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Education : Second Thoughts Newsletters : Complete text of all the Second Thoughts Newsletters Last Updated: Sep 8th, 2009 - 08:07:52

Second Thoughts Vol. 1, No. 2, November, 1978

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In this issue:

-- Must We All Go Back to School?
-- Highlander invitation
-- Austrian alternative to MCE for workers
-- Comment on draft proclamation
-- Roszak on schools vs. lifelong learning
-- Free universities
-- Learning exchanges
-- Gross' guide to generating genuine Innovations in CE

Must We All Go Back To School?

That's the title of an article by David Lisman and John Ohliger appearing in the October 1978 issue of The Progressive magazine.

The article (subtitled "The pitfalls of compulsory adult education") summarizes the currently available evidence for the trend toward mandatory continuing education (MCE); places the trend in economic, political, ethical, and technological contexts; presents the arguments against it; and calls for political resistance and the fostering of alternatives to stimulate public discussion of the sweeping issues that confront society.

To obtain a copy send us a self-addressed stamped envelope or order the whole magazine from The Progressive, 408 W. Gorham, Madison, WI 53703, at $1.50.

There are other signs of the emerging concern about MCE and related questions. Some are pointed out in the Lisman-Ohliger article, another is the response to the first issue of this newsletter. About 1,200 copies of Second Thoughts (ST) were mailed in May to readers in forty-eight states, eight Canadian provinces, and twenty-four other countries. Since publication about 150 letters of response and request have been received, some containing subscription contributions averaging twelve dollars each.

Yet another sign of the emerging concern is the ten other publications which have carried or have indicated they will carry items about MCE and/or this newsletter. They include Adult and Continuing Education Today, Convergence, Learning, The Adult Education Clearinghouse Newsletter, Triad, Higher Education Practitioner's News, and the newsletter of the National Center for the Study of Professions. We are heartened by these indications of concern, but we recognize, as a number of the responses note, that the struggle to bring these issues to general public awareness, discussion, and action has just begun. To accomplish these tasks will involve the committed activity of many of us.

In an effort to provide a forum on these issues we're presenting excerpts from some of the responses we received in the remainder of the newsletter. In future newsletters we hope to present longer articles on related topics and invite you to send them to us. (An initial draft of a proclamation along with a summary of the larger meeting that developed the Second Thoughts perspective is contained in ST No.1. Send us a self-addressed stamped envelope if you want an additional copy of it.)

Highlander invitation

An invitation to hold the organizational meeting of those concerned about MCE and related issues of freedom and equity has just been received from the Highlander Center in New Market, Tennessee.

The Highlander Invitation is in response to this action suggestion in ST No. 1 (page 3): "Hold an organization meeting of concerned persons, perhaps for two or three days, where extended planning for reflection and action could be carried out without the distraction of a convention."

If you generally agree with the spirit of the Detroit meetings as summarized in ST No. 1 please write us suggesting convenient dates in 1979 and items for the agenda. Planning for this meeting including a search for needed funds is now in progress.

We're encouraged by this additional indication of emerging concern. The Highlander invitation comes through the good offices of Frank Adams, author of Unearthing Seeds of Fire; The Idea of Highlander (John F. Blair, Publisher, Winston-Salem, N.C.). For more information on Highlander's historic importance in the struggle for a better society see Frank's book or ST No. 1, page 9.

Pathetically pleased to be wanted

J. Roby Kidd, Secretary General, International Council for Adult Education (in January 1978, Lifelong Learning: The Adult Years):

"Instead of a careful review of what is happening, some adult educators have accepted the legislation (for MCE) with approval or with glee. It seems that we are pathetically pleased to be wanted, to be recognized even for the wrong reasons, and we have been quick to see that in the short run there may be money to be made offering programs to people who are legally compelled to attend some activities."

Austrian alternative to MCE for workers

By Freda Meissner-Blau, Vienna, Austria

The German socialist Karl Liebknecht (1871-1919) coined the phrase "Knowledge is power and power is knowledge." It sounded convincing at the time but it is not true to day. Those who are in power define what knowledge is and who will have how much of it under whose control.

In Austria workers' education has a long history closely linked to the history of the socialist movement. Its original aims are forgotten today -- to enable workers to participate in struggles for social and political change. Workers' education is reduced in Austria as it is everywhere else to fitting living wheels into the production machinery, based on the ideology of permanent economic growth and technological progress.

Roughly 20% of the industrial workers in Austria are employed within nationalized industries. Recently we have been given the chance to organize workers' seminars for the mineral oil branch of these nationalized industries. The seminars are strictly voluntary and exclude all vocational training.

Our concept is that the participating workers and their day-by-day experiences provide the contents for the seminars. As they reflect on their individual realities they often develop a collective awareness of the alienation of their working and general life conditions. Such awareness is a precondition for a desire to struggle for social and political change.

Through the seminars new and alternative experiences result; the silent become articulate, prejudices become evident, the sources of prejudice are uncovered, and collective interests are recognized. We know that this attempt -- having little in common with "education" in its standard meaning, since few facts and no theories are offered -- is just the first step towards unleashing intellectual and psychological forces to build up more individual autonomy as a basis for increased solidarity and engagement in social and political action. (For further information write Freda at Starkfriedgasse 11, A1190 Vienna, Austria).

Letters of general comment

Gregory Squires, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, Midwestern Regional Office, Chicago:

"As your first issue indicates, whether or not adult education moves in the direction of more formalized, credentialized, bureaucratized paths depends more on the changing nature of access to various occupations than on the intrinsic merits of different types of learning formats.

"I would encourage you to focus on the occupational structure, access to professions, promotions within organizations and occupations, etc., in future research. A growing body of literature demonstrates that the skill requirements of jobs do not necessarily change, just the credentials. Why?

"What is there about our social system that leads to a situation where there is a need for legal services, health care, education, etc? We have an oversupply of qualified people who want to fill these roles, yet we cannot find adequate training or employment opportunities for those who do get the training.

"I am suggesting a more fundamental critique than simply that certain professions organize to maintain an artificial scarcity of practitioners for the benefit of those few who are permitted into the fraternity.

"There are basic contradictions and irrationalities built into our economic system which have many consequences. One consequence is that adult education becomes corrupted in the manner that education in general has been corrupted. All social institutions, including educational ones, are molded to serve the needs of a profit oriented, social control minded, exploitative system for the benefit of the few at the expense of the many.

"As unemployment increases racial tensions mount (and we get more reverse discrimination lawsuits) and other tensions are exacerbated; ideological and social control become more important. One mechanism to justify existing patterns is the need for a certain level of schooling in order to qualify for certain jobs. How long we continue to buy this remains to be seen."

(Ed. Note: Greg expands on these ideas in his new book Education and Jobs: The Imbalancing of the Social Machinery published by Transaction Books and excerpted as Education, Jobs and Inequality: Functional and Conflict Models of Social Stratification in the U.S.” in Social Problems, April 1978, pp. 436-450.

Paul Pottinger, Executive Director, National Center for the Study of Professions, Washington, D.C.:

"I am rapidly becoming aware of a large resistance to MCE, and I agree with those who have serious reservations about its effectiveness, desirability and even its ethics.

"I am suspicious of educators who promote MCE because of the obvious self-serving nature. I probably would not be so suspicious if I were not aware of how lucrative CE has become to institutions in higher education. I had an opportunity to talk to a group of CE advocates in California last year. It was difficult for some of them to be objective in their analyses when they are being threatened with cuts in traditional college enrollments. MCE was attractive security."

Professor Allen Tough, The Ontario Institute for Studies in Education:

"ST is great. Maybe 'mandatory instruction' or 'mandatory assisting' would be a more telling phrase. Somehow MCE almost has a positive ring to it! "I think the key to success will be very precise writing about what we do and don't like, and about the options. Things still seem (to me) to be too vague to arouse much resentment or action."

(Ed. Note: Allen's most recent effort on self-learning projects is no longer available from him – “Major Learning Efforts: Recent Research and Future Directions” – but can be found in Adult Education, Summer 1978, vol. 8, No. 4)

Ron Gross, author of The Lifelong Learner (Simon and Schuster):

“You have done a superb job of initiating the debate over MCE. The chief danger which confronts adult education lies in the possibility that we may "Americanize" it before we understand its meaning,' said Eduard Lindeman 50 years ago. If we duck this danger this time round, major credit will surely go to your efforts."

E.M. Hutchinson, Consultant, Later Learning, Richmond, England:

"I go a long way with you but I'm not sure if it's all the way. I quite agree that over certification is a defense mechanism of professional oligarchies but there remains an absolutely valid need for openly attested evidence of competence in the enormous range of performance skills on which we mutually depend...

"The book my wife and I have been working on for some years (Learning Later, Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd.) is now actually in print. It concerns a provision of open access, no certificate courses which are nonetheless firmly structured and assume that probability is greater than possibility that many of the students will want to go on to formal higher education or professional training. But it doesn’t matter if they don't."

Health Professionals Comment


Sonny Robinson, Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts:

"We are already saddled with a MCE law here that is awful. Share your feelings exactly. Expensive non-participatory workshops of poor quality and of not much newness in content. A horrendous event."

Kathie Clark, Paris, Ontario, Canada:

"I am a health professional opposed to the imposition of compulsory CE. You may be Interested to know that the Registered Nurses Association of British Columbia has also endorsed voluntary participation in CE. You could obtain a copy of their position statement from Pat Cutshall, Coordinator, Professional Affairs, R.N.A.B.C., 2130 W. 12th Ave, Vancouver, Canada V6K 2N3

Alice Kuramoto, Associate Dean for Continuing Nursing Education, University of Washington, Seattle:

"I'm quite concerned about the issue of MCE and feel that MCE will be here whether we want it or not. I'm opposed to MCE, but am outnumbered by nurses who want it."

Mary Joy Sorenson, Elgin, Illinois:

"As a registered nurse, who just this May received my M.S. in Adult Education from Northern Illinois University, I am especially concerned with the issues discussed in ST. With MCE facing RN's in Illinois in two short years, I am trying to collect data to remain current about this issue."

World Health Organization official

Marsden Wagner, M.D., Consultant, Maternal and Child Health, World Health Organization, Regional Office for Europe, Copenhagen:

"I certainly would fall into that category of people who would be firmly against MCE. Although Denmark has one of the longest histories in the world in CE (perhaps you have heard of the Danish Folk High Schools?), their continuing education has never been of a mandatory character. Indeed, it would be very much against the Danish culture as well as the Danish laws to ever make such CE mandatory .

"I certainly wish you every success in your efforts."

(Ed. Note: Is anyone interested in writing a brief article 200 words or so on how or whether Denmark or any other country has been able to avoid the economic technological trap of the trend toward lifelong schooling? Of course, we're interested in brief articles on any relevant topic.)

Professional vested interests

James Martin, Director of Education, American College of Hospital Administrators:

"It's been my experience that when MCE is enacted by state legislatures it is usually prompted by the vested interests of the professional association involved, which is trying for instant 'professionalism.'"

Hospital education director

Robert Matthews, Director of Education, St. Mary of Nazareth Hospital Center, Chicago:

"I was most intrigued by ST and, while I do not accept all of its points of view, I do think that there are many serious implications for our culture in the growth of the postsecondary 'education industry,' implications which warrant careful monitoring and analysis. I hope that your newsletter will continue to help."

Comment On Draft Proclamation

One part of the Draft Proclamation (see pp. 67, ST No. 1) states that the trends toward MCE, certification, credentialing, and professionalization in adult education are taking place within a framework in which "knowledge is defined as worthwhile only if it is technical or scientific. Professional elites are increasingly securing monopoly control over access to this knowledge and its development."

Hilton Power, University of Maine at Augusta, has sent us these related statements by J.E. Thomas (Studies in Adult Education, October 1972):

"Adult educators are heirs to a tradition which questions the use to which information is put, and its relationship to the well-being of society. This should not be surrendered too willingly... "The implications of the tendency to produce a one-dimensional style of adult education, serving the one universal phenomenon, technological need, demands very careful scrutiny."

Phyllis Cunningham, Associate Professor, Northern Illinois University, and CoEditor, Adult Education:

"My reaction to ST is 'right on.' Your declaration is appropriate for the most part. However, the second statement on lifelong learning seems to be too broad. Although I understand that this statement in general may be true, I feel that it could be reworded to not include the good with the bad. Stated another way there are some very good effects coming out of the lifelong learning concept."

Peter Lund, Education Dept., The Polytechnic, Huddersfield, England

"I like the idea of 'working together toward a just society with more democratic control and mutual self-reliance. Is our society going to allow this? Can we go on separating learning, working, and living?

"I think here it is just beginning to hit people that paid educational leave could well mean turning people off for the second time. I sent a friend a copy of the first ST and I believe it really made him think seriously for the first time that anything but good might come out of his continuing education ideals!"

(Ed. Note: Peter's new and provocative book, Ivan Illich and His Antics, is available at $2.50 from SLD Publications, 19 Hillside, Denby Dale, Huddersfield, England.)

Joan Wright, Associate Professor, North Carolina State University at Raleigh:

"The proclamation appears to be a classic example of 'clear if known.' Perhaps debate/ discussion could be stimulated if future ST's discussed one premise at a time in some depth."

(Ed. Note: We look forward to getting articles or letters taking up Joan's suggestion.)

More Comment On Draft Proclamation

Another part of the draft proclamation states that though "more time and money is being spent on adult education...these efforts are presently paying off in less economic benefits for most people."

Beth Noble, University of Missouri, Kansas City, writes us that she has just completed her doctoral dissertation which has strengthened her conviction that "adult educational inputs are irrelevant to many groups. Such programming is form without substance...especially in economic terms."

"A Study to Identify the Determinants of Placement and Wage Rates of a Selected Population of CETA Trainees" is the title of her work which contrasts the dual labor market and capital investment theories. Beth writes that "the dual labor market theory assumes basically that certain groups have access to the economic system and derive great benefit from such access (they also appear to derive benefit from educational investments and degrees), while other groups are recycled among low wage, low mobility and unstable employments (they also receive little benefit from education and training). The human capital investment model in the Horatio Alger tradition predicts that anyone can move through the system and there is equal access to economic institutions. This model is quite important to adult educators who continue to prescribe educational remedies to situations which are structured against the target populations."

We have placed a copy of Beth's dissertation in our growing MCE Clearinghouse at Basic Choices along with a set of interesting and related papers on credentialism sent us by Kathy Rockhill at UCLA, one of which (by David White & Richard Francis in the July 1976 Georgetown Law Journal) contains this relevant conclusion:

Additional education is neither clearly required by, nor entirely beneficial to, today's labor market. The net social benefit from increased education is unclear, but the negative economic consequences of credentialism on such disfavored groups as blacks, women, and older workers are very real."

Ned Iceton, Armidale, New South Wales, Australia:

"I support your draft proclamation. However, I suspect MCE is not a major 'generative theme' with large numbers of people. Certainly it isn't in Australia. I think that research to define the broadest generative themes in any given society may be our highest priority, and that we should perhaps base our proclamations on these, as well as upon such things as MCE, which is merely the generative theme of a minority of adult educators and adult learners."

(Ed. Note: We welcome comment on the issue Ned poses. The concept of "generative themes" comes out of the adult literacy work of Paulo Freire, who speaks both of "generative words" as well as "generative themes." In Freire's usage a "generative word" is a "charged" or key word in a given social setting which has the capacity to evoke or generate associations, other words and ideas that help participants in the literacy programs clarify their social situation. Such words when linked together with related words form the "generative themes" of that society.)

More support

Support for the draft proclamation has also come from Floyd Pennington, Director, Office of Continuing Medical Education, University of Michigan Medical Center; Sol Kort, Centre for Continuing Education, University of British Columbia; Ira Shor, Associate Professor, Staten Island College; and Joyce Livak, School of Home Economics, University of Vermont. Authors in "Issues" book write

"Lifelong Learning Ought Not Become Lifelong Schooling" and "In Opposition to Mandatory Continuing Professional Education" are the titles of two chapters in the new book, Issues in Adult Education, (Jossey-Bass Publishers), edited by Burton Kreitlow. Below are excerpts from letters to ST by both authors, respectively.

Emmanual Corso, Taos, New Mexico:

"I think ST could fill an important need if you can avoid the usual academic mealy- mouthed trip. No use putting out energy if you aren't going to do what needs to be done. That's how I feel about my energy. I simply got tired of all the well meaning bullshit."

Kathleen Rockhill, Assistant Professor, Dept. of Education, UCLA:

"I received ST today, which I applaud. I've gone around with the issue of MCE for some time now and would like to begin some research that focuses on the perspective of individuals who were required to participate in compulsory learning experiences. One reason why I hold back is because I fear that like sheep they'll accept whatever they're required to do. But for my own inner peace, I have to begin to see what people who are compelled to participate in learning experiences feel about its impact on their lives.

"To me the problem inherent in MCE is that it brings with it authority, selecting, and screening aspects of the schooling process, and that in some way what is viewed as an opportunity becomes a requirement. Is there no way to provide opportunities without this happening? Cannot we think of lifelong learning as a framework that might prohibit this from happening?

"What I am suggesting is that one of the strong arguments against structured learning may be that it prevents more meaningful learning. I can remember myself when I finished my graduate studies saying I hoped I never had to take a course again in my life, and I found it ironic that my area of work was adult education. Since then I have heard that refrain again and again from graduate students."

Another letter from Canada

H.M. Rosenthal, Director, Social Science Programs, Centre for Continuing Education, University of British Columbia:

"I am concerned not only about the trend towards compulsion in CE, but also about the increasing trend to monopolization of services by professional groups without account ability to the public."

A state legislator comments

Representative David Clarenbach, Wisconsin legislature:

"ST frankly raised some issues on CE requirements that I had not previously considered. I look forward to working with all of you on these concerns in the future."

Roszak on schools vs. lifelong learning

Theodore Roszak is Professor of History and Chairman of General Studies at California State University, Hayward. He is the author or editor of The Making of a Counter Culture, The Dissenting Academy, Masculine/Feminine, Where the Wasteland Ends and other important books. Recently we wrote Ted asking him if he would be willing to write an article for ST. He replied: "There's a meaty chapter on education (free schooling/de-schooling/human potentials) in the new book. After that, I'm written out for the time being, but I wish you every success."

His new book is Person/Planet: The Creative Disintegration of Industrial Society (Anchor Press/Doubleday, $10.95). In it he wrestles profoundly with the basic problem of creating a "politics of consciousness," searching for a balance "between the privacy of the personal quest and the clamor of political action." He concludes, "There must be a reaching out as well as a delving within, social engagement as well as contemplative exploration (in order to) follow the adventure of self-discovery through to its planet saving purpose."

Following is an excerpt from the chapter he suggested (Chapter 7 School: Letting Go, Letting Grow). Caution: before you rush out and put any of this in a brochure or a grant application read the complex context of Roszak's whole book which (as one of the ST editors read it, at least) often inspires, infuriates, clarifies, and confuses. Person/ Planet richly deserves careful reading, serious study and extensive small group discussion:

"To focus too much on the schools lends a certain misleading twist to the idea of education. Perhaps in spite of ourselves, we help confirm the assumption that education is for that special population of learners called 'the young' who are housed in special institutions called 'schools.' As Ivan Illich has so well argued, this is the distortion that even free and alternative schools help to produce. They create a spreading social dependence on professionals and on all the restrictions that go with any kind of official institutionalization. Education, as I approach it here, is meant to be the essential gesture of human existence. It is the daily progress of our lives as we move through the adventure of experience, selecting, rejecting, shaping the moments into some workable meaning. Education is for everybody, anywhere, and for a lifetime. It may be an especially urgent part of childhood and youth, when curiosity is boundless and insistent, but it does not follow that there is ever a point where learning (especially if we speak of self-discovery) leaves off and we graduate into something called 'life.' Even death is a lesson, our final essay in human being.

"So I cling here to the cliche of every university extension that learning is a lifelong process. If that is so, then any philosophy of education whose ideals, methods, or institutions are too much limited to the young is bound to be inadequate. There are ailments of our school system like its obsession with quick, competitive success. Its Infatuation with grades, degrees, certification that can be cured only if we insist that education means continuing, lifelong access to learning. In this respect, I agree with the de-schoolers. The practical right to return to one's education as an adult -- meaning, the ability to take time out, to find instruction, to gain the use of necessary facilities is even more important than the right to free schooling in childhood. There are choices that few people can sensibly make in their youth, least of all the choice of a life's work.

"Why do we worry so anxiously about how promptly the young are learning to read, write, cipher, or perform useful jobs? Because we know they must learn these things now, in their early years, or most of them will have missed their only opportunity. This now-or-never pressure is one of the worst tyrannies of the system; it denies us the freedom to experiment, to fall, to turn back, to begin again if necessary, to start a second career, to launch a new life. We must have an ideal of education which confronts our institutional life with the full force of that need.

"If we conceive of education as self-discovery rather than merely the mastery of skills or accumulation of knowledge then we must regard every moment of life as equally pregnant with educational possibilities, and we see that there is no single institution, no one period of life where the whole task can be done. Very likely one lifetime will not be enough."

Draves on free universities

Bill Draves, National Free University Network, Manhattan, Kansas:

"More power to you! Basic Choices looks great. Strength, energy, money, people, and resources be yours.

"Here In Free U land we are doing real well. Free U's are catching on and although problems and possible dangers of cooptation, emphases on macramé and yoga, and some other threats loom, we are still very high about having the Free U model gain increasing acceptance. There are about 300,000 participants in 150 Free U's now, and we are gaining each year.

"A dream of mine soon to become some sort of a long term working project, is to set up Free U's for low income and minority communities (rather, help low income communities set them up). I am convinced that the Free U model and concept (that people can share vital knowledge, skills, experiences and values with each other in a low cost community setting) is workable anywhere. Free U's are starting to reach more than WASPs without any national strategy, but I think in three to five years we could start Free U's in the ghetto and really do a good job. The ghetto Free U will not be called a Free U and may not look much like a Free U we do now, but we can make it work."

Newton on learning exchanges

Some comments on the problems and possibilities of Learning Exchanges (LEs) from Phil Newton, Outreach Coordinator, DeKalb (Illinois) Learning Exchange. The DeKalb LE, the second oldest in the country, temporarily suspended operations in September:

"Organizations like ours are going under a little faster than they are being started. Local sources of money are going back to basics, and LE's apparently aren't a basic. If you try to charge for the service before giving out any names, people won't use the service. And we don't fit any guidelines for federal funding because we can't prove we help any specific groups.

"One exception, of course, is good old CETA. Most functioning LE's are currently underwritten by CETA Title VI grants, which are quite easy to obtain, but last for a maximum of 18 months. The CETA contracts of key people in three of the five oldest LE's in the country expire in the next two months.

"Our experience is that this kind of organization cannot be maintained solely by volunteers, a mistake that many people who would like to see one in their communities tend to make. It looks simple but it isn't.

"By the way, the word 'exchange' is an unfortunate choice. People tend to think that one has to exchange one kind of learning for another. I teach you gardening, you teach me auto mechanics. This one possibility, but we also serve as a kind of brokerage for independent teachers and information sources, professional, semiprofessional and volunteer. The parties we match must work out their own arrangements for compensation. About 90% of the Evanston organization's resource people charge, about 85% of ours do not.

"I also see exchanges as tools for political, social and economic organizing. If you want to take some kind of group action but have no group and little money, an exchange can act as a kind of answering service for people who want to get together around a specific issue."

Twenty five Sunset acts

Since Colorado enacted the first Sunset Legislation in 1976, twenty four more states have followed with similar kinds of laws. Each state varies, but the basic concept of Sunset is to make licensing/regulatory agencies (e.g. State Board of Pharmacy) more accountable to the legislature (and thus to the public) and to cut down on the tendency of bureaucracies to mushroom and reproduce.

Under Sunset, the life of a regulatory agency expires every few years and its continuance is dependent upon its ability to prove that it has been accountable to the public it was designed to serve. If a licensing agency for professionals ceases to exist so do the often accompanying MCE requirements .

Of course, eliminating and regulating licensing agencies is not enough in itself; such laws must be paired with community awareness and action that redefine professional-client roles and empower the public to take informed and responsible control over their own lives. For further information on Sunset, contact Basic Choices or Betsy Sherman, Common Cause National, 2030 "M" St., Washington, D.C., 20036.

Gross' Guide To Generating Genuine Innovations In Continuing Education
Simply choose one term from each column, graft them together, and you're ready to request funding, to issue your catalog, mail flyers, run ads, and be a consultant to other continuing education administrators. For example, choosing "adult" from column A. "experiential" from column B, and "laboratory" from column C, gives you an "Adult Experiential Laboratory," which happens to already be offered by one midwestern institution. So mix 'em and match 'em — innovation in continuing education is an Open Functional System!

Column A: adult, basic, extramural, continuing, drop-in, stop-out, postsecondary, open, free, distant, external, adjunct, peer, individualized, developmental, mandatory, special, participatory, problem-oriented, non-credit, extension, mini

Column B: functional, competency-based, extension, recurrent, non-formal, lifelong, androgogical, non-collegiate, programmed, experimential, computer-assisted, equivalency, alternative, sandwich, intergenerational, short, training, workshop, re-entry, delivery, weekend, modular

Column C: center, program, academy, consortium, network, laboratory, project, contract, course, package, study, broker, mentor, consultant, facilitator, enabler, group, system, service, mode, seminar, workshop

Copyright © Ronald Gross, 1978

Call to MCE supporters

Robert Boissoneau, Dean, College of Human Services, Eastern Michigan University:

(Bob is the author of the first dissertation on MCE, which along with articles growing out of it, is available in the new Basic Choices Resource Center/Clearinghouse):

"I am impressed with ST. My concern is that the supporters of MCE be heard by the opponents. It seems Ironic that Ohliger/ Illich would reach the same conclusion as the American Medical Association."

(Ed. Note: We welcome statements from MCE supporters. For the differences between the ST and AMA conclusions on MCE see the article in the October 1978 Progressive noted on page one of this newsletter.)

Thiede on MCE

Wilson Thiede, Provost for University Outreach, The University of Wisconsin System:

"I agree that we should not generally support MCE for any purpose, including the professions."

Subscription rate
We've decided to take the suggestion of Bob Lewis, one of the founders of The Learning Exchange in Evanston, Illinois, and ask for $10/year for ST ($15/year for institutions) . For those for whom $10 is not possible please send what you can.

New clearinghouse/resource center

Basic Choices is developing a Clearinghouse/Resource Center of materials about MCE, Freire, Illich, alternative education, media, and related topics. For information about specific materials available or if you'd like to visit us, contact Chris Wagner, c/o BCI.

Second Thoughts

Second Thoughts is a newsletter designed to serve as a link in a network of persons concerned with raising basic questions about mandatory continuing education (MCE) and related issues.

It is published by Basic Choices, which is a project in values-clarification of Madison Campus Ministry, 731 State St., Madison, WI 53703. Members of the group are David Lisman, Art Lloyd, Sue Lloyd, John Ohliger, Vern Visick, and Chris Wagner.

For the newsletter to continue we need responses from you including suggestions, criticisms, statements, articles, and financial contributions. The address for Second Thoughts is 1121 University Ave., Madison, WI 53715.

Exchanges with other publications are welcome. Our thanks to members of the Madison Review of Books for help in preparing the newsletter for mailing, to Donna Camp for layout, make-up, typing and printing, and to Bill Kasdorf for layout advice.

© Copyright 2004 John

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Complete text of all the Second Thoughts Newsletters
New Additions
Second Thoughts Vol. 1 No. 1 May 1978
Second Thoughts Vol. 1, No. 2, November, 1978
Second Thoughts Vol. 2, No. 1, April 7, 1979
Second Thoughts Vol. 2, No. 2, October 1979
Second Thoughts Vol. 2, No. 3, April 1980
Second Thoughts Vol. 3, No. 1, October 1980
Second Thoughts Vol. 3, No. 2, February 1981
Second Thoughts Vol. 3, No. 3, July 1981
Second Thoughts Vol. 4, No. 1, October 1981
Second Thoughts Vol. 4, No. 2, January 1982