Erasmus Primary School was named in honour of the 15th century scholar, Christian theologian, philosopher, educator, and humanist: Desiderius Erasmus. Born in Rotterdam in 1466, Erasmus is renowned as one of Renaissance Europe’s leading scholars. He believed in the power of education and dedicated much of his life to education: learning and questioning the thinking of his day. He was averse to dogma and constantly sought spiritual enlightenment. He believed that human nature could be shaped to draw out the virtuous qualities innately present in every child. He believed that ‘one is what one reads’.
Today, Erasmus Primary School draws upon many of Erasmus’ insights into education that have stood the test of time. These have been incorporated in tandem with contemporary educational methods and materials – combining methodical study with clear thinking and reasoning skills, spiritual development and an enquiring mind.
In his works on education, he advocated the importance of a Christian education, learning Latin and grammar from a young age, and the need for regular physical education. He criticised severe discipline and insisted on arousing the student’s interest. His educational writings contributed to introducing the classics into the curriculum. He advocated studying the great authors of antiquity, and encouraged students to model their speech and writing on the works of the masters.
The main hope of a nation lies in the proper education of its youth.