Education is my passion. Britain is full of talented people. I believe that each young person has talent and potential. Each some gift to develop. Each something to give to the good of the community."
Learning brings more happiness than having sex, playing or watching sport or doing the National Lottery.
During the last century we have moved from the Industrial Age through the Information Age to the Knowledge Age. The ability to obtain, assimilate and apply the right knowledge effectively, will become a key skill in the next century. Our ability will no longer be judged solely by qualifications gained in the past, but will also be assessed by our capacity to learn and adapt in the future.
Learning isn't just about economic success, however. It is the key to achieving our full potential. Human beings are uniquely adapted to learn and we have the ability to do so throughout our lives.
None of us learns in isolation. There are a whole range of factors that can help or hinder us in learning. They include factors within each of us - such as our motivation and our preferred learning styles - as well as external factors - such as the opportunities that exist for us to learn and the other demands that life makes on our time and resources.
For example, in terms of environments, it is acknowledged that we learn best in a high-challenge, low-threat environment. Much thinking has gone into how that environment can be created. Often it is an individual teacher's enthusiasm and ability that influences how we learn. Most of us remember a good teacher or a strong role model from when we were young; someone who got us excited about their subject by teaching us in an interesting way.
Equally, many barriers to learning exist which prevent people from getting started on learning or make it impossible to continue however strong that person's determination. Some of the most commonly recognised barriers to people's learning include: