What is Round Square?
Founded in 1966, Round Square maintains and facilitates a worldwide network of 160 Schools in 40 countries, representing a student capacity in the region of 90,000 and a teacher/management workforce of around 7,500. Those schools share a holistic approach to learning built around six IDEALS of learning. Membership of the Round Square network offers schools a framework for excellence and continuous improvement, along with structured opportunities to collaborate and share experiences with like-minded peers around the world. Round Square is a not for profit membership network, registered as a charity in the UK and governed by a board under the Presidency of His Majesty King Constantine.
What is the History of Round Square?
Round Square owes much to the heritage of Kurt Hahn, who founded two of our original member schools, Schule Schloss Salem in Germany, with Prince Max of Baden, and Gordonstoun in Scotland.
Both schools are committed to equipping youth for leadership and service in a democracy by helping them to prepare for life despite hardships, dangers and emotion of the moment.
A pupil of both schools, Jocelin Winthrop-Young, later headmaster of Anavryta school, had an idea to found a permanent association of schools that shared in these beliefs, and whose students were prepared to provide practical support to communities in need, as Salem’s pupils had done after the earthquake at Argostoli in the Ionian Islands in 1954.
In 1966, King Constantine of the Hellenes, a former pupil of Anavryta, chaired a meeting of the first seven schools that would form the association, later named after the Round Square building at Gordonstoun, where the first conference took place in 1967.
Round Square is proud to be celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year.
Who is Kurt Hahn?
Kurt Hahn was a German educator and a key figure in the development of experiential education. To this day his philosophies have far-reaching international influence that has stood the test of time.
Hahn believed that students could only really understand life by experiencing it in many exciting and challenging ways. By testing themselves, students would be able to develop their courage, generosity, imagination, principles and resolution. Ultimately they would develop the skills and abilities to become the guardians and leaders of the future.
He also believed that the greatest thing one could learn – and inspire in others – was compassion. Inspired by this principle, the Round Square network of schools shares practical opportunities to guide and support students in becoming courageous and compassionate leaders. Kurt Hahn’s philosophies also founded Outward Bound and The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. Every year we recognise the hard work and dedication of pupils at Round Square schools with the Kurt Hahn Prize. The Kurt Hahn Prize is awarded in recognition of an exceptional act of service to others, immediate or long term, either within or without the school community.
“There is more in us than we know. If we can be made to see it, perhaps, for the rest of our lives, we will be willing to settle for less.” Kurt Hahn
Why is Round Square important?
At Round Square we care passionately about what happens in the future to our world and to the fascinating variety of cultures and communities it supports.
We want those communities to thrive and prosper and care about each other In mutual cooperation. That’s quite a challenge. As educators we believe that we have a responsibility to shape the way in which the next generation of business, political and community leaders understand, prepare for, and respond to, this challenge.
This information has been taken from the Round Square website – click here to access the direct link.