Jack Miller – April 2017


I have been working in the area of holistic education for over 30 years. Much of my work is based on my contemplative practices. As a young American facing the draft, I began doing hatha yoga in 1969 and this led me to start doing vipassana, or insight meditation, in 1974 and have continued doingthese practices on a daily basis. These practices can help one understand how everything is interconnected which is one the main principles of holistic education.

I have been working at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education since 1972.  For 25 years I worked in the OISE field Centres in Thunder Bay and St. Catharines.  This work involved doing consultative work with schools and school boards. When I was working in St. Catharines, I started to teach graduate courses at OISE and 1985 I first offered a course entitled The Holistic Curriculum.  This led to my book, The Holistic Curriculum,which was first published in 1988.  The book presents six connections which can be a foundation for developing holistic curriculum.  In 2007 I was asked to help a group of teachers and parents in the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) to develop a proposal for a holistic alternative school.  Originally called The Whole Child School, Equinox Holistic Alternative School began in 2009 and part of their curriculum is based on The Holistic Curriculum.  Equinox is now the largest alternative school in the TDSB with 200 students and a long waiting list.  I did a qualitative study of the school in 2015 where I interviewed teachers, parents and students and this study was published in the International Journal of Children’s Spirituality.

In 1988 I started to require students in my courses to meditate every day for six weeks. This was made a requirement because I believe meditation helps the teacher be more present in the classroom. Since then I introduced meditation to well over 2000 teachers.  The students keep journals on this experience and the impact of the practice on their lives in many cases has been transforming.  I have written about this work in many different forums including, The Contemplative Practitioner: Meditation in Education and the Workplace.

Recently I have been asked to co-edit a book series for Information Age Publishing entitled Current Perspectives in Holistic Education and a book will be published in the series this spring entitled Holistic Education and Embodied Learning.  This book includes several chapters written by my thesis students at OISE.  I have finished a book entitled Eros and Education: Love’s Role in Teaching and Learning that will be published by U of Toronto Press.  I have written and edited 20 books and these are listed on my author’s page under John P Miller on Amazon.com.

I will turn 74 this year and still enjoy teaching but am cutting back on my workload to half time.

The field of holistic education has grown since the mid 1980’s as there more conferences on holistic education in different parts of the world where people are sharing their work.  For example, The Asia Pacific Network of Holistic Network has held annual conferences most recently in Malaysia (2016) and Japan (2015).


Refereed Books


The Contemplative Practitioner: Meditation in Education and the Workplace. 2014. Toronto: UTPress, 189pp.


Whole Child Education.  2010.  Toronto: U of Toronto Press. 146 pp.

            Translated into Korean published by Academic Press. 2014. 214pp.


The Holistic Curriculum.  2007, 1996, 1988. Published by U of Toronto Press 211pp.

Edition published in Japanese by Shunju Sha, Tokyo, 1994

Published in Korea, 2001 by Booksarang publishers

Chinese Edition 2009 by Psychology Press


Education and the Soul: Toward a Spiritual Curriculum.  2000. Albany New York:    SUNY Press.  168pp.

Translated in  Farsi Andishe Metacognation, Publication,2001

Translated in Chinese by Pro-Ed Publishing, Taiwan 2008

Translated in Japanese by Koyo Publishers 2010


Articles in Refereed Journals

Equinox:  Portrait of a Holistic School”, International Journal of Children’s Spirituality on line published on September 22, 2016 and in paper, Vol. 21, Issue 3-4, 283-301.

“Presence of Mind: A Qualitative Study of Meditating Teachers.  Co Author:Michele Irwin. Journal of Transformative Education, Online, October 21, 2015, 1-10.

Guest Editorial on Contemplative Education,” Editors’ Choice Collections Journal of      Transformative Education, October 2015.  1-9.

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