In the most watched TED talk of all time, educationalist Sir Ken Robinson FRSA claims that “schools kill creativity”, arguing that “we don’t grow into creativity, we grow out of it. Or rather we get educated out of it”. Yet to Robinson, “creativity is as important as literacy and we should afford it the same status”.
My former colleague Tim Leunig FRSA, while working as Chief Scientific Advisor at the Department for Education, delivered a TEDx talk that tackled Robinson’s argument head-on. “True creativity” he argues, “is based on knowledge which in turn is based on literacy”. Our schools, where children develop the literacy skills on which all further learning depends, are therefore not killing creativity, but cultivating it by providing the “foundations young people need to be properly creative”.