conway Hall Ethical Society (CHES). You can book your place on the Eventbrite site, where you can choose either to pay the £5 admission charge or to join GlobalNet21 (£15 pa or £7.50 for those unemployed or on benefits) or CHES (£35 or £25pa unwaged). If you join you will then have access to all our events for the next year free of any further charge.

Brockway Room, Conway Hall

25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL · London

What we're about

Public Group

Recreating Our Futures

GlobalNet21 is a leading forum in the UK for discussing the major issues in the 21st Century. We share a common concern for the sustainability of both our planet and the people on it. With almost 20,000 network members in the UK and abroad, we are making the debate, and democracy, more accessible by enlarging the Public Square and using social networks.

As well as a network of individuals we have also set up a collaborative network of organisations to exchange good practice and transfer knowledge so that we can learn from each other. This network is cross boundary and includes local authorities, housing associations, universities, community groups and social enterprises. Our aim is through dialogue to celebrate diversity and develop community self-resilience and sustainability at a time of unprecedented social and environmental change.

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