rf mackenzie
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The text below was originally printed on the inside back cover of his first book;
A Question of Living'. Please note the text then and now is referring to the period when this book was first published in 1963.

R.F. Mackenzie, the son of a stationmaster, was born in Aberdeenshire. After graduating at the University of Aberdeen, he toured most of the countries of Europe on a bicycle - afterwards collaborating on a travel book, 'Road Fortune' - and later visited Canada, the USA and South Africa, taking a variety of jobs.

RF Mackenzie  in the school office 1964He taught in experimental schools in England and Switzerland and was living with a Jewish family in Germany when their house was attacked by the Nazis in 1938. During the war he served with Bomber Command as a navigator, afterwards returning to Scotland to teach.

He was appointed headmaster of Braehead Secondary School in 1957, and is at present engaged on an educational venture at Inverlair in Lochaber, where pupils will take part in forestry, soil reclamation, mountaineering and skiing. An authority on education, he has contributed many articles to newspapers on that subject, and has also written school programs for Sound and Television broadcasting.

He married in 1945 and has two sons and
one daughter. (see picture below)

The Mackenzie family around 1965

The Mackenzie Family (1965) from left to right
R.F. Mackenzie, Neil, Diana (jnr), Alasdair and Diana (sen)

A classroom climate that offered a 'respite from pressure' and that is what the Art Department achieved - a pupil - oriented approach that depended for its success on the personal involvement that pupils felt they had in what they were doing, and , accordingly did what they were doing well, and not under stress.

Extract from
'The Life of R.F. Mackenzie' written by Peter A Murphy

 a symposium on the life and work of R.F. Mackenzie

    University of Dundee Coat of Arms at The University of Dundee,
    Saturday, November 14th, 1998
    'here' to view his presentation.

    What I have in mind is the fundamental values for our participants.
    We want to give them a chance to learn for themselves that practical work
    can give you self-esteem and pleasure in working.
    That they can make these values come alive by creating values,
    directly, by the products they make."

    Extract from welcome speech in Denmark, September '99
    (visit to a Production School)
    I feel that RF Mackenzie would agree with this statement above. (jim)

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