Activation of The Educative Community
Changes Required in the Educational System
People very early in the advance of civilization realized that education was important. Educating the young for survival and independence was carried out first in the home, then in tribal or community settings, and then through churches. Learning throughout life easily followed as a natural circumstance of life, survival, and human growth. However, somewhere along this path of change, it was decided that learning had become too complicated for a family or community to manage alone and education as a specialized service was created.
That an age of rapid change now exists has been said in many ways by many people and was discussed in Chapter One. Change has become the only inevitability in history; therefore, educating for change becomes of utmost importance. However, the more it is assumed that continual education is essential to be able to cope with change, the more will be the requirement for specialized knowledge. This, too, has led to a tendency for the educational system to become highly specialized.
The transition of education to a system of specialized, systematized institutions has advantages, such as development of a corps of highly trained professionals. Most educational institutions have teachers, counselors, administrators, and various specialists all working together to provide educational programs, from kindergarten through high school (K-12) for youth, two-year, four-year, and proprietary schools primarily for young adults, and a variety of continuing education or training opportunities for adults of all ages. In addition, many educational institutions employ specialists to work in such areas as special education, career education, family life education, counseling services, and human resources development.
Another advantage has been in knowledge gained about the educational process. For example, some K-12 teachers use individualized curricula and methods in an attempt to help children achieve their potential. A growing number of adult education teachers use self-directed techniques with their adult students. Many trainers in business and industry work with some trainees in individualized settings. Furthermore, audiovisual equipment, flexible scheduling, work-study programs, internship opportunities, and independent study have all been employed
increasingly by various educators to supplement the learning process.
Despite the above and other advantages, education still requires some changes if the needs of all are to be met. For example, schools must be a place where the young are prepared for life roles and lifelong learning, not a place isolated from the main stream where students spend their time concentrating only on subject content. In addition, an increasing body of research (see Brockett & Hiemstra, 1991; Brookfield, 1984; Candy, 1991; Hiemstra, 1991; Hiemstra & Sisco, 1990; Long & Associates, 1991, 1992; Merriam & Caffarella, 1991; Merriam & Cunningham, 1989; Peters, Jarvis, & Associates, 1991; Tough, 1979) about adults as learners has revealed a need for more emphasis on self-direction in learning, more efforts to individualize the instructional process, the provision of better resources, a reexamination of the learning environment, and new support for part-time students. Thus, education should be person, problem, and community centered. However, changes in education will be successful only to the point that members of the community share in attempts to redefine tasks. Current financial constraints that exist in many communities also will need to be resolved.
Teachers, too, need to support any changes in the educational system, and perhaps be changed with it. Some critics accuse teachers of being subject-oriented rather than people-oriented or community-oriented. Others suggest that teachers' interests are directed only upward within the bureaucracy of the educational system itself. Still other critics suggest that some teachers or trainers of adults, for example, utilize child-oriented teaching techniques that don't work very well with the mature learner. The point is that the educational system will require financial support and other rewarding or motivational techniques adequate enough to attract, hold, and provide training for the best possible teachers and administrators. Without continued professional excellence and educators committed to making educational institutions an integral part of the community, attempts to increase an educational agency's community commitment may well be futile. Chapter Eight discusses the teacher-training situation as it relates to preparing educators for commitment to the educative community notions described in this chapter.
The Status of the K-12 System
How are the K-12 schools doing today in their attempts to promote social change or to develop citizens capable of surviving rapid change, especially in large cities? Some critics suggest that U.S. schools have not succeeded as well as they could. Stevenson, (1984) revealed that U.S. school children's reading and math scores trail those of Japanese and Taiwanese pupils virtually from the day they enter school. Recent information has suggested the problem has not improved in the past eight to nine years (U.S. Students, 1993). Hodgkinson (1991b) talks about how education in the United States has deteriorated and suggests that at least one-third of all children are now at risk of failure before they even enter kindergarten. Anderson and Jeffrey (1992) share some facts developed from the U.S. House of Representatives Select Committee on Children, Youth, and Families that support such assertions:
Innovations such as tracking systems, microcomputer instruction, and non-graded classes have been some corrective responses, but are seen by many to be mostly window dressing of a system that is out of date. The recent decline in national test scores also has created all sorts of discussion, criticism, and change efforts. A National Commission on Excellence in Education in 1983 criticized the United State's educational system and made five major recommendations for change: (a) A foundation in English, math science, social studies, and computer science is needed, (b) rigorous standards must be developed, (c) more time must be devoted to
learning the foundation courses, (d) higher educational standards for teachers with corresponding teacher salary raises are needed, and (e) adequate support from educators, elected officials, and citizens is required.
In 1989 President Bush called together the nation's governors and several others for an educational summit to deal with such criticisms and recommendations. The outcome was a list of national education goals such as every child starting school ready to learn, higher graduation rates, mastery in certain core subjects, U.S. students becoming first worldwide in math and science abilities, schools becoming free from drugs and violence, and higher adult literacy. In 1991 under the leadership of U.S. Education Secretary Alexander, a corresponding America 2000 plan was unveiled (U.S. Department of Education, 1991). The plan's scope calls for significant change pertaining to learning in 110,000 schools, every American community, and every American home by the year 2000.
Although the plan has received some criticism (Clinchy, 1991; Howe, 1991; Voices from the field, 1991), many believe it is finally a big step in the right direction. The Clinton administration no doubt will make various responses to the plan. Chapter Three will discuss some of the ways a community education approach can meet some of the K-12 and adult education needs of today.
There is also growing evidence that schools have not had major success in equipping many of the disadvantaged members of society with the skills and knowledge needed for effective living. Increasing dropout rates (only very recently have improvements or a slowing of the rates been reported), escalating violence in the schools, people graduating from high school with low literacy skills, and high unemployment rates among inner-city youth are some of the related indicators. Job retraining programs, training divisions in business and industry, Adult Basic Education programs, volunteer literacy organizations, and general adult education programs frequently are called on to provide remedial or corrective education. In essence, because every person normally spends a great deal of time in school early in life, the education received should not only relate to basic skills, but also should promote lifelong learning skills.
The fault for most present school limitations centers not only on the educational system itself. Many forces have emerged that make the educational task a difficult one. Such factors as drug problems, youth's changing attitudes, and society's changing values have all contributed to the complexity of providing an education that is useful and relevant. Another problem has been declining student populations in some areas, often with corresponding reluctance on the part of taxpayers to provide adequate support. Yonkers (New York), Chicago, Los Angeles, and Detroit, for example, have each faced tremendous financial deficits, as have many smaller cities in the United States and elsewhere.
Furthermore, the rapidity of technological advance has created what some scholars refer to as a wide cultural lag, where sociological and economic gaps between the "haves" and "havenots" are growing at frightening rates. The United States' growing number of homeless is one indicator of this situation. An inability to fill these gaps through training or education has contributed to a situation where community needs and educational goals are often out of harmony.
The definition of community noted earlier suggested that those social units performing societal functions must be combined to serve the needs of a given public. The school is one of these major units. Unfortunately, the school has too often become separated from other community institutions, many of which also have educational functions, such as churches, community centers, and many voluntary agencies. The school can no longer afford to remain separate from the community, its citizens, and various institutions. The school and most community organizations must find ways to reinforce each others' teachings about life and social change.
The local public normally has very few avenues for its voice to be heard in relation to education. The feeling that others are constantly making decisions for or about a person is prevalent among many citizens. In the United States, for instance, a state can mandate the consolidation of certain schools. A professional association might require that members obtain a certain amount of continuing education experiences within a given time period. The federal government can dictate the amount of tax dollars coming back to local educational units. Thus, a mechanism needs to be developed whereby educational organizations and citizens can work together for a community's betterment. Another America 2000 goal is creating and sustaining healthy communities where education is enhanced by all the people residing in them. Achievement of such a goal is imperative for our future.
The Status of Adult Education
What is the status of adult education today? In many ways there has been tremendous growth in educational activity by adults throughout the United States and most other countries, especially when making comparisons over the past three decades. Authors like Cross (1981), Hiemstra (1984), Merriam and Cunningham (1989), Peterson and Associates (1979), and many others cited at the conclusion of the chapter, have documented heavy and often increasing involvement in education by adults of all ages. When the corresponding active involvement of adults in training activities, non-formal learning projects, and self-directed learning as reported by Brockett & Hiemstra (1991), Candy (1991), Tough (1979), and others is included, the overall educational activity is quite phenomenal.
However, it should be noted that the United States, for example, has experienced heavy involvement in learning by adults during other periods of history. Past movements under such titles as Chautauqua, Extension, Americanization, and the G. I. Bill also resulted in large numbers of people engaged in adult education.
Perhaps what is most important about the growing involvement of adults in learning today is the corresponding growth in knowledge, theory, and literature about the field. In addition, there has been a rapid expansion in professionalization of the field through a corps of people trained in graduate adult education, policy development and research efforts, and professional associations. Most professionals and many of the thousands of volunteers working in the field of adult education appear to be making significant efforts to facilitate necessary social change. But, as noted above for schools, many adult educators and adult education agencies can be criticized for working at times in isolation from the other educational institutions within a community. Adult education, too, can benefit from mechanisms that facilitate various educational organizations in a community working together.
Decentralizing Educational Decision-Making
One frequently mentioned precondition for greater community and citizen participation in the educational process is decentralization of the public schools. Particularly in the large cities, this is often seen as a vital need. In Detroit, Michigan, for example, decentralization was accomplished by a state legislative act. The purpose of the plan was to spread the decision-making base from five to 45 persons, 40 of whom represent eight different regions of the larger city. Several other cities have developed comparable plans.
Decentralization can also go the other way. Nebraska's Unicameral a few years ago approved a bill that allows the State Education Board, rather than the local school districts, to set curriculum standards. The New York State Board of Regents has mandated various changes in local schools. Alaska, Florida, Oregon,
Texas, Vermont, and Wisconsin lawmakers all have in some way impacted on local high school graduation standards. A Texas-based organization has attempted to set national text book standards. School prayer decisions are constantly being considered at the federal level. It is difficult to forecast how far this wrestling away of power from local control will go, but the remainder of this section will examine decentralization as it relates to giving more control to local residents by agencies within the community setting.
Decentralization often is thought to include only some legal or highly formalized arrangements for involving the local citizen in educational decision-making. However, decentralization can be a matter of mind in addition to, or in lieu of, being a matter of fact. If a person believes that the local school is serving personal needs or that the average citizen can have a part in the determination of policy, then decentralization has been accomplished. Thus, decentralization can take place in small or large communities, it can affect adult education as well as youth education, and it can be made formal or can happen informally.
Decentralization can also help both large and small cities bring resources to bear on educational needs by the following:
1. Providing a vehicle by which the total community engages in democratic decision-making.
2. Developing better relationships between educational institutions and the community.
3. Implementing a continuous evaluation of needs to provide feedback information for educational planning.
4. Involving educational institutions as a vital part, but only one part, of a whole community process of education.
The greater involvement of a community in education, and, indeed, the success of decentralization attempts, rests on the premise that educational organizations should serve the needs of their clientele rather than meeting some general set of requirements established at a centralized level. Many experts suggest, for example, that decentralization of schools will begin to meet these particular needs. For example, a large city such as Los Angeles might implement alternative school programs for its various ethnic or racial areas if the concept of involving local residents in local decision making is followed. Of course, the issue of whether English will remain the primary language of instruction in our rapidly emerging multicultured society has not been resolved.
Perhaps the most widely known and discussed plan for the decentralization of educational decision-making in the U.S. has been New York City's plan. The Bundy Report--as the original New York study is commonly called--suggested the establishment of 60 or more
autonomous school districts in the city, each representing a distinct community or locality, and controlled by parent-dominated school boards. This plan's goal was that each local community would be large enough to effectively carry out the necessary educational functions and services, yet small enough to be sensitive to the unique needs of local clientele. In reality not all districts have functioned as originally planned and the system chancellor (superintendent) still maintains considerable control of day to day activities
Another example is what happened in Flint, Michigan. There the superintendent is now called the superintendent of community education and works through local community school directors and advisory councils. Each school's educational programs, including after school and adult education activities, are locality-specific. The school board plays both a decision-making role and an advisory role, with local advisory committees providing guidelines for adult education activities.
Supreme Court rulings have added a complexity to helping local community residents feel that education is meeting their needs. However, it is suggested that even the bussing of children to schools away from the local community, one of the issues brought about by court rulings in the sixties and seventies, does not prohibit two communities from working together on a coordinated school plan. In the State of New York, for example, various school systems work together with an area vocational-technical institution (BOCES--Board of Cooperative Educational Services) to provide cooperative educational services to certain students. These institutions also serve young and older adults desiring vocational training, refresher courses, or general adult education. Throughout the United States neighboring school districts or institutions are learning to share a variety of human and other resources, even when formal mergers or combinations are not possible.
Unfortunately, national laws and rulings do not always work the way they are intended. While laws requiring or permitting segregated schools are no longer in existence, de facto segregation continues to exist and in some parts of the United States even appears to be increasing. For example, an increasing number of private schools and academies, frequently but not always sponsored by religious organizations, serve only white students. In a few cities African-American academies have been established. Block grants to states for education also has resulted in some locations reducing their Adult Basic Education and general literacy training efforts.
National leadership as it relates to the local control issue also can be important. As noted by Bull (1984), the Reagan administration during the early eighties approached decentralization and local control in a way that may have some real long term effects. Few changes were made during the Bush administration. The resulting withdrawal of bilingual education regulations, blocking of federal categorical grants to states, revision of some special education regulations, and support for local plans to redress civil rights violations are all indications of a national support for and encouragement of localism during those two presidencies. Not all of these moves have resulted in positive results and the Clinton administration no doubt will be forced to address many of the inequalities that have resulted.
Is there reason to believe that greater community involvement in the schools or a heightened sense of localism will improve the educational system? The findings of the much-discussed Coleman Report of the 1960's suggest that the answer is yes. In this report, which examined the equality of educational opportunity, it was found that an educational system first and foremost needed to promote a strong sense of worth among the students. What better way of starting this than with parents and students having some self-determination of their own destinies through helping to make local educational decisions. A 1983 report, A Nation At Risk (National Commission on Excellence in Education), also supported the notion that parents need to be heavily involved in the educational process.
There are problems in implementing a greater decentralization of educational decision-making or the current moves toward excellence. In addition, when something new or different leads to educational changes, there is no guarantee of improvements in the educational system. The Rand Corporation (Beyond the Commission Reports, 1984), for example, suggested that the drive in many states to tighten curriculum requirements and impose additional teacher and pupil competency tests are actually making teaching careers less attractive. Violence to teachers, declining financial support in many cities, and increasing class sizes in some school districts are adding problems. The implication is that the better people may either leave or not even enter the teaching profession. To obtain some understanding of various other problems and potential change, you are urged to explore various current issues in the periodicals listed at the conclusion of this chapter and Chapter Eight.
One basic problem centers around the issue of autonomy in educational decision-making. School administrators and board members wish for a certain amount of autonomy and will be in conflict when community leaders and other citizens require a major part in the decision-making process. For example, a community college advisory board recommending more effort in career counseling may be at direct odds with a faculty primarily interested in a college transfer emphasis. Some citizens, in turn, may be unsure of their power or how they can work with educators. However, it has been demonstrated that once community members and educators begin to work more closely with each other through advisory councils and other such devices, the educational system and its participants reap increased benefits.
Furthermore, in the United States the decentralization issue and a greater involvement of local residents in education must be examined in light of several factors. As noted earlier, there is still a widening economic gap between the rich and the poor; evidence is available that the polarization between different racial groups continues despite several intervention attempts; and the increased intolerance and lack of cooperation among many groups of people have created a variety of community tensions.
To successfully educate all people those conditions that prevent adequate learning, such as polarization, intolerance of others, ghettos, segregation, gang or home violence, unemployment, and inadequate income, must be removed from society. Community involvement cannot be used as an issue
by which the various educational and social problems are dumped off for solution by local leadership. The need is to educate all people for social action, ranging from such groups as neighborhood watch groups or "Guardian Angels" to professional change organizations like rape crisis centers or community action programs.
The education professional, the community citizen, and the public policy-maker must all work together to help education become a more crucial part of community life. For example, those neighborhood watch groups might use a school building for informational meetings. Guardian Angels might work in cooperation with local law enforcement agencies to patrol the grounds of schools or college campuses located in troubled neighborhoods. The rape crisis center might provide counseling in conjunction with some educational agency's support services. Thus, learning how to work with such community groups, involving local citizens in educational decision-making, or what Kerensky (1989) calls the percolator approach, and discovering how to activate the entire community in problem-solving are skills educators must obtain (Chapter Eight discusses this in greater detail.) A greater utilization of the community and its people may be our best chance to solve the many problems facing society.
Developing A Sense Of Community
Some of the changes required in most educational systems and a need for community participation in decision-making if a greater utilization of education to solve local problems is to be realized have been discussed. How can a greater sense of community be developed in people as a prerequisite to creating such an educative community?
People are products of their communities. Learning to live and work effectively in a community setting is especially important in view of the rapidity of social change. The first chapter described how social change is a force contributing to people forming more and more vertical associations, a situation tending to weaken ties to a locality setting. Consequently, developing a greater sense of community requires that horizontal relationships be strengthened wherever possible.
There are several ways in which such horizontal relationships can be strengthened. The continued involvement of community residents in various volunteer activities is one of the most viable means. The trick may be finding some activity in which an individual is interested and/or skilled. This could range from working with young people in sports activities, leading a 4-H club, supporting music programs in some way, counseling in an AIDS awareness effort, helping the homeless and hungry with food and nutrition programs, working with an individual in a nursing home, or doing some literacy tutoring. Ilsley and Niemi (1981) provide a wide variety of useful suggestions for recruiting and training volunteers.
Another means for enhancing horizontal involvement is to engage groups of individuals on some particular project that will benefit the community. For example, currently throughout the United States
there are many different communities engaged in educating community residents about the perils and problems associated with drug abuse. Known by a variety of names, these groups engage a number of specialists, community officials, and interested residents in learning about the problem, educating others about it, and undertaking a variety of projects aimed at reducing dependency on drugs. Thus, a large (and often growing) number of people become involved in an activity that has meaning both for them and for their community.
Another activity that has success in some communities is to involve many residents in some special project each year. This may be a project to raise money for the community, some agency, or a special group of people within a community. The annual "Elksburg chicken fry," the "Raddison Winter Carnival," and the "Newport Jazz Festival" are some typical titles for such projects.
Joint planning between community citizens and educational officials has also been suggested as a mechanism to facilitate attempts to activate the entire community educationally. It is also suggested that community involvement in educational decision-making--through decentralized local involvement and/or some other means--will contribute to the strengthening of horizontal ties and to developing a greater sense and understanding of community.
Various other means of involving citizens in community and educational programs are being tried in several American communities. Block clubs, community councils, advisory boards, and ad hoc problem-solving committees are typical of these means.
There also are various ways the educational system in any community can give people opportunities to become more active citizens. Open school board meetings, community forums, or town-meetings are a beginning step. Interested citizens may also serve in a variety of volunteer roles in most community schools, ranging from running the personal computer laboratory to monitoring the school lunch room. In Syracuse, New York, for example, LeMoyne College and the Wagon Wheels Senior Center have combined efforts in a computers and the elderly project where seniors are trained in computer literacy and in turn teach such skills to local elementary school children. Schools also may use community residents as paid aides or para-professionals in various capacities.
All of the above possibilities and the many others that do exist throughout the United States and many other countries may initially present problems in role conflict or expectations. However, they do provide opportunities for people normally outside the broader educational system to feel a part of an important aspect of their place of residence. Helping individuals feel involved and develop a sense of their community is beneficial to both the person and the community, including not only the various educational systems but also a wide variety of additional aspects of community life.
Activating the Entire Community
The concept of activating the educative community, as the title of the chapter suggests, assumes that most people and agencies in a
community have a potential if not actual capacity for being involved in the educational process. More importantly, it suggests that these people and agencies should assume some responsibility for the educational function. This will necessitate some changes in the educational system. Educational institutions, however, will still have a responsibility to the total community, regardless of whether the decisions affecting them come from a centralized source or from some scheme involving local citizen participation.
It is this book's thesis that the community is a teacher of all the people who live there. The community is a teacher in the sense that it is a continuous learning setting in which people's attitudes, talents, and behaviors are influenced. As noted in the preceding section, the educational system can help the community become a better teacher. Thus, the community, people, and educational system can interact for the betterment of all.
In the truly educative community, all individuals accept that education of the young as well as people of all ages is a task requiring the time and energy of each community member. Education then becomes distinguishable and different from schooling. The schools do not become irrelevant under this premise as some might advocate; they actually play vital roles in coordinating all educative activities and may even assume new roles. Furthermore, the humanistic intents of most educational professionals can begin to be separated from the rules and traditions of the confined institutional setting. For example, the State of Maryland through the Department of Education requires all students in grades 6-12 to spend 75 hours a year in community service working with such groups as pre-schoolers, senior citizens, and the homeless. The local school integrates curricular efforts with the service activities. Many similar programs across the country are available on a voluntary basis.
Through such approaches to education and learning--what was referred to in the previous section as the community education approach--all resources in a community are viewed as potential learning forces and factors. This also may be viewed as an attempt to strengthen the horizontal relationships of citizens to their communities. The people and facilities of a community's educational institutions join together with the resources and talents of the community and its residents. This way educational institutions can operate effectively with local involvement and each separate educational programs can reflect the community in which it exists.
Education is the sum of many parts, including not only what is available through various educational programs, but also through the home, church, peer group, and community. Each person is reached through some aspect of their community. Thus, once this is realized, it becomes important for each educator to obtain and analyze various kinds of community information. Understanding the adult or child to be educated, including family backgrounds, personal situations, a variety of possible constraints--what Cross (1981) calls barriers to learning--and a community's educational needs is only a partial listing of the necessary information. Appendix 2-A and various sources at the conclusion of this chapter provide additional insights on the subject.
The discussion thus far has perhaps seemed somewhat idealistic. However, if all people in the United States (and, of course, in other countries) are going to be served and be given an equal educational opportunity, all appropriate educational systems will need to change to meet the challenge.
Becoming part of a larger educative community will mean some new and even expanded roles for education. The basic purpose of educational institutions will still be improvement of the society, community, and individual. However, this might mean that in addition to classroom instruction, some teachers will become change agents, some will become specialists in certain curricular areas (such as science, math, computer science, career counseling, and family life education), some will work to improve relations with the community, and others will work at developing community leadership. For example, in Flint, Michigan, many traditional community school directors are now called community education agents and they are responsible for designated advocacy areas, such as parent involvement, health, academic support, and neighborhood development and safety.
Educational programs will not forsake learning as an objective, as a community's development is largely dependent on education. But, educational systems, like the Flint, Michigan example, could use their knowledge bases and professionals' skills on various community improvement tasks involving educational institutions, personnel, students, and community residents. Education, then, reaches into every corner of the community, touches every citizen, rejuvenates community pride, and serves as a facilitating agent in helping people to help themselves.
What is needed as educational personnel and residents strive to more fully use the entire community? A crucial need is learning how to communicate with all elements of the community. This means educational officials know how to communicate with students and community residents from a variety of socio-economic backgrounds. It also means that community residents are encouraged to communicate their problems and needs to educators. Chapter Five discusses communication needs in greater detail.
Another need is to bring together all the learning forces and factors available for purposes of teaching, learning, and problem-solving. An important aspect of this need is to learn how to use all talents and skills of educators in a community, rather than assign them only to traditional institutional tasks. Educators may need to be trained to be more aware of the community, to survey community needs, and to deal with community and societal change. (Chapter Eight examines some of the teacher-training needs associated with the educative community concept.) Why couldn't an English teacher from a nearby university, for example, become involved with the development of a reading program for senior citizens or in the running of a writing clinic? Why couldn't a high school science teacher help some local industry in their pollution control efforts? Why can't a university computer specialist coordinate a project to teach senior citizens in the community how to operate and use home computers? Such talent exchanges and uses have already been tried in a few communities and the results have been very positive.
Release time from traditional assignments and some increased financial support will be required for such people to play three important
roles in the educative community: Instructor, curriculum developer (using some of the resources of the community to develop curriculum in specific content areas), and liaison with the community. However, by getting out into the community as a liaison or to develop educational curricula, the educator will learn more about the community and, thereby, be able to improve individual endeavors for the institution.
Parents of children in the K-12 schools, too, can play an important part in activating the educative community. Parents who are not involved, who do not know what is taking place in the school, certainly have little opportunity to reinforce what it is doing with their children. Parents and other citizens can help plan educational curricula. Parents can be taught how to use the community and its services for supplementing their children's education. A greater involvement of parents in the educational process through existing or new organizations will hopefully raise their aspirations and leadership skills, and in turn, positively affect their children.
There are several agencies or organizations in most communities that deserve special mention here and should be encouraged to play a larger role in the educative community. Proprietary schools, libraries, museums, and such media as newspapers, radio, and television are those common to most communities. Their contributions could become more explicit, systematic, and extensive. The community college and vocational/technical institutions also should be mentioned. Community college and vocational institutions are located in many communities, and they often have outreach efforts to many nearby communities or suburbs. Their function potentially can, and often does, go far beyond the central campus or training site. In addition to the facilities and staff available to the local community and frequent cooperative ventures with local schools, many such institutions are making in increased effort to provide a variety of services to community.
Churches, too, can play an important educational role beyond religious training or alternative school opportunities. For example, churches can provide weekend retreats for engaged or married couples where an exploration of family life relationships take place. Churches also can serve as sites for, and provide the leadership on, discussions by teenagers of drug problems, sexuality, and inter-family relationships. Many churches also have extensive adult education programs; some of these could be extended to other than church members if they are not already so designed.
In this chapter an attempt has been made to build the case that the entire community is potentially a living, learning laboratory. Most communities have available every type of building or facility needed for educational or training purposes. In addition, in almost every community people reside with the talents and knowledge necessary to meet the curricular and teaching needs of most educational institutions.
Learners could go out to all parts of the community where various facilities can be shared, resource persons can be utilized, and most importantly, scarce financial support for education can be used as efficiently as possible. Focussing on K-12 education for some specific suggestions of an ideal setting, the following could be used as "extensions" of schooling sites:
Appendix 2-B gives various examples of supplemental experiences for different curricular areas.
Many of the suggestions made in this chapter are already being attempted in some communities. The selected bibliography contains several sources that highlight some successful instances. The community education movement of the past three decades has had a great deal to do with this awakening about most communities' potential as educational resources. The next chapter describes the community school, a vehicle of community education used by many communities to activate the educative community and to facilitate finding resources necessary for this activation.
Adult Education -- The relationship between an adult student and an educational facilitator trained to work with adult learners. The facilitator provides the learner with specialized information, learning experiences, or reference to resource materials. Frequently, such direction is based on learner-generated assessment of need.
Community Education -- This can be thought of as a way of viewing education in a locality, a means by which people, their problems, and community resources are central to designing an educational program. The traditional role of a school is expanded to one of identifying needs, problems, and concerns of the community and then assisting in the development and utilization of programs toward improving the entire community.
Community School -- A site serving as a center for community education. Sometimes referred to as the "lighted school house," the community school attempts to facilitate education to all groups of people at all times of the day and year.
Continuing Education -- Often referred to in connection or synonymous with adult education, the term has come to mean for many the extension of higher education programs to adult students.
Educative Community -- A community which is seen to be or is used as a learning laboratory in some manner. In this book the concept is associated with the notion of activation or facilitation of learning by an educational agent where some community resource, part, or agency is used to supplement the educational experience.
Self-Directed Learning -- A learning activity that is self-directed, self initiated, and frequently carried out alone.
Training -- Usually associated with non-school activities except for occupational/vocational training, this concept refers to the enhancement of work-related skills, knowledge, and attitudes. The setting can be in or out of the work place.
1. Examine the educational program existing in your community. Are there community education programs? Are there adult education programs?
2. What is the status of "local control" of educational decision-making in your community? Is it different for public K-12 schooling in comparison to private K-12 schooling? For community colleges or other higher education institutions? For vocational/technical education systems?
3. In California, Florida, and some other locations there are movements to have Spanish be the primary language of instruction at the K-12 level of schooling in certain programs. How would such changes affect education? How would they affect American society?
4. Determine some ways the "educative community" is activated in your locality. What other ways are possible or needed?
5. Plan, develop, and implement some activity to activate the educative community. An example might be a doctor including holistic health recommendations with monthly billings, a telephone company advertising community adult education opportunities in monthly mailings, or a local gardening store cooperating with the County Extension office to set up periodic displays on horticulture.
6. Using your community as a base of reference, list as many adult training or continuing education programs (industry, medical agencies, churches, higher education, community agencies, etc.) you either know of, have had experience with, or have heard operates in some fashion.
7. Develop a list of learning resources available in the educative community for people of all ages.
Adult Education Quarterly (formerly Adult Education). Published four times a year by the American Association of Adult and Continuing Education. A variety of research issues related to adult
education are addressed. Book reviews and forum pieces are included in each issue.
Adult Learning (formerly Lifelong Learning: An Omnibus of Practice and Research). Published eight times a year by the American Association of Adult and Continuing Education. Contains a number of practically written articles related to adult education issues. Frequently covers subjects related to adult education at the community level. Includes special features or departments each issue.
Anderson, T. R., & Jeffrey, J. (1992). Restructuring schools with the forgotten solution: Community education. In L. E. Decker & V. A. Romney (Eds.), Educational restructuring and the community education process. Alexandria, VA: National Community Education Association. This chapter describes various principles of community education that need to be implemented.
Beyond the Commission Reports: The coming crises in teaching. (1984). New York: Rand Corporation. This is a 19 page report of a Rand corporation study. The organization also calls for a sharp rise in average teachers salaries.
Boone, E. J., Shearon, R. W., & White, E. E. (1980). Serving personal and community needs through adult education. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 338 pages. Index. References. This book is divided into five major parts. Chapters cover such topics as education for the aging, women's education, adult basic education, and education for handicapped adults. One chapter is devoted to community education for community development.
Boyd, R. D., Apps, J. W., & Associates. (1980). Redefining the discipline of adult education. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 219 pages. Index. References. The first two authors present a conceptual model for adult education and the remainder of the book is devoted to presenting examples of learning within the model's framework. The community as educational setting is a major element of the model.
Brandwein, P. F. (1981). Memorandum: On renewing schooling and education. New York: Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich. 308 pages. Index. Bibliography. The author discusses how a community and a school are inextricably linked in meeting needs of the young. Curriculum, instruction, and evaluation are some of the issues discussed within this context.
Brockett, R. G., & Hiemstra, R. (1991). Self-direction in adult learning: Perspectives on theory, research, and practice. New York: Routledge. 276 pages. Index. The authors have pulled together an up-to-date accumulation of research related to self-directed learning. Chapters cover such topics as how to use the information for instruction, creating policy, and working with special groups. An appendix is included with an annotated bibliography pertaining to andragogy.
Brookfield, S. (1984). Adult learners, adult education, and the community. New York: Teachers College Press. 229 pages. Index. References. The author talks about adult learning groups in the community, research on adult learning in the community, and community adult education. The individual mode and group modes of learning also are discussed. Examples from several countries are provided throughout the book.
Brookfield, S. D. (Ed.). (1985). Self-directed learning (New Directions for Continuing Education, No. 25). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 94 pages. Index. This sourcebook summarizes much of the research, theory, and knowledge related to self-directed learning.
Brookfield, S. (1993). Community adult education: A conceptual analysis. Adult Education Quarterly, 33, 154-160. This article discusses various concepts of community in light of several theoretical perspectives. A conceptual typology involving adult education for the community, in the community, and of the community is presented.
Bull, B. L. (1984). Liberty and the new localism: Toward an evaluation of the trade-off between educational equity and local control of schools. Educational Theory, 21, 61-69. A discussion of the Reagan administration stance on local control of education.
Candy, P. C. (1991). Self-direction for lifelong learning: A comprehensive guide to theory and practice. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 567 pages. Name index. Subject index. This book traces the roots of self-direction in learning and explores the numerous ways it manifests itself in various parts of educational processes. Fifteen chapters are included covering a variety of topics, ranging from learner control to promoting self-directed learning skills.
Citizen Action in Education. Published twice yearly by the Institute for Responsive Education, Boston. This periodical publishes information about citizen participation and involvement in education.
Clinchy, E. (1991). America 2000: Reform, revolution, or just more smoke and mirrors? Phi Delta Kappan, 73, 210-218. The author suggests that the plan has problems in terms of funding strategies and mandated requirements.
Cohen, A. M, & Brawer, F. B. (1989). The American community college (2nd Edition). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 445 pages. Index. References. Annotated Bibliography. The book focuses primarily on the period from 1965-1988 when community colleges were undergoing considerable change and growth. Chapters cover a variety of topics. Chapter 10 on community education and community services is a useful one.
Community College Review. Published quarterly by the Department of Adult and Community College Education, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC. Articles are published on all aspects of community college operation, research, and programs.
Community Development Journal. Published quarterly by the Oxford University Press. It publishes articles on such topics as community studies, community power, and community development.
Corner, T. E. (Ed.). (1990). Learning opportunities for adults. New York: Routledge. 238 pages. References within each chapter. Utilizing the expertise of 15 authors from various parts of the world, a useful description of learning opportunities for adults in various countries is presented. Included are various case studies of adult, community, and non-formal education.
Cross, K. P. (1981). Adults as learners. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 300 pages. Index. References. Appendices. The author develops a conceptual framework, "Characteristics of Adults as Learners," for understanding the involvement of adults in learning. She also discusses a variety of theories related to adult motivation, adult participation, and facilitating adult learning.
Cross, K. P., Valley, J. R., & Associates. (1976). Planning non-traditional programs. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 264 pages. Subject index. Name index. Appendices. Based on a study of non-traditional adult learning in the U.S., seven chapters are provided. New ideas for community adult education are described.
Cryan, J. R., & Surbeck, E. (1979). Early childhood education: Foundations for lifelong learning. Bloomington, IN: Phi Delta Kappa Educational Foundation. 62 pages. Bibliography. Contact persons and agencies. A variety of pre-school models are described in relation to their promotion of lifelong learning skills.
Davies, D., & Zerchykov, R. (1979). Citizen participation in education: Annotated bibliography. Boston: Institute for Responsive Education. 397 pages. Geographical, topical, and author indices. Some 834 annotated references are provided on the topic of citizen participation in educational institutions and settings.
Galbraith, M. W. (Ed.). (1992). Education in the rural American community: A lifelong process. Malabar: Krieger. 398 pages. Index. References. Appendix. Drawing on the expertise of some leaders in rural education, this book presents a practical framework for understanding lifelong education and how various formal and nonformal educational organizations in the rural community enhances this process.
Gillis, C. (1992). The community as classroom: Integrating school and community through language arts. Portsmouth, NH: Boynton/Cook Publishers. 186 pages. References. The book presents ideas on how to use the language arts in integrating or promoting the use of the community for school activities.
Grant, C. A. (Ed.). (1979). Community participation in education. Boston: Allyn and Bacon, Inc. 262 pages. Author index. Subject index. Fourteen chapters by various authors make up this book. Community control, parent involvement, and community participation in education are the main themes. A chapter on community education is included.
Hameyer, U. (1979). School curriculum in the context of lifelong learning. Hamburg: UNESCO Institute for Education. 112 pages. Bibliography. The author provides five chapters in support of the contention that school curriculum is a major influence on lifelong learning skills and attitudes. The essential functions of the curriculum are discussed.
Heath, S. B. (1983). Ways with words. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 421 pages. Index. Bibliography. An interesting presentation of several communities and the influence each has on learning. Relationships between home, community, and school are discussed.
Herber, H. L. (1978). Teaching reading in content areas. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice- Hall, Inc. 316 pages. Index. Appendices. The author presents ten chapters discussing the need for specialized reading instruction in the content areas. Content is shown as a vehicle for learning. Reaction guides are provided throughout the book.
Hickey, H. W., Vanvoorhees, C., & Associates. (1972). The role of the school in community education. Midland, MI: Pendell Publishing Company. 133 pages. Selected bibliography. The book discusses the organization, staffing, program planning, financing, facilities, and evaluating required for a community education program centered on the community school. It is written for teachers, students, school officials, and parents.
Hiemstra, R. (1974). Educating parents in the use of the community. Adult Leadership, 23(9), 85-88. A description of the various ways a parent can supplement education by using available community resources.
Hiemstra, R. (1980). Adult and community education: Mobilizing the resources of the city. In W. F. Spikes (Ed.), The university and the inner city, a redefinition of relationships. Lexington, MA: D. C. Heath and Company. This chapter describes the relationships between adult and community education, why a person should study the community, and the future of community education.
Hiemstra R. (1984). Lifelong Learning. Baldwinsville, NY: HiTree Press, rerelease. 114 pages. Study stimulators and selected bibliography after each chapter. This book explores adult and continuing education within a setting of lifelong learning needs. There are eight chapters on such topics as the societal role of adult and continuing education, the field's clientele, programs, and professionals, and research in adult education. One chapter is devoted to the community and adult education. A 1976 edition was published by Professional Educators Publications, Lincoln, NE.
Hiemstra, R. (Ed.) (1991). Creating environments for effective adult learning (New Directions for Adult and Continuing Education, No. 50). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 103 pages. Index. The editor has pulled together a team of nine scholars who contribute 10 chapters on various topics pertaining to adult learning environments. Considerable how to do it information is included.
Hiemstra, R., & Sisco, B. (1990). Individualizing instruction: Making learning personal, empowering, and successful. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 304 pages. Name index. Subject index. The authors present a six-stage model for individualizing the instructional process based on their years of experience and scholarship related to teaching adults. Chapters describe how to carry out each step. In addition, a large resource section presents both practical examples and research findings related to the individualizing process.
Hodgkinson, H. (1991a). Beyond the schools. How schools and communities must collaborate to solve the problems facing America's youth. Arlington, VA: American Association of School Administrators and National School Boards Association. 43 pages. This publication describes some of the problems faced by children and the role that education must play to promote their well-being.
Hodgkinson, H. (1991b). School reform vs. reality. Phi Delta Kappan, 73(1), 9-16. In this article the author describes America's children as an endangered species. He depicts various of the ways for dealing with a whole host of educational problems. An entire issue of the Phi Delta Kappan (January, 1991) is devoted to the role of parent involvement in meeting some of these problems.
Howe, H., II. (1991). America 2000: Bumpy ride on four trains. Phi Delta Kappan, 73, 192-203. This article describes the plan as a rhetorical masterpiece with minimal public input and maximum government interference.
Ilsley, P. J., & Niemi, J. A. (1981). Recruiting and training volunteers. New York: McGraw-Hill. 150 pages. Index. Bibliography. Appendices. This book examines voluntarism within a context of adult education. The authors describe how to recruit individuals into volunteer activities and how to plan future educational programs that incorporate volunteers. The book also describes the roles and responsibilities of the volunteer coordinator and presents some information on various leadership styles that can be utilized.
International Journal of Lifelong Education. Published four times a year by Palmer Press, Barcombe, UK. The journal presents a wide variety of articles pertaining to adult, community, and lifelong education.
Irwin, M., & Russell, W. (1971). The community is the classroom. Midland, MI: Pendell Publishing Company. 131 pages. Bibliography. The authors have documented examples and experiences that show various possibilities for utilizing the community as an open classroom. Chapters center on developing community-centered curriculum. Teachers, administrators, and concerned parents are the book's intended audience.
Judy, S. N. (1980). The ABCs of literacy. New York: Oxford University Press. 361 pages. Index. Bibliography. Several chapters on literacy instruction are provided. The final section contains three sections on literacy, language, and community-based activities. Several useful project ideas are presented.
Kerensky, V. M. (1989). The sovereign: New perspectives on people, power, and public education. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company. 119 pages. Bibliography. The author describes some of the failures of schools to meet the needs of children. He offers some suggestions on what should be done and builds many ideas on community education principles.
Kerensky, V. M., & Melby, E. O. (1971). Education II-the social imperative. Midland, MI: Pendell Publishing Company. 192 pages. Bibliography. Centering on the challenges of education in the urban community and with the disadvantaged, the authors propose that education for all people is feasible and possible, provided the resources and knowledge already available are better utilized. The authors also examine the appropriateness of various community resources.
Kerns, M., & Stanley, M. (1982). Building community partnerships through community education. Minneapolis, MN: Department of Education, Community Education Section. 63 pages. Appendices. This booklet describes a project in Minnesota to promote community partnerships of various types. Includes several examples.
Leean, C., & Sisco, B. (1981). Learning projects and self-planned learning efforts among undereducated adults in rural Vermont. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. 227 322.). 357 pages. An NIE funded adult learning project report describing an 18 month study of the ways adults learn in rural settings. The majority of learning efforts were found to be self-planned. A variety of recommendations are presented.
Long, H. B., & Associates. (1991). Self-directed learning: Consensus & conflict. Norman, OK: Oklahoma Research Center for Continuing Professional and Higher Education, University of Oklahoma. 296 pages. References contained at the end of chapters. This book is based primarily on the Fourth International Symposium on Adult Self-Directed Learning in that various symposium presenters were invited to develop their presentations into chapters. There are 16 chapters involving 20 authors. Numerous topics related to self-directed learning are covered.
Long, H. B., & Associates. (1992). Self-directed learning: Application and research. Norman, OK: Oklahoma Research Center for Continuing Professional and Higher Education, University of Oklahoma. 400 pages. References contained at the end of chapters. This book is a product of the Fifth International Symposium on Adult Self-Directed Learning in that various symposium presenters were invited to develop their presentations into chapters. There are 23 chapters involving 33 authors. Numerous topics related to self-directed learning are covered.
Lovett, T., Clarke, C., & Kilmurray, A. (1983). Adult education and community action: Adult education and popular social movements. London: Croom Helm. 163 pages. References. The author has written this book as part of a radical forum on adult education series. Adult education, the community, and schools in Great Britain are some of the topics covered.
Lutz, F. W., & Merz, C. (1992). The politics of school/community relations. New York: Teachers College Press. 205 pages. Bibliography. Index. The authors describe the relationship of community and school in the United States. Some political implications are included.
McClure, L., Cook, S. C., & Thompson, V. (1978). Experience-based learning: How to make the community your classroom. Portland, OR: Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory. 246 pages. Index. Appendices. The authors present six chapters describing how to involve students with community-related learning activities. Such techniques as journals, community analysis, and student projects are discussed.
Merriam, S. B., & Caffarella, R. S. (1991). Learning in adulthood. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 376 pages. Name index. Subject index. In the book the authors pull together all the latest scholarship pertaining to adult learning. The context and environment of adult learning, the adult as learner, the learning process, building a theoretical base for adult learning, and challenges in fostering adult learning make up major sections for the book's 16 chapters.
Merriam, S. B., & Cunningham, P. M. (Eds.). (1989). Handbook of adult and continuing education. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 718 pages. Name index. Subject index. This mammoth book attempts to pull together the latest information on the entire field of adult education. Seventy-one authors contribute to the work with 48 chapters covering a vast array of topics. A final resource section displays the contents of all previous handbooks pertaining to adult education.
MPAEA Journal of Adult Education. Published twice yearly by the Mountain Plains Adult Education Association, Laramie, WY. The journal presents a wide variety of articles on theory to practice in adult education.
National Commission On Excellence In Education. (1983). A nation at risk. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. 65 pages. Several Appendices. A discussion of an analysis by the commission on the current status of education in America. Five major recommendations for improvement are included.
O'Hanlin, J., & Hiemstra, R. (1975). The educator as community resource. Contemporary Education, 46, 127-130. This article explores various ways in which teachers can serve the local community.
Olsen, E. G. (1963). The school and community reader: Education in perspective. New York: The Macmillan Company. 523 pages. Index. Sources. A collection of readings on the practice, methods, and theory dealing with school and community. This book covers topics dealing with the use of community resources, meeting the community's needs, working with community leaders, and developing the education-centered community.
Penland, P. (1979). Self-initiated learning. Adult Education, 29, 170-179. A description of a national study in the United States of self-initiated and self-planned learning. Involvement in self-initiated learning projects was found in 76 percent of the respondents. See also Penland, P. R. (1978). Self-planned learning in America. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 152 987.)
Peters, J. M., Jarvis, P., & Associates. (1991). Adult education: Evolution and achievements in a developing field of study. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 491 pages. Name index. Subject index. This book provides information on the development of adult education as a field of study for the past 30 years. Eighteen authors contribute 16 chapters over various topics. The field's development, multidisciplinary dimensions of adult education, and forces and trends shaping the future make up the book's major sections.
Peterson, R. E., & Associates. (1979). Lifelong learning in America. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 532 pages. Subject index. Name index. References. This large volume provides information on a wide range of lifelong learning policies, programs, and resources. Chapters are on such topics as characteristics of adult learners, local community programs, state-wide policies, and information resources.
The Responsive Community. Published four times a year by the Center for Policy Research, George Washington University. The journal presents a wide variety of articles of relevance to those interested in various aspects of community.
Salisbury, R. H. (1980). Citizen participation in the public schools. Lexington, MA: Lexington books. 218 pages. Index. The author provides several community examples of how citizens have participated in the schools. The impact of such participation, participant conceptions of participation, and some of the effects are also described.
Sisco, B. (1983). The undereducated: Myth or reality. Lifelong Learning: The Adult Years, 6(4), 15-16, 24, 26. This article describes some of the illiteracy problems in the United States and presents three educational myths. A study of rural adults serves as a basis for the information.
Spikes, W. F. (Ed.). (1980). The university and the inner city, a redefinition of relationships. Lexington, MA: Lexington Books. 192 pages. Index. Nine chapters are included on such topics as establishing an urban commuter university, lifelong learning, cooperative education, and a university in partnership with the community. There also is a chapter on the connection between adult and community education.
Stevenson, H. W. (1984). Article entitled U.S. pupils trails Japan's, Taiwan's from 1st school day, authored by Edward B. Fiske, Syracuse Herald Journal, June 13, pages 1 & 8. Stevenson and several colleagues completed a study through the University of Michigan's Center for Human Growth and Development in which pupils in the three countries were compared.
Sumption, M. R., & Engstrom, Y. (1966). School community relations: A new approach. New York: McGraw-Hill. 238 pages. Index. Appendix. This book attempts to treat the community as an active participant with the school in education. The community's role in educational endeavors, how the school and community work together, and the school in the power structure are some topics covered.
Totten, W. F. (1970). The power of community education. Midland, MI: Pendell Publishing Company. 168 pages. Index. Bibliography. This book is designed primarily for teachers and administrators wishing for a broad overview of community education theory and how it can be used to solve various community problems. Included are case examples to illustrate the various topics.
Totten, W. F., & Manley, F. J. (1970). The community education concept and nature and function of the community school. Flint, MI: W. Fred Totten, 1810 Ramsay Boulevard. 74 pages. The authors provide basic information about the community education movement and provide some useful examples or models.
Tough, A. (1979). The adult's learning projects (2nd Edition). Austin, TX: Learning concepts. 207 pages. References. Appendices. This book describes the author's pioneering work in studying adult learning activity. A major result of this study was the discovery of a heavy learning involvement and a preference for self-directed learning.
U. S. Department of Education. (1991). America 2000: An education strategy. Washington, DC: U. S. Department of Education. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 327 009). 52 pages. A description of the strategy for education in the United States and what is hoped will be achieved by the year 2000. A revised edition with 65 pages in the ERIC system is ED 332 380 and an 82 page supporting sourcebook in the ERIC system is ED 327 985.
U. S. students still trail in math; parents show little concern. (1993). Syracuse Herald-Journal, January 1, A7.
Van Til, W. (1971). Curriculum: Quest for relevance. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company. 390 pages. Index. Forty-six chapters by a variety of authors discuss some of the future needs of curriculum in preparing people for a lifetime of learning.
Van Til, W. (1978). Secondary education: School and community. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company. 402 pages. Index. Discussion. Suggestions for further readings are included at the end of each of the 12 chapters. Several of the chapters contain discussion on combining school and community participation in educational activities.
Voices from the field: 30 expert opinions on America 2000, the Bush Administration strategy to "reinvent" America's schools. (1991). Washington, DC: William T. Grant Foundation Commission on Work, Family, and Citizenship and Institute for Educational Leadership. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 336 823). 65 pages. Various leaders discuss the pros and cons of the America 2000 plan.
Wallat, C., & Goldman, R. (1979). Home, school & community interaction. Columbus, OH: Charles E. Merrill Publishing Company. 232 pages. Bibliography. Appendices. The authors discuss several community development studies and some theory related to community development. A section is included on the role of parents as educators.
Wood, G. S., Jr., & Carmichael, L. D. (Eds.). (1981). Its name is community education. Muncie, IN: Ball State University, Institute for Community Development. 399 pages. Index. Resources list. The book is based on a federally funded project. It presents a description of the community education structure in 17 communities representing a wide variety of application models. The types of services, administrative structures, funding patterns, involvement of citizens, and interagency collaboration efforts are some of those covered in each case presentation.
Appendix 2-A: Knowing Your Community
Ideas and sources for this section come from the author's teaching experiences and from Hiemstra, 1980 (see the selected bibliography).
A graduate course taught by the author regarding community is entitled "Community and the Adult Educator." The course is intended to upgrade participants' knowledge and skill in working with a variety of community-based educational programs. The following activities make up the heart of the course:
1. The development of a personalized planning model or series of planning steps for utilization in subsequent community programming efforts, social change efforts, or collective action.
2. The identification of a variety of social, educational, and economic indicators available for studying a community.
3. The development of an approach for studying a community, assessing community needs, determining potential educational resources, and creating needed educational programs.
4. The analysis of a community, its vertical and horizontal pulls, and its strengths and weaknesses.
5. The completion of a power structure analysis of a community, including identification of the primary power figures.
6. Critical discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of the community education movement both in the United States and in other countries.
7. Critical discussion of the implications of rapid social change for the development of community and adult education programs.
Appendix 2-B: Supplemental Community Experience Possibilities
Ideas for this section come from Hiemstra (1974) and Totten and Manley (1970)
1. A community-wide book fair is held to encourage reading and the use of books.
2. Interested learners meet periodically in the home of a Spanish-speaking family for purposes of conversational Spanish and examining another culture.
3. The public library promotes a greater use of books and media to encourage and establish habits toward a continuing practice of self-inquiry.
4. A university language arts professor teaches one or more courses a year at a local public school.
1. Parents and students develop a basement laboratory to supplement and encourage learning about the sciences.
2. Several parents volunteer to work in the schools microcomputer lab to teach computing skills. The school, in turn, opens the lab during non-school hours to community citizens.
3. A 4-H leader organizes a rocketry project for 4-H members and other interested young people.
4. Students and teachers regularly visit local science-related industries to examine an application of science principles and techniques.
5. Selected educators, scientists, engineers, and medical professionals coordinate a "science for peace" fair.
Music and Art
1. Parents and students are encouraged to participate together in community bands, choirs, or art classes to create a greater interest in, and appreciation for, music or art.
2. Students and volunteer senior citizens attend community concerts or art shows together to enhance an interest in music or art and to promote better understanding between the generations.
Health, Safety, and Recreation
1. Parents and students plan and carry out some local ecology or drug education project.
2. Family life study courses are developed for parents to help them better understand how to reinforce learning in the home.
3. A community campaign on safe driving or the problems of driving and alcohol is organized by interested citizens, medical officials, and law enforcement officers.
4. Parents and older teens assist with sight, hearing, and/or other medical examinations of children and adults to better understand various health needs.
5. Parents volunteer to coach, organize, and run various after-school athletic programs.
6. Several interested citizens volunteer to serve a weekly meal to senior citizens thereby freeing up the director to carry out some simultaneous educational programs.
Social Studies/Career Education
1. A course centered on "Understanding Our Community" is developed by a college professor for joint participation by parents and high school students to help them learn how the community and schools both educate people.
2. A teen traffic court is established to give students some practical knowledge and experience with court procedures.
3. Several social studies high school teachers agree to teach some non-credit courses in their specialty area to participants in the local senior citizen center.
1. A program on family life and human relationships is sponsored by the community council of churches. The program participants are engaged or young married couples and the resource personnel are various church and school professionals.
2. A breakfast program for low-income students is combined with programs for low-income elderly and implemented by homemaking students and their parents.
3. Such activities as clothing selection/construction or food/nutrition projects for both child and parent are organized and administered by the public school's homemaking instructors.
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-- Go to Information about the author, -- Go to the Preface, Chapter One, Chapter Three, Chapter Four, Chapter Five, Chapter Six, Chapter Seven, Chapter Eight, or the Index