Toon Dijkstra 1939 - 2017

Founder of EOP and initiator of professional study tours in education in the Netherlands.

His impact on the education sector in the Netherlands can’t be overestimated.

In the nineties, when both researchers and professionals in education opened up and started looking for international ideas and best practices, Toon was one of the first pioneers to organize visits and exchanges to foreign expertise.

In this way he introduced the ideas of people like Marzano, Spencer Kagan, Andy Hargraves, as well as Canadians as Michel Fullan and Norm Green to Dutch academics and teachers.

At that time it was only considered as a side line of his study tours.

To this day it happens several times in  a year that I meet Dutch educators and superintendents who talk with enthusiasm about their own experiences.

When I ask for more details it turns out mostly that they were once part of a group organized by Toon. He must have influenced  a whole generation of (future) leaders.

And of course in return groups of US and UK students came to Maastricht: UMD, MSU, UNCC and others.

I always felt privileged to have the opportunity to work with him, and to be introduced to people in his wide network.