The 4Cs Are Still the Same Story | Benjamin Freud | 8 Min Read

There is something insidious about pushing schools to change in order to prepare students for new jobs that do not yet exist, for problem-solving to address threats to productivity, or for new business models with geographically and culturally distributed workforces. There is a strange sense of familiarity in rebuking the traditional education system, saying it won’t allow young people to succeed in the new economy. Beware! If we aren’t careful, we will be lured by these sirens’ songs and find ourselves back in the same mess we thought we were going to leave behind.

Imagine you had a time machine and were able to travel back to England in the year 1820. The First Industrial Revolution is drawing a skyline of smokestacks and the country is turning black. Cities are expanding, travel takes a fraction of the time it used to, and workers come in and out of the factory to operate machinery on set time schedules.  You change your clothes and brush up on your Midlands accent to escape notice and, with the same curiosity and desire to understand social and education movements you had in 2021, you conduct a series of interviews with government officials, business owners,…

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Benjamin Freud, Ph.D.

Benjamin Freud, Ph.D. is the co-founder of Coconut Thinking, an advisory that supports schools and learning organizations to co-create, co-develop, co-stress test, and co-implement ideas that nurture the conditions for emergent learning. Benjamin is also the Head of Upper School at Green School, Bali. He was previously the Whole School Leader of Learning and Teaching at Prem Tinsulanonda International School in Thailand. He was the Academic Coordinator at Misk Schools, one of the most prestigious and high-profile school in the kingdom. In 2018-2019, he was also the Head of Upper Primary and Middle School at Misk. Prior to this, he was Vice-Principal of the Middle School and High School at the Harbour School in Hong Kong. He holds a Ph.D. in History, an MSc in Education, an MBA, an MA in International Relations, and a BA in International Affairs. Benjamin was born and grew up in Paris, France. He moved to the U.S. when he was 15 and spent 11 years there in different cities before living in the U.K., Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, and now Bali, Indonesia. He started his career in consulting for Internet start-ups in Silicon Valley in the late 1990s, working with people whose ambitions were no less than to change the world. This experience had a profound effect on Benjamin's outlook on education, innovation, and entrepreneurship.