All schools should prepare young people for the 21st Century, not to pass examinations. The movement Most Likely to Succeed, based upon the work of thought leaders such as Sir Ken Robinson and championed by educationalists and academics alike, contends that our educational system is built upon pre-industrial ideology – classrooms, subjects, bells and exams – reflecting very little of “real-world” learning. Sycol helps schools establish the culture, systems and practices necessary to promote key features and conditions that we know are necessary to achieve best learning outcomes in the modern, digital era:

A) a 21st century vision, curriculum and pedagogy that is not predicated upon pre-industrial revolution structures and limiting parameters
B) a leadership culture that values, creativity, high-performance and trust
C) a project-based learning and environments to match


Here are some good examples of such schools, ones that are also regarded as the 13 most innovative schools in the world according to TechInsider (in no particular order):


Makoko Floating School. Lagos, Nigeria. The school that floats.

Ørestad Gymnasium. Copenhagen, Denmark. The school in a cube.


Big Picture Learning. Providence, Rhode Island. The school in the real world.

Egalia Pre-school. Stockholm, Sweden. The school without gender.

AltSchool. San FranciscoCalifornia. The school of Silicon Valley.

Sra Pou Vocational School. Sra Pou village, Cambodia. The school for building community.

P-TECH High School. Brooklyn, New York. The school that bridges high school and college.

Steve Jobs School. Amsterdam, The Netherlands. The school that thinks different.

Brightworks School. San Francisco, California. The school that teaches dangerously.

Carpe Diem Schools. Aiken, Ohio. The school built like an office.

Innova Schools. Peru. The school built by world-class designers.

Blue School. New York, New York. The school fusing compassion and creativity.

Samaschool. San Francisco, California. The school that says it’s not too late.



We’d like to add the following four, innovative schools to the list for catching our eye and, demonstrating exceptional cultural courage with associated outcomes:


Summit Schools. California and Washington. Public schools backed by Bill Gates.

Khan Lab School. San Francisco, California. The first ‘bricks and mortar’ manifestation of the Khan Academy.

High Tech High. San Diego, California. Built On Six Cultural Principles of Design.

XP School. Doncaster, England, UK. A high-school that is based upon the extremely successful practice of High Tech High and Expeditionary Learning schools.