About the Institute for Progressive Education


Institute for Progressive Education
UNESCO Chair in Humanistic Education
Kibbutzim College of Education

Director and Chair: Professor Nimrod Aloni

The Institute for Progressive Education (IPE) was established in 2003. It is "progressive" in its commitment to the ideals of cultural progress, which are based on humanistic morality, rational and critical thinking, democratic culture and social justice, as well as, to the methods of progressive education and the cultivation of the young by means of holistic approach, experiential learning, inter-disciplinary studies, climate of mutual caring and meaningful experiences.

The Institute for Progressive Education is further committed to bring together the three key elements required for successful educational activity: philosophy, research, and practice.

IPE activities include:

1. Developing new approaches, narratives, theories and paradigms in the areas of humanistic and moral education, peace, environmental, multicultural and citizenship education.
2. Implementing the moral and theoretical insights in various courses and programs of practical nature such as: Educational leadership in humanistic Judaism, multiculturalism and democratic citizenship; experimental schools that focus on topics such as environmental sustainability and scientific education; workshops on ethics and education for military commanders and administrators from the national and municipal educational administration.
3. Leading the public campaign and the educational program for providing suitable, healthy and growth promoting conditions for the children of refugees and migrant workers in the city of Tel Aviv (about which the Oscar winning documentary movie Strangers No More was done).
4. Publishing an academic Journals of Education and establishment of the largest and most prestigious educational conference in Israel – the Annual Tel Aviv Conference on Progressive Education.

The final ingredient to the twofold notions of progressive education and to the inextricable bond between thought and practice in education is – our deep concern for meaningful engagement in the community and of making significant contribution to Israeli society.

This concern finds its actualization in many forms:

  • Reaching underprivileged groups – in poor neighborhood and developing towns – initiating educational and empowering projects and monitoring their development.
  • Providing workshops and pedagogic consultation to governmental and military departments (prisons, defense forces, social workers, etc.)
  • Improving the Israeli education system by providing academic guidance to experimental schools.
  • Leading programs in humanistic moral education as well as in peace and citizenship education, thereby establishing more sensitive, sensible and tolerant dispositions for dealing with the conflicts and predicaments so prevalent in our political situation.
  • Improving the high level of teacher education at Kibbutzim College through research, publishing books and journal articles, organizing conferences, and staff development.

Kibbutzim College is the leading teachers college in Israel. In the tradition of its roots in the Kibbutz movement, while dedicated to the greater good of the community it strives to respond to individual needs as well, with the overall goal of excellence in public education in Israel. The College believes in the power of education to bring about social change and it encourages students to become positive role models for generations to follow.