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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Equal educational opportunity and considerations of student interests: the basis on which public schools… Karmel, Joe 1998

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EQUAL EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITY AND CONSIDERATIONS OF STUDENT INTERESTS: THE BASIS ON WHICH PUBLIC SCHOOLS PROCEED by JOE KARMEL B . P . E . , The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , 1981 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTERS OF ARTS i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES Centre f o r the Study of C u r r i c u l u m and I n s t r u c t i o n We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming to the r e q u i r e d s t a n d a r d THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA A p r i l 1998 © Joe K a r m e l , 1998 04/17/98 FRI 14:22 FAX 604 822 4714 UBC EDUC CUST El 002 in presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. degree at the University of British Columbia. I agree that the Library shall make it Department of fV.oA-ve f o f - tW fAuAu of C v > r r V C o l A Xf\s-Vrv>cAVor\ The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada DE-6 (2/88) ABSTRACT A d i f f i c u l t y i n a c h i e v i n g equa l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y i n the p u b l i c s c h o o l system i s tha t t h e r e has been a tendency among e d u c a t i o n a l p l a n n e r s to confuse the n o t i o n of e q u a l i t y w i t h that o f sameness, to the ex tent t h a t s c h o o l s tend to o f f e r i d e n t i c a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s r a t h e r than e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s . The promot ion of an approach which aims to s t a n d a r d i z e t e a c h i n g p r a c t i c e s and s tudent programmes, stems from an i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of e q u a l i t y which c o n s i d e r s tha t c o n d i t i o n s of equa l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y are a t t a i n e d when the same c o n d i t i o n s e x i s t f o r everyone . L a c k i n g i n t h i s approach , however, i s any c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f i n d i v i d u a l s tudent i n t e r e s t s , a c o n s i d e r a t i o n wherein the i n t e n t i o n a l s t r i v i n g o f s tudents to a c h i e v e e q u a l access to the r e s o u r c e s t h a t promote academic achievement has e s s e n t i a l l y been o v e r l o o k e d i n the j u d g i n g of e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y . i i i TABLE OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT i i TABLE OF CONTENTS i i i LIST OF TABLES v i ACKNOWLEDGMENTS v i i CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION 1 Statement of the Problem 3 Research Q u e s t i o n 4 Purpose and Focus of the T h e s i s 5 A p p l i c a t i o n s and L i m i t a t i o n s o f the Study 8 CHAPTER TWO: BACKGROUND AND RATIONALE FOR THE STUDY 11 The B a s i s on Which Schoo l s Proceed 13 I f Everyone Were Al lowed to Succeed 15 The R i g h t To Cho ice In E d u c a t i o n 19 The P r i n c i p l e Of C o n f e r r e d B e n e f i t s 22 Summary 25 CHAPTER THREE: INTERPRETING EQUAL EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITY 27 The Input and Output I n t e r p r e t a t i o n s 27 A l e x a n d e r ' s T h e o r y : M a x i m i z a t i o n o f B e n e f i t s 29 D w o r k i n 1 s T h e o r y : P r e f e r r e d P r o v i s i o n o f Resources 30 i v Frankena's Theory: R e l a t i v e D i s t r i b u t i o n 30 Coomb's Theory: E q u a l Access t o the Eq u a l D i s t r i b u t i o n o f Resources 31 Summary 32 CHAPTER FOUR: CONDITIONS LACKING, CONDITIONS OVERLOOKED 35 L e g i s l a t i v e I n t e r v e n t i o n : The C o s t s and B e n e f i t s 35 The L i m i t i n g of Student O p t i o n s 37 C o e r c i v e Attendance 38 The S e l e c t i o n of Student Programmes 41 I n t e n t i o n a l S t r i v i n g 42 Summary 46 CHAPTER FIVE: QUESTIONING WHAT IS TAKEN FOR GRANTED 48 The O r d e r i n g o f Knowledge 53 Summary 58 CHAPTER SIX: The C i r c u m s t a n c e s of Change 60 C o n s i d e r a t i o n s o f I n t e r e s t and P r o d u c t i v e L e a r n i n g 64 Summary 68 V CHAPTER SEVEN: LEARNING BY INTEREST: AN ALTERNATIVE TO THE STANDARDIZED CURRICULUM 70 The S t r u c t u r e of P u b l i c . S c h o o l s 70 The Road t o I t h i c a : A l t e r i n g S c h o o l S t r u c t u r e s 74 Those With Whom We Share the L e a r n i n g Environment 75 From Theory t o P r a c t i c e : A F i v e Year P l a n 80 ...and a l l the World's a Stage 81 Do a l l Roads Lead t o Rome? 89 Programme C o m p a t i b i l i t y 97 E d u c a t i o n and F u t u r e C a r e e r O p p o r t u n i t i e s 105 Summary 108 CHAPTER EIGHT: CONCLUSION: WHAT IS AND WHAT OUGHT TO BE 110 What Ought To Be 116 BIBLIOGRAPHY 120 APPENDIX 1: The U n i v e r s a l D e c l a r a t i o n o f Human R i g h t s 128 APPENDIX 2: P u l l i n g the p l u g on ap p e a l s t o i r r a t i o n a l i t y , i m m a t u r i t y and ex p e d i e n c y 129 V I I ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I would l i k e t o thank my t h e s i s committee f o r t h e i r combined e f f o r t s throughout the w r i t i n g o f t h i s paper; Dr. Inge Andreen f o r c h e e r f u l l y c o o r d i n a t i n g the many r e v i s i o n s t h a t were r e q u i r e d , and Drs. J e r r o l d Coombs and W a l t e r Werner f o r t h e i r thorough c r o s s e x a m i n a t i o n o f my work which made such r e v i s i o n s n e c e s s a r y . I would a l s o l i k e t o thank my f a t h e r f o r i n s p i r i n g i n me the n o t i o n t o q u e s t i o n what i s o f t e n t a k e n f o r g r a n t e d , and most o f a l l my d e a r e s t f r i e n d and c o l l e a g u e Nadine C r u i c k s h a n k s f o r p a t i e n t l y e n d u r i n g my arguments and c a u s i n g me t o c o n s t a n t l y re-examine my p o s i t i o n . 1. CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION Democrat i c s o c i e t i e s have set f o r themselves some v e r y a m b i t i o u s g o a l s . E s t a b l i s h i n g p r a c t i c e s that promote f a i r n e s s , e q u a l i t y , freedom, r e s p e c t f o r human r i g h t s and d i g n i t i e s , are indeed p r a i s e w o r t h y g o a l s towards which a t h o u g h t f u l and c a r i n g s o c i e t y ought to s t r i v e . And i n the a t ta inment o f these g o a l s a s o c i e t y r e l i e s upon the support and a s s i s t a n c e of the p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n sys tem. In t h i s p a r t n e r s h i p i t i s a f u n c t i o n of the s c h o o l s to t r a n s m i t the a t t i t u d e s , the v a l u e s , the b e l i e f s , and the a s p i r a t i o n s o f s o c i e t y to the younger members o f t h e i r communi t i e s . And no where does i t seem more important to r e i n f o r c e and promote these p r a c t i c e s than i n the p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n system, f o r i n h e r e n t i n these p r a c t i c e s i s the b e l i e f that " i n e q u i t a b l e e d u c a t i o n tends to i n c r e a s e i n e q u a l i t y of o p p o r t u n i t y to secure economic and s o c i a l goods, and d e p r i v e s s o c i e t y i n g e n e r a l of the b e n e f i t s that accrue when a l l members are a b l e to be f u l l p a r t i c i p a n t s and c o n t r i b u t o r s " (Coombs, 1994, p . 281) . I t i s , i n f a c t , a c o r o l l a r y o f t h i s s u p p o s i t i o n , that a l l o f s o c i e t y i n c r e a s i n g l y p r o f i t s and b e n e f i t s from e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y ( S t r i k e , 1 9 8 2 , pp . 1 5 7 - 1 5 9 ) , and a b e l i e f that p u b l i c s c h o o l s embody p r a c t i c e s of f a i r n e s s and e q u a l i t y o f o p p o r t u n i t y ( F u l l a n , 1 9 9 1 , p . 1 4 ) , whereby we j u s t i f y the l e g i s l a t i o n o f compulsory e d u c a t i o n . And to c o n t i n u e to support c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s on the b a s i s of these assumptions and b e l i e f s would be u n d e r s t a n d a b l e , were i t not f o r an abundance o f r e s e a r c h to suggest tha t the ends o f e x i s t i n g p r a c t i c e s do not r e s u l t i n the equa l d i s t r i b u t i o n o f e d u c a t i o n a l b e n e f i t s to a l l s t u d e n t s , but r a t h e r i n the g a i n i n g of advantages f o r a r e l a t i v e few (Bowles & G i n t i s , 1 9 7 6 ; B r u n e r , 1 9 7 1 ; Darl ing-Hammond, 1 9 9 3 ; F u l l a n , 1 9 9 1 ; G o o d l a d , 1 9 8 3 ; H o l t , 1 9 6 4 ; " H u m , 1 979 ; K i r k n e s s , 1 9 9 1 ; Noddings , 1 9 9 3 ; Ro land M a r t i n , 1 9 9 5 ) . And such ev idence does not support the e x i s t e n c e o f e d u c a t i o n which has as i t s ends the promot ion of e q u a l o p p o r t u n i t y f o r the b e n e f i t of the common good of s o c i e t y . For the c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f b e n e f i t s f o r the common good i s r e c o g n i z e d as c o n t r i b u t i n g to the m a j o r i t y and not a m i n o r i t y , and p r o v i s i o n s o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y must i n c l u d e b e n e f i t s f o r a l l and not j u s t some. Unless i t can be shown that the i n t e r e s t s of some are more important than the i n t e r e s t s o f o t h e r s , and tha t the success of a few w i l l p r o v i d e f o r an e q u a l d i s t r i b u t i o n of b e n e f i t s f o r a l l , we must then be concerned tha t the ends of c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s are v e r y much i n c o n t r a s t w i th the d e s i r e d g o a l s of p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n , and tha t we have perhaps o v e r l o o k e d some e s s e n t i a l e lements i n our c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n s of e q u a l i t y and hence e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y . Statement of the Problem The g o a l of p r o v i d i n g e q u a l o p p o r t u n i t y i n e d u c a t i o n i s an i n s p i r i n g n o t i o n , though the concept o f e q u a l i t y i s i t s e l f complex i f not w h o l l y t roub lesome . As e d u c a t i o n a l p h i l o s o p h e r K e n n i t h S t r i k e (1995) contends , maybe e q u a l i t y r e q u i r e s t r e a t i n g people d i f f e r e n t l y (p. 53 ) . And, i f t h i s apparent paradox i s i n f a c t v a l i d , then perhaps i n our a l t r u i s t i c and e g a l i t a r i a n e f f o r t s to educate a l l l e a r n e r s w i th the same c u r r i c u l u m , under the premise of e q u i t y and n o n d i s c r i m i n a t i o n , we have m i s t a k e n l y equated the n o t i o n o f e q u a l i t y f o r t h a t of sameness, thereby o f f e r i n g i d e n t i c a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s i n s t e a d of e q u a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s . I f t h i s were t r u e , then the r e c o g n i t i o n o f i n d i v i d u a l s tudent needs to which we c u r r e n t l y pay l i p s e r v i c e - the r i c h d i v e r s i t y of c u l t u r a l , e t h n i c , l i n g u i s t i c , and i n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s - would be f a c i l i t a t e d through the p r a c t i c e o f a s s i m i l a t i o n r a t h e r than through the proces s of accommodation. And i f t h i s were indeed the c a s e , then i t would a l s o h o l d t h a t presen t t e a c h i n g s t r a t e g i e s and a s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m may be at odds wi th our g o a l s f o r e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y . The Research Question I f e e l t h e r e i s s u f f i c i e n t reason to q u e s t i o n the d e s i r a b i l i t y o f c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s , as the j u s t i f i c a t i o n f o r compulsory e d u c a t i o n r e s t s l a r g e l y upon the s u p p o s i t i o n tha t e d u c a t i o n i s b e n e f i c i a l to a l l persons who r e c e i v e one. However, i f t h i s i s not the c a s e , and t h e r e appears to be c r e d i b l e ev idence to suggest t h a t t h i s i s so , t h a t i n f a c t c o n d i t i o n s o f equa l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y are v e r y much l a c k i n g i n our p u b l i c s c h o o l s to the extent tha t c u r r e n t p r a c t i c e s may a c t u a l l y c o n f e r upon some s t u d e n t s more harm than b e n e f i t , then i t i s r e a s o n a b l e f o r e d u c a t o r s to ask on what b a s i s p u b l i c s c h o o l s p r o c e e d , and to q u e s t i o n why we c o n t i n u e to t each what we t e a c h , i n the manner that we do? A c c o r d i n g l y , i n the f o l l o w i n g t h e s i s , I c r i t i c a l l y examine both the means and ends o f c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s as they r e l a t e to p r o v i s i o n s o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y , by p o s i n g the f o l l o w i n g r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n : How desirable are current practices in our efforts towards achieving the goal of equal educational opportunity through an equal distribution of educational benefits to all students? Purpose and Focus of the Thesis I t i s my i n t e n t i o n t o show t h a t t h e h a r m r e s u l t i n g f r o m e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s w h i c h s e r v e t o s u p p o r t a n d r e i n f o r c e a s y s t e m a t i c a l l y s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m w h o l l y o u t w e i g h s t h e p e r c e i v e d b e n e f i t s , a n d t h a t t h e l o n g a n d e s t a b l i s h e d p r a c t i c e o f d e n y i n g s t u d e n t s t h e o p p o r t u n i t y f o r m a k i n g m e a n i n g f u l a n d r e l e v a n t d e c i s i o n s a b o u t t h e i r e d u c a t i o n i s u n r e a s o n a b l e a n d u n j u s t , a n d a t o d d s w i t h o u r g o a l s f o r p r o v i s i o n s o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y , a s u l t i m a t e l y t h e e n d s o f s u c h p r a c t i c e s w i l l n o t b r i n g a b o u t a n e q u a l d i s t r i b u t i o n o f e d u c a t i o n a l b e n e f i t s t o a l l s t u d e n t s . I s h a l l s u p p o r t t h e a b o v e c l a i m s w i t h t h e d e v e l o p m e n t o f t w o a r g u m e n t s . I w i l l a r g u e f i r s t l y , t h a t i f e d u c a t i o n i s a b a s i c human r i g h t , a s a c k n o w l e d g e d i n t h e U n i v e r s a l D e c l a r a t i o n o f Human R i g h t s ( 1 9 4 8 , A r t i c l e 2 6 ) , a n d t h a t c e n t r a l t o o u r n o t i o n o f a human r i g h t i s t h e p r o m o t i o n o f t h e f r e e d o m t o p u r s u e o n e ' s own w i l l ( s e e A p p e n d i x 2 -C a s e , 1 9 8 5 , p . 4 5 2 ) a n d t h e m a x i m i z a t i o n o f o p p o r t u n i t i e s t o p r o m o t e p e o p l e ' s i n t e r e s t s ( P e t e r s , 1 9 6 6 , p . 1 7 9 ) , t h e n compulsory p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n a s y s t e m i c a l l y s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m n e c e s s a r i l y compromises a s t u d e n t ' s o p p o r t u n i t y f o r p u r s u i n g "the f u l l development of the human p e r s o n a l i t y " and "the s t r e n g t h e n i n g of r e s p e c t f o r human r i g h t s " t o which the u n i v e r s a l r i g h t t o e d u c a t i o n i s d i r e c t e d (see Appendix 1) . Under such c i r c u m s t a n c e s , I m a i n t a i n t h a t e x i s t i n g e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s must be c o n s i d e r e d u n j u s t , and a s e r i o u s i n f r i n g e m e n t o f the b a s i c r i g h t to e d u c a t i o n . I s h a l l argue s e c o n d l y , t h a t f u r t h e r l a c k i n g i n the s u p p o r t of a s y s t e m i c a l l y s t a n d a r d i z e d and mandatory c u r r i c u l u m , i s a r e a s o n a b l e j u s t i f i c a t i o n f o r the b a s i s on w h i c h s c h o o l s p r o c e e d t o demand t h a t s t u d e n t s s t u d y one t h i n g and not a n o t h e r . Even a c u r s o r y r e v i e w of the l i t e r a t u r e r e v e a l s e x t e n s i v e disagreement i n v i r t u a l l y e v e r y a r e a o f e d u c a t i o n a l r e s e a r c h and p r a c t i c e r e g a r d i n g how b e s t t o p r o c e e d , on what b a s i s , and t o what ends (Bowles & G i n t i s , 1976; B r u n e r , 1971; Darling-Hammond, 1993; Goodlad, 1984; H o l t , 1969; Hurn, 1979; K i r k n e s s , 1991; Noddings, 1995, J a n u a r y ; R o l a n d M a r t i n , 1995). As a s o c i e t y and a p r o f e s s i o n , i t would appear t h a t we p o s s e s s no s h a r e d and e p i s t e m o l o g i c a l agreement on the purpose of e d u c a t i o n , nor what knowledge or e x p e r i e n c e s a r e most n e c e s s a r y or most d e s i r a b l e beyond those of b a s i c l i t e r a c y , numeracy, and the a c q u i s i t i o n of s o c i a l s k i l l s . 7 . C o n s i d e r the q u e s t i o n s posed by A r i s t o t l e more than 2000 years ago and the reader w i l l f i n d tha t the same q u e s t i o n s s t i l l remain unanswered and v i r t u a l l y unchanged w i t h the passage of t i m e . In f a c t , so unchanged are the fundamental concerns o f e d u c a t o r s , the exact t ex t used by A r i s t o t l e c o u l d e a s i l y be p l a c e d on the agenda of a " 1 9 9 7 Forum on E d u c a t i o n " , at any symposium i n the w o r l d , w i thout c a u s i n g a n o t i c e a b l e d i f f e r e n c e . For these same i s s u e s are s t i l l the c e n t r a l concerns and focus o f c u r r e n t d i s c u s s i o n s i n e d u c a t i o n today: How young persons s h o u l d be e d u c a t e d , are q u e s t i o n s which remain to be c o n s i d e r e d . As t h i n g s a r e , there i s d i sagreement about the s u b j e c t s . For mankind are by no means agreed about the t h i n g s to be t a u g h t , whether we l o o k to v i r t u e or the best l i f e . N e i t h e r i s i t c l e a r whether e d u c a t i o n i s more concerned wi th i n t e l l e c t u a l or w i t h moral v i r t u e . The e x i s t i n g p r a c t i c e i s p e r p l e x i n g ; no one knows on what p r i n c i p l e we s h o u l d proceed - s h o u l d the u s e f u l i n l i f e , or sh ou ld v i r t u e , or s h o u l d the h i g h e r knowledge, be the aim of our t r a i n i n g ; a l l t h r e e o p i n i o n s have been e n t e r t a i n e d . ( A r i s t o t l e , 1 9 8 0 , p . 542) A f t e r I have g i v e n s u f f i c i e n t grounds f o r my t h e s i s , I w i l l then proceed to o u t l i n e the c o n c e p t u a l framework f o r an a l t e r n a t i v e s t r a t e g y which I f e e l w i l l h e l p to b r i n g about some s o l u t i o n s to the i s s u e s tha t have been r a i s e d , and to enhance c o n d i t i o n s f o r the e q u a l i t y of e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y to o b t a i n i n the p u b l i c s c h o o l sys tem. Applications and Limitations of the Study The f o l l o w i n g examinat ion i s n e c e s s a r i l y broad i n scope , f o r there i s much to be c o n s i d e r e d i n the p r o c e s s of i n c r e a s i n g our u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f what i t means to pursue e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y i n our s c h o o l sys tem. We c o u l d not engage i n meaningfu l d i s c u s s i o n wi thout c r o s s i n g over a grea t many s u b j e c t mat ters i n c l u d i n g : l o g i c , e t h i c s , r e a s o n , economics , p o l i t i c s , the s tudy of l i b e r a l and v o c a t i o n a l t r a i n i n g , nor wi thout g i v i n g some thought to the c o n s i d e r a t i o n s of change and i m p l e m e n t a t i o n , i n n o v a t i o n and p r o g r e s s , r i g h t s and o b l i g a t i o n s , democracy and the r i g h t s of c i t i z e n s , e q u a l i t y , d i v e r s i t y , r e s p e c t f o r p e r s o n s , freedom of c h o i c e , and the purpose o f e d u c a t i o n . My arguments a p p l y to p u b l i c s c h o o l s and p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n systems i n North Amer ica i n g e n e r a l , and t h e r e f o r e much of the f o l l o w i n g d i s c u s s i o n w i l l c e n t e r around g e n e r a l i z a t i o n s . However, as an e d u c a t o r , w i th e x p e r i e n c e i n s e v e r a l s c h o o l s and s c h o o l d i s t r i c t s , I know t h a t t h e r e a r e no two c las srooms a l i k e , l e t a lone a l i k e n e s s among s c h o o l s , s c h o o l d i s t r i c t s , and s c h o o l sys tems . Each i s a d i s t i n c t i v e microcosm w i t h i t s own set of c u l t u r a l v a l u e s , r u l e s , and codes o f conduct (Sarason, 1 982) . B u t , at the same t ime , there i s a l s o something r e c o g n i z a b l e about a l l s c h o o l s , i n a l l d i s t r i c t s , and i n a l l systems, such tha t when a combinat ion o f these p a r t i c u l a r c o n d i t i o n s and c i r c u m s t a n c e s presen t themse lves , we are aware o f something u n i v e r s a l l y r e c o g n i z e d as " s c h o o l " . I t i s i n t h i s sense that I address a l l p u b l i c s c h o o l s , i n as much as t h e r e e x i s t s a g e n e r i c s i m i l a r i t y i n f a m i l i a r p a t t e r n s and rhythms which e s t a b l i s h a r o u t i n e " d a i l i n e s s " i n the r u n n i n g of these i n s t i t u t i o n s (Dryden, 1 9 9 5 ; L ieberman & M i l l e r , 1 9 8 4 ) . Much of what t r a n s p i r e s on a day to day b a s i s i n the c l a s s r o o m can be p r e d e t e r m i n e d by the presence of w e l l e s t a b l i s h e d and h i g h l y r e c o g n i z a b l e s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s which h e l p to d e f i n e the t e a c h i n g / l e a r n i n g env ironment . These common s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s - t ime , space , p e o p l e , a u t h o r i t y , and s u b j e c t matter (Werner, 1995) - account f o r one o f the main d i s t i n g u i s h i n g f e a t u r e s which tend to extend a f r a n c h i s e d appearance to the p r a c t i c e s o f p u b l i c s c h o o l s . And i n a d d i t i o n to the s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s tha t appear common to a l l s c h o o l s , there a l s o e x i s t s another l a y e r of e s t a b l i s h e d s t r u c t u r e s which h e l p to d e f i n e and u l t i m a t e l y 1 0 . d i s t i n g u i s h the c u l t u r e s and p r a c t i c e s o f e l ementary s c h o o l s from those of middle or secondary s c h o o l s . A c c o r d i n g l y , where such g e n e r a l i z a t i o n s do not a p p l y to all p u b l i c s c h o o l s I s i n c e r e l y a p o l o g i z e , f o r my i n t e n t i s i n the same s p i r i t as the arguments o f P l a t o and M i l l , Noddings and S a r a s o n ; my i n t e n t i o n i s not to o v e r s i m p l i f y the g e n e r i c s i m i l a r i t i e s o f s c h o o l s , but r a t h e r to c a l l a t t e n t i o n to the i n f l u e n c e s o f t h e i r e x i s t e n c e . Hence, i n acknowledging the presence of g e n e r a l i z a t i o n s w h i l e at the same time m a i n t a i n i n g the s p e c i f i c i t y n e c e s s a r y f o r the a p p l i c a t i o n of s o l u t i o n s , I have t r i e d to s t r i k e a b a l a n c e by open ing wi th d i s c u s s i o n on the e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s o f p u b l i c s c h o o l s i n g e n e r a l , and then n a r r o w i n g the d i s c u s s i o n to focus on the problems and concerns as they r e l a t e to the p r a c t i c e o f secondary s c h o o l s i n p a r t i c u l a r . 11. CHAPTER 2 BACKGROUND AND RATIONALE FOR THE STUDY I t can be argued that e d u c a t i o n i n one form or the o t h e r has always e x i s t e d , and as i t appears to be the n a t u r a l p r o c e s s of p a s s i n g oh the accumulated l e a r n i n g e x p e r i e n c e s from one g e n e r a t i o n to the n e x t , and s i n c e humankind has d e v i s e d no o t h e r , e d u c a t i o n s h o u l d be v a l u e d and f u l l y s u p p o r t e d . But even i f t h i s were so , the q u e s t i o n s t i l l a r i s e s as to whether the e d u c a t i o n tha t has e x i s t e d and c u r r e n t l y e x i s t s now w i t h i n our s c h o o l s i s n e c e s s a r i l y the e d u c a t i o n tha t ought to e x i s t ? For i f a c e r t a i n form of e d u c a t i o n appears to be unreasonab le or u n j u s t , then no amount of t r a d i t i o n or l e g i s l a t i o n w i l l c o n v i n c e a person of reason tha t such p r a c t i c e s ought to p r e v a i l . I am of the o p i n i o n tha t c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s are unreasonab le as w e l l as u n j u s t . I f e e l t h i s i s so because the ends of e d u c a t i o n do not r e s u l t i n an e q u a l d i s t r i b u t i o n o f e d u c a t i o n a l b e n e f i t s to a l l s t u d e n t s , and because d e s p i t e ev idence to i n d i c a t e that not a l l i n d i v i d u a l s can ach ieve e q u a l l y the b e n e f i t s o b t a i n e d 12. through e d u c a t i o n , we n e v e r t h e l e s s c o n t i n u e to support and promote t h i s e d u c a t i o n as b e i n g a proces s which i s b e n e f i c i a l to a l l p e r s o n s . I f e e l i f i t can be shown under the e x i s t i n g p r o v i s i o n s se t f o r t h as e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y that some s tudent s r o u t i n e l y g a i n e d advantages over o t h e r s t u d e n t s , and tha t t h i s indeed was a r e c o g n i z e d o b j e c t i v e o f e d u c a t i o n , such tha t the ends o f these p r a c t i c e s do not r e s u l t i n i n c r e a s e d b e n e f i t s to a l l s tudents but o n l y to some, then i t would not be unreasonab le to suggest t h a t the e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s which g'o under the name of "Equal E d u c a t i o n a l O p p o r t u n i t y " were not a c t u a l l y e q u a l , but i n f a c t v e r y much unequal and u n j u s t . And i f s u f f i c i e n t ev idence was shown to support t h i s c l a i m , then i t would a l s o not be unreasonable to suggest there i s a need to q u e s t i o n the b a s i s on which s c h o o l s p r o c e e d . And such i s the purpose o f the f o l l o w i n g c h a p t e r ; f i r s t l y , to show t h a t c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s are indeed u n r e a s o n a b l e , u n j u s t , and g e n e r a l l y at odds wi th our i n t e n d e d g o a l s f o r p r o v i s i o n s of equa l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y and, s e c o n d l y , to show tha t t h i s unreasonableness and i n j u s t i c e i s not w i d e l y u n d e r s t o o d and that the i l l u m i n a t i o n and i d e n t i f i c a t i o n o f these p r a c t i c e s would serve as a good s t a r t i n g p o i n t f o r d i s c u s s i o n and change. 1 3 . I w i l l b e g i n by s u g g e s t i n g that we have made a grave mis take i n our c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n of "equal e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y " and s u b s e q u e n t l y i n the manner i n which we have o r g a n i z e d our p u b l i c s c h o o l s around a narrow g r o u p i n g of s u b j e c t areas w i t h i n the framework o f a s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m . I w i l l argue f u r t h e r tha t r i g i d adherence to a s y s t e m i c a l l y s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m r e p r e s e n t s the a s p i r a t i o n s and i n t e r e s t s of o n l y a m i n o r i t y of s t u d e n t s , w h i l e e s s e n t i a l l y i g n o r i n g the n a t u r a l d i v e r s i t y tha t e x i s t s among s t u d e n t s ' backgrounds , a b i l i t i e s , and i n d i v i d u a l i n t e r e s t s , and i s thus fundamenta l ly i n o p p o s i t i o n to e f f o r t s to promote equa l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y . The Basis on Which Schools Proceed There i s an equa l o p p o r t u n i t y to a t t e n d s c h o o l , but not to succeed i n s c h o o l . I see no l e v e l p l a y i n g f i e l d e x i s t i n g i n p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n . I t appears to me tha t what we have i n r e a l i t y i s a s t r a i g h t and narrow pathway, b u l l d o z e d through i n c r e a s i n g l y rough t e r r a i n , on which o n l y a v e r y few s tudent s are a b l e to t r e a d . The r e s t of the s tudents are t o s s e d a compass wi thout a map. E q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s s h o u l d not mean identical e d u c a t i o n f o r a l l l e a r n e r s , but r a t h e r an equa l or equivalent o p p o r t u n i t y to deve lop i n d i v i d u a l p o t e n t i a l i n 1 4 . one ' s own a r e a of i n t e r e s t and a b i l i t y . Our system does not p r o v i d e e q u i v a l e n t e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r s tudent s not g o i n g on to u n i v e r s i t y , even though they r e p r e s e n t an overwhelming m a j o r i t y of the s tudent body. The m a j o r i t y o f s c h o o l f u n d i n g i s d i r e c t e d towards a m i n o r i t y of the s c h o o l p o p u l a t i o n . The e x i s t i n g a v a i l a b l e o p t i o n s are p e r c e i v e d to be of f a r l e s s s i g n i f i c a n c e and r e l e g a t e d to a v a s t l y lower l e v e l o f s t a t u s . So low i n f a c t , i n B r i t i s h Co lumbia , the M i n i s t r y of E d u c a t i o n does not even bother to s a n c t i o n p r o v i n c i a l t e s t i n g o u t s i d e of the "core" s u b j e c t a r e a s . Schoo l s c o n d i t i o n c h i l d r e n ' s o p i n i o n s o f s u c c e s s . I f a s tudent i s d e s t i n e d to go on to graduate on the a c a d e m i c - t e c h n i c a l program, he or she i s c o n s i d e r e d s u c c e s s f u l and, t h e r e f o r e , "smart ." However, s h o u l d the same s tudent d e c i d e they would r a t h e r c o n c e n t r a t e on the i n d u s t r i a l a r t s such as power mechanics or metal w o r k i n g , they are a l l o f a sudden i n a d i f f e r e n t c a t e g o r y of g r a d u a t e s ; the s tudents who h a v e n ' t q u i t e made i t - the "not so smart" s t u d e n t s . I t matters l i t t l e i f a s tudent demonstrates e x c e l l e n c e i n mechanica l a b i l i t y or' meta lworking c r a f t s m a n s h i p ; they r e c e i v e a pat on the back , not a s c h o l a r s h i p . 1 5 . T h i s i s u n f o r t u n a t e f o r we make these s tudents f e e l i n a d e q u a t e , t h a t they have somehow under a c h i e v e d and not " l i v e d up to t h e i r p o t e n t i a l " (Bennett & LeCompte, 1990, p . 192). Most s tudents never d i s c o v e r t h e i r academic p o t e n t i a l , because they have never been g i v e n the o p p o r t u n i t y to f i n d out what i t i s . They do , however, unders tand t h e i r l i m i t a t i o n s , as t h e r e has been f a r g r e a t e r o p p o r t u n i t y f o r f a i l u r e than f o r s u c c e s s . I f Everyone Were Allowed to Succeed? S e t t i n g the prime e d u c a t i o n a l g o a l i n our p u b l i c s c h o o l c u r r i c u l u m to prepare s tudents f o r a u n i v e r s i t y e n t r a n c e g r a d u a t i o n c e r t i f i c a t e i s a mis take (Noddings, 1992, p . x i v ) . Not o n l y i s i t an u n d e s i r a b l e g o a l , but i t i s a l s o u n a t t a i n a b l e and t o t a l l y i m p r a c t i c a l f o r most s tudent s i n the p u b l i c s c h o o l system. And a l t h o u g h i t might be argued tha t there i s not o n l y ' o n e g o a l ( i . e . , u n i v e r s i t y e n t r a n c e ) , t h i s g o a l i s g i v e n the h i g h e s t s o c i a l s t a t u s by e d u c a t o r s , p a r e n t s , and by o t h e r s o c i a l i n s t i t u t i o n s . By send ing out the message tha t g r a d u a t i o n , synonymous w i t h u n i v e r s i t y e n t r a n c e , i s the u l t i m a t e g o a l to s t r i v e f o r , we do a g r e a t d i s s e r v i c e to the m a j o r i t y of our s tudents because i t i s a g o a l tha t cannot be reached from the o u t s e t , and t h e r e f o r e m o r a l l y u n j u s t i f i a b l e . L e t me e x p l a i n . 1 6 . L e t ' s say Canadian h i g h s c h o o l s d i d an a b s o l u t e l y o u t s t a n d i n g j o b of g r a d u a t i n g s tudents i n June o f 1998 , and every h i g h s c h o o l managed to graduate every s t u d e n t , meet ing a l l the requirements f o r u n i v e r s i t y e n t r a n c e . And suppose t h i s became the t r e n d . What would we do? We c o u l d not hope to accommodate everyone i n our u n i v e r s i t i e s . Take t h i s example a l i t t l e f u r t h e r and say t h a t not o n l y d i d the p u b l i c s c h o o l s do a tremendous j o b o f g e t t i n g s tudent s to u n i v e r s i t y , but they a l s o c o u n s e l e d the s t u d e n t s i n the " r i g h t " d i r e c t i o n and a l l these s tudent s a p p l i e d to the f a c u l t i e s o f m e d i c i n e , law, and e n g i n e e r i n g . And, p l a y i n g out t h i s s c e n a r i o to i t s u l t i m a t e c o n c l u s i o n , l e t ' s say that the u n i v e r s i t i e s d i d an e q u a l l y tremendous j o b , and i n the year 2005 a re ready to graduate 1 3 5 , 0 0 0 f u l l y t r a i n e d d o c t o r s , l a w y e r s , and e n g i n e e r s . Where would we put a l l these p r o f e s s i o n a l s , these h i g h l y t r a i n e d educated s p e c i a l i s t s , i n our h i g h l y t e c h n o l o g i c a l s o c i e t y ? The above s c e n a r i o i s perhaps a good example o f the U n i v e r s a l Consequences t e s t (Coombs, 1980 , p . 31) - the consequences of everyone a c t i n g on the same p r i n c i p l e -f o r the f a c t remains that what our s o c i e t y has come to v a l u e as the most d e s i r a b l e jobs a t t a i n a b l e through the e d u c a t i o n a l proces s has a l s o become the measuring s t i c k 1 7 . f o r e d u c a t i o n a l s u c c e s s , even though the o p p o r t u n i t y cannot be a v a i l a b l e to everyone (Hurn, 1 9 7 9 ) . We can o n l y support so many d o c t o r s and lawyers i n our s o c i e t y , and t h e r e f o r e we l i m i t access to these o c c u p a t i o n s by s e t t i n g r i g o r o u s academic s tandards which r e l y on most people f a i l i n g to r e a c h these h i g h l y s a n c t i o n e d g o a l s . Our e v a l u a t i o n system i n f a c t depends on most people f a i l i n g to make the g r a d e , f o r wi thout the f a i l u r e o f the many t h e r e cannot be the success of the few. There would be l i t t l e p o i n t i n awarding A ' s to e v e r y s t u d e n t . I f everyone c o u l d make the grade , we would s i m p l y r a i s e the q u a l i f i c a t i o n s i n o r d e r to r e s t r i c t the number of a p p l i c a n t s . As Nel Noddings (1993) o f S t a n f o r d U n i v e r s i t y contends , " L e a r n i n g as i t i s d e f i n e d today i s a r i g g e d game. I t i s d e s i g n e d to s e p a r a t e and p o i n t up d i f f e r e n c e s . I t has l i t t l e to do wi th the i n t e r e s t s or needs o f c h i l d r e n " (p. 1 4 ) . But t h a t . o u r system of e d u c a t i o n r e l i e s on f a i l u r e i n o r d e r to work has been w e l l c i t e d (Bowles & G i n t i s , 1 9 7 6 ; B r u n e r , 1 9 7 1 ; K e l l e y , 1 9 9 3 ) , though s t i l l not w i d e l y a p p r e c i a t e d nor r e c o g n i z e d f o r i t s r u t h l e s s n e s s . There i s a w e l l d e f i n e d and w e l l unders tood p r i n c i p l e at work i n our s c h o o l s , which Bowles ,and G i n t i s (1976) i d e n t i f i e d as the " s o r t i n g f u n c t i o n " of s c h o o l s - a "Law 18 . of the Jung le" so to speak - where someone i s g o i n g to win and someone i s g o i n g to l o s e . T h a t ' s how the " r e a l wor ld" works, and as the r e c o g n i z e d t r a i n i n g grounds f o r the r e a l w o r l d , s c h o o l s q u i t e n a t u r a l l y r e i n f o r c e t h i s p r i n c i p l e (Bruner , 1 9 7 1 ; D o l l , 1 9 9 3 ) . We have u n w i t t i n g l y b u i l t f a i l u r e r i g h t i n t o the fundamental s t r u c t u r e s o f our e d u c a t i o n system i n such a way that i t appears to be e q u i t a b l e and t h e r e f o r e worthy o f our s u p p o r t . The n o t i o n t h a t s tudent s have an e q u a l o p p o r t u n i t y to succeed i s u p h e l d by a b e l i e f tha t p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n has " l e v e l e d the p l a y i n g f i e l d " f o r a l l s tudent s to compete f a i r l y . A g a i n s t t h i s background s tudents are g i v e n to u n d e r s t a n d t h a t they can succeed i n the j o b market i f they s t a y i n s c h o o l and get a good e d u c a t i o n . In t h i s i n s t i t u t i o n we are l e d to b e l i e v e that everyone has the o p p o r t u n i t y to be a winner . T h i s n o t i o n i s f u r t h e r r e i n f o r c e d because the image appears to be so c o r r e c t and so matter o f f a c t , tha t to r e j e c t t h i s b e l i e f "would be u n n a t u r a l , a v i o l a t i o n of common sense" (McLaren, 1989 ; A p p l e , 1 990) . But w h i l e i t may be t r u e that i n d i v i d u a l s or p a r t i c u l a r groups o f i n d i v i d u a l s who have more e d u c a t i o n w i l l s tand a b e t t e r chance o f success i n our s o c i e t y , i t does not f o l l o w tha t i f everyone has more s c h o o l i n g , then everyone w i l l be more s u c c e s s f u l . For the s t a t u s quo w i l l not have changed (Hurn, 1 9 7 9 ) . 1 9 . The Right To Choice i n Education In my i n t r o d u c t i o n I c l a i m e d that c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s were u n j u s t to the ex tent tha t they may i n f r i n g e upon the fundamental r i g h t to e d u c a t i o n . I m a i n t a i n that t h e r e e x i s t s a r e l a t i o n s h i p between e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y and the u n i v e r s a l r i g h t to e d u c a t i o n which i s r o o t e d i n the p r i n c i p l e of "Respect f o r Persons" - a p r i n c i p l e which presupposes a c e r t a i n minimal e q u a l i t y among a l l p e r s o n s : capable i n some measure of o v e r r i d i n g e s t a b l i s h e d h i e r a r c h y . . . i t i s grounded i n the f a c t t h a t each [person] speaks from h i s own p a r t i c u l a r p o i n t of v iew, h a v i n g p e r c e i v e d i n t e r e s t s that no one e l s e can presume to k n o w . . . and which cannot be assumed to be i n t e r c h a n g e a b l e w i t h anyone e l s e ' s . . . b e c a u s e the a c t i o n s and d e t e r m i n a t i o n s have a d i f f e r e n t s i g n i f i c a n c e when seen, as i t were, from the r e c e i v i n g e n d . . . T o r e s p e c t someone as a person i s thus to t r e a t h i s own view of h i m s e l f s e r i o u s l y . (Benn, 1988 , pp. 104 -105) F u r t h e r m o r e , I suggest tha t the r e l a t i o n s h i p between e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y and human r i g h t s a l s o has to do w i t h freedom, p a r t i c u l a r l y freedom of c h o i c e , and thus I am'drawn to the c o n c l u s i o n that c o n s i d e r a t i o n s o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y and r e s p e c t f o r the r i g h t to e d u c a t i o n are c o n d i t i o n a l upon freedom of c h o i c e . 2 0 . H a v i n g a r r i v e d a t t h i s c o n c l u s i o n , I c o n t e n d t h a t e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s c a n be b e s t r e a l i z e d when a l l s t u d e n t s a r e p r o v i d e d w i t h o p p o r t u n i t e s t o be e q u a l l y i n t e r e s t e d i n t h e s u b j e c t m a t e r i a l s b e i n g o f f e r e d . S t u d e n t s w h o s e i n t e r e s t s a r e b e i n g met i n t h e c l a s s r o o m h a v e a n a d v a n t a g e o v e r s t u d e n t s w h o s e i n t e r e s t s a r e n o t b e i n g m e t , a s w i t h o u t t h e p r e s e n c e o f i n t e r e s t t h e r e i s l i t t l e m o t i v a t i o n f o r s t u d e n t s t o f u l l y p a r t i c i p a t e i n a n d c o n t r i b u t e t o t h e l e a r n i n g e n v i r o n m e n t . The r e s u l t b e i n g t h a t u n i n t e r e s t e d l e a r n e r s a r e u n l i k e l y t o i n t e n t i o n a l l y s t r i v e t o t a k e f u l l a d v a n t a g e o f t h e k i n d s o f e d u c a t i o n a l g o o d s o r r e s o u r c e s w h i c h p r o m o t e s u c c e s s f u l a c a d e m i c a c h i e v e m e n t . S t u d e n t s who a r e i n t e r e s t e d i n wha t i s b e i n g t a u g h t t e n d t o l e a r n q u i c k e r , e a s i e r , a n d w i t h g r e a t e r s a t i s f a c t i o n a n d e n j o y m e n t t h a n t h o s e who a r e n o t i n t e r e s t e d i n wha t t h e y a r e l e a r n i n g , a n d a r e o n l y t h e r e b e c a u s e t h e y f e e l t h e y h a v e t o be ( W i l l i a m J a m e s , 1 8 9 0 / 1 9 8 0 , p . 2 7 5 ) . S a t i s f a c t i o n a n d e n j o y m e n t i n l e a r n i n g , h o w e v e r , a r e n o t t h e p r e r o g a t i v e o f a n a c a d e m i c e l i t e ; a l l s t u d e n t s h a v e a r i g h t t o be i n t e r e s t e d i n wha t t h e y a r e l e a r n i n g . H o w e v e r , a s i t s t a n d s now, o n l y some s t u d e n t s a r e i n t e r e s t e d i n wha t s c h o o l s t e a c h ( C a n a d i a n T e a c h e r s ' F e d e r a t i o n , 1 9 9 5 ; F u l l a n , 1 9 9 1 ) , w h i l e a g r e a t many 21 . s tudent s have l i t t l e a c t u a l i n t e r e s t i n what s c h o o l s teach ( H o l t , 1964) and are there f o r a v a r i e t y o f o t h e r reasons which we s h a l l d i s c u s s f u r t h e r i n Chapter F o u r . But i t would seem to make sense tha t s tudent s who are u n i n t e r e s t e d i n what s c h o o l s t e a c h , w i l l l i k e l y remain so u n t i l s c h o o l s t each what i s o f i n t e r e s t to those c h i l d r e n . Thus , i f we c o u l d i n f e r from the l i t e r a t u r e a s i m p l e p r i n c i p l e , i t would be to the a f f e c t t h a t , i f s c h o o l s were to t each what i s of i n t e r e s t to c h i l d r e n , c h i l d r e n i n t u r n would be i n t e r e s t e d i n what s c h o o l s t e a c h . And a l t h o u g h the above p r i n c i p l e i s s t r a i g h t f o r w a r d and l o g i c a l i t i s s t i l l p r o b l e m a t i c , as s c h o o l s are not d e s i g n e d to i n t e r e s t c h i l d r e n ; they are des igned to be i n the bes t i n t e r e s t of c h i l d r e n , which i s not the same t h i n g and, i n f a c t , c h a l l e n g e s the v e r y n o t i o n of a r i g h t . As P e t e r ' s (1966) reminds us , the whole purpose o f a freedom or r i g h t i s "to promote p e o p l e ' s i n t e r e s t s " (p. 1 7 9 ) . Consequent ly we must c h a l l e n g e assumptions and b e l i e f s about any e d u c a t i o n a l process i n a d e m o c r a t i c s o c i e t y tha t l i m i t s the r i g h t to freedom of c h o i c e , p a r t i c u l a r l y when i n c l u s i o n i n that process i s mandatory but we can as sure n e i t h e r the e q u a l i t y o f o p p o r t u n i t y nor a l l o w each i n d i v i d u a l to pursue "the f u l l development of [ t h e i r ] human p e r s o n a l i t y " , to which the fundamental r i g h t to e d u c a t i o n i s d i r e c t e d ( A r t i c l e 2 6 , paragraph 2 ) . And without c o n d i t i o n s tha t encourage the i n d i v i d u a l to i n t e n t i o n a l l y s t r i v e f o r s u c c e s s f u l academic achievement , the r i g h t to e d u c a t i o n , and i n t u r n e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y , cannot p r o p e r l y be a c h i e v e d . The P r i n c i p l e of Conferred Benefits The j u s t i f i c a t i o n f o r a mandatory and s y s t e m i c a l l y s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m , based upon a t h e o r y o f c o n f e r r e d b e n e f i t s which the r e c i p i e n t s can n e i t h e r u n d e r s t a n d nor j u d g e , i s unreasonab le and u n j u s t . For i f the r e c i p i e n t s of t h i s conferment are unable to acknowledge the b e n e f i t s d e r i v e d from e d u c a t i o n , what then conf i rms that e d u c a t i o n i s b e n e f i c i a l to a l l l e a r n e r s ? The p r i n c i p l e o f c o n f e r r e d b e n e f i t s i s not reason enough to j u s t i f y the l e g i s l a t i o n o f compulsory i n c l u s i o n i n c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s , f o r i t must a l s o be c o n s i d e r e d t h a t e d u c a t i o n i s a fundamental human r i g h t and i m p l i c i t i n a human r i g h t i s the l i b e r t y to choose whether or not to e x e r c i s e that r i g h t . The o n l y m o r a l l y j u s t i f i a b l e reason f o r l i m i t i n g a human r i g h t can o n l y be f o r the same reason that the r i g h t was proposed and acknowledged i n the f i r s t p l a c e - which i s to r e s p e c t the w i l l o f every i n d i v i d u a l through a p o l i c y o f n o n i n t e r f e r e n c e i n t h e i r l i v e s , o t h e r than f o r reasons of p r e v e n t i n g harm unto themselves and o t h e r s . 23 . There i s a p r i n c i p l e more fundamental than the p r i n c i p l e o f c o n f e r r e d b e n e f i t s which takes precedence when both are a p p l i e d to j u s t i f y or i n t e r p r e t the r e a s o n i n g b e h i n d c e r t a i n a c t i o n s . The p r i n c i p l e o f "Respect f o r Persons" , or what W i l l i a m James r e f e r r e d to as the " S o v e r e i g n t y o f the L i v i n g I n d i v i d u a l " , suggests tha t freedom i s l i m i t e d to those ac t s which , at the v.ery l e a s t , do not harm o t h e r s ( c i t e d i n K i l p a t r i c k , 1951 , p . 1 3 9 ) . M i l l ' s p o i n t o f view i s c o n s i s t e n t w i t h that o f James, and he suggests t h a t : A c t s , o f whatever k i n d , which , wi thout j u s t i f i a b l e cause , do harm to o t h e r s , may be, and i n the more impor tant cases a b s o l u t e l y r e q u i r e to be, c o n t r o l l e d by the u n f a v o u r a b l e s e n t i m e n t s , and, when n e e d f u l , by the a c t i v e i n t e r f e r e n c e o f mankind. The l i b e r t y o f the i n d i v i d u a l must be thus f a r l i m i t e d ; he must not make h i m s e l f a n u i s a n c e to o t h e r p e o p l e . ( 1 8 6 1 / 1 9 8 0 p . 293) E s s e n t i a l l y then , the p r i n c i p l e o f harm i s the r i g h t f u l r e a s o n i n g u n d e r l y i n g the p r i n c i p l e o f r e s p e c t f o r persons and the acknowledgment of human r i g h t s , not the p r i n c i p l e o c o n f e r r e d b e n e f i t s . T h i s p o i n t i s f u r t h e r i l l u s t r a t e d by c o n s i d e r i n g the f o l l o w i n g example. 24. Suppose the wor ld was s t a r t i n g anew and the reader was the o n l y person on e a r t h . Under these c i r c u m s t a n c e s there would be no need of e s t a b l i s h i n g the p r i n c i p l e of r e s p e c t f o r persons or acknowledging human r i g h t s , f o r such r i g h t s would a l r e a d y e x i s t as n a t u r a l r i g h t s , or as John Locke sugges t s , " U n a l i e n a b l e R i g h t s " , g i v e n by the na ture of the u n i v e r s e ( c i t e d i n K i l p a t r i c k , 1951, p . 51 ) . U n t i l such a t ime as there was a second person tha t c o u l d i n t e r f e r e w i th the n a t u r a l r i g h t s of the r e a d e r , there would be no need to r e c o g n i z e the e x i s t e n c e of human r i g h t s , f o r the freedom i s a l r e a d y presen t i n na ture and o n l y remains to be l i m i t e d . I t i s based on the p r i n c i p l e o f r e s p e c t f o r persons that we r e c e i v e the u n i v e r s a l d e c l a r a t i o n of human r i g h t s , and hence M a g s i n o ' s c l a i m that there must be ev idence o f misuse to j u s t i f i a b l y l i m i t a human r i g h t (see Appendix 2, p . 451) . In e d u c a t i o n t h i s means that the burden of p r o o f r e s t s upon s c h o o l s to show tha t by a l l o w i n g s t u d e n t s g r e a t e r freedom to choose what i t i s they would l i k e to l e a r n , based on t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l i n t e r e s t s , i t would be more harmfu l than mandi tory p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l a to they are c u r r e n t l y s u b j e c t e d . To my knowledge s c h o o l s have not demonstrated the i n c a p a c i t y o f s tudents to make use o f t h e i r l i b e r t y to choose what they wish to l e a r n . Where i s the ev idence that c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s , w i t h t h e i r r e q u i r e d c o u r s e s , t e s t s , l e t t e r g r a d e s , and l o c k - s t e p p r o g r e s s i o n s , b e n e f i t s a l l c h i l d r e n ? And where i s the ev idence to support the j u s t i f i c a t i o n that compulsory i n c l u s i o n i n e d u c a t i o n r e s u l t s i n an i n c r e a s e o f b e n e f i t s to a l l members of s o c i e t y ? Summary "The j u s t i f i c a t i o n f o r l i b e r t y " m a i n t a i n s Case , "is the v a l u e o f p u r s u i n g one ' s own w i l l . I f an a c t i o n does not r e f l e c t the i n t e n t i o n s and v o l i t i o n s of tha t p e r s o n , then i t i s not h i s / h e r w i l l . As su ch , i t i s not the p r o p e r o b j e c t of a r i g h t to l i b e r t y " (see Appendix 2, p . 452) . I agree w i t h Case . I f e e l that c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s appear to l a c k e s s e n t i a l e lements by which we r e c o g n i z e and judge human r i g h t s . In a d d i t i o n , Case reasons that "age-based r e s t r i c t i o n s are e m p i r i c a l g e n e r a l i z a t i o n s and are not e q u i v a l e n t to moral e n t i t l e m e n t s " (p. 451) . The o n l y d e f e n s i b l e reason f o r e x c l u s i o n from a human r i g h t , he adds , "must be the v e r y reason we have f o r a s c r i b i n g the r i g h t i n the f i r s t p l a c e " (P. 452) . F u r t h e r m o r e , Magsino c l a i m s tha t any moral j u s t i f i c a t i o n f o r the l i m i t i n g of a human r i g h t or freedom r e q u i r e s "demonstrable i n c a p a c i t y to make a c c e p t a b l e use o f one ' s l i b e r t i e s " (p. 451), which Case m a i n t a i n s be demonstrated i n the f o l l o w i n g manner: Anyone who upholds a c a t e g o r i c a l d i s t i n c t i o n i s committed t o the f o l l o w i n g [ p r i n c i p l e ] : C l a s s o r group X can be t r e a t e d d i f f e r e n t l y than c l a s s / g r o u p Y w i t h r e g a r d t o e x e r c i s e o f r i g h t R o n l y i f t h e r e i s a re a s o n f o r d o i n g so t h a t i s both r e l e v a n t t o R and c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of X but not of Y. I n o t h e r words, proponents of a d i f f e r e n t s t a t u s f o r c h i l d r e n ' s l i b e r t i e s must p r o v i d e a c o n d i t i o n t h a t i s e m p i r i c a l l y r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of c h i l d r e n (and not of a d u l t s ) and m o r a l l y r e l e v a n t t o the e x e r c i s e of freedoms, (p. 446) I t i s not an e n t i t l e m e n t o f any p e r s o n o r groups of pers o n s t o i n t e r f e r e i n the p l a n s or p r o j e c t s of any o t h e r s i m p l y because they d i s a p p r o v e o f the c h o i c e s or c o n s i d e r o t h e r c h o i c e s more w o r t h w h i l e . And, as Case (1985) c o n c l u d e s w i t h r e g a r d s t o e d u c a t i o n , "merely b e i n g w o r t h w h i l e i s not s u f f i c i e n t j u s t i f i c a t i o n " (p. 4 5 3 ). I n o t h e r words, the c o n f e r r i n g o f b e n e f i t s deemed t o be more w o r t h w h i l e does not e n t i t l e one t o i n t e r f e r e w i t h the w i l l o f another human b e i n g no matter how w o r t h w h i l e the p e r c e i v e d b e n e f i t s may be. 27 . CHAPTER 3 INTERPRETING EQUAL EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITY The n o t i o n of e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y i s an i d e a l and as such open to i n t e r p r e t a t i o n . The l i t e r a t u r e o f f e r s s e v e r a l i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n o p p o r t u n i t y tha t are worth e x a m i n i n g . E d u c a t i o n a l p h i l o s o p h e r J e r r o l d Coombs (1994) has a n a l y z e d some of the more p e r s u a s i v e of these i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s , and suggests f i v e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s that may be u s e f u l to examine f u r t h e r . Adding Coombs' own i n t e r p r e t a t i o n , I f e e l tha t t h e r e are at l e a s t s i x tha t we s h o u l d c o n s i d e r , and I would l i k e to proceed to examine each of these i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s more c l o s e l y wi th regards to S t r i k e ' s t h e o r y s u g g e s t i n g tha t e q u a l i t y may r e q u i r e that we t r e a t people d i f f e r e n t l y . The Input and Output I n t e r p r e t a t i o n s There are two commonly h e l d views of equa l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y tha t may h e l p us to u n d ers t an d the c r i t e r i a f o r d e t e r m i n i n g i t s presence i n our s c h o o l systems and to what e x t e n t : 2 8 . The n o t i o n o f equa l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y has been g i v e n an ' i n p u t ' i n t e r p r e t a t i o n by some, and an ' o u t p u t ' i n t e r p r e t a t i o n by o t h e r s . A c c o r d i n g to the i n p u t i n t e r p r e t a t i o n , e q u a l i t y o f e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y i s a c h i e v e d when the same q u a l i t y and range o f e d u c a t i o n a l programmes i s made a v a i l a b l e to a l l s t u d e n t s . The outcome i n t e r p r e t a t i o n suggests tha t equa l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y o b t a i n s o n l y when e d u c a t i o n a l arrangements produce a p p r o x i m a t e l y the same l e v e l and range o f e d u c a t i o n a l achievement i n every s o c i a l g r o u p . (Coombs, 1994, p . 282) C o n c e p t u a l i z e d i n t h i s manner, s u p p o r t e r s of the i n p u t i n t e r p r e t a t i o n may f e e l q u i t e j u s t i f i e d i n b e l i e v i n g that a c e r t a i n l e v e l of e q u a l i t y i n e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y has been a c h i e v e d through the e q u a l d i s t r i b u t i o n of s c h o o l r e s o u r c e s and by the sy s t emic implementa t ion of a s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m f o r a l l s t u d e n t s . S u p p o r t e r s of the output i n t e r p r e t a t i o n may a l s o f e e l tha t they have had some success i n a c h i e v i n g e q u a l i t y . A l t h o u g h s t i l l a l o n g way from r e a c h i n g complete p a r i t y , many t r a d i t i o n a l l y m a r g i n a l i z e d groups have begun to show b e t t e r r e p r e s e n t a t i o n a c r o s s the spectrum of s o c i a l a c t i v i t i e s . We have seen an i n c r e a s e i n p a r t i c i p a t i o n at v i r t u a l l y a l l l e v e l s i n our i n s t i t u t i o n s among women, r e l i g i o u s and e t h n i c ' g r o u p s , F i r s t N a t i o n s , e t c . But as Coombs c o n c l u d e s : A l t h o u g h both of these i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s have a c e r t a i n degree o f p l a u s i b i l i t y , n e i t h e r i s adequate . The i n p u t i n t e r p r e t a t i o n f a i l s to take account o f e d u c a t i o n a l l y r e l e v a n t d i f f e r e n c e s . . . the range o f e d u c a t i o n a l programmes may u n j u s t i f i a b l y b e n e f i t the members o f one group more than members of the o t h e r . . . [ T h e output i n t e r p r e t a t i o n ] i s inadequate because i t f a i l s to take due account o f the f a c t that e d u c a t i o n a l achievements are not the s o r t o f t h i n g s one can c o n f e r on p e r s o n s ; they are g a i n e d o n l y through i n t e n t i o n a l l y s t r i v i n g f o r them, (p. 282) A l e x a n d e r ' s T h e o r y : M a x i m i z a t i o n of B e n e f i t s Coombs (1994) i n t e r p r e t s A l e x a n d e r ' s t h e o r y of e q u a l i t y of e d u c a t i o n a l treatment as c o n d i t i o n s where "no f u r t h e r a l l o c a t i o n o f a d d i t i o n a l e d u c a t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s would make any d i f f e r e n c e to the e d u c a t i o n a l achievement o f any s tudent" (p. 284) . A l though Coombs agrees tha t t h i s would indeed r e s u l t i n a " jus t d i s t r i b u t i o n " , he f e e l s i t i s i m p o s s i b l e to know when no a d d i t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s of any k i n d would make a d i f f e r e n c e , and tha t such a t h e o r y would o n l y be f e a s i b l e i f t h e r e were access to v i r t u a l l y u n l i m i t e d r e s o u r c e s such as those of t ime and the a t t e n t i o n o f t e a c h e r s . Because o f t h i s s c a r c i t y of e d u c a t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s , Coombs suggests that we s e t t l e f o r a " less a m b i t i o u s " i n t e r p r e t a t i o n . 30. Dworkin's Theory: P r e f e r r e d P r o v i s i o n of Resources Dworkin's t h e o r y o f p r e f e r r e d p r o v i s i o n s e s s e n t i a l l y i m p l i e s " t h a t we s h o u l d d i s t r i b u t e e d u c a t i o n a l p r o v i s i o n s i n such a way t h a t no s t u d e n t w i t h f u l l knowledge of how e d u c a t i o n a l p r o v i s i o n s were d i s t r i b u t e d would have r e a s o n t o want t o t r a d e p r o v i s i o n s w i t h any o t h e r s t u d e n t " (Coombs, p. 2 8 4 ) . The d i f f i c u l t y Coombs f i n d s w i t h t h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n i s t h a t a s t u d e n t may not wi s h t o t r a d e p r o v i s i o n s , but s t i l l o b j e c t t o a s t u d e n t o b t a i n i n g a g r e a t e r amount o f e d u c a t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s . Frankena's Theory: R e l a t i v e D i s t r i b u t i o n Coombs t r a n s l a t e s Frankena's t h e o r y f o r e d u c a t i o n a l e q u a l i t y t o mean t h a t r e s o u r c e s s h o u l d be d i s t r i b u t e d " i n such a way as t o make the same r e l a t i v e or p r o p o r t i o n a l c o n t r i b u t i o n t o e v e r y s t u d e n t a t t a i n i n g a s e t of e d u c a t i o n a l achievements which f o r her or him would count as h a v i n g a good e d u c a t i o n " (p. 2 8 4 ) . L i k e Dworkin's t h e o r y , t h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n p l a c e s the s t u d e n t a t the c e n t r e of the judgment which, i n my o p i n i o n , i s a s t e p i n the r i g h t d i r e c t i o n . The d i f f i c u l t y , o f c o u r s e , t h a t Coombs f i n d s i s t h a t t h e r e i s no way t o a s c e r t a i n "the r e l a t i v e c o n t r i b u t i o n s of d i f f e r e n t k i n d s of r e s o u r c e s t o the e d u c a t i o n a l achievements o f s t u d e n t s h a v i n g v e r y d i f f e r e n t i n t e r e s t s and t a l e n t s " (p. 2 8 4 ) . Another 31 d i f f i c u l t y that I have wi th t h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n i s that what a s tudent f e e l s i s a v e r y good e d u c a t i o n f o r him or h e r , may o n l y be one i n which they f e e l tha t p a r e n t s , t e a c h e r s , and c o u n s e l o r s , have g i v e n the g r e a t e s t p r i o r i t y and s t a t u s t o , and one tha t w i l l be c o n s i d e r e d worthwhi le by s o c i e t y . I am a f r a i d that t h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n does not c o n s i d e r s o c i e t y ' s tremendous i n f l u e n c e , nor the i n f l u e n c e o f f u t u r e c a r e e r c h o i c e s upon presen t e d u c a t i o n a l choice's . Coombs' T h e o r y : E q u a l Access to the D i s t r i b u t i o n o f E d u c a t i o n a l Resources By combining the e s s e n t i a l e lements of the p r e c e d i n g i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s , Coombs c o n s t r u c t s a f u r t h e r i n t e r p r e t a t i o n which focuses on e d u c a t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s . He argues that the p r o v i s i o n o f e q u a l access to the d i s t r i b u t i o n o f e d u c a t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s - " c o n d i t i o n s or o b j e c t s which f a c i l i t a t e d e s i r a b l e e d u c a t i o n a l achievements" - would serve as a b e t t e r i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y (p. 282) . Coombs suggests t h a t a l t h o u g h e q u a l access to r e s o u r c e s w i l l not ensure s u c c e s s f u l achievement , i t w i l l at the v e r y l e a s t i n c r e a s e the chances o f s u c c e s s . But he a l s o p o i n t s out s e v e r a l d i f f i c u l t i e s w i th the a p p l i c a t i o n of h i s own theory which he c o n s i d e r s to be l i m i t i n g f a c t o r s . One such l i m i t a t i o n c e n t r e s around the f a c t t h a t u l t i m a t e l y what c o n s t i t u t e s e q u a l i t y of a c c e s s t o e d u c a t i o n i s e s s e n t i a l l y a v a l u e judgment, and as such u n l i k e l y t o g a i n u n i v e r s a l a s s e n t . Coombs c o n c l u d e s t h a t the b e s t c o n t r i b u t i o n o f t h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n may not a c t u a l l y be t o i d e n t i f y a p a r t i c u l a r s e t of c o n d i t i o n s f o r c l a i m i n g e q u a l d i s t r i b u t i o n o f e d u c a t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s , but r a t h e r " t o make c l e a r e r the n a t u r e of the v a l u e judgments t h a t a r e r e q u i r e d f o r a p p l y i n g the p r i n c i p l e of e q u a l a c c e s s t o e d u c a t i o n " by u s i n g what Hart c a l l s the ' d e f e a s i b l e ' concept ( c i t e d i n Coombs, p. 285). The d e f e a s i b l e concept i n v o l v e s i d e n t i f y i n g c o n d i t i o n s t h a t a r e e s s e n t i a l l y l a c k i n g , and t h a t n e c e s s a r i l y t a k e away from a c h i e v i n g our c l a i m . Summary To t h i s p o i n t t h e n , we have l o o k e d at s e v e r a l i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s of e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y and t aken from each one the e s s e n t i a l elements f o r c o n s i d e r i n g y e t a f u r t h e r i n t e r p r e t a t i o n (see o v e r v i e w on p.33). But s i m p l y c ombining t h e s e elements i n t o a s i n g l e model may not i n i t s e l f be s u f f i c i e n t . The a p p l i c a t i o n of Coombs' i n t e r p r e t a t i o n t o c o n d i t i o n s of e q u a l a c c e s s which are l a c k i n g , I f e e l c o u l d enhance our e f f o r t s by d e t e r m i n i n g c o n s i d e r a t i o n s which T a b l e 1, I n t e r p r e t i n g E q u a l E d u c a t i o n a l O p p o r t u n i t y S t r i k e Equality of Differences Appreciation of Differences Input Program Availability Output Academic Achievement Relevant D i f f e r e n c e s Alexander Maximization of Achievement i—.Time L i m i t e d Resources" Teachers-Conditions Lacking Dworkin Preferred Provisions of Resources E s s e n t i a l Elements Frankena Relative Distribution P r o p o r t i o n a l D i s t r i b u t i o n D i v e r s i t y - I n t e r e s t s -- T a l e n t ' < Conditions Overlooked Coombs Access to Equal Distribution of Resources E d u c a t i o n a l Achievement D e f e a s i b l e Concept Intentional S t r i v i n g Coombs suggests may have " h e r e t o f o r e been o v e r l o o k e d " . For i f we can i d e n t i f y c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of those elements which n e c e s s a r i l y take away from e f f o r t s to a c h i e v e equa l a c c e s s , we might then b e g i n i d e n t i f y i n g the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of e lements which c o n t r i b u t e to equa l access as those p e r c e i v e d to be opposed to the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f unequal a c c e s s . And w h i l e the absence o f oppos ing or " s u b t r a c t i v e " elements may not i n themselves be s u f f i c i e n t to guarantee c o n d i t i o n s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of e q u a l i t y , the i n c r e a s e d presence of the former w i l l c e r t a i n l y i n d i c a t e a l a c k o f c o n d i t i o n s n e c e s s a r y f o r the l a t t e r to p r e v a i l . In c h a p t e r four we s h a l l l o o k more c l o s e l y at t h i s s t r a t e g y o f i d e n t i f y i n g elements that have been overlooked and those tha t are lacking, and see how these p r i n c i p l e s can be a p p l i e d to a f u r t h e r i n t e r p r e t a t i o n ' of e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y . CHAPTER 4 CONDITIONS LACKING, CONDITIONS OVERLOOKED L e g i s l a t i v e Intervention: The Costs and Benefits K i l p a t r i c k (1951) reminds us, freedom i s not a b s o l u t e , and t h a t "the p r i n c i p l e of e q u a l i t y p r e c i s e l y l i m i t s t he p r i n c i p l e o f l i b e r t y " (p. 140). I n o t h e r words, i n any s o c i e t y or i n s t i t u t i o n i n t h a t s o c i e t y t h a t v a l u e s e q u a l i t y , t h e r e must be a b a l a n c e t h a t d e t e r m i n e s the e x t e n t of the freedom of the i n d i v i d u a l from i n f r i n g i n g upon the r i g h t s of a l l members of s o c i e t y . O f t e n such a b a l a n c e o c c u r s i n the form o f government l e g i s l a t i o n . I n Canada, as i n o t h e r d e m o c r a t i c n a t i o n s , the r i g h t t o e d u c a t i o n has been l e g i s l a t e d and " p r o t e c t e d " by law. But whenever a law i s c r e a t e d i t a l s o s e r v e s t o l i m i t the freedoms of i n d i v i d u a l s w i t h i n t h a t s o c i e t y . I t i s reasoned, however, t h a t the benefits derived from the enactment o f a c e r t a i n law are worth the costs o f the freedom s u r r e n d e r e d . The laws which make e d u c a t i o n compulsory f o r e v e r y member of our s o c i e t y r e p r e s e n t a l i m i t i n g o f f i n d i v i d u a l freedoms f o r the sake of the common good. Adherence t o l e g i s l a t i o n c a l l i n g f o r mandatory e d u c a t i o n i s seen as b e n e f i t i n g a l l members o f s o c i e t y , f o r i t i s w i d e l y h e l d t h a t w i t h an e d u c a t i o n each i n d i v i d u a l w i l l i n c r e a s i n g l y p r o s p e r s o c i a l l y , p o l i t i c a l l y , and e c o n o m i c a l l y w hich, i n t u r n , w i l l l e a d t o the c r e a t i o n of a more p r o s p e r o u s and thus b e t t e r s o c i e t y f o r a l l p e r s o n s . I n a democracy, the i n t e r v e n t i o n by the s t a t e f o r the e s t a b l i s h m e n t of laws which n e c e s s a r i l y r e s t r i c t i n d i v i d u a l freedoms and r i g h t s , i s t o l e r a t e d and deemed j u s t i f i a b l e on the b a s i s t h a t the enactment o f such laws g i v e s no advantage, e i t h e r by k i n d o r degree, t o any p a r t i c u l a r i n d i v i d u a l or groups o f i n d i v i d u a l s w i t h i n our s o c i e t y ; o n l y t o s o c i e t y as a whole, and i n e q u a l measure. There a r e , however, many who would argue t h a t c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s do i n f a c t p r o v i d e advantages f o r c e r t a i n i n d i v i d u a l s and groups of i n d i v i d u a l s w i t h i n our s o c i e t y , and hence do not o p e r a t e on a b a s i s o f n e u t r a l i t y f o r t he w e l f a r e o f a l l (Bowles & G i n t i s , 1976; Bruner 1971; Dewey, 1963; Hurn,1979). I , t o o , have put f o r t h the argument t h a t s t u d e n t s who are i n t e r e s t e d i n what i s b e i n g taught m a i n t a i n advantages over s t u d e n t s t h a t a re not i n t e r e s t e d i n what they a r e l e a r n i n g . I have argued t h a t t o i g n o r e the r i g h t s o f c h i l d r e n t o choose, by e n f o r c i n g o u t s i d e p l a n s o r e x p e c t a t i o n s upon 37 . them, i s a v i o l a t i o n o f the r i g h t s due t o them as a p e r s o n . As t e a c h e r s and a d u l t s we d e e p l y r e s e n t i n t e r f e r e n c e i n our own p l a n s . T h e r e f o r e we must acknowledge the same r i g h t s of n o n i n t e r f e r e n c e i n the a s p i r a t i o n s and p r o j e c t s o f s t u d e n t s u n l e s s i n f o l l o w i n g such p l a n s , we can show e v i d e n c e t h a t t h e i r own i n t e r e s t s or the i n t e r e s t s o f o t h e r s a r e a t s t a k e and i n danger o f harm. To do o t h e r w i s e i s u n j u s t and I s h a l l c o n t i n u e t o expand upon t h i s p o i n t . The Limiting of Student Options There a r e t h o s e who would argue t h a t whether or not e d u c a t i o n i s a r i g h t , the f a c t i s t h a t s t u d e n t s , e s p e c i a l l y t h o s e i n secondary s c h o o l , a l r e a d y have a g r e a t d e a l o f c h o i c e i n what they choose t o s t u d y , and a r e f r e e t o e l e c t s u b j e c t s t h a t l e a d t o the type o f g r a d u a t i o n programme i n which they a r e i n t e r e s t e d . F u r t h e r m o r e , they argue t h a t the v e r y f a c t t h a t s t u d e n t s remain i n s c h o o l beyond the age o f mandatory s c h o o l i n g , on a " v o l u n t a r y " b a s i s , i s . e v i d e n c e t h a t s t u d e n t s are making the c h o i c e t o c o n t i n u e on i n s c h o o l and t o s e l e c t a c o u r s e o f s t u d y t h a t i s o f i n t e r e s t t o them. And t o a c e r t a i n e x t e n t t h i s i s so, f o r s t u d e n t s do choose t o c o n t i n u e on i n s c h o o l beyond the p o i n t ,that i s r e q u i r e d o f them by law, and t h e r e a r e i n f a c t s e v e r a l 38. o p t i o n s from which s t u d e n t s may choose i n t h e i r c o u r s e s of s t u d y . However, I w i l l argue t h a t s o c i a l arrangements whereby the i n f l u e n c e of u n w r i t t e n r u l e s , e x p e c t a t i o n s , p e r c e p t i o n s , and o b l i g a t i o n s , d i c t a t e the a c t i o n s o f i n d i v i d u a l s i n ways over which they have no c o n t r o l (Apple, 1991;. McLaren, 1 989; Ogbu, 1 985), cannot t r u l y be s a i d t o c o n s t i t u t e r e s p e c t f o r democracy, human r i g h t s , or p e r s o n s . Under such c o n d i t i o n s , the f a c i l i t a t i o n o f s t u d e n t o p t i o n s and c h o i c e i s an i l l u s i o n , and the c o n t i n u e d e x i s t e n c e of such p r a c t i c e s u n j u s t . Coerciye Attendance There a r e at l e a s t f o u r reason's f o r a t t e n d i n g s c h o o l w h ich, s t r i c t l y s p e a k i n g , a r e n e i t h e r compulsory nor v o l u n t a r y a c t i o n s , but which which a c t t o r e s t r i c t s t u d e n t o p t i o n s and u n d u l y i n f l u e n c e s t u d e n t c h o i c e s : Reason #1: In which there are no acceptable alternatives to schooling. Having no a c c e p t a b l e a l t e r n a t i v e s t o s c h o o l i n g i s one r e a s o n f o r a t t e n d a n c e . I t i s q u i t e a s t o n i s h i n g t o r e a l i z e t h a t i n a d e m o c r a t i c s o c i e t y we o f f e r no a c c e p t a b l e a l t e r n a t i v e t o s c h o o l i n g . For h i g h s c h o o l s t u d e n t s under the age of s i x t e e n , t h e r e i s a c h o i c e between g o i n g t o s c h o o l or g o i n g t o j a i l . A r a t h e r h a r s h punishment, but 39 . i n c a r c e r a t i o n i n y o u t h d e t e n t i o n programmes f o r r e p e a t e d o r p r o l o n g e d t r u a n c y i s one o f s e v e r a l s t r a t e g i e s f o r d e a l i n g w i t h noncompliance, and o f t e n i n c o n j u n c t i o n w i t h removal from the f a m i l y t o a tre a t m e n t f a c i l i t y and/or a sente n c e o f j u v e n i l e p r o b a t i o n . For s t u d e n t s over the age of s i x t e e n , s i n c e i t i s no l o n g e r mandatory t o remain i n s c h o o l , the o n l y a l t e r n a t i v e i s d r o p p i n g o u t . And w h i l e i t i s s t i l l u n a c c e p t a b l e , d r o p p i n g out i s the most w i d e l y u t i l i z e d a l t e r n a t i v e . A c c o r d i n g t o the Canadian Teachers' F e d e r a t i o n (1995), about one out of e v e r y f o u r Canadian c h i l d r e n choose t h i s " o p t i o n " . But the p o i n t must be emphasized t h a t t h e s e are not s t u d e n t s w i t h low academic a b i l i t i e s o r a h i s t o r y of s c h o o l - r e l a t e d d i f f i c u l t i e s ; i n d e e d they a r e among the b e s t and the b r i g h t e s t . The m a j o r i t y o f these e a r l y s c h o o l 'leavers c i t e boredom w i t h s c h o o l arid a p r e f e r e n c e f o r work as the main f a c t o r s f o r l e a v i n g s c h o o l . Only 8% o f [ e a r l y ] s c h o o l l e a v e r s c i t e d problems w i t h s c h o o l work as t h e i r main reason f o r l e a v i n g , and j u s t o ver 10% r e p o r t e d average grades of D or F. More than 30% o f h i g h s c h o o l d r o p o u t s had A or B averages when they l e f t s c h o o l . (Canadian Teachers' F e d e r a t i o n , 1995, p . 1 ) . 40. Reason #2: In which students attend school out of fear. A second reason f o r " v o l u n t a r y " a t t e n d a n c e has t o do w i t h the f e a r of j e o p a r d i z i n g one's f u t u r e l i f e s t y l e . I n a r e c e n t s t u d y of O n t a r i o s c h o o l s M i c h a e l F u l l a n (1991), found t h a t a t l e a s t 50% o f h i g h s c h o o l s t u d e n t s a r e u n i n t e r e s t e d i n s c h o o l but go s i m p l y because of f u t u r e c o n s i d e r a t i o n s f o r employment and p r o s p e c t i v e e a r n i n g . F u l l a n ' s r e s e a r c h e s s e n t i a l l y shows t h a t one out o f e v e r y two s t u d e n t s r e m a i n i n g i n s c h o o l do so f e a r i n g unemployment or p o v e r t y as the o t h e r a l t e r n a t i v e . Reason #3: In which students attend school to secure a successful future. A t h i r d r e a s o n , which i s e s s e n t i a l l y a c o r o l l a r y of the second r e a s o n , i s based on a b e l i e f t h a t s c h o o l i n g o f f e r s , t o quote John Dewey, ""The o p p o r t u n i t y t o escape from the l i m i t a t i o n s o f the s o c i a l group" i n which one i s bo r n " ( c i t e d i n F u l l a n , 1991, p. 14). I n o t h e r words, s c h o o l s o f f e r our s t u d e n t s hope - hope f o r p o l i t i c a l ascendency, economic s u c c e s s , and s o c i a l w e l l - b e i n g -w i t h o u t which t h e r e i s o n l y d e s p a i r and the f e a r o f d o i n g w i t h o u t , of not b e l o n g i n g , and o f r e m a i n i n g u n s u c c e s s f u l . Reason #4: In which students attend school out of a sense of duty. 41 A f o u r t h r e a s o n has t o do w i t h a t t e n d i n g s c h o o l , t r y i n g t o get good marks, t r y i n g t o be a good s t u d e n t , t r y i n g t o be r e s p e c t f u l of s c h o o l r u l e s , p o l i c i e s , and so f o r t h , out o f a sense of d u t y t o one's f a m i l y and t o thos e s i g n i f i c a n t o t h e r s f o r whom they f e e l r e s p e c t and a sense o f i d e n t i t y . I t i s a d e s i r e t o p l e a s e p a r e n t s and f r i e n d s and make thes e p e o p l e proud t o be a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t h e i r e f f o r t s and achievements. C o n v e r s e l y , l e a v i n g s c h o o l e a r l y , poor achievement, poor b e h a v i o u r , would n e c e s s a r i l y r e f l e c t b a d l y upon those a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t h a t p e r s o n , such t h a t i t b r i n g s shame or d i s a p p o i n t m e n t t o a l l concerned. The Selection of Student Programmes "There i s a l l the d i f f e r e n c e i n the w o r l d between c h o o s i n g between a l t e r n a t i v e s and ' o p t i n g ' f o r a l t e r n a t i v e s based upon a v a i l a b l e o p t i o n s " ( P e t e r s , 1966 , p. 197 ). V o t e r s a re not unaware o f t h i s d i f f e r e n c e . O f t e n v o t e r s v o t e f o r a c e r t a i n c a n d i d a t e or p a r t y not because t h e y f e e l t h a t t h a t p a r t i c u l a r c a n d i d a t e o r p o l i t i c a l p a r t y e x p r e s s e s t h e i r v i e w s , but s i m p l y because out of the o p t i o n s a v a i l a b l e , t h a t p a r t i c u l a r c a n d i d a t e o r p a r t y i s l e a s t l i k e l y t o i n t e r r u p t or i n t e r f e r e w i t h t h a t v o t e r s p l a n s or p r o j e c t s . A l o n g s i m i l a r l i n e s , p a s sengers i n a b u r n i n g a i r p l a n e c o u l d be o f f e r e d a c h o i c e e i t h e r t o jump w i t h a p a r a c h u t e 42 . or go down w i t h the p l a n e . N e i t h e r o f t h e s e o p t i o n s e x p r e s s the wishes o f the passengers b u t , of t h e a v a i l a b l e o p t i o n s , p a r a c h u t i n g appears t o be the l e a s t h a r m f u l . I n the case f o r e d u c a t i o n , the s i t u a t i o n i s much the same. Of the a v a i l a b l e o p t i o n s s t u d e n t s o f t e n choose one i n which the chances of s u r v i v a l are the g r e a t e s t , such as c o u r s e s which i n v o l v e the l e a s t amount of Mathematics, or ones which don't r e q u i r e homework or don't i n v o l v e the w r i t i n g o f e s s a y s , or even c o u r s e s t h a t s u i t t h e i r time t a b l i n g s c h e d u l e . S t u d e n t s a l s o f r e q u e n t l y choose area s of s t u d y and make c o u r s e s e l e c t i o n on the b a s i s o f c a r e e r o p p o r t u n i t i e s , or what they u n d e r s t a n d from p a r e n t s , t e a c h e r s , and p e e r s , t o be the b e s t use o f t h e i r time i n terms of where they see themselves a f t e r c o m p l e t i n g s c h o o l . Intentional S t r i v i n g P u b l i c s c h o o l s c o n t i n u e t o o p e r a t e on the combined p r i n c i p l e s o f hope and f e a r : the hope of economic s u c c e s s , p o l i t i c a l ascendancy, and s o c i a l w e l l b e i n g , and the f e a r of d o i n g w i t h o u t and o f not b e l o n g i n g . I n e d u c a t i o n , the c h o i c e t o a t t e n d s c h o o l i s not p o s s i b l e u n l e s s a s t u d e n t i s w i l l i n g t o d e f y common sense, and t o r e j e c t the a d v i c e and endure the d i s a p p o i n t m e n t of p a r e n t s , p e e r s , and the s c h o o l community. I n a c t u a l f a c t , a s t r a t e g y o f 43 . i n c e n t i v e s and d e t e r r e n t s - a " c a r r o t and s t i c k " s t r a t e g y appears t o be the p r i n c i p l e m o t i v a t i n g f o r c e b e h i n d many s t u d e n t s c u r r e n t l y c h o o s i n g t o remain i n s c h o o l . The i d e a o f d a n g l i n g a c a r r o t from a p o l e or s t i c k , j u s t i n f r o n t of a donkey's nose and s l i g h t l y out o f r e a c h of i t s g r a s p , i s a s t r a t e g y f r e q u e n t l y used as an i n c e n t i v e t o encourage the an i m a l t o move f o r w a r d i n the hopes of r e a c h i n g the c a r r o t . C o n v e r s e l y , i f the c a r r o t i n c e n t i v e doesn't work t o e n t i c e the a n i m a l , the s t i c k can then be used as a d e v i c e f o r p e r s u a d i n g the an i m a l t h a t i t i s t r u l y not i n i t s b e s t i n t e r e s t t o r e f u s e t o comply. And a l t h o u g h t h e c a r r o t may appear as q u i t e an i n n o c e n t m o t i v a t i o n a l s t r a t e g y i n comparison t o the har s h n e s s of the s t i c k , b o t h s t r a t e g i e s a re u l t i m a t e l y aimed at c o e r c i n g the a n i m a l i n t o d o i n g what i t does not want t o do. F u r t h e r m o r e , w h i l e i t might appear q u i t e o b v i o u s t h a t c h i l d r e n a re not t o be t r e a t e d as donkeys, i t . i s not o b v i o u s as t o why we employ the same s t r a t e g i e s and m o t i v a t i o n a l d e v i c e s i n t h e i r e d u c a t i o n . D a n g l i n g c a r e e r and l i f e s t y l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s e n t i c i n g l y out of r e a c h of most s t u d e n t s ' g r a s p i s as a l l u r i n g as the " i n n o c e n t " c a r r o t w h i l e the f e a r of unemployment, i n s u f f i c i e n t income, and r e l e g a t i o n t o a l e v e l of s o c i a l i n s i g n i f i c a n c e a r e c a p a b l e o f i n f l i c t i n g blows more p a i n f u l and more e n d u r i n g t h a n a n y t h a t c o u l d be d e l i v e r e d by want o f a s t i c k . I b e l i e v e t h a t p u b l i c s c h o o l s must p r o v i d e more c a r r o t s a n d on s h o r t e r p o l e s i f t h e y a r e t o s u c c e e d i n i n c r e a s i n g e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s t o a l l s t u d e n t s . S t u d e n t s n e e d a g r e a t e r v a r i e t y o f e d u c a t i o n a l p r o g r a m m e s , d r i v e n by s t u d e n t c h o i c e , s o t h a t t h e r e e x i s t s e q u a l o p p o r t u n i t y t o be i n t e r e s t e d i n t h e r e s o u r c e s t h a t s c h o o l s o f f e r . The i n c e n t i v e t o r e m a i n i n s c h o o l a n d t o s t r i v e i n t e n t i o n a l l y and c o n t i n u o u s l y f o r e d u c a t i o n a l a c h i e v e m e n t a n d s u c c e s s must be a c c o m p a n i e d b y c o n s i d e r a t i o n s o f i n t e r e s t , e n j o y m e n t , a s e n s e o f w o n d e r , a n d p e r s o n a l f u l f i l l m e n t , r a t h e r t h a n s i m p l y b y c o n s i d e r a t i o n s o f f u t u r e e m p l o y m e n t , a l a c k o f o p t i o n s , a n d a s e n s e o f o b l i g a t i o n ( O h a n i a n , 1996 ; M e i e r , 1 9 9 6 ) . I n t e n t i o n a l s t r i v i n g i s b r o u g h t a b o u t n a t u r a l l y t h r o u g h i n t r i n s i c m o t i v a t i o n . S u c h m o t i v a t i o n o c c u r s when s t u d e n t s f e e l empowered t o make d e c i s i o n s a n d c h o i c e s t h a t g e n u i n e l y a f f e c t i s s u e s r e l e v a n t t o t h e i r e d u c a t i o n a n d t o t h e i r f u t u r e p l a n s a n d p r o j e c t s . The human f a c i l i t i e s o f p e r c e p t i o n , j u d g m e n t , d i s c r i m i n a t i v e f e e l i n g , m e n t a l a c t i v i t y , a n d e v e n m o r a l c h o i c e s , a r e e x e r c i s e d o n l y i n m a k i n g a c h o i c e . He who d o e s a n y t h i n g b e c a u s e i t i s t h e c u s t o m makes no c h o i c e . . . H e who l e t s t h e w o r l d . , o r h i s p o r t i o n o f i t , choose h i s p l a n of l i f e f o r him, has no need of any o t h e r f a c u l t y than the a p e - l i k e one o f i m i t a t i o n . He who chooses h i s p l a n f o r h i m s e l f , employs a l l h i s f a c u i t i e s . . . . H u m a n n a t u r e i s not a machine t o be b u i l t a f t e r a model, and s e t t o do e x a c t l y the work p r e s c r i b e d f o r i t , but a t r e e , which r e q u i r e s t o grow and t o d e v e l o p i t s e l f on a l l s i d e s , a c c o r d i n g t o the tendency o f the inward f o r c e s which make i t a l i v i n g t h i n g . ( M i l l , 1861/1980, p. 294) Over t i m e , and w i t h o u t c o n d i t i o n s which p r o v i d e f o r a range of a l t e r n a t i v e o p t i o n s and the pro m o t i o n i n t e n t i o n a l s t r i v i n g , s t u d e n t s can a c q u i r e a f e e l i n g o f h o p e l e s s n e s s , r e s u l t i n g i n t o t a l apathy towards s c h o o l and l e a r n i n g i n g e n e r a l . And apathy i s a c o n d i t i o n t h a t can be r e p l a c e d o n l y by en t h u s i a s m , and ent h u s i a s m i s r e s t o r e d when a w e l l thought out p l a n t a k e s the i m a g i n a t i o n by storm, whereby the i n d i v i d u a l can a g a i n see the p o t e n t i a l and the o p p o r t u n i t y t o succeed t o h e i g h t s l i m i t e d o n l y by b o u n d a r i e s s e t of t h e i r own i m a g i n a t i o n and e f f o r t s , not by b a r r i e r s over which they have no c o n t r o l (Ogbu, 1985). C o e r c i o n i s not a c o n d i t i o n c o n d u c i v e t o c r e a t i n g e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y . U n l e s s s t u d e n t s p e r c e i v e a j u s t and r e a s o n a b l e cause t o be g e n u i n e l y i n t e r e s t e d i n the e d u c a t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s and c a r e e r o p p o r t u n i t i e s o f f e r e d t h r o u g h the e d u c a t i o n system, and u n l e s s t h e y have the freedom t o make a p p r o p r i a t e c h o i c e s c o n c e r n i n g t h o s e o p p o r t u n i t i e s , our b e s t i n t e n t i o n s t o p r o v i d e e q u a l a c c e s s t o the d i s t r i b u t i o n o f e d u c a t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s w i l l n e c e s s a r i l y f a i l t o encourage i n t e n t i o n a l s t r i v i n g on the p a r t o f s t u d e n t s . Summary At t h i s p o i n t I t h i n k i t w i l l now be c l e a r t o the r e a d e r t h a t I c o n s i d e r any f u t u r e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y must n e c e s s a r i l y r e c o g n i z e c o n d i t i o n s t h a t may be l a c k i n g , and c o n d i t i o n s which may have been o v e r l o o k e d . Of the c o n d i t i o n s l a c k i n g , I have emphasized the l a c k o f Choice of Student Options. I have f u r t h e r s u p p o r t e d the c l a i m t h a t t h rough t h i s l a c k of c h o i c e , Intentional Striving i s u n l i k e l y t o o c c u r , and t h a t the v i t a l i mportance of t h i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f l e a r n i n g has been o v e r l o o k e d i n our j u d g i n g e d u c a t i o n a l achievement. I have argued t h a t p u b l i c s c h o o l s have an o b l i g a t i o n and r e s p o n s i b i l i t y t o p r o v i d e a l l s t u d e n t s w i t h e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s , and t h a t these o p p o r t u n i t i e s be " d i r e c t e d a t the f u l l development of the human p e r s o n a l i t y " , which i s a fundamental human r i g h t and one which Canada, l i k e many o t h e r d e m o c r a t i c n a t i o n s , w i l l i n g l y assumes r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r ( M i l l , p. 104). I t i s the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of the s t a t e t o p r o v i d e c o n d i t i o n s 47 . whereby such a r i g h t can be r e a l i z e d , and w i t h o u t j e o p a r d i z i n g the " r e s p e c t f o r human r i g h t s and fundamental freedoms t o which a l l persons a re e n t i t l e d " . I f we c o u l d f i n d any e v i d e n c e t h a t c o u l d c o n v i n c e us t h a t s u p p o r t f o r und e m o c r a t i c arrangements p r o v i d e f o r a b e t t e r q u a l i t y o f human e x p e r i e n c e i n e d u c a t i o n , then I would agree we have l e g i t i m a t e cause t o promote the e f f o r t s of c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s . But, a c c o r d i n g t o A r i s t o t l e (1980, p. 542), "two p r i n c i p l e s a r e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of democracy, the government of the m a j o r i t y and freedom". And J e f f e r s o n ( c i t e d i n K i l p a t r i c k , 1951, p. 52) s i m i l a r l y s u g g e s t s t h a t " i t i s t o se c u r e t h e s e r i g h t s t h a t governments a r e i n s t i t u t e d " . 48. CHAPTER 5 QUESTIONING WHAT IS TAKEN FOR GRANTED I t i s d i f f i c u l t t o be a s t u d e n t o f E d u c a t i o n i n the 1990's and not be aware of the wide d i f f e r e n c e s o f o p i n i o n r e g a r d i n g what p u b l i c s c h o o l s a r e c u r r e n t l y d o i n g , and what r e s e a r c h e r s and those who r e s i d e o u t s i d e the f i e l d c l a i m they s h o u l d be d o i n g . T h i s d i s c r e p a n c y between what i s and what ought t o be i s one o f k i n d , arid not degree. These w r i t e r s a re not s i m p l y s u g g e s t i n g v a r i a t i o n s t o the same theme; t h e y a re a d v o c a t i n g a whole new theme. Simply p u t , they a r e e x p r e s s i n g an o u t r i g h t r e j e c t i o n o f p r e v a i l i n g p h i l o s o p h i e s and e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s t h a t c u r r e n t l y o r d e r our s c h o o l s . Of s i g n i f i c a n t importance t o p r a c t i t i o n e r s i n the f i e l d , i s how we account f o r such d i f f e r e n c e s of o p i n i o n , and p r e c i s e l y on what b a s i s s c h o o l s s h o u l d p r o c e e d . Without the as s u r a n c e of knowing why we do what we do -f o r what purpose and t o what ends - t e a c h e r s must remain c a u t i o u s and somewhat s u s p i c i o u s o f the c o n v e n t i o n a l wisdom t h a t g u i d e s e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s . There e x i s t s f a r too many c o n t r a d i c t i o n s and f a r too many unanswered q u e s t i o n s about the way our s c h o o l s run t h a t s i m p l y don't measure up under the s c r u t i n y of sound r e a s o n i n g f o r t e a c h e r s n o t t o c o n s i d e r t h a t p e r h a p s we a r e d e s t r o y i n g t h e v e r y e d u c a t i o n a l e x p e r i e n c e s we s e e k t o p r o m o t e by c o n t i n u i n g t o t e a c h i n t h e manner t h a t we d o , a s i n d e e d o u r m e t h o d s o f t e n a p p e a r t o be a t o d d s w i t h o u r g o a l s . Some m o d e r n w r i t e r s c r e d i t p u b l i c s c h o o l s , a n d i n t u r n p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n , a s s e r v i n g g e n e r a l l y two m a i n p u r p o s e s : (1) t h e a c q u i s i t i o n o f v a r i o u s a c a d e m i c o r c o g n i t i v e s k i l l s a n d k n o w l e d g e , and (2) t h e d e v e l o p m e n t o f t h e e s s e n t i a l s o c i a l s k i l l s a n d k n o w l e d g e n e e d e d t o s u c c e s s f u l l y e n g a g e i n t h e s o c i a l , p o l i t i c a l , a n d e c o n o m i c f u n c t i o n s o f s o c i e t y ( B o w l e s & G i n t i s , 1976 ; F u l l a n , 1991 ; S a r a s o n , 1990 ; S c h l e c h t y , 1 9 9 0 ) . H o w e v e r , a s e a r l i e r i n f e r r e d , t h e r e a p p e a r s a g r o w i n g number o f w r i t e r s a n d p r a c t i t i o n e r s who w o u l d a r g u e t h a t t h e s e e n d s a r e w h o l l y i n s u f f i c i e n t , a n d l a c k i n g i n m e a n i n g f u l p u r p o s e . And w h e r e a s t h e a im o f p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n must n e c e s s a r i l y c o n c e r n i t s e l f w i t h t h e w e l f a r e a n d t h e p r o s p e r i t y o f t h e s t a t e , i t s h o u l d n o t be a t t h e e x p e n s e o f , o r i n c o n f l i c t w i t h t h e i n t e r e s t s o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l , n o r s h o u l d i t c o n t i n u e t o f u n c t i o n i n d e p e n d e n t l y o f t h e g r e a t e r c o n c e r n s f o r h u m a n i t y . A few e x a m p l e s h a v e b e e n t a k e n f r o m t h e l i t e r a t u r e t o a c q u a i n t t h e r e a d e r w i t h t h e s e a r g u m e n t s : 50. N e l l Noddings, S t a n f o r d U n i v e r s i t y : I t i s o b v i o u s t h a t our main s c h o o l purpose i s not a moral one o f p r o d u c i n g c a r i n g p e o p l e but a r e l e n t l e s s , and as i t t u r n s o u t , h a p l e s s d r i v e f o r academic adequacy...a r e o r d e r i n g o f p r i o r i t i e s i s e s s e n t i a l . (1995, J a n u a r y , p. 63) Jerome B r u n e r , H a r v a r d U n i v e r s i t y : I b e l i e v e I would be q u i t e s a t i s f i e d t o d e c l a r e , i f not a m o r i t o r i u m , then something of a de-emphasis on m a t t e r s t h a t have t o do w i t h the s t r u c t u r e o f h i s t o r y or p h y s i c s , the n a t u r e of m a t h e m a t i c a l c o n s i s t e n c y , and d e a l w i t h i t r a t h e r i n the c o n t e x t of the problems t h a t we f a c e . We might b e t t e r c o n c e r n o u r s e l v e s with.how those problems can be s o l v e d , not j u s t by p r a c t i c a l a c t i o n , but by p u t t i n g knowledge, wherever we f i n d i t and i n whatever form we f i n d i t , t o work i n t h e s e massive t a s k s . (1971, p. 21) James A. Beane, N a t i o n a l C o l l e g e o f E d u c a t i o n : What p o s s i b l e i n t e g r i t y c o u l d t h e r e be f o r any k i n d of knowledge a p a r t from how i t c o n n e c t s w i t h o t h e r forms t o h e l p us i n v e s t i g a t e and s o l v e the problems, c o n c e r n s , and i s s u e s t h a t c o n f r o n t us i n the r e a l w o r ld? Furthermore, what k i n d o f i n t e g r i t y do the d i s c i p l i n e s o f knowledge now have i n young p e o p l e ' s minds? (1995, p. 620) 51 . Seymour Sarason, S t a n f o r d U n i v e r s i t y : We have l e a r n e d a l o t about the c o n t e x t s t h a t f a c i l i t a t e p r o d u c t i v e l e a r n i n g . . . . To f o s t e r p r o d u c t i v e l e a r n i n g , you s t a r t where the c h i l d i s : h i s or her i n t e r e s t s , q u e s t i o n s , c u r i o s i t y . Ignore t h o s e a s p e c t s , s t a r t where you want t o s t a r t , "pour i n " what you want the c h i l d t o l e a r n , pace the i n s t r u c t i o n a c c o r d i n g t o a p r e d e t e r m i n e d c u r r i c u l u m and the p r e s s u r e of a s c h o o l c a l e n d a r , i g n o r e the i n e v i t a b l e and b r u t e f a c t o f i n d i v i d u a l i t y - p r oceed i n t h a t way and you have th e p r e s c r i p t i o n f o r making w a n t i n g t o l e a r n a sometime t h i n g , i f t h a t . The modal c l a s s r o o m i s a d u l l , u n i n t e r e s t i n g , b o r i n g a f f a i r b o th f o r s t u d e n t s and t e a c h e r s . (1996, p. 274.) I t i s p o s s i b l e t o quote from the l i t e r a t u r e a t g r e a t l e n g t h t h o s e w r i t e r s whose o p i n i o n s r u n c o n t r a r y t o c o n v e n t i o n a l e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s , and though t h e y a l l v o i c e d i f f e r e n t c o n c e r n s , e s s e n t i a l l y they are about the same t h i n g ; the need t o r e a d d r e s s b o t h the means and the ends' of e d u c a t i o n . R e f l e c t i n g on the above s t a t e m e n t s , one has t o ask how i s i t t h a t such h i g h l y educated p e o p l e , i n d e e d those who appear t o have done v e r y w e l l and who have l a r g e l y p r o f i t e d from t h e i r i n c l u s i o n i n the system now see f i t t o c r i t i c i z e t h i s same p r o c e s s and h o l d views of e d u c a t i o n i n such j u x t a p o s i t i o n t o t h o s e t h a t c u r r e n t l y p r e v a i l ? The q u e s t i o n i n g o f common e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s i s i m p o r t a n t t o our u n d e r s t a n d i n g of the t h e s i s q u e s t i o n , f o r what c o n s t i t u t e s e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y i s a p h i l o s o p h i c a l q u e s t i o n and, by d e f i n i t i o n , one which e d u c a t o r s must ask each g e n e r a t i o n , over and over a g a i n . G i v e n the overwhelming amount o f l i t e r a t u r e s u r r o u n d i n g the need f o r change, bf which the above quoted a u t h o r s r e p r e s e n t o n l y a s m a l l h a n d f u l , t h e r e appears an u r g e n t need t o re-examine t h a t which we have t a k e n f o r g r a n t e d i n e d u c a t i o n as b e i n g o f sound t h e o r y and p r a c t i c e . Even though the l e g i s l a t i o n o f compulsory e d u c a t i o n has e s s e n t i a l l y made the assumption f o r each of us t h a t e d u c a t i o n i s i n h e r e n t l y d e s i r a b l e f o r a l l c i t i z e n s , I conte n d t h a t we s h o u l d not b e g i n our e x a m i n a t i o n , i n the words of P o p k e w i t z , by assuming " t h a t e x i s t i n g p r a c t i c e s are r e a s o n a b l e " ( c i t e d i n Werner, 1 9 9 1 , p. 1 8 ) . I n f a c t , I f e e l i t would be more prudent t o f o l l o w the a d v i c e of the infamous d e t e c t i v e , S h e r l o c k Holmes, who a t the b e g i n n i n g of each new case c a u t i o u s l y reminded h i s companion, Dr. John Watson, t o "assume n o t h i n g " and t o " l e a v e no s t o n e u n t u r n e d " i n t h e i r i n v e s t i g a t i o n : I n o t h e r words, i t would be i r r e s p o n s i b l e and u n p r o f e s s i o n a l t o s i m p l y assume t h a t our c u r r e n t system of e d u c a t i o n o f f e r s something of e q u a l b e n e f i t f o r each p e r s o n , and t o such a degree t h a t i n c l u s i o n s h o u l d be w i t h o u t c h o i c e . I t i s i n the s p i r i t of Holmes' a d v i c e then - assuming n o t h i n g and l e a v i n g no stone u n t u r n e d - t h a t we proceed w i t h our i n v e s t i g a t i o n . I have come t o the c o n c l u s i o n t h a t our b e s t i n t e n t i o n to c r e a t e e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y w i l l n e c e s s a r i l y f a i l t o b r i n g about any m e a n i n g f u l and l a s t i n g change i n ac c e p t e d e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s u n t i l we acknowledge some v e r y fundamental e r r o r s on which we have based our e d u c a t i o n a l t h e o r i e s . The n o t i o n o f s e t t i n g u n i v e r s i t y e n t r a n c e as a prime e d u c a t i o n a l g o a l and the c o n f u s i o n o f i d e n t i c a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s w i t h t h o s e of e q u a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s , as d i s c u s s e d i n Chapters 1 and 2, are two such e r r o r s . The u n d e r v a l u i n g o f t h e r e s p e c t f o r s t u d e n t s ' freedom o f c h o i c e i n the r i g h t t o e d u c a t i o n , as p r e s e n t e d i n Chapter 4 i s another o v e r s i g h t . But f u r t h e r to our u n d e r s t a n d i n g of c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s , t h e r e e x i s t s perhaps an even more s i g n i f i c a n t e r r o r from which th e s e m i s c a l c u l a t i o n s and o t h e r s t h a t we have y e t t o d i s c u s s have sprung. The Ordering of Knowledge There a r e those who would argue t h a t some types o f knowledge a r e more d e s i r a b l e and of a h i g h e r o r d e r than o t h e r s , and t h a t t h i s type o f knowledge s h o u l d be t h e k i n d t h a t i s promoted i n our s c h o o l s . R u s s e l K i r k ( c i t e d i n 54 . H o l t z et a l . , 1989, p . 4 8 ) , f o r example, c l a i m s that s c h o o l s s h o u l d be spared "the a s s a u l t s o f u t i l i t a r i a n i s m and e g a l i t a r i a n i s m " i n favour of "the t r a i n i n g of the mind and c o n s c i e n c e through c e r t a i n w e l l - d e f i n e d academic d i s c i p l i n e s . " The L i b e r a l A r t s versus V o c a t i o n a l T r a i n i n g debate i s w e l l known, and one which perhaps e p i t o m i z e s our n o t i o n o f compromise. For what i s o f t e n seen as an encroachment on the t r a d i t i o n a l t u r f of a l i b e r a l e d u c a t i o n , has been what S o c r a t e s r e f e r r e d to as an " i l l i b e r a l " e d u c a t i o n , promoted by those who see a need f o r d e v e l o p i n g more than s i m p l y the a b i l i t i e s o f the mind to engage i n t h e o r e t i c a l r e a s o n i n g , l o g i c , and c r i t i c a l t h i n k i n g (Bruner , 1971; Dewey, 1932; H o l t , 1969, Noddings , 1995; Ro land M a r t i n , 1995). I t i s not w i t h i n the scope of t h i s paper to wade i n t o the depths of the l i b e r a l v s . i l l i b e r a l e d u c a t i o n d e b a t e . However, c e n t r a l to my c l a i m tha t we have confused the means and ends o f e d u c a t i o n wi th those o f l e a r n i n g , i s the b e l i e f tha t a l i b e r a l e d u c a t i o n i s o f g r e a t e r v a l u e to s o c i e t y than an i l l i b e r a l e d u c a t i o n ; the i d e a tha t the development of the mind i s more important than the development of e i t h e r the body or the s o u l (Cru ickshanks, 1997). But what I f e e l may be a c c o m p l i s h e d by t o u c h i n g on t h i s a r e a o f d i s c u s s i o n , i s to demonstrate that the h i e r a r c h i c a l o r d e r i n g of knowledge i n our c u r r i c u l a i s both an i r r a t i o n a l as w e l l as counter p r o d u c t i v e s t r a t e g y f o r p u r s u i n g e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y i n the p u b l i c s c h o o l system. The p e d e s t a l i z a t i o n of a l i b e r a l e d u c a t i o n i s a prime example o f p o i n t made e a r l i e r i n t h i s c h a p t e r r e g a r d i n g d o i n g what we do i n e d u c a t i o n w i t h o u t a c t u a l l y knowing why we do i t , but t a k i n g f o r g r a n t e d t h a t t h e r e i s a good r e a s o n f o r c o n t i n u i n g t o do so. To demonstrate t h i s p r i n c i p l e i t i s n e c e s s a r y t o t u r n back the c l o c k two thousand y e a r s t o whence came the i d e a o f a l i b e r a l e d u c a t i o n . The t r a d i t i o n a l meaning o f the word " l i b e r a l " , as a p p l i e d t o e d u c a t i o n , denoted a d i s t i n c t i o n between the e d u c a t i o n o f f r e e men and t h a t of s l a v e s who, not u n l i k e d o m e s t i c a t e d a n i m a l s , were t r a i n e d t o perform s p e c i f i c t a s k s and t h e r e f o r e not educated f o r t h e i r own good, but r a t h e r f o r the employ i n which they were i n t e n d e d . I l l i b e r a l e d u c a t i o n was thus f o r those who needed t o work f o r a l i v i n g , w h i l e a l i b e r a l e d u c a t i o n was o f f e r e d to those f r e e men who p o s s e s s e d the l e i s u r e i n which t o intentionally strive t o l i v e w e l l . A c c o r d i n g l y , e d u c a t i o n was c a t e g o r i z e d as " l i b e r a l " o r " i l l i b e r a l " ( A r i s t o t l e , 1980), w i t h the l a t t e r c o n s t i t u t i n g "any o c c u p a t i o n , a r t , or s c i e n c e , which makes the body or s o u l l e s s f i t f o r v i r t u e " , i n c l u d i n g " a l l p a i d employments f o r t h e y a b s o r b and degrade the mind" (p. 542). However, i t i s not o n l y the n a t u r e of the s u b j e c t by which e d u c a t i o n was judged t o be l i b e r a l o r i l l i b e r a l , but a l s o by i t s i n t e n d e d use. I n o r d e r t o be c o n s i d e r e d l i b e r a l , e d u c a t i o n must s e r v e the ends of l e i s u r e i n the p u r s u i t o f e x c e l l e n c e . O t h e r w i s e , " i f done f o r the sake of o t h e r s " , even a p o t e n t i a l l i b e r a l a r t becomes, "menial and s e r v i l e " ( A r i s t o t l e , p. 542). Hence we cannot s i m p l y c a t e g o r i z e a s u b j e c t as a l i b e r a l a r t o n l y by i t s n a t u r e ; i t must a l s o be de t e r m i n e d by i t s i n t e n d e d use, which must be to each i n d i v i d u a l l i v i n g w e l l r a t h e r than f o r the purpose o f e a r n i n g a l i v i n g . I n o t h e r words, those s u b j e c t a r e a s such as Mathematics, P h i l o s o p h y , S c i e n c e , R h e t o r i c , and so f o r t h cannot o f themselves be c a l l e d l i b e r a l i f t h e y a r e i n t e n d e d t o make o n e s e l f i n a b e t t e r p o s i t i o n f o r g a i n f u l employment. Thus the s t u d y o f Law, M e d i c i n e , or Mathematics, f o r the purpose of making a c a r e e r and e a r n i n g a l i v i n g as a l a w y e r , d o c t o r , or e n g i n e e r i s , t r a d i t i o n a l l y s p e a k i n g , the ends o f an i l l i b e r a l or " v o c a t i o n a l " e d u c a t i o n and not o f a l i b e r a l one, as we must ta k e f u l l y i n t o account not o n l y the means but the ends. Put another way, the f u t u r e d o c t o r who, w h i l e s t u d y i n g M e d i c i n e , a l s o l e a r n s the a r t of Woodcarving f o r h i s own enjoyment and towards f u r t h e r i n g h i s knowledge i n t h a t a r e a f o r h i s own s a t i s f a c t i o n , i s , by d e f i n i t i o n , i n p u r s u i t o f a l i b e r a l e d u c a t i o n through h i s hobby r a t h e r than i n h i s 57 . p r i n c i p l e a r e a o f s t u d y a t the u n i v e r s i t y . By the same measure tho s e s t u d e n t s who c u r r e n t l y s t u d y s u b j e c t a r e a s i n h i g h s c h o o l , which have been r e l e g a t e d t o a v o c a t i o n a l s t a t u s such a s : Cooking, T y p i n g , D r a f t i n g , M e t a l Working, e t c . , but who have no d e s i r e t o pursue those ends as a c a r e e r , and a r e l e a r n i n g s i m p l y f o r the sake o f enjoyment, s e l f - i n t e r e s t , s a t i s f a c t i o n , and o t h e r w i s e i n c r e a s i n g t h e i r u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f the a r t , may be s a i d t o be r e c e i v i n g a l i b e r a l e d u c a t i o n . T r a d i t i o n a l l y s p e a k i n g t h e n , t h o s e who promote the n o t i o n of a " L i b e r a l A r t s " c u r r i c u l u m of Mathematics, S c i e n c e , S o c i a l S t u d i e s , and L i t e r a t u r e as c o n s t i t u t i n g a more w o r t h w h i l e f o c u s of s t u d y , do so under f a l s e p r e t e n s e s , r e c k l e s s l y and n e e d l e s s l y a p p l y i n g an o r d e r t o knowledge t h a t i s w h o l l y u n j u s t i f i a b l e and w i t h o u t good r e a s o n (Noddings, 1992, p. x i i ) ; For what h i g h e r purpose does the d i v i s i o n of knowledge s e r v e by d i v i d i n g i t i n t o s u b c l a s s e s o f i l l i b e r a l and l i b e r a l o r , as o f t e n r e f e r r e d t o , academic and v o c a t i o n a l ? I cannot imagine t h a t the b e n e f i t s of such naming can outweigh the c o s t s t o t h e i n d i v i d u a l i n s o c i e t y who f e e l s t h a t they have a c h i e v e d l e s s t h r o u g h s t u d y i n an a r e a o f p e r s o n a l i n t e r e s t r e l e v a n t t o t h e i r h a p p i n e s s and w e l l b e i n g as a p e r s o n . However, i f advocates of a l i b e r a l e d u c a t i o n a r e i n t e n t on " r e s t o r i n g " t r a d i t i o n t o our s c h o o l s (Roland 58 . M a r t i n , 1995 , p. 3 5 8 ) , then a " r e o r d e r i n g of p r i o r i t i e s " i s c e r t a i n l y w e l l c a l l e d f o r (Noddings, 1992 , p. x i i ) . I n f a c t , i n the p r o c e s s , i t would be q u i t e n e c e s s a r y t o rename and r e o r d e r the n a t u r e o f s u b j e c t d i s c i p l i n e s i n our c u r r e n t h i g h s c h o o l s c u r r i c u l a , such t h a t v o c a t i o n a l e l e c t i v e s a r e r e c a s t as l i b e r a l a r t s , s i n c e they meet the c r i t e r i a o f the t r a d i t i o n a l meaning of the word, w h i l e t h o s e "academic" or l i b e r a l s u b j e c t s be a p p r o p r i a t e l y renamed i l l i b e r a l , as they do not f i t the c r i t e r i a . And i f we d i d so, what s i t u a t i o n would r e s u l t ? Would we then v a l u e more h i g h l y v o c a t i o n a l t r a i n i n g as i t i s now a l i b e r a l a r t , or would the former d i s t i n c t i o n s become mea n i n g l e s s a l t o g e t h e r ? Summary I concur w i t h Jane R o l a n d M a r t i n who, a f t e r s u r v e y i n g the means and ends o f c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s , c o n c l u d e s t h a t : We need a new c u r r i c u l a r paradigm... one t h a t i n t e g r a t e s thought and a c t i o n , r e a s o n and e motion, e d u c a t i o n and l i f e ; one t h a t does not d i v o r c e p e o p l e from t h e i r s o c i a l and n a t u r a l c o n t e x t s . ( 1995 , J a n u a r y , p. 358) But such a r e a l i z a t i o n w i l l r e q u i r e t h a t s c h o o l s r e f r a i n from r o u t i n e l y and b l i n d l y f o l l o w i n g e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s t h a t t a k e away from the j o y s and wonderment of l e a r n i n g , t h a t s c h o o l s v a l u e e q u a l l y the c o n t r i b u t i o n t o s o c i e t y of many typ e s o f l e a r n i n g and, f i n a l l y , t h a t s c h o o l s d e s i s t from the a r b i t r a r y o r d e r i n g of knowledge 'Which h e l p s t o p r e s e r v e c o n d i t i o n s o f i n e q u a l i t y w i t h i n e d u c a t i o n s and o c c u p a t i o n s . We need t o b e g i n c o n s i d e r i n g new means t o new ends and t o a new u n d e r s t a n d i n g of e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y w i t h i n the p u b l i c s c h o o l system. And such i s t h e purpose of t h e next two c h a p t e r s . I n c h a p t e r s 6 and 7 we s h a l l e x p l o r e the n o t i o n of change and attempt t o d i s c o v e r what th e s e new means and new ends i n p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n might l o o k l i k e . 60 . CHAPTER 6 THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF CHANGE There has been much w r i t t e n on t h e whys and whats of e d u c a t i o n a l change, f o c u s i n g p r i m a r i l y on a m u l t i t u d e of sh o r t c o m i n g s and p r o b l e m a t i c i s s u e s as reasons f o r c o n s i d e r i n g r e f o r m s . I n f a c t , what has been d i s c u s s e d i n the p r e c e e d i n g c h a p t e r s i s e s s e n t i a l l y j u s t t h a t ; the s u p p o r t i n g r a t i o n a l e , j u s t i f i c a t i o n , and purpose f o r change. However, d e s p i t e the abundance o f l i t e r a t u r e on e d u c a t i o n a l r e f o r m , t h e r e i s v e r y l i t t l e w r i t t e n w i t h r e g a r d t o e x a c t l y how t h e s e changes s h o u l d o c c u r . I have not become a c q u a i n t e d w i t h any a l t e r n a t i v e approach which o u t l i n e s p r e c i s e l y how t o address the whole broad i s s u e of change, such t h a t we can r e a l i z e any g r e a t advantages over t h a t which a l r e a d y e x i s t s w i t h i n t r a d i t i o n a l e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s . To d a t e our e f f o r t s towards change i n e d u c a t i o n a r e c o n f i n e d l a r g e l y t o r h e t o r i c , o f f e r i n g few c o n c r e t e p l a n s o f a c t i o n and l i t t l e t h a t i s t a n g i b l e w i t h which t o pr o c e e d . I t i s as Derksen r e p o r t s , "the c l a s s r o o m t e a c h e r i s h a r d p r e s s e d t o f i n d p r a c t i c a l models of how [change] 61 . w i l l work", w h i l e f u r t h e r on he a s k s , "what has been done i n the c la s sroom which the t eacher f a c i n g the r e a l i t y of Monday morning can b u i l d upon?" F i n a l l y , he c o n c l u d e s , "teachers need to examine programs which demonstrate what works" ( c i t e d i n Werner 1991 , p . 1 4 ) . And D e r k s e n ' s f i n d i n g s are c o n s i s t e n t w i t h those r e p o r t e d i n the l i t e r a t u r e (Dryden, 1995 ; G i r o u x , 1 9 8 5 ) . John Goodlad ( 1 9 8 3 ) , former Dean of the Graduate Schoo l o f E d u c a t i o n at UCLA, w r i t e s that "both the t h e o r y to guide and the t e c h n o l o g y to e x p e d i a t e program development are at bes t weak" (p. 4 6 8 ) . The reason f o r the l a c k o f exemplars i s perhaps as W i l l i a m James ( 1 8 9 0 / 1 9 8 0 ) noted a c e n t u r y e a r l i e r , that " i t i s e a s i e r to d e f i n e the i d e a l [educat ion] than g i v e p r a c t i c a l d i r e c t i o n s f o r b r i n g i n g i t about" (p. 2 7 4 ) . In Chapter 7 I w i l l i n t r o d u c e an a l t e r n a t i v e approach to the means and ends of p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n , o u t l i n i n g a "Monday Morning P l a n , " w i th " p r a c t i c a l d i r e c t i o n s f o r b r i n g i n g i t a b o u t . " I t i s my b e l i e f tha t the c o n s i d e r a b l e absence of a c c e p t a b l e a l t e r n a t i v e s i s a v i t a l element l a c k i n g not o n l y i n c o n s i d e r a t i o n s o f equa l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y and the achievement o f e d u c a t i o n a l s u c c e s s , but to a l l manner of e d u c a t i o n a l change. In my mind the best way to i n c r e a s e e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l achievement and equa l access to the d i s t r i b u t i o n o f e d u c a t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s , i s to i n c r e a s e the m o t i v a t i o n of s tudent s such that they i n t e n t i o n a l l y s t r i v e towards the " f u l l development o f the human p e r s o n a l i t y " as i n t e n d e d i n the U n i v e r s a l D e c l a r a t i o n o f Human R i g h t s ( A r t i c l e 2 6 , paragraph 2 ) . I t h i n k t h i s can be a c c o m p l i s h e d by t a k i n g i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n a l l tha t we have d i s c u s s e d : (1) d e v e l o p i n g s c h o o l environments that encourage and promote the r i g h t to e d u c a t i o n and the freedoms a s s o c i a t e d w i t h that r i g h t , i n accordance w i t h the n o t i o n of r e s p e c t f o r the a s p i r a t i o n s and i n t e r e s t s of all persons i r r e s p e c t i v e of t h e i r age or s t a t u s i n s o c i e t y (Benns, 1988 ; M i l l , 1 8 2 1 / 1 9 8 0 ) , and as c o n c e i v e d by the U n i v e r s a l D e c l a r a t i o n of Human R i g h t s , by (2) a d o p t i n g e d u c a t i o n a l p h i l o s o p h i e s which encourage p r o d u c t i v e l e a r n i n g (Darling-Hammond, 1 9 9 3 ; H o l t , 1969 ; S a r a s o n , 1 9 9 6 ) , and a c a r i n g s o c i e t y , concerned f o r the c o l l e c t i v e w e l l - b e i n g o f a l l ( M i l l , 1 8 2 1 / 1 9 8 0 ; Noddings , 1993 , 1 9 9 5 , May; Roland M a r t i n , 1 995;' S e r g i o v a n n i , 1 9 9 4 ) . (3) C r e a t i n g s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s t h a t w i l l accommodate and promote d i v e r s i t y ( S t r i k e , 1982 , p . 1 6 7 ) , (4) whereby s tudents are encouraged to f u r t h e r e x p l o r e t h e i r own i n t e r e s t s , (5) thereby p r o v i d i n g c o n d i t i o n s wherein s tudents w i l l i n t e n t i o n a l l y s t r i v e to a c h i e v e e d u c a t i o n a l success (Coombs, 1 9 9 4 ) . Any new approach towards i n c r e a s i n g e q u a l a c c e s s and achievement must ta k e i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n a l l of t h e above and a l s o a v o i d the " m i s t a k e s " of the p a s t : (1) the over emphasis on a c h i e v i n g u n i v e r s i t y e n t r a n c e s t a t u s and i n c r e a s i n g p r o s p e c t s f o r employment as the p r i m a r y g o a l s o f e d u c a t i o n , (2) r e g a r d i n g the same o p p o r t u n i t i e s as c o n s t i t u t i n g e q u a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s , (3) c o n f u s i n g the means and ends o f e d u c a t i o n , (4) l a b e l i n g and d i s t i n g u i s h i n g knowledge as l i b e r a l or i l l i b e r a l , and (5) a t t e m p t i n g t o r e s t r u c t u r e t h a t which i s not worth r e s t r u c t u r i n g . I suggest i n s e a r c h i n g f o r s o l u t i o n s t o our d i f f i c u l t i e s t h a t we might keep i n mind a p o p u l a r adage t h a t seems t o c h a r a c t e r i z e the e f f o r t s of p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n t o d a t e : "You can p l e a s e some o f the peopl e some o f the t i m e , and some of the peopl e a l l of the t i m e , but you ca n ' t p l e a s e a l l the peopl e a l l of the t i m e . " However, I do not t h i n k I would be amiss i n s u g g e s t i n g t h a t we have come t o expect more o f our e d u c a t i o n system than s i m p l y p l e a s i n g "some o f the peopl e some o f t i m e . " I t i s time I t h i n k t o r e w r i t e the l a s t l i n e o f the s a y i n g such t h a t i t r e a d s , "you ca n ' t p l e a s e a l l of the p e o p l e a l l o f the time - unless sufficient alternatives and options of equivalent status are provided from which people can freely choose according to their individual interests and aspirations." Of c o u r s e t h i s r e v i s e d s a y i n g may not r o l l o f f the tongue q u i t e as e a s i l y as the o r i g i n a l and as such l o s e i t s emphasis. But perhaps t h i s i s not so bad. Maybe i n d o i n g so, we c o u l d r e - e s t a b l i s h the p r i n c i p l e so t h a t i n e d u c a t i o n we can expect t o p l e a s e all of the p e o p l e a t l e a s t most o f the t i m e . I t i s based on t h i s r e v i s e d p r i n c i p l e t h a t I , i n any c a s e , s h a l l p r o c e e d t o o u t l i n e my approach as one s t r a t e g y f o r i n c r e a s i n g the chances f o r e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y t o e x i s t i n the p u b l i c s c h o o l system. Considerations of Interests and Productive Learning P u b l i c s c h o o l s a r e not d e s i g n e d t o i n t e r e s t c h i l d r e n . O t h e r w i s e , a t the v e r y l e a s t , they would t r y t o accommodate t h e i r c a p t i v e a u d i e n c e s by o f f e r i n g a v a r i e t y of e d u c a t i o n a l o p t i o n s and a l t e r n a t i v e s , i f o n l y because th e y must r e a l i z e t h a t everyone cannot be e x p e c t e d t o l e a r n the same i n f o r m a t i o n , i n the same manner, i n the same span o f tim e , and w i t h the same r e s u l t s ( P i a g e t , 1977). G i v e n the age o f the c l i e n t e l e and t h e i r n a t u r a l a f f i n i t y towards l e a r n i n g t h r o u g h p l a y i n g and d o i n g , one c o u l d almost take i t f o r g r a n t e d t h a t s c h o o l s would n a t u r a l l y o f f e r h i g h i n t e r e s t , h i g h a c t i v i t y - o r i e n t e d , r e l e v a n t l e a r n i n g e x p e r i e n c e s i n o r d e r t o ensure maximum p a r t i c i p a t i o n and m o t i v a t i o n f o r a l l s t u d e n t s , r a t h e r than cope w i t h the overwhelming d i s i n t e r e s t and apathy t h a t would r e s u l t from o f f e r i n g low i n t e r e s t , low a c t i v i t y l e a r n i n g e x p e r i e n c e s ( E r i k s o n , 1977). G i v e n what we now know about how c h i l d r e n l e a r n (Sarason, 1996, p. 274), one would t a k e i t f o r g r a n t e d t h a t we would have ta k e n the above p r i n c i p l e s i n t o account when d e s i g n i n g our system of e d u c a t i o n . B u t, the t r u t h of the matter i s , we haven't and the r e s u l t i n g d e l u s i o n and c o n f u s i o n a r e the consequences. But what an a s t o n i s h i n g n o t i o n t h i s i d e a of t e a c h i n g s t u d e n t i n t e r e s t s . Why s h o u l d s c h o o l s t e a c h what i n t e r e s t s s t u d e n t s ? With a l l t h a t we have d i s c u s s e d , I c o n c l u d e t h a t the r e a s o n must be because s c h o o l s a r e not o n l y about g e t t i n g an e d u c a t i o n , t h e y a re a l s o about productive l e a r n i n g w hich, a c c o r d i n g t o Sarason: i s f a r more than an e x e r c i s e of memory, or o f a c q u i r i n g knowledge and s k i l l s w i t h the aim o f s a t i s f y i n g the r e q u i r e m e n t s of o t h e r s . . . a t the expense o f p e r s o n a l s i g n i f i c a n c e . . . T o f o s t e r p r o d u c t i v e l e a r n i n g , you s t a r t where the c h i l d i s : h i s or her i n t e r e s t s , q u e s t i o n s , c u r i o s i t y . (1991, p. 274) And Sarason i s not a l o n e i n h i s a p p r e c i a t i o n of the r o l e t h a t i n t e r e s t and, i n t u r n , r e l e v a n c y p l a y i n m o t i v a t i n g c h i l d r e n t o t a k e an i n t e r e s t i n s c h o o l and i n 66. l e a r n i n g . E d u c a t o r s from the time of P l a t o u n t i l the p r e s e n t day have noted the much n e g l e c t e d element of p e r s o n a l i n t e r e s t i n the p r o c e s s o f e d u c a t i o n . M i c h a e l F u l l a n (1991), i n a s t u d y o f s c h o o l s i n Canada and the U n i t e d s t a t e s , found t h a t s t u d e n t s g i v e up on l e a r n i n g when they a r e not i n t e r e s t e d , and s i m p l y drop out o f s c h o o l (Chap. 2 ) . S i m i l a r f i n d i n g s were r e p o r t e d by the Canadian Teachers' F e d e r a t i o n (1995), who c i t e d boredom as a c h i e f f a c t o r i n most s t u d e n t s ' d e c i s i o n t o drop o u t . A q u a r t e r c e n t u r y ago John H o l t (1964) wrote i n the i n t r o d u c t i o n o f h i s then c o n t r o v e r s i a l book, How Children Fai 1: Most c h i l d r e n f a i l i n s c h o o l . . . they f a i l because they are a f r a i d , b o r ed, and c o n f u s e d . They a r e a f r a i d , above a l l e l s e of f a i l i n g , of d i s a p p o i n t i n g or d i s p l e a s i n g the many an x i o u s a d u l t s around them, whose l i m i t l e s s hopes and e x p e c t a t i o n s f o r them hang over t h e i r heads l i k e a c l o u d . They a r e bored because the t h i n g s they are g i v e n and t o l d to do are so t r i v i a l , so d u l l , and make such l i m i t e d and narrow demands on the wide spectrum o f t h e i r i n t e l l i g e n c e , c a p a b i l i t i e s , and t a l e n t s . They are c o n f u s e d because most of the t o r r e n t of words t h a t pours over them i n s c h o o l makes l i t t l e o r no sense. I t o f t e n f l a t l y c o n t r a d i c t s o t h e r t h i n g s they have been t o l d , and h a r d l y ever has any r e l a t i o n t o what they r e a l l y know. (p. x i v ) 67 . At the end o f h i s book, H o l t c o n c l u d e s what many o t h e r s have: The a l t e r n a t i v e - I can see no o t h e r -r i s to have s c h o o l s and c l a s s r o o m s i n which each c h i l d i n h i s own way can s a t i s f y h i s c u r i o s i t y , d e v e l o p h i s a b i l i t i e s and t a l e n t s , pursue h i s i n t e r e s t s , and...get a g l i m p s e o f the g r e a t v a r i e t y and r i c h n e s s o f l i f e (p. 1 80) . In view o f a l l t h a t has been w r i t t e n t o d a t e , r e g a r d i n g the sho r t c o m i n g s of c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s , I cannot h e l p but t h i n k t h a t the o n l y r e a s o n t o r e j e c t the n o t i o n s of p r o d u c t i v e l e a r n i n g as e n v i s i o n e d by the l i k e s o f Dewey, E i n s t e i n , H o l t , and Sarason, and themes of c a r i n g as a r t i c u l a t e d i n the w r i t i n g s o f M i l l , M ontaigne, Noddings, and Rola n d M a r t i n , would be because of f e a r . We a r e a f r a i d t h a t i f we c e n t r e our c l a s s r o o m s around the c u r i o s i t i e s , q u e s t i o n s , and i n t e r e s t s o f c h i l d r e n , i f we f o c u s our c u r r i c u l a on i s s u e s of p o v e r t y , w o r l d hunger, abuse, r a c i s m , e n v i r o n m e n t a l d e s t r u c t i o n , t h a t t h e r e w i l l not be enough of an emphasis on academic d i s c i p l i n e s , and c o n s e q u e n t l y s t u d e n t s w i l l not get a "p r o p e r " e d u c a t i o n . The f e a r t h a t s t u d e n t s w i l l l o s e out on a prop e r academic e d u c a t i o n i s a v a l i d c o n c e r n as l o n g as s c h o o l s c o n t i n u e t o promote the n o t i o n t h a t a L i b e r a l A r t s or "Academic" e d u c a t i o n i s s u p e r i o r , o r at l e a s t a more d e s i r a b l e e d u c a t i o n and of g r e a t e r p e r s o n a l and 6 8 . s o c i e t a l worth than an I l l i b e r a l or " V o c a t i o n a l " e d u c a t i o n . Summary To be sure what I have w r i t t e n w i l l be c h a l l e n g e d ; t h a t my c l a i m s are too s t r o n g , and tha t the c i r c u m s t a n c e s f o r change which I have p r o p o s e d , must u l t i m a t e l y be l i m i t e d to what can be r e a l i s t i c a l l y accompl i shed under the e x i s t i n g c i r c u m s t a n c e s . B u t , h a v i n g heard these o b j e c t i o n s , I m a i n t a i n tha t these l i m i t i n g c o n d i t i o n s are o n l y a g i v e n under the p r e s e n t set o f c i r c u m s t a n c e s . They are not f i x e d r e a l i t i e s ; they are o n l y r e l a t i v e to our e x i s t i n g system of e d u c a t i o n . I f we a l t e r the system, we then a l t e r the r e l a t i v e r e a l i t i e s which d e f i n e that system. In o t h e r words, i f we change the c i r c u m s t a n c e s under which our s c h o o l s o p e r a t e , by making changes to the fundamental p h i l o s o p h i e s and s t r u c t u r e s of our i n s t i t u t i o n s , we a l s o change the e x i s t i n g c o n d i t i o n s o f that r e a l i t y . There i s no reason to b e l i e v e tha t there e x i s t s c e r t a i n u n a l t e r a b l e c o n d i t i o n s , i n h e r e n t i n a l l p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n systems, t h a t must n e c e s s a r i l y be p r e s e n t i n every se t of c i r c u m s t a n c e s . I f we c r e a t e another set o f c i r c u m s t a n c e s , we a l s o c r e a t e a new set o f r e a l i t i e s which d e f i n e i t . 69 . The c i r c u m s t a n c e s which I e n v i s i o n t r e a t the i n t e r e s t s o f the i n d i v i d u a l as the means to p r o d u c t i v e l e a r n i n g and e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y , and h o l d as i t s ends the a s p i r a t i o n s o f the i n d i v i d u a l t o seek h a p p i n e s s , u n d e r s t a n d i n g , and r e s p e c t f o r a l l persons and t h i n g s . P r o m o t i n g such a v i s i o n w i l l r e q u i r e t h a t we f o c u s not on the t e a c h i n g of s u b j e c t a r e a s , but r a t h e r on the e x p l o r a t i o n o f mutual i n t e r e s t s o f the t e a c h e r and h i s / h e r p u p i l s . F o c u s i n g on mutual i n t e r e s t s w i l l f i r s t r e q u i r e a reassessment o f the s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s which have e v o l v e d t o s u p p o r t and promote c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s . I t i s the t a s k of c u r r i c u l u m p l a n n e r s , p h i l o s o p h e r s , and s t u d e n t s of e d u c a t i o n a l change t o d e s i g n c o n d i t i o n s t h a t promote and s u p p o r t d i v e r s i t y , but which can c o e x i s t w i t h , r a t h e r than attempt t o r e p l a c e , t r a d i t i o n a l approaches i n e d u c a t i o n . We must a v o i d an e i t h e r / o r type of s t r a t e g y . P l a n n i n g f o r d i v e r s i t y and c h o i c e must be c e n t r a l t o a l l f u t u r e e d u c a t i o n a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n s , such t h a t s t u d e n t s , t e a c h e r s , and p a r e n t s over time can see the o b v i o u s b e n e f i t s and form the o p i n i o n t o change i n t h e i r own minds. There must be no n o t i o n of f o r c i n g change; d i v e r s i t y o f o p i n i o n must not o n l y be t o l e r a t e d b u t , i n a democracy, encouraged. 70 . CHAPTER 7 LEARNING BY INTEREST: AN ALTERNATIVE TO THE STANDARDIZED CURRICULUM The Structure of Public Schools E s s e n t i a l l y t h e r e e x i s t s o n l y one model o f e d u c a t i o n throughout our p u b l i c s c h o o l s system where p r e d i c t a b l e and a c c e p t e d p a t t e r n s or rhythms, o f what Lieberman and M i l l e r (1989) have r e f e r r e d to as the " D a i l i n e s s o f T e a c h i n g " , are dominant and h i g h l y v i s i b l e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . When a c e r t a i n c o m b i n a t i o n of c o n d i t i o n s and c i r c u m s t a n c e s are p r e s e n t , we can r e c o g n i z e a p a r t i c u l a r i n s t i t u t i o n as a h o t e l , a t h e a t r e , a h o s p i t a l , a r e s t a u r a n t , or a s c h o o l . P a r t i c u l a r l y so i f there e x i s t s a k i n d of u n i f o r m i t y between each l o c a t i o n . P u b l i c s c h o o l s by d e s i g n have a type of u n i f o r m i t y about them, such that they tend to have a f r a n c h i s e d appearance to t h e i r p h y s i c a l b e i n g and f u n c t i o n tha t v e r y much d i s t i n g u i s h e s them from o t h e r types o f i n s t i t u t i o n s and s c h o o l s . P u b l i c s c h o o l s r e p r e s e n t the " M a c D o n a l d s i z a t i o n " of the e d u c a t i o n i n d u s t r y , i f you w i l l . A t eacher or s tudent can walk i n t o any p u b l i c s c h o o l , i n v i r t u a l l y any i n d u s t r i a l i z e d c o u n t r y i n the w o r l d , and f e e l a sense o f 71 . f a m i l i a r i t y w i th the s u r r o u n d i n g s . They w i l l immedia te ly r e c o g n i z e the l a y o u t of the s c h o o l w i t h i t s i n d i v i d u a l c lassrooms e x t e n d i n g o f f a c e n t r a l h a l l w a y r u n n i n g the l e n g t h o f the b u i l d i n g . They w i l l r e c o g n i z e the decor of the c lassrooms w i t h t h e i r desks and t a b l e s , c h a l k b o a r d s , and b o o k s h e l v e s . They w i l l expect to f i n d an a d u l t at the head of each c l a s s r o o m , surrounded by two dozen or so c h i l d r e n busy w i t h work a s s i g n e d and e v a l u a t e d by tha t a d u l t . A v i s i t o r to the s c h o o l w i l l take comfort i n f i n d i n g a p r e d i c t a b l e o r d e r l i n e s s to the c la s sroom a c t i v i t i e s , where in t e x t b o o k s , p e n c i l s , pens , and paper are the common and e s s e n t i a l equipment . They w i l l r e c o g n i z e and know the i tems on the c u r r i c u l a r menu by h e a r t . There w i l l be the u s u a l s t a n d b y s : S c i e n c e , S o c i a l s , E n g l i s h , Mathemat ics , as w e l l as the u s u a l d a i l y s p e c i a l s : A r t , P h y s i c a l E d u c a t i o n , or M u s i c . They w i l l r e c o g n i z e a l l the sounds, s i g h t s , and d a i l y rhythms of p e r i o d r o t a t i o n s , r ece s se s , ' l u n c h b r e a k s , homework, gym c l a s s , and i n a s h o r t t ime f e e l at home i n tha t env ironment . And a l t h o u g h they may never have se t f o o t i n , nor c l a p p e d eyes on a p a r t i c u l a r s c h o o l , they know w e l l what to expect when they e n t e r i t s d o o r s . There w i l l be few s u r p r i s e s , f o r f a m i l i a r i t y , c o n t i n u i t y , c o n s i s t e n c y , u n i f o r m i t y , s t a n d a r d i z a t i o n , are the f r a n c h i s e d t r a d e marks of p u b l i c s c h o o l s , as r e c o g n i z a b l e 72 . from the d i s t a n c e t o t e a c h e r s and s t u d e n t s as the Golden Arches of t h a t o t h e r N o r t h American i n s t i t u t i o n i s t o i t s p a t r o n s . T h i s f r a n c h i s e d , or perhaps " s t a n d a r d i z e d " model i s s u p p o r t e d by a few b a s i c and " t r a d i t i o n a l " s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s . Walt Werner (1995) contends t h a t s c h o o l c u l t u r e s a r e b u i l t around t h r e e b a s i c components: c o r e pedagogy, norms, and s t r u c t u r e s . Of t h e s e t h r e e components o f s c h o o l c u l t u r e s , he p r e d i c t s s i g n i f i c a n t p o s s i b i l i t i e s f o r change o c c u r r i n g t h rough the a l t e r i n g of s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s , which i n c l u d e the c o n s i d e r a t i o n s o f : ti m e , space, p e o p l e , a u t h o r i t y , and s u b j e c t m a t t e r . Werner s u g g e s t s t h a t i n e d u c a t i o n we have reached a " t h r e s h o l d " , beyond which e d u c a t o r s f i n d i t d i f f i c u l t t o e f f e c t s i g n i f i c a n t and l a s t i n g change w i t h o u t accompanying changes t o t h e fundamental s t r u c t u r e s o f p u b l i c s c h o o l s . I t i s not enough t o p r o v i d e p r o f e s s i o n a l development o p p o r t u n i t i e s o r some time f o r d i s c u s s i o n when the c o n t e x t i n which t e a c h e r s work i s not c o n d u c i v e t o , and may even c o n t r a d i c t , a s p e c t s o f d e s i r e d change. Implementation i s not a ma t t e r o f f o c u s i n g on the p r a c t i c e s o f i n d i v i d u a l s w i t h o u t a l s o m o d i f y i n g i n s t i t u t i o n a l v a l u e s and r e g u l a r i t i e s . (p. 18). 73. These same s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s put i n p l a c e i n o r d e r t o f a c i l i t a t e p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n , have i n t u r n become a s i g n i f i c a n t impediment f o r s c h o o l s t r y i n g t o adapt t o the r e f o r m s c u r r e n t l y demanded of them. They a c t t o c o n s t r i c t the realm o f p o s s i b i l i t i e s f o r the a c c e p t a n c e of change. As Werner (1991) a g a i n o b s e r v e s : U n l e s s d i s c u s s i o n f o c u s e s on the i n t e r p l a y among o r g a n i z a t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e s and norms, and forms of [change], t e a c h e r s t a k e them f o r g r a n t e d and do not r e a l i z e the e x t e n t o f the problem i n v o l v e d . [Change] i s then i n t e r p r e t e d i n l i g h t o f , and m o d i f i e d t o f i t w i t h , e x i s t i n g c o n d i t i o n s . (p. 18) And "the l i k e l y consequence", o b s e r v e s H a r g r e a v e s , " i s t h a t i n the main i t w i l l endorse and g l o s s what [ e d u c a t o r s ] a l r e a d y t h i n k and do. I t w i l l r e i n f o r c e and r a t i o n a l i z e the e x i s t i n g c u l t u r e o f [ e d u c a t i o n ] , not t r a n s f o r m i t " ( c i t e d i n Werner, 1991, p. 18). C o n s e q u e n t l y , under the p r e s e n t c i r c u m s t a n c e s , w i t h o u t the type of s t r u c t u r a l s u p p o r t n e c e s s a r y t o promote, s u p p o r t , and m a i n t a i n new e f f o r t s , i t i s not f e a s i b l e t o i n t r o d u c e any type o f r a d i c a l or a l t e r n a t i v e approach and e x p e c t f a v o u r a b l e r e s u l t s . We must, i n f a c t , c o n s c i o u s l y a v o i d i n t r o d u c i n g any new approaches t o e d u c a t i o n u n l e s s we can be r e a s o n a b l y c e r t a i n o f s u c c e s s f u l i m p l e m e n t a t i o n , f o r as F u l l a n (1991) warns, "nonimplementable programs 74 . p r o b a b l y do more harm than good when th e y a r e a t t e m p t e d " (p. 104). I f we a r e , t h e r e f o r e , t o r e a l i z e any s o r t o f chance f o r the s u c c e s s f u l i m p l e m e n t a t i o n of a l t e r n a t i v e approaches t o e d u c a t i o n , we must a l t e r e x i s t i n g c i r c u m s t a n c e s such t h a t they a r e r e c e p t i v e t o and c o n d u c i v e t o the f a c i l i t a t i o n of such changes. Th^ Road to I t h i c a : A l t e r i n g School Structures I n s t a r t i n g out on the r o a d t o change, I am reminded of a scene i n an o l d f i l m i n v o l v i n g t h r e e of the most u n l i k e l y s a i l o r s e v e r t o put t o s e a . I n t h i s s i t u a t i o n L a r r y , Moe, and C u r l y , b e t t e r known as "The Three Stooges", a r e s h i p w r e c k e d i n a storm and wash up upon the s h o r e s o f C r e t e . H a v i n g l o s t t h e i r b e a r i n g s i n t h e o r d e a l , t h e y i n q u i r e from a wandering goat h e r d e r as t o t h e b e s t r o u t e t o t a k e t o get t o I t h i c a . Upon t r y i n g t o e x p l a i n t o them i n which d i r e c t i o n i t would be b e s t t o s t a r t t h e i r j o u r n e y , and a f t e r r e a l i z i n g t h a t t h e r e r e a l l y was no b e s t r o u t e , t h e o l d goat h e r d e r t h o u g h t f u l l y c o n c l u d e d , "You know boys, i f I were you, I wouldn't s t a r t from h e r e ! " I n e d u c a t i o n we c o u l d w e l l t a k e the goat h e r d e r ' s a d v i c e . For i n our s i t u a t i o n , u n l i k e t h a t of the despondent t r i o , such a d v i c e would be q u i t e p r a c t i c a l . And i f we keep i n mind P o p k e w i t z ' s and Werner's quote, 75. t h a t " t o s t a r t where s c h o o l i s cannot mean t o i m p l y t h a t e x i s t i n g p r a c t i c e s a re r e a s o n a b l e " , the message i s q u i t e s i m i l a r - we c o u l d use a new s t a r t i n g p o i n t f o r our e f f o r t s - a new s e t o f s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s and a new p h i l o s o p h i c a l o r i e n t a t i o n t o h e l p us on the road t o I t h i c a . What must i n i t i a l l y f o l l o w i n o r d e r t o p r o v i d e support f o r t h e L e a r n i n g by I n t e r e s t approach, or any o t h e r a l t e r n a t i v e approach t h a t we might c o n s i d e r , i s the c a p a c i t y o f the s c h o o l t o accommodate d i v e r s i t y among s t u d e n t s , s t u d e n t programmes, and t e a c h i n g / l e a r n i n g methods, s i m u l t a n e o u s l y . The a l t e r i n g of s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s ( t i m e , p l a c e , p e o p l e , a u t h o r i t y , s u b j e c t m atter) I n c o n j u n c t i o n w i t h the m o r a l , p h i l o s o p h i c a l , and c u r r i c u l a r c o n s i d e r a t i o n s t h a t we have d i s c u s s e d , w i l l c r e a t e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r such m o d i f i c a t i o n s t o be a p p l i e d i n t h e f o l l o w i n g c o n s i d e r a t i o n s o f secondary s c h o o l models. PEOPLE Those With Whom We Share the Learning Environment For a s t a r t , i n the l e a r n i n g by i n t e r e s t approach we must be a b l e t o group teachers' and s t u d e n t s a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l i n t e r e s t s . As i t e x i s t s now, secondary 76 . s c h o o l s g e n e r a l l y p o p u l a t e t h e i r c l a s s r o o m s i n r o u g h l y the same manner. I n each c l a s s r o o m t h e r e i s one a d u l t t e a c h e r who i s r e s p o n s i b l e f o r d i r e c t i n g t h e a c t i v i t i e s and e f f o r t s o f up t o t h i r t y o r so c h i l d r e n whose r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s , i n t u r n , e s s e n t i a l l y c o n s i s t o f t a k i n g d i r e c t i o n from the one a d u l t . The method o f matching s t u d e n t s and t e a c h e r s i s g e n e r a l l y based on age a p p r o p r i a t e c r i t e r i a , i n which the t e a c h e r and s t u d e n t s a r e a s s i g n e d t o the same c l a s s r o o m based on the age o f the c h i l d and the c o r r e s p o n d i n g grade l e v e l or s u b j e c t a r e a t a u g h t by t h a t p a r t i c u l a r t e a c h e r . P r e - s e l e c t i o n , t h a t i s s t u d e n t s r e q u e s t i n g a c e r t a i n t e a c h e r o r t e a c h e r s s e l e c t i n g c e r t a i n s t u d e n t s , i s a l l o w e d o n l y under c e r t a i n c i r c u m s t a n c e s and i n c e r t a i n s u b j e c t a r e a s i n secondary s c h o o l s , such as i n the e l e c t i v e or s e n i o r academic s p e c i a l t y a r e a s . However, random g r o u p i n g i n the c o r e c u r r i c u l u m a r e a s ( i . e . , Mathematics, S c i e n c e , S o c i a l s , and E n g l i s h ) i s g e n e r a l l y deemed a r e a s o n a b l e approach t o c l a s s r o o m a s s i g n m e n t s , based on the p r i n c i p l e t h a t the c o n s i d e r a t i o n s o f a l l s t u d e n t s are t r e a t e d " e q u a l l y " , and a l l t e a c h e r s a r e deemed e q u a l l y competent t o t e a c h the s t u d e n t s i n tho s e a s s i g n e d a r e a s . G i v e n the p r e v i o u s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s Of e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y , a l a r g e l y random p a i r i n g o f t e a c h e r s and s t u d e n t s was a r e a s o n a b l e s t r a t e g y t o f o l l o w . 77 . However, w i t h the added c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f i n t e r e s t s , random o r c a s u a l c l a s s r o o m placement i s a l e s s a p p r o p r i a t e method o f s e l e c t i o n . I n o r d e r t o maximize th e p o t e n t i a l b e n e f i t s o f l e a r n i n g by i n t e r e s t , i t i s n e c e s s a r y t o a l t e r the way i n ' w h i c h we randomly p a i r s t u d e n t s and t e a c h e r s , and i n s t e a d match t e a c h e r s and t h e i r p u p i l s a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i r a r e a s of mutual i n t e r e s t s as we do i n e l e c t i v e and s e n i o r academic s u b j e c t a r e a s . B e f o r e p r e s e n t i n g the r e a d e r w i t h a c o n c r e t e example, I t h i n k i t would be h e l p f u l t o remember t h a t the a s s o c i a t i o n s I am s u g g e s t i n g are common t o most manner of t h i n g s t h a t we do, except i n the normal c o u r s e o f p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n . G e n e r a l l y i n most l e a r n i n g s i t u a t i o n s t h a t we engage i n , we f i n d t h a t i t i s most advantageous t o group p e o p l e t o g e t h e r a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i r i n t e r e s t s . B a l l e t l e s s o n s f o r example, or i n s t r u c t i o n i n K a r a t e , Gymnastics, Swimming, A c c o u n t i n g , M u s i c , F i r s t A i d , Dance, and so f o r t h are a l l a r r a n g e d a c c o r d i n g t o the i n t e r e s t s o f the l e a r n e r s and the t e a c h e r . There i s no n o t i o n of f o r c i n g an i n d i v i d u a l to s t u d y t h i n g s i n which they a r e not i n t e r e s t e d . I n n o n - s c h o o l r e l a t e d a c t i v i t i e s we seem t o u n d e r s t a n d t h a t f o r c e d l e a r n i n g w i l l be c o u n t e r p r o d u c t i v e not o n l y t o t h e i n d i v i d u a l s concerned, but a l s o t o those w i t h whom t h e y s h a r e the l e a r n i n g environment. 78. There would be l i t t l e use, f o r example, i n h a v i n g a stamp c o l l e c t i n g c l u b or an Olympic swim team i f a good many of the members had no i n t e r e s t i n c o l l e c t i n g stamps or swimming c o m p e t i t i v e l y . The f i r s t o r d e r of b u s i n e s s would be t o ask those who do not w i s h t o be t h e r e t o l e a v e so t h a t the r e s t o f the members c o u l d get on w i t h t h e i r b u s i n e s s . I n the s e a r e a s we r e c o g n i z e t h a t o n l y by g r o u p i n g t o g e t h e r p e o p l e who sh a r e s i m i l a r a s p i r a t i o n s and i n t e r e s t s can we c r e a t e the be s t p o s s i b l e environment f o r the b e s t l e a r n i n g and t e a c h i n g c o n d i t i o n s t o o c c u r . A good l e a r n i n g environment depends not o n l y on the i n s i g h t s and d i r e c t i o n s o f the t e a c h e r , but a l s o on the p r e t e n s e t h a t the l e a r n e r s themselves w i l l encourage and e x c i t e each o t h e r and, i n d o i n g so, h e l p t o f u r t h e r each o t h e r s i n t e r e s t s and knowledge f o r the common good as w e l l as f o r t h e i r own b e n e f i t s . I t i s o n l y through i n t e r e s t t h a t these groups can c o n t i n u e t o f u n c t i o n . Without a common i n t e r e s t , t h e r e would be no re a s o n t o come t o g e t h e r . I am o f t e n amazed t o hear o f e l e m e n t a r y s c h o o l t e a c h e r s a r r a n g i n g t h e i r d a i l y s c h e d u l e s such t h a t a c t i v i t i e s l i k e A r i t h m e t i c and Language A r t s , where they f e e l the g r e a t e s t amount of a t t e n t i v e n e s s and c o n c e n t r a t i o n a re r e q u i r e d , are programmed f o r the morning p e r i o d s when c h i l d r e n ' s a t t e n t i o n spans and c o n c e n t r a t i o n l e v e l s appear t o be the 79. h i g h e s t , w h i l e l e s s m i n d f u l a c t i v i t i e s , such as A r t , M u s i c , o r P h y s i c a l E d u c a t i o n , a r e p l a n n e d f o r the a f t e r n o o n p e r i o d s when a p p a r e n t l y c h i l d r e n ' s a t t e n t i o n spans and a b i l i t i e s t o c o n c e n t r a t e a re l o w e r . They speak so m a t t e r o f f a c t l y o f t h i s impending d e c l i n e i n a t t e n t i o n , i t i s as though i t were a normal p h y s i o l o g i c a l c o n d i t i o n t h a t n a t u r a l l y o c c u r s among a l l c h i l d r e n d u r i n g the a f t e r n o o n . -What I f i n d most amazing about t h i s a t t e n t i o n d e f i c i t phenomenom i s t h a t a t 3:00 o ' c l o c k , p r e c i s e l y when, a c c o r d i n g t o the above t h e o r y , s t u d e n t s a r e the most r e s t l e s s and a p p a r e n t l y the l e a s t a b l e t o c o n c e n t r a t e and a p p l y t h e m s e l v e s , t h e s e same r e s t l e s s and i n a t t e n t i v e i n d i v i d u a l s r u s h o f f t o music l e s s o n s , dance l e s s o n s , t h e a t r e c l a s s e s , e t c . , where they a p p l y themselves d i l i g e n t l y and v o l u n t a r i l y to, l e s s o n s f a r more r i g o r o u s , f a r more demanding, and o f t e n r e q u i r i n g g r e a t e r d i s c i p l i n e , s e l f - c o n t r o l , and d e t e r m i n a t i o n than any number of s c h o o l s u b j e c t s . One cannot h e l p but n o t i c e the s t a r t l i n g c o n t r a s t i n energy l e v e l s between s c h o o l and e x t r a c u r r i c u l a r a c t i v i t i e s no matter what time o f day. Are we t o suppose t h a t i f s c h o o l was t o be h e l d on a Sa t u r d a y morning t h a t we would encou n t e r g r e a t e r e n t h u s i a s m than i f those same c l a s s e s were h e l d on a Thursday a f t e r n o o n ? I b e l i e v e t h a t the apparent d e c l i n e 80 . i n t h e c a p a c i t i e s o f s t u d e n t s t o l e a r n i n the a f t e r n o o n , has l i t t l e t o do w i t h s h o r t a t t e n t i o n spans or lower l e v e l s of c o n c e n t r a t i o n and much t o do w i t h the u t t e r l a c k o f i n t e r e s t i n what i s b e i n g t a u g h t . I t i s as Sarason (1996, p. 274) s a y s , i f we i g n o r e the i n t e r e s t s o f c h i l d r e n and t e a c h what we want t o t e a c h , l e a r n i n g becomes o n l y a "sometime t h i n g , i f t h a t . " I f e e l , t h a t a f t e r s u r v i v i n g the morning g r i n d , s t u d e n t s see the a f t e r n o o n s s i m p l y as the d o w n h i l l s t r e t c h and move out of the w o r k i n g mode, not at a l l u n l i k e the e l a t i o n e x p e r i e n c e d i n the a d u l t w o r k i n g w o r l d by employees w i t h the a r r i v a l o f F r i d a y a f t e r n o o n s . SUBJECT MATTER From Theory to Practice: A Five Year Plan There i s s t i l l much more t h a t we c o u l d c o n s i d e r on the s u b j e c t o f c l a s s r o o m g r o u p i n g s , however, i t i s time t o move from the t h e o r e t i c a l t o the p r a c t i c a l , and t o examine j u s t how the s t r a t e g y o f g r o u p i n g s t u d e n t s and t e a c h e r s a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i r i n t e r e s t s might work i n a p u b l i c s c h o o l s e t t i n g . Suppose, f o r example, we were t o adopt a f i v e y e a r p l a n , and i n the f i r s t year of t h i s p l a n we were t o i n v i t e s t u d e n t s i n grades 8 and 9 t o t h i n k about what i t i s they 81 . would r e a l l y l i k e t o l e a r n about i n s c h o o l - where t h e i r i n t e r e s t s , a s p i r a t i o n s , and c u r i o s i t i e s l i e . These i n t e r e s t s would then be added t o a p o o l of i n t e r e s t s which would be c o n s i d e r e d as p o s s i b l e t e a c h i n g / l e a r n i n g a c t i v i t i e s o f f e r e d t o s t u d e n t s i n the upcoming y e a r s . At t h i s same t i m e , s c h o o l s would b e g i n t o r e c r u i t any new t e a c h e r s k e e p i n g i n mind the i n t e r e s t s e x p r e s s e d by s t u d e n t s . The o b j e c t i v e would be t o match p o t e n t i a l t e a c h e r s w i t h s t u d e n t s who sh a r e s i m i l a r i n t e r e s t s i n a p a r t i c u l a r a r e a o u t s i d e of tho s e c u r r e n t l y o f f e r e d w i t h i n the s t a n d a r d c u r r i c u l u m . To c o n t i n u e w i t h t h i s example, l e t ' s say t h a t o f the s i x new t e a c h e r s r e c r u i t e d , f o u r were h i r e d e x p r e s s l y because of t h e i r a b i l i t i e s and d e s i r e s t o t e a c h i n areas t h a t s t u d e n t s had e x p r e s s e d i n t e r e s t i n l e a r n i n g . With f o u r such matches i n p l a c e , we c o u l d c r e a t e i n the second y e a r f o u r new c o r r e s p o n d i n g c o u r s e s o f s t u d y , open t o any grade 8 or 9 s t u d e n t who had e x p r e s s e d a d e s i r e t o pursue s t u d i e s i n one of tho s e f o u r a r e a s o f i n t e r e s t . ...and A l l the World's a Stage L e a r n i n g about a n y t h i n g w e l l , r e q u i r e s t h a t the l e a r n e r u n d e r s t a n d as much as p o s s i b l e the many elements and v a r i a b l e s a f f e c t i n g t h a t p a r t i c u l a r i n t e r e s t . One of the ways t o become more f a m i l i a r w i t h an a r e a o f i n t e r e s t 12 . i s t o s t u d y t h a t i n t e r e s t from d i f f e r e n t p o i n t s o f view. And one method of s t u d y i n g something from d i f f e r e n t p o i n t s of view i s t o a n a l y z e i t t h r o u g h v a r i o u s s u b j e c t a r e a s , such as those we are a l l f a m i l i a r w i t h a t s c h o o l . A l t h o u g h we have no w i s h t o promote the s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m , i t does have the d i s t i n c t advantage of b e i n g a c c e p t e d and v a l u e d by the g e n e r a l p u b l i c and the e d u c a t i o n a l community. For t h i s r e a s o n perhaps the e a s i e s t and the most e x p e d i e n t way t o demonstrate the r o l e t h a t i n t e r e s t s c o u l d p l a y i n c o n t r i b u t i n g t o the s e r i o u s demands o f academic s t u d y , i s t o r e l a t e the e x p l o r a t i o n o f t h e s e i n t e r e s t s t o s u b j e c t areas i n the s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m . U l t i m a t e l y , however, I f e e l t h a t once p e o p l e become more f a m i l i a r w i t h the n o t i o n of s t u d y i n g i n t e r e s t s f o r i n t e r e s t sake and not s i m p l y as a n o v e l t y , a comparison t o the e x i s t i n g s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m and s u b j e c t a r e a s w i l l be u n n e c e s s a r y and l a r g e l y u n i m p o r t a n t . I f the r e a d e r w i l l c o n s i d e r b r i e f l y the t r a n s i t i o n from horse drawn v e h i c l e s t o m o t o r i z e d v e h i c l e s t h e r e i s an a n a l o g y which c o u l d be u s e f u l t o our u n d e r s t a n d i n g of the changes which I am p r o p o s i n g . When m o t o r i z e d v e h i c l e s were f i r s t i n t r o d u c e d t h e y were me r e l y r e g a r d e d as a n o v e l t y , and not something f o r s e r i o u s work. But as t h e s e v e h i c l e s were improved and r e f i n e d , t h e i r p o t e n t i a l advantages became more e v i d e n t . W h i l e m o t o r i z e d v e h i c l e s 83 . were b e i n g d e v e l o p e d and adapted t o the v a r i o u s uses t h a t h o r s e s or oxen t r a d i t i o n a l l y f i l l e d , i t was n e c e s s a r y t o c o n s t a n t l y compare t h e i r p o t e n t i a l s i n terms o f "horse power". And f o r many y e a r s t h e horsepower of a v e h i c l e was an i m p o r t a n t s t a n d a r d by which t o judge performance and t o s a t i s f y e x i s t i n g c a l c u l a t i o n s f o r a s s e s s i n g work p o t e n t i a l . A c e n t u r y l a t e r , however, horsepower does not l a r g e l y f i g u r e i n t o the c o n s i d e r a t i o n s o f p r o s p e c t i v e v e h i c l e buyers and, i n f a c t , many buyers do not even u n d e r s t a n d the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the performance of t h e i r v e h i c l e and the c a l c u l a t i o n of horsepower. Buyers today a re o f t e n more aware o f o t h e r measures of performance such a s , c u b i c c e n t i m e t e r s , c y l i n d e r s i z e , and l i t r e uptake c a p a c i t y , a c c e l e r a t i o n speed from z e r o t o s i x t y , and so f o r t h . The owner of a v e h i c l e no l o n g e r r e q u i r e s a c o n f i r m a t i o n i n "horse power" t o a p p r e c i a t e i f the j o b i s b e i n g done e f f i c i e n t l y . R e t u r n i n g t o our d i s c u s s i o n , i f we c o n s i d e r t h a t v i t a l t o a w e l l - r o u n d e d u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f T h e a t r e , f o r example, i s the a c q u i s i t i o n o f knowledge about the language of the performance - i t s s u b t l e t i e s and innuendoes, knowledge about the times and t h e c o n t e x t of the s t o r y , and knowledge about the a c t u a l s t a g i n g of the performance such as: c o s t u m i n g , s t a g e s e t s , sound and l i g h t i n g , s p e c i a l 84. e f f e c t s , choreography, music, s e a t i n g , a d v e r t i s i n g , or f i n a n c i n g , one can see t h a t t h e r e i s p l e n t y o f scope f o r s e r i o u s academic i n p u t . And t h i s i s e x a c t l y what w'e s h a l l attempt t o do. We s h a l l endeavour t o enhance and e n r i c h the s t u d y o f T h e a t r e by u s i n g and g i v i n g c r e d i t i n s u b j e c t a r e a s t h a t c o n t r i b u t e t o a g r e a t e r u n d e r s t a n d i n g and enjoyment of a p a r t i c u l a r a r e a of i n t e r e s t . Imagine a t y p i c a l h i g h s c h o o l s t u d e n t g e t t i n g out o f bed i n the morning and a c t u a l l y l o o k i n g f o r w a r d t o g o i n g t o s c h o o l because of what they would be l e a r n i n g , r a t h e r than s i m p l y t o see t h e i r f r i e n d s . What would t h a t l o o k l i k e ? What i t would be l i k e f o r a h i g h s c h o o l s t u d e n t t o s t a r t s c h o o l on Monday mornings w i t h o u t t h a t s i n k i n g f e e l i n g c r e e p i n g i n and t h i n k i n g , "Oh god, I s t i l l have a whole week t o go u n t i l the weekend!" The r e a d e r can imagine a grade n i n e s t u d e n t waking up on a Monday morning i n September and g o i n g t o s c h o o l t o s t u d y not E n g l i s h , or S o c i a l s S t u d i e s or Shop, but r a t h e r t o s t u d y T h e a t r e . T h i s s t u d e n t i s g o i n g t o get up and spend a whole day l e a r n i n g something he o r she has a g r e a t i n t e r e s t i n and has asked t o l e a r n - an e n t i r e day l e a r n i n g w i t h o t h e r s t u d e n t s who a c t u a l l y want t o be t h e r e , and a t e a c h e r who i s i n s p i r e d and encouraged by the e n t h u s i a s m o f h i s / h e r p u p i l s ' a m b i t i o n s . 85 . F u r t h e r m o r e , t h i s s t u d e n t w i l l have the o p p o r t u n i t y t o get up each day and l o o k f o r w a r d t o s t u d y i n g and l e a r n i n g about h i s / h e r i n t e r e s t e v e r y day o f the week f o r an e n t i r e semester. But what t h i s l o o k s l i k e , and how i t would be p o s s i b l e t o s t u d y T h e a t r e a l l day l o n g and s t i l l l e a r n what i s " r e q u i r e d " and n e c e s s a r y f o r " g r a d u a t i o n " , w i l l r e q u i r e some f u r t h e r e x p l a i n i n g . I b e l i e v e t h a t t h rough the s t u d y o f T h e a t r e , i t i s p o s s i b l e f o r a s t u d e n t t o a t t a i n c r e d i t s i n E n g l i s h , S o c i a l S t u d i e s , or Hu m a n i t i e s and, depending on t h a t s t u d e n t ' s s p e c i a l i n t e r e s t s , c r e d i t i n an e l e c t i v e a r e a as w e l l . How would t h i s work e x a c t l y ? W e l l , l e t us suppose t h a t the T h e a t r e p r o d u c t i o n was based upon the s t o r y of G u l l i v e r ' s T r a v e l s f o r example. To r e a l l y u n d e r s t a n d the u n d e r l y i n g s t o r y , i t i s n e c e s s a r y t o u n d e r s t a n d t h e s a r c a s t i c c o n t e x t i n which Jonathan S w i f t was w r i t i n g (1726/1980, P a r t I V ) . To do t h i s , i t would be h e l p f u l t o put o n e s e l f i n Jonathan S w i f t ' s shoes, so t o speak, and t o see the e v e n t s of 17th and 18th c e n t u r y Europe t h r o u g h h i s eyes ; e x p l o r i n g the i d e a s o f s t a t e , government, c o n s t i t u t i o n , j u s t i c e , and democracy, and the many other-c o n s i d e r a t i o n s c o n s i s t e n t w i t h our n o t i o n of S o c i a l S t u d i e s . B e i n g f a m i l i a r w i t h the c o n c e p t s and l e a r n i n g outcomes of the S o c i a l S t u d i e s c u r r i c u l u m , a t e a c h e r c o u l d d e v i s e a 86 . s o c i a l s t u d y , such as t h a t shown on the f o l l o w i n g page (p. 87) which c o u l d enhance a s t u d e n t ' s u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f the t h e a t r i c a l p r o d u c t i o n w h i l e a l s o s a t i s f y i n g the aims of S o c i a l S t u d i e s . L e a r n i n g h i s t o r y t h r o u g h the s t u d y o f T h e a t r e i s d e r i v e d o f the same p r i n c i p l e as l e a r n i n g about h i s t o r y t h r o u g h the s t u d y of A r t . A r t H i s t o r y has e v o l v e d as a l e g i t i m a t e and f a s c i n a t i n g way of l o o k i n g at the developments o f humankind. I n the same manner as S o c i a l S t u d i e s , such s t r a t e g i e s c o u l d a l s o be a p p l i e d t o s a t i s f y i n g the r e q u i r e m e n t s of e l e c t i v e a r e a s . T h e a t r e s t u d e n t s w i t h an i n t e r e s t i n c o s t u m i n g , f o r example,\ c o u l d make a thorough s t u d y o f the d r e s s and t h e f a s h i o n s d u r i n g 16th and 17th c e n t u r y Europe and combine t h i s h i s t o r i c a l r e s e a r c h w i t h Home Economics t o make the n e c e s s a r y costumes and r e c e i v e c r e d i t i n the e l e c t i v e a r e a of T e x t i l e s and C l o t h i n g . The same would be t r u e of e l e c t i v e s i n M u s i c , Dance, or Shop. S i m i l a r l y a s t u d e n t c o u l d r e c e i v e c r e d i t i n an a r e a l i k e Photography by a p p l y i n g the s t u d y of S c i e n c e , H i s t o r y , and E n g l i s h t o the u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f the e v o l u t i o n of t h e camera and how p i c t u r e s i n f l u e n c e the way we t h i n k about our w o r l d and how we e x p r e s s o u r s e l v e s (p. 8 8 ) . The same a p p l i e s t o Human and E n v i r o n m e n t a l I s s u e s , where the u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f the concerns i n d i s p u t e s over l o g g i n g , f i s h i n g , p o l l u t i o n , g l o b a l warming, w o r l d hunger, 87. T a b l e 2. Theatre Production (Romeo and Juliette, Gulliver's Travels) Soc ia l Stud ies Reading Writing Speaking Language Listening Medium Area of Study Applied Skills Concepts in Culture Pleasure Silent Oral Tone Clarity Expression Information Pleasure History Basic Problems Journal Creative Advertisement Poetry Story Play Essay Editing Spelling Vocabulary Presentation Tape Film Photograph Word Processing Live Performance Research Organization of Data & Materials Analyzing Critical Thinking & Feedback Application Stage Product ion Mus ic Industrial Educat ion/ F ine Arts r Historical Research Fabrication • Electrical/ ' Special Effects m Sound Scenery m Make up Costuming Orchestrat ion Choreography 88. Table 3 . Science Impact on Historical Recordings School Newspaper Yearbook Inventions Experimentation Variables Adaptation to Change Camera Film Paper Lighting Lens Shutter Construction 89 . c h i l d l a b o r , and so f o r t h , demands t h a t s t u d e n t s u n d e r s t a n d the s o c i a l , p o l i t i c a l , and s c i e n t i f i c i m p l i c a t i o n s o f such a c t i v i t i e s on t h e w o r l d . Do a l l Roads Lead to Rome? A q u e s t i o n f r e q u e n t l y asked by c o l l e a g u e s r e g a r d i n g s t u d e n t s c h o o s i n g a r e a s o f i n t e r e s t s i s , "Would we l e t the s t u d e n t choose t o s t u d y j u s t any i n t e r e s t ? " I n o t h e r words, a r e a l l i n t e r e s t s worthy of s e r i o u s academic s t u d y ? The answer t o the q u e s t i o n i s both yes and no. Yes, p r o v i d e d t h a t the p a r t i c u l a r i n t e r e s t can be matched w i t h t h a t o f a t e a c h e r ' s who w i l l a c t as an a d v i s o r f o r the s t u d e n t . No, i f t h e r e i s reasoned e v i d e n c e t o show t h a t such a p u r s u i t may be h a r m f u l . Suppose, f o r example, t h e r e are s t u d e n t s who have r e q u e s t e d t o pursue s t u d i e s i n Outdoor P u r s u i t s and among th e s e s t u d e n t s s e v e r a l who would l o v e t o l e a r n more about b i c y c l e s and t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n a b i c y c l e t o u r i n g t r i p as a p a r t of t h e i r s c h o o l i n g . I t would, I t h i n k , be v e r y d i f f i c u l t t o make a case f o r t h i s a c t i v i t y b e i n g h a r m f u l . But l e t us remember t h a t we have su g g e s t e d s t u d e n t s s h o u l d t h r i v e from the s c h o o l i n g e x p e r i e n c e ; not s i m p l y s u r v i v e . So our f i r s t c o n s i d e r a t i o n s h o u l d not be d e f e n d i n g our c h o i c e s from concerns o f p o t e n t i a l harm. I n s t e a d i t would s t r e n g t h e n our p o s i t i o n t o show reasoned e v i d e n c e t h a t the 90. s t u d y of b i c y c l e s and b i c y c l e t o u r i n g c o u l d c o n t r i b u t e t o a p u r p o s e f u l and m e a n i n g f u l academic s t u d y . Such " e v i d e n c e " c o u l d be demonstrated i n two ways. F i r s t , i f we l o o k a t the model on the f o l l o w i n g page (p. 9 1 ) , we can see many s u b j e c t a r e a s t h a t c o u l d p o t e n t i a l l y and l o g i c a l l y c o n t r i b u t e t o an i n - d e p t h s t u d y of t h i s two-wheeled marvel of i n d u s t r i a l i z a t i o n . "The R o l e of the B i c y c l e i n S o c i e t y " i s a theme which c o u l d be approached q u i t e e f f e c t i v e l y from s e v e r a l p o i n t s o f view. I have, i n t h i s example, h i g h l i g h t e d f o u r a r e a s of t r a d i t i o n a l s o c i a l s t u d y : S o c i a l Impact, Competing R e s o u r c e s , Economic I m p l i c a t i o n s , and Geography, as p o t e n t i a l s t r a t e g i e s f o r u n d e r s t a n d i n g the b i c y c l e from a S o c i a l S t u d i e s p o i n t , o f v i e w . A f t e r i d e n t i f y i n g s e v e r a l p o s s i b l e l e a r n i n g s t r a t e g i e s , we c o u l d then i l l u s t r a t e j u s t how t hey would a c t u a l l y c o n t r i b u t e t o our s t u d y i n d e t a i l . D e t a i l i n g the f l o w c h a r t i s our second p i e c e of e v i d e n c e . I f we c o n s i d e r , f o r example, the h e a d i n g of " S o c i a l Impact" as shown at the t o p of the c h a r t on page 91, we c o u l d show the r e l e v a n c y o f the b i c y c l e towards i n c r e a s i n g our u n d e r s t a n d i n g of the s o c i o - e c o n o m i c i m p l i c a t i o n s i n our a p p r e c i a t i o n o f s o c i a l h i s t o r y . T h i s we have done on the f o l l o w i n g page (p. 9 2 ) . Here the r e a d e r w i l l f i n d a b r i e f o v e r v i e w h i g h l i g h t i n g 91 Table 4 Social Impact competing Resources Economic Implications Geography P Horse C a r Boat Public Transport | Suitability | Climate I R o a d Sys tems I The Role of the Bicycle in Society S c i e n c e Technologica l A d v a n c e s iC Spin oft Inventions! Life Skills Log Journal Reading for Pleasure The Bicycle in Literature Reading for Information Estimation 1 0 Whole Number Operations Ratio Physics Geometry Planning a Trip Food Equipment Repairs & Maintenance Exercise F j Pneumatic Tire 1 Exper imenta t ion^ | Gearing Ratios" Braking SystemsT"^^. Friction | Heat R o a d S igns Repair Manuals M a p s T i m e Distance Velocity Distance Accelerat ion Res is tance Levers Fulcrum Ratios P lane Critical Angle Purpose Duration Weather Suppl ies Suitability Preparation Nutrition Packing Precautions Safety Build up Stress Recreation 92. T a b l e 5. The Bicycle in History: A Brief Overview From a historical point of view, the common bicycle merits a special place in our study of history as an intriguing technological and social phenomena. Consider if you will the following capsulized points: 18th Century - The velocipede (a predecessor of the modern bicycle without pedals) is considered "faddish nonsense" and without any conceivable use in modern society. 19th Century - The bicycle is Seen as a fashionable leisure activity for "gentlemen". Social clubs dedicated to bicycle touring are established in major European cities. International cycling competitions evolve, spurring the relationship between sports and new industrial technology. The cost of a new bicycle is equivalent to one year's wages for a working man (two and a half years for a working woman). 20th Century - The bicycle is eclipsed by the increasingly popular motor car for gentlemen of the leisure class. Women demand radical changes in leisure clothing to accommodate the open-legged riding position on the bicycle. "Decent women" are forbidden by their husbands to ride bikes. The bicycle and women's slacks become symbols of women's emancipation and independence. The City of Chicago boasts the fastest bicycle-powered fire engine on the continent. World War I - The bicycle makes its debut as a "silent messenger" for deliveries and communication behind enemy lines. Post World War 11 - The advent of cheap and plentiful supplies of Middle-Eastern oil brings about a sharp increase in the use of automobiles in North America. The bicycle in Canada and United States (not Mexico) is reduced in status to a toy; something that only children use. 195Q's - China takes over as the world leader in bicycle transport and manufacture. The bicycle becomes the symbol of the working man's transportation in Europe and Asia. 1960's - The bicycle in Canada and the United States is considered quite unfashionable or "uncool" by urban high school students. They would rather walk long distances to school rather than ride a bike. 1970's - The Middle-Eastern oil crisis and the corresponding increase in gasoline prices spawns renewed interest in the use of bicycles. Many new designs and models hit the consumer market. 1980's - Governments offer tax incentives to promote bicycles as a fuel efficient alternative for urban commuters. City councils begin serious discussions regarding special bicycle lanes and pathways in urban centers. 1990's - Increasing interest in the bicycle as an "environmentally friendly" source of transportation with global implications for addressing the problems of air pollution, global warming, heart disease, the increased dependence on fossil fuels, easing traffic congestion, and so forth. 1997 - Interested grad students and teachers try to persuade administrators, school boards, and thesis committee members that bicycle touring is relevant to the understanding of modern history and fulfills all the requirements of the Standard Curriculum and the demands of serious academic study. some key ev e n t s of the b i c y c l e i n h i s t o r y which w i l l form the b a s i s o f a h i s t o r i c a l approach t o s t u d y i n g t h e b i c y c l e . S i m i l a r o v e r v i e w s showing the s i g n i f i c a n c e o f the b i c y c l e c o u l d a l s o be p r e p a r e d i n the areas o f Geography, Economics, and C i v i l R i g h t s . I n much t h e same manner, s t u d e n t s c o u l d engage i n the s t u d y o f the b i c y c l e from a S c i e n t i f i c or M a t h e m a t i c a l p o i n t o f view. A second l o o k a t the c h a r t on page 91 a l s o r e v e a l s the b i c y c l e as a r o l l i n g p i e c e of P h y s i c s - a M a t h e m a t i c a l problem on wheels so t o speak. As an i n n o v a t i o n o f S c i e n c e and Technology, the b i c y c l e c o u l d be approached from the p o i n t o f view o f s e v e r a l a r e a s i n the P h y s i c a l S c i e n c e s : M a t t e r and Energy, I n d u s t r y , and T r a n s p o r t a t i o n . A t t e m p t i n g t o r e b u i l d o r modify o l d b i c y c l e s , or i m p r o v i n g them beyond t h e i r o r i g i n a l manufacture and then t a k i n g them on a c y c l i n g t r i p , c o u l d i n v o l v e many l e a r n i n g outcomes as r e c o g n i z e d under the e x i s t i n g headings o f A p p l i e d S k i l l s , S c i e n t i f i c A t t i t u d e , S c i e n t i f i c Knowledge, and Independent T h i n k i n g . With a l i t t l e i m a g i n a t i o n and c r e a t i v i t y , i t i s p o s s i b l e t o mix and match many of the t r a d i t i o n a l l y v a l u e d l e a r n i n g outcomes, a r e a s of s t u d y , and a p p l i e d s k i l l s , e t c . , t o c r e a t e a sound academic s t u d y i n almost any a r e a of i n t e r e s t s t u d e n t s may c a r e t o pur s u e . I have s u g g e s t e d t h a t a l t e r n a t i v e c u r r i c u l a s h o u l d seek t o c o e x i s t w i t h e x i s t i n g c u r r i c u l a r a t h e r than t r y t o r e p l a c e them. By acknowledging the g o a l s and e x p e c t a t i o n s of e x i s t i n g c u r r i c u l a we a c c o m p l i s h t h r e e t h i n g s : (1) we g a i n the c o n f i d e n c e and sup p o r t o f the e d u c a t i o n a l community, (2) we i n c r e a s e the l i k e l i h o o d o f s u c c e s s f u l i m p l e m e n t a t i o n and c o n t i n u a t i o n o f the a l t e r n a t i v e c u r r i c u l a r approach, and (3) we have a b a s i s f o r i n c r e a s i n g programme c o m p a t i b i l i t y , t h e r e b y a l l o w i n g s t u d e n t s and t e a c h e r s i n c r e a s e d freedom t o move e a s i l y between approaches w i t h o u t any s i g n i f i c a n t l o s s o f c r e d i t or e d u c a t i o n a l s t a t u s . On pages 95 and 96 a r e two f u r t h e r examples o f s t u d e n t i n t e r e s t s t h a t c o u l d c o n c e i v a b l y come under one of the headings o f Outdoor P u r s u i t s as o f f e r e d i n the second year o f our f i v e y e a r p l a n . The t h i r d , f o u r t h , and f i f t h y e a r s of the F i v e Year P l a n would g r a d u a l l y see an i n c r e a s e of s i m i l a r L e a r n i n g by I n t e r e s t programmes, o f f e r e d s i m u l t a n e o u s l y a l o n g s i d e the S t a n d a r d C u r r i c u l u m and i n t e r c h a n g e a b l e w i t h a l l the s t a n d a r d s u b j e c t d i s c i p l i n e s . Such e x p a n s i o n would r e q u i r e t h a t we f o c u s on t h r e e main areas o f i m p l e m e n t a t i o n : (1) the r e c r u i t m e n t of t e a c h e r s w i t h c o m p a t i b l e t e a c h i n g i n t e r e s t s , (2) w o r k i n g w i t h t e a c h e r p r e p a r a t i o n programmes t o promote t e a c h i n g and c u r r i c u l u m s t r a t e g i e s t h a t promote the needs and 95. Table 6 C a n o e i n g I Exped i t ion K M m Math Science English Estimation Compass Scale History Socials Geography Applied CommunicatiorJ Log Journal Diary Time D is tance F ixed Direct ion D e g r e e s Bear ing M a p p i n g r Exploration L Transportation Impact t) a i • Political Change Compass Inventions Knots Maps Universally of Symbols Technology Application Time Frame Travel • Cost Packing Food Nutrition Preparation Purpose Duration Individual Organization Roles Group Responsibilities Psychomotor Exercise Education Wilderness Skills Nutrition Cognitive i Health i Physiology Socio-economic Balance of Power Equipment Weather Clothing 96 . T a b l e 7. 97. e x p e c t a t i o n s of the L e a r n i n g by I n t e r e s t approach, and (3) i n c r e a s i n g the number of c h o i c e s open t o s t u d e n t s by a l t e r i n g non-accommodating s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s t o accommodate a l l t h o s e s t u d e n t s who w i s h t o pursue the L e a r n i n g by I n t e r e s t approach as an e q u a l and e q u i v a l e n t a l t e r n a t i v e t o the S t a n d a r d C u r r i c u l u m . TIME Programme Compatibility A l t h o u g h I have s t r e s s e d t h a t i t i s i m p o r t a n t t o d e v i s e new approaches t h a t w i l l c o e x i s t w i t h , r a t h e r than attempt t o r e p l a c e e x i s t i n g approaches, such c o e x i s t e n c e s h o u l d be accommodated by m o d i f y i n g the time s t r u c t u r e of s c h o o l s r a t h e r than through any m o d i f i c a t i o n s t o the o r i e n t a t i o n i t s e l f . I f we can r e a l i z e a more e f f e c t i v e use o f t i m e , I b e l i e v e t h e r e e x i s t s the p o t e n t i a l t o m a i n t a i n a s i m u l t a n e o u s and c o m p a t i b l e c o e x i s t e n c e o f d i v e r s e c u r r i c u l a , w h i l e a t the same time a c t u a l l y i n c r e a s i n g t h e q u a n t i t y and q u a l i t y o f c l a s s r o o m i n s t r u c t i o n and s t u d e n t programmes r a t h e r than d e t r a c t i n g from e x i s t i n g p r a c t i c e s . Key t o m a i n t a i n i n g and p r o m o t i n g a s u c c e s s f u l c o e x i s t e n c e o f d i v e r s e approaches i n e d u c a t i o n i s 9 8 . programme c o m p a t i b i l i t y . Programme c o m p a t i b i l i t y depends very much upon the presence of two c o n d i t i o n s : (a) the freedom to move i n and out o f e i t h e r approach wi thout e x p e r i e n c i n g a l o s s o f e d u c a t i o n a l c r e d i t s or s t a t u s , and (b) the p h y s i c a l a b i l i t y to do so wi thout e x p e r i e n c i n g a l o s s o f v a l u a b l e s c h o o l t i m e . The s t r u c t u r e o f time impacts s i g n i f i c a n t l y upon the use o f space and the people f i l l i n g those s p a c e s . In d o i n g so i t a l s o has the p o t e n t i a l to i n c r e a s e both the q u a n t i t y and q u a l i t y of c la s sroom i n s t r u c t i o n r e g a r d l e s s of which approach we d e c i d e to use . I b e l i e v e there i s s u f f i c i e n t ev idence to show tha t the q u a l i t y o f i n s t r u c t i o n i n our e x i s t i n g h i g h s c h o o l c lassrooms c o u l d be g r e a t l y enhanced by r e d u c i n g the number of s tudent s seen by a t eacher i n a s i n g l e week (McGivern , 1 9 8 9 ; Nye, 1 9 8 2 ; R ike & Wendlant , 1 9 8 7 ; W h i t t i n g t o n , 1 9 8 5 ) . A s i g n i f i c a n t r e d u c t i o n i n the t e a c h e r - s t u d e n t r a t i o , from an average o f 190 d i f f e r e n t s tudents per week (27 s tudent per c l a s s X 7 c l a s s e s ) to a maximum of 27 s tudents per week, c o u l d e a s i l y be a c h i e v e d by f a c i l i t a t i n g two s imple changes to our t i m e t a b l e and t e a c h i n g r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s . F i r s t , many h i g h s c h o o l t e a c h e r s , and e s p e c i a l l y thos t e a c h i n g grade 8 - 1 0 c o u r s e s , are q u i t e capab le o f t e a c h i n g w i t h competence i n more than one s u b j e c t a r e a . A t eacher c o u l d , f o r example, teach a combinat ion o f E n g l i s h , S o c i a l S t u d i e s , and P h y s i c a l E d u c a t i o n o r , p e r h a p s , S c i e n c e , Mathematics, and Home Economics. S e c o n d l y , the s c h o o l year c o u l d be broken i n t o a t r i m e s t e r w i t h t h r e e s u b j e c t s per semester. The c u r r e n t s c h o o l day would a l l o w f o r two, 1-J hour p e r i o d s i n the morning p l u s a 2 hour l e s s o n i n the a f t e r n o o n , or perhaps a t h i r d , 1-2-hour l e s s o n i n the a f t e r n o o n and a hour p e r i o d f o r group work, s t u d y b l o c k , or seminar d i s c u s s i o n f o r Government exams, e t c . A s i n g l e t e a c h e r c o u l d then assume r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r a c l a s s o f 27 s t u d e n t s , i n t h r e e s u b j e c t a r e a s , f o r an e n t i r e term, as shown on the c h a r t l a b e l e d " S t a n d a r d C u r r i c u l u m T i m e t a b l e - O p t i o n A", on the f o l l o w i n g page (p. 100). Under t h i s r e v i s e d time s t r u c t u r e , t e a c h e r s would be f r e e t o combine p e r i o d s and l e s s o n s , t h e r e b y e r a s i n g c o n c r e t e d i v i s i o n s between s u b j e c t d i s c i p l i n e s . T h i s s t r u c t u r e would a l s o enhance the f a c i l i t a t i o n o f major c l a s s r o o m p r o j e c t s , f i e l d s t u d i e s , and s p e c i a l e v e n t s , s i n c e the r e l a t i v e independence of any one c l a s s r o o m would no l o n g e r d i r e c t l y impact upon p r e v i o u s concerns around the s c h e d u l i n g o f exams, m u l t i p l e homework as s i g n m e n t s , or the usage of any o t h e r c l a s s r o o m i n the s c h o o l b u i l d i n g . Such a framework would accommodate b o t h the L e a r n i n g by I n t e r e s t as w e l l as the S t a n d a r d i z e d C u r r i c u l a r approaches, a l l o w i n g f o r f u l l or p a r t i a l a d o p t i o n of 1 00. T a b l e 8. High S c h o o l Time T a b l e - O p t i o n A STANDARD CURRICULUM Fall Term Christmas Winter Term Easier/Spring Spring Term (15 weeks) Break (12 weeks) Break (12 weeks) Daily Schedule Semester 1 Semester 2 Semester 3 8:45 Period 1 (1.5 hrs) Mathematics Social Studies French 10:15 Break (15 min) 10:30 Period 2 (1.5 hrs) Physical Education English Sciences 12:00 Lunch (1 hour) 1:00 Period 3 (1.5 hrs) Elective Elective Elective 2:30 Seminar Student directed time for school, community or individual educational needs. (45 min) Seminar options include: Band, Government exam review, Student Council, Homework, Computer Lab, School Newspaper, Peer Tutoring, English as a Second Language, Learning Assistance, etc. 3:15 Dismissal Structural Advantages of Timetable: a) Compared to a full year 5x8 rotating timetable, there is an 85% reduction in the amount of students seen by one teacher in a term and a 60% reduction in students compared to a 4x5 semester system time table, if a teacher assumes responsibility for 27 students in three different subject areas per term. However, even with teachers rotating classes in each period, there is still a reduction of approximately 60% on a 5X8 timetable, and a 25% reduction on the 5 x 4 semester timetable. b) Less time required for classroom administration, allowing for more time to be spent on classroom instruction or classroom activities. c) Greater flexibility for engaging in class projects, field studies, subject integration, etc., and increased potential for creative and spontaneous learning experiences. d) Fewer subjects to prepare for, less homework, and fewer exams for students at any one time. e) Less confusion surrounding rotating timetable, classroom changes, multiple teachers. f) Sizable breaks between terms for students and teachers. 101 . e i t h e r c u r r i c u l a r approach as b e s t s u i t s the s i t u a t i o n . By a l t e r i n g the i n t e r n a l time s t r u c t u r e of the s c h o o l , and thus the c l a s s r o o m , we impact upon the s t r u c t u r e s of space, p e o p l e , s u b j e c t m a t t e r , and a u t h o r i t y , i n such a way as t o a l l o w the c o m p a t i b l e c o e x i s t e n c e o f two r a t h e r d i v e r s e t e a c h i n g / l e a r n i n g approaches. However, we a r e not f i n i s h e d the j o b y e t . Up t o t h i s p o i n t , the r e v i s e d time t a b l i n g (as p r e s e n t e d on p. 100) has o n l y a c c o m p l i s h e d the t a s k o f not d i s t u r b i n g the t r a d i t i o n a l S t a n d a r d i z e d C u r r i c u l u m w h i l e a l l o w i n g o t h e r approaches t o e x i s t s i m u l t a n e o u s l y . In o t h e r words, e x c e p t f o r l e n g t h e n i n g the p e r i o d s and s h o r t e n i n g the semester (the t o t a l hours of i n s t r u c t i o n s t a y the same) t e a c h e r s and s t u d e n t s w i s h i n g t o s t a y w i t h the S t a n d a r d C u r r i c u l u m are e s s e n t i a l l y u n a f f e c t e d by the change. St u d e n t s can s t i l l t a k e a l l the t r a d i t i o n a l s u b j e c t a r e a s and r o t a t e from t e a c h e r t o t e a c h e r and c l a s s r o o m t o c l a s s r o o m . Teachers can s t i l l t e a c h i n t h e i r t r a d i t i o n a l s u b j e c t areas and t e a c h more than one group a day. G r a d i n g and e v a l u a t i o n remain unchanged, and the rhythm of the day, a l t h o u g h m o d i f i e d , i s e s s e n t i a l l y i n p l a c e . But, what we a l s o a c c o m p l i s h w i t h t h i s s t r u c t u r a l change, i s the c r e a t i o n o f the n e c e s s a r y environment t o ' s u p p o r t the L e a r n i n g by I n t e r e s t approach i n a manner t h a t w i l l h e l p t o i n c r e a s e the o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r i t s s u c c e s s f u l 1 0 2 . i m p l e m e n t a t i o n . I f we l o o k a t T i m e T a b l e O p t i o n B o n t h e n e x t p a g e ( p . 1 0 3 ) , t h e r e a d e r w i l l s e e t h a t we a r e f r e e t o d e v o t e t h e e n t i r e d a y t o t h e s t u d y o f i n t e r e s t s , w i t h o u t a f f e c t i n g t h e s m o o t h r u n n i n g o f t h e s c h o o l d a y a n d w i t h o u t c o m p e t i n g w i t h a n y o t h e r p r o g r a m m e . S t u d e n t s a n d t e a c h e r s c a n e a s i l y move b e t w e e n s u b j e c t s a n d i n t e r e s t s . T h u s we h a v e s a t i s f i e d t h e f i r s t o f t h e two c o n d i t i o n s n e c e s s a r y f o r p r o g r a m m e c o m p a t i b i l i t y ; we h a v e c r e a t e d t h e p h y s i c a l a b i l i t y t o move i n o r o u t o f p r o g r a m m e s w i t h o u t l o s s o f s c h o o l t i m e . O u r s e c o n d c o n d i t i o n o f c o m p a t i b i l i t y r e q u i r e s t h a t we m a i n t a i n e q u i v a l e n t s t a t u s a n d c r e d i t s i n a l l s t u d e n t p r o g r a m m e s ( o r a t l e a s t a r e a s o n a b l e number o f p r o g r a m m e s a s t o o f f e r s t u d e n t s s u f f i c i e n t c h o i c e ) , s u c h t h a t a l l c r e d i t s e a r n e d a r e i n t e r c h a n g e a b l e a n d c a n b e a p p l i e d t o w a r d s g r a d u a t i o n . E v e n t h o u g h I h a v e a r g u e d t h a t a n e m p h a s i s o n u n i v e r s i t y e n t r a n c e i s a n u n d e s i r a b l e g o a l f o r many s t u d e n t s , i t i s s t i l l n e c e s s a r y t o make t h i s g o a l a v a i l a b l e t o t h o s e who may n e v e r u s e t h i s o p t i o n , a s we h a v e no s u r e way o f k n o w i n g i n a d v a n c e w h i c h s t u d e n t s w i l l e v e n t u a l l y s e e k u n i v e r s i t y e n t r a n c e . The a b i l i t y t o i n t e r c h a n g e s c h o o l c r e d i t s c a n be a c c o m p l i s h e d i f we t a k e i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n t h e S t a n d a r d C u r r i c u l u m when m a p p i n g o u t o u r c o u r s e s o f s t u d y , o f f e r i n g a r e a s o f i n t e r e s t i n s u b j e c t c o m b i n a t i o n s t h a t w i l l 103. T a b l e 9. High S c h o o l Time T a b l e - O p t i o n B LEARNING by INTEREST Fall Term Christmas Winter Term Easter/Spring Spring Term (15 weeks) Break (12 weeks) Break (12 weeks) Daily Schedule Semester 1 (Teacher A ) Semester 2 (Teacher B) Semester 3 (Teacher C) 8:45 Morning Session Lunch Afternoon Session Theatre English French and choose one of: Shop Textiles Music or Dance Photography Science Social Studies and choose one of: Journalism Art School Annual Outdoor Pursuits Mathematics Physical Education and choose one of: Environmental Education Outdoor Education Journalism 2:30 Seminar - Student directed time for school, community or individual educational needs. - Seminar options include: Band, Government exam review, Student Council, Homework, Computer Lab, School Newspaper, Peer Tutoring, English as a Second Language, Learning Assistance, etc. 3:15 Dismissal Structural Advantages of Timetable: a) Compared to a full year 5x8 rotating timetable, there is an 85% reduction in the amount of students seen by one teacher in a term, and a 75% reduction compared to a 4x5 semester system time table. b) Less time required for classroom administration, allowing for more time to be spent on classroom instruction or classroom activities. c) Optional arranging of daily schedule and courses of study, allowing for greater flexibility for engaging in class projects, field studies, subject integration, etc., and increased potential for creative and spontaneous learning experiences. d) Fewer subjects to prepare for, less homework, and fewer exams for students at any one time. e) Less confusion surrounding rotating timetable, classroom changes, multiple teachers. f) Sizable breaks between terms for students and teachers. 104. f u l f i l l t he r e q u i r e m e n t s of the S t a n d a r d C u r r i c u l u m n e c e s s a r y f o r g r a d u a t i o n . S t u d e n t s , a l o n g w i t h t h e i r p a r e n t s and c o u n s e l o r s , would d e t e r m i n e what c r e d i t s are r e q u i r e d f o r g r a d u a t i o n w i t h i n the S t a n d a r d or U n i v e r s i t y bound c u r r i c u l u m t h a t a re a l s o o f f e r e d through the L e a r n i n g by I n t e r e s t o p t i o n . Some i n t e r e s t s , such as those i n Photography (p. 88) f o r example, c o u l d earn p a r t i c i p a n t s c r e d i t s i n the c o r e c u r r i c u l a r a r e a s o f S o c i a l S t u d i e s , S c i e n c e , o r E n g l i s h , and i n the e l e c t i v e a r e a s o f F i n e A r t s . Other i n t e r e s t s , such as tho s e we have seen i n T h e a t r e (p. 8 7 ) , might e x t e n d c r e d i t s i n S o c i a l S t u d i e s and E n g l i s h , o r perhaps a s i n g l e c o u r s e i n Hu m a n i t i e s and two e l e c t i v e c o u r s e s i n a r e a s such a s : M u s i c , Choreography, F i n e A r t s , Dance, I n d u s t r i a l A r t s , Home Economics, or Drama. S t i l l , o t h e r i n t e r e s t s , such as t h o s e i n E n v i r o n m e n t a l I s s u e s , might o f f e r o n l y c o r e c u r r i c u l a r c r e d i t s i n E n g l i s h , Mathematics, S o c i a l s S t u d i e s o r S c i e n c e . In some c a s e s , the i n t e r e s t s o f c e r t a i n s t u d e n t s and t e a c h e r s may i n f a c t be one o f the s t a n d a r d s u b j e c t areas such as Mathematics, o r B i o l o g y , or P h y s i c s , or E n g l i s h L i t e r a t u r e . The c o m b i n a t i o n o f o p t i o n s a re l i m i t e d o n l y by p r a c t i c a l i t y and i m a g i n a t i o n . What we have a c c o m p l i s h e d by c o n s i d e r i n g the s t r u c t u r a l , p h i l o s o p h i c a l , and moral c o n d i t i o n s o f s c h o o l s , i s t o i n c r e a s e the 1 05 . o p p o r t u n i t y f o r s tudents to s tudy areas o f t h e i r own c h o o s i n g , by expanding the rea lm of p r a c t i c a l i t y and by e n c o u r a g i n g the use o f i m a g i n a t i o n and c r e a t i v i t y . Education and Future Career Opportunities There i s s t i l l one aspect o f e d u c a t i o n that was i n t r o d u c e d e a r l i e r which needs to be d i s c u s s e d f u r t h e r . The n a t u r e o f the L e a r n i n g by I n t e r e s t approach l ends i t s e l f p e r f e c t l y to s tudent s c o m p i l i n g p o r t f o l i o s and d o s s i e r s o f p r o j e c t s and e x p e r i e n c e s i n which they have engaged over the course o f t h e i r s t u d i e s , which c o u l d i n c r e a s e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r employment as w e l l as h e l p encourage them towards c a r e e r c o n s i d e r a t i o n s . For example, a s tudent c o u l d s tudy Photography over a p e r i o d of two or t h r e e y e a r s and c o n t i n u e to add to h i s / h e r p o r t f o l i o and d o s s i e r by working wi th d i f f e r e n t types of cameras , i n a v a r i e t y o f s i t u a t i o n s , and under d i f f e r e n t s e t s of c i r c u m s t a n c e s . The s tudent may, f o r i n s t a n c e , combine Photography w i t h an i n t e r e s t i n T h e a t r e , and use h i s / h e r s k i l l s i n Photography to h e l p w i t h v i d e o t a p i n g r e h e a r s a l s , h e l p i n g to produce hand b i l l s and p o s t e r s to a d v e r t i s e the p r o d u c t i o n , t a k i n g cas t p i c t u r e s , making s c e n e r y , h e l p i n g wi th s p e c i a l e f f e c t s and l i g h t i n g , and so o n . The same s tudent c o u l d be encouraged to do w r i t e - u p s f o r the s c h o o l and community newspapers or the h i g h s c h o o l 106. a n n u a l , t a k i n g p i c t u r e s o f team s p o r t s , s p e c i a l s c h o o l e v e n t s , community happenings, s t u d e n t i d e n t i f i c a t i o n c a r d s , g r a d u a t i o n p i c t u r e s , and so f o r t h . I n a d d i t i o n , t h i s s t u d e n t may choose t o combine h i s / h e r i n t e r e s t s i n Photography w i t h i n t e r e s t s i n E n v i r o n m e n t a l o r P o l i t i c a l I s s u e s , g a i n i n g e x p e r i e n c e w i t h o n - l o c a t i o n f i l m i n g , i n t e r v i e w i n g , and news r e p o r t i n g . Prom the e x p e r i e n c e s g a i n e d i n s c h o o l a s t u d e n t c o u l d r e a l i z e the o p p o r t u n i t y t o d i s t i n g u i s h h i m / h e r s e l f from the m u l t i t u d e of o t h e r s t u d e n t s who o f f e r a l s o e x p e r i e n c e i n grade 10, 11 or 12 E n g l i s h , S c i e n c e , S o c i a l S t u d i e s , Mathematics, and P h y s i c a l E d u c a t i o n . T h i s s t u d e n t would a c t u a l l y have the e x p e r i e n c e o f a p p l y i n g t h e s e l e a r n e d s k i l l s t o something. And t h e s e e x p e r i e n c e s would be documented i n t h e i r p o r t f o l i o and d o s s i e r . When the time a r r i v e s f o r t h a t s t u d e n t t o seek employment, whether i t i s p a r t time w h i l e g o i n g t o s c h o o l or f u l l time f o l l o w i n g h i g h s c h o o l , t h a t s t u d e n t would not have t o e n t e r the work f o r c e l i k e so many o t h e r s t u d e n t s s e e k i n g t h e i r f i r s t j o b placement by a p p l y i n g t o the l o c a l f a s t f o o d r e s t a u r a n t , c o n v e n i e n c e s t o r e , o r s e r v i c e s t a t i o n f o r a "no e x p e r i e n c e n e c e s s a r y " e n t r y p o s i t i o n . A s t u d e n t who has had the o p p o r t u n i t y t o s t u d y and pursue an i n t e r e s t i n Photography, T h e a t r e , or Environmental/Human I s s u e s over the c o u r s e of f o u r or f i v e 107. y e a r s at h i g h s c h o o l w i l l , upon g r a d u a t i o n , have had exposure t o a v a r i e t y o f d i f f e r e n t j o b and c a r e e r p o s s i b i l i t i e s . C o n s e q u e n t l y , r a t h e r than s e a r c h i n g the c l a s s i f i e d s f o r r e s t a u r a n t and gas s t a t i o n j o b s , t h a t s t u d e n t would be n a t u r a l l y drawn t o s e e k i n g employment o r c a r e e r o p p o r t u n i t i e s at a camera shop, photography s t u d i o , l o c a l newspaper, or perhaps a p u b l i c r e l a t i o n s p o s i t i o n w i t h a l o c a l t h e a t r e company or news s t a t i o n . Such a s t u d e n t would be a b l e t o walk i n t o a camera shop o r photography s t u d i o and, w i t h h i s / h e r p o r t f o l i o t u c k e d under t h e i r arm and s e v e r a l y e a r s o f "on the j o b " e x p e r i e n c e , demonstrate a knowledge o f the camera: the d i f f e r e n t t y p e s of cameras they had b u i l t and used i n c l a s s , the many a p p l i c a t i o n s they had a p p l i e d t h a t knowledge t o , which camera was used f o r which p r o j e c t , the pro s and cons o f u s i n g a Pentax, Cannon, or Ni k k o n camera, which type o f f i l m t o use i n c e r t a i n s i t u a t i o n s , how t o d e v e l o p t h a t f i l m f o r the b e s t l i g h t i n g e f f e c t s , how t o i m p r o v i s e when c a l l e d f o r , and so on. I n the f i n a l a n a l y s i s , s t u d e n t s who have had the o p p o r t u n i t y t o e x p l o r e t h e i r i n t e r e s t s and g a i n p r a c t i c a l e x p e r i e n c e from th e s e a r e a s o f academic s t u d y , have e s s e n t i a l l y d e v e l o p e d m a r k e t a b l e t a l e n t s w h i l e s t u d y i n g something t h a t was o f g r e a t p e r s o n a l i n t e r e s t and s a t i s f a c t i o n . What we have i n the end i s a knowledgeable 108. s t u d e n t , eager t o l e a r n more, encouraged t o l e a r n more, and ready and w i l l i n g t o c o n t r i b u t e h i s / h e r s k i l l s t o community l i f e . That s t u d e n t i s not one of s e v e r a l thousand h i g h s c h o o l c l o n e s who have reached a l e v e l o f competence i n t h e i r n a t i v e language, and demonstrated adequate s k i l l s i n Mathematics, S c i e n c e , or S o c i a l S t u d i e s . Summary C o n s i d e r , i f you w i l l , t he p o s s i b i l i t i e s a v a i l a b l e i n a medium s i z e d h i g h s c h o o l o f 600 t o 1000 s t u d e n t s where the L e a r n i n g by I n t e r e s t approach i s o f f e r e d . I f o n l y h a l f of the f o r t y o r f i f t y t e a c h e r s i n t h a t s c h o o l t e a c h i n one or two areas o f t h e i r i n t e r e s t s , i t would mean t h a t s t u d e n t s would have the o p p o r t u n i t y t o p i c k from f o r t y o r f i f t y d i f f e r e n t l e a r n i n g e x p e r i e n c e s , i n a d d i t i o n t o those o f f e r e d on the s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m . D u r i n g the c o u r s e o f t h e i r h i g h s c h o o l y e a r s , s t u d e n t s would have the o p p o r t u n i t y t o e x p l o r e a dozen d i f f e r e n t i n t e r e s t s w h i l e e a r n i n g c r e d i t s f o r g r a d u a t i o n . A s t u d e n t c o u l d a l s o choose t o s t u d y i n g r e a t e r depth two or t h r e e a r e a s of i n t e r e s t , which c o u l d c o n c e i v a b l y l e a d t o c a r e e r o p p o r t u n i t i e s or l i f e t i m e i n t e r e s t s . R ather than s h a p i n g a l t e r n a t i v e approaches t o accommodate e x i s t i n g c i r c u m s t a n c e s , we must i n s t e a d c r e a t e 109. a l t e r n a t i v e c i r c u m s t a n c e s i n o r d e r t o s u p p o r t and promote the a l t e r n a t i v e approach. The c r e a t i o n o f such c i r c u m s t a n c e s i n v o l v e t a k i n g s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s , a l o n g w i t h p h i l o s o p h i c a l and moral c o n s i d e r a t i o n s , i n new d i r e c t i o n s . C o n s i d e r a t i o n s of c o m p a t i b i l i t y between p e o p l e , s u b j e c t m a t t e r , and time t a b l i n g a r e key c o n d i t i o n s f o r i n c r e a s i n g the chances of s u c c e s s f u l i m p l e m e n t a t i o n and c o n t i n u a t i o n o f a l t e r n a t i v e approaches t o p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n . 110. CHAPTER 8 CONCLUSION: WHAT IS AND WHAT OUGHT TO BE Throughout t h i s d i s c u s s i o n I have c o n c e n t r a t e d p r i m a r i l y on i d e n t i f y i n g the weakness, o v e r s i g h t s , c o n t r a d i c t i o n s , m i s t a k e s , and the c o n f u s i o n r e g a r d i n g the b a s i s on which p u b l i c s c h o o l s p r o c e e d t o p r o v i d e e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s t o a l l s t u d e n t s . And t h i s . , of c o u r s e , was the p r i m a r y purpose of our e x a m i n a t i o n - t o b e g i n t o i d e n t i f y c o n d i t i o n s l a c k i n g and c o n d i t i o n s o v e r l o o k e d i n our c o n s i d e r a t i o n s of e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y . I n the p r o c e s s we have d i s c o v e r e d t h a t the n o t i o n of e q u a l i t y i s not formed of a s i n g l e i d e a , but of many i d e a s e n c a p s u l a t i n g c e r t a i n v a l u e s , b e l i e f s , and c l a i m s , which a r e c o n s t a n t l y e v o l v i n g . We must, t h e r e f o r e , c o n s t a n t l y q u e s t i o n our u n d e r s t a n d i n g of e q u a l i t y as i t a p p l i e s t o e d u c a t i o n , s e a r c h i n g f o r elements o v e r l o o k e d o r l a c k i n g i n our i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s of the concept t o ensure t h a t e x i s t i n g c o n d i t i o n s i n our s c h o o l s a r e c o n s i s t e n t w i t h t h o s e e x p e c t a t i o n s of s o c i e t y . Any i n c o n s i s t e n c i e s w i l l g i v e r i s e t o c l a i m s o f i n e q u a l i t y . The concept o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y e v o l v i n g a t the p r e s e n t time demands t h a t the system work w e l l f o r a l l and not j u s t some, t o the e x t e n t t h a t t h e a t t a i n m e n t 111. o f a d e m o c r a t i c s o c i e t y i s b e l i e v e d t o be l a r g e l y dependent upon the e x i s t e n c e o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y (Goodlad, 1983, p. 2 ) , and the n o t i o n t h a t " i n e q u i t a b l e e d u c a t i o n d e p r i v e s s o c i e t y i n g e n e r a l o f the b e n e f i t s which ac c r u e when a l l members are a b l e t o be f u l l p a r t i c i p a n t s and c o n t r i b u t o r s " (Coombs, 1994, p. 281). S i n c e the i n c e p t i o n o f p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n , the n o t i o n of e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y has e x i s t e d as an i d e a l , and when an e d u c a t i o n a l i d e a l i s proposed e d u c a t o r s a r e e n t i t l e d t o ask i n what manner can i t be a c h i e v e d ? I n o t h e r words, can everyone get t h i s e d u c a t i o n ? And i f i t cannot be a c h i e v e d i n p a r t o r i n whole, then i t i s t h e r i g h t f u l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y o f e d u c a t o r s t o attempt t o i d e n t i f y and examine the s h o r t c o m i n g s and t o encourage c r i t i c a l assessment t h a t may r e s u l t i n e i t h e r m o d i f i c a t i o n s t o or a r e j e c t i o n of the e x i s t i n g p r o p o s a l . The d i f f i c u l t y i n a c h i e v i n g e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y , however, i s t h a t t h e r e has been a tendency among e d u c a t i o n a l p l a n n e r s t o c o n f u s e the n o t i o n of e q u a l i t y w i t h t h a t o f sameness, such t h a t s c h o o l s t e n d t o o f f e r i d e n t i c a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s i n s t e a d o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s . The pr o m o t i o n of an approach which aims t o s t a n d a r d i z e t e a c h i n g p r a c t i c e s and s t u d e n t programmes, stems from an i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f e q u a l i t y which c o n s i d e r s t h a t c o n d i t i o n s o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y 112. are a t t a i n e d when the same c o n d i t i o n s e x i s t f o r everyone . L a c k i n g i n t h i s a p p r o a c h , however, i s any c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f i n d i v i d u a l s tudent i n t e r e s t s , a c o n s i d e r a t i o n wherein the i n t e n t i o n a l s t r i v i n g of s tudent s to ach i eve e q u a l access to the r e s o u r c e s that promote academic achievement has e s s e n t i a l l y been o v e r l o o k e d i n the j u d g i n g o f e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y . C e n t r a l to the n o t i o n o f a s t a n d a r d system of e d u c a t i o n i s the acceptance o f a s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m , one which assumes t h a t there i s an e s s e n t i a l body of b a s i c knowledge which must be mastered through a proces s o f f o r m a l s c h o o l i n g . F u r t h e r m o r e , t h i s knowledge must be a c q u i r e d through mandatory study, i n a p a r t i c u l a r group of s u b j e c t d i s c i p l i n e s . I have argued tha t s t r a t e g i e s which s erve to s t r e a m l i n e and c o n s o l i d a t e our system of e d u c a t i o n a l s o c o n t r i b u t e to i t s i n a b i l i t y to accommodate the d i v e r s e needs and i n t e r e s t s of a l l l e a r n e r s . The l a c k of d i v e r s i t y o f f e r e d among s tudent programmes d i s c o u r a g e s e q u a l i t y of o p p o r t u n i t y f o r a l l l e a r n e r s to a c h i e v e academic s u c c e s s , such that the ends of c u r r e n t p r a c t i c e s do not r e s u l t i n the equa l d i s t r i b u t i o n of e d u c a t i o n a l b e n e f i t s to a l l s t u d e n t s . I have argued tha t c u r r e n t p r a c t i c e s proceed c o n t r a r y to the g o a l s we d e s i r e o f p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n and, t h e r e f o r e , to promote compulsory i n c l u s i o n i n e d u c a t i o n as b e i n g b e n e f i c i a l to a l l 1 1 3 . l e a r n e r s i s u n r e a s o n a b l e and u n j u s t . The accommodation of d i v e r s i t y i n our s c h o o l s i s dependent upon a t o l e r a n t a t t i t u d e . T o l e r a n c e r e q u i r e s an awareness o f and r e s p e c t f o r the d i v e r s i t y o f th o u g h t s and a c t i o n s among persons which may not c o i n c i d e , and may even c o n f l i c t , w i t h one's own. I n h i s book L i b e r t y and L e a r n i n g , K e n n i t h S t r i k e (1982) makes the f o l l o w i n g c o m p e l l i n g argument f o r the r e c o g n i t i o n and accommodation o f t o l e r a n c e and d i v e r s i t y i n s o c i e t y : A l a c k of t o l e r a n c e w i l l reduce c u l t u r a l v a r i e t y and i n d o i n g so w i l l narrow the c u l t u r a l r e s o u r c e s f o r p r o d u c i n g t h o s e n o v e l t i e s on which the renewal o f human thought depends . . . . I n d i v i d u a l s s e e k i n g t o take r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r the d i r e c t i o n of t h e i r l i v e s need a r i c h and v a r i e d s e t of o p t i o n s from which t o choose.... Thus, a r i c h and d i v e r s e c u l t u r e w i t h ample o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r n o v e l t y t o oc c u r i s a r e s o u r c e b o t h f o r the l i f e o f i n t e l l e c t u a l communities and f o r i n d i v i d u a l s s e e k i n g t o make r a t i o n a l and r e s p o n s i b l e c h o i c e s . ( P P - 166 - 1 6 7 ) . S t r i k e proceeds t o make a f u r t h e r and e q u a l l y p e r s u a s i v e argument w i t h r e g a r d s t o the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the n a t u r e of s c h o o l c u r r i c u l a and the ends t o which i t might s e r v e a s o c i e t y : S c h o o l can e a s i l y become a d e v i c e whereby c u l t u r a l d i v e r s i t y and n o v e l t y a r e 114. reduced. S c h o o l s o p e r a t e i n the d i r e c t i o n of p r o d u c i n g c u l t u r a l and i n t e l l e c t u a l u n i f o r m i t y . I t thus seems i m p o r t a n t t h a t s c h o o l s do not o p e r a t e i n such a way t h a t they g r a t u i t o u s l y suppress n o v e l t y . But we do t h i s when we compel s t u d e n t s from t r a d i t i o n s a t odds w i t h some component of the c u r r i c u l u m t o a t t e n d t o i t , nonetheless....We s h o u l d not be so c o n f i d e n t i n [the c u r r i c u l u m ] t h a t s o u r c e s o f n o v e l t y o u t s i d e o f t h e s e t r a d i t i o n s a r e u n n e c e s s a r y . . . . I t i s [nec e s s a r y ] t o s u p p o r t d i v e r s i t y , and t o p r o v i d e a s o c i e t y w i t h s o u r c e s o f r e n e w a l , (p. 167) There i s m e r i t i n what S t r i k e has o b s e r v e d . T o l e r a n c e i s an i m p o r t a n t s t e p towards the r e c o g n i t i o n of d i v e r s i t y . But I do not b e l i e v e t h a t s i m p l y t o l e r a n c e i s what we are u l t i m a t e l y s e e k i n g i n e d u c a t i o n . T o l e r a n c e i s o n l y a h a l f way measure between i n t o l e r a n c e and compassion; between r e c o g n i t i o n and a c c e p t a n c e . What we are s e e k i n g f i n a l l y i s not t o l e r a n c e , which o f t e n l e a d s t o i n d i f f e r e n c e , but compassion which b r i n g s empathy and the a b i l i t y t o c a r e . A q u a r t e r o f a c e n t u r y ago Noddings (1972) c l a i m e d t h a t , " w i t h r a r e e x c e p t i o n s , [ s c h o o l s ] a re not s u p p o r t i v e p l a c e s f o r s t u d e n t s w i t h any genuine or i n t r i n s i c i n t e r e s t s " (p. 60). Some y e a r s l a t e r she added t h a t , "too many of us t h i n k t h a t we can improve e d u c a t i o n by merely d e s i g n i n g a b e t t e r c u r r i c u l u m , f i n d i n g and imp l e m e n t i n g a b e t t e r form o f 115. i n s t r u c t i o n , or i n s t i t u t i n g a b e t t e r form of c l a s s r o o m management. These t h i n g s do not work" (Noddings, 1995, p . 368). For as H o l t (1964) o b s e r v e d , "I f the s i t u a t i o n , the m a t e r i a l s , the problems b e f o r e the c h i l d do not i n t e r e s t h im, h i s a t t e n t i o n w i l l s l i p o f f to what does i n t e r e s t h im, and no amount o f e x h o r t a t i o n or t h r e a t s w i l l b r i n g i t back" (p. 158). The o b s e r v a t i o n s of bo th H o l t and Noddings are i n my o p i n i o n i n s i g h t f u l , as p u b l i c s c h o o l s were never d e s i g n e d to f a c i l i t a t e the i n t e r e s t s o f c h i l d r e n . H i s t o r i c a l l y the ends o f e d u c a t i o n were meant to serve the i n t e r e s t s o f the s t a t e and the s o c i a l and economic w e l f a r e of s o c i e t y at l a r g e , r a t h e r than the i n t e r e s t s of the i n d i v i d u a l . More r e c e n t l y , however, t h e r e has been a growing p e r c e p t i o n that e d u c a t i o n must i n c r e a s i n g l y p r o v i d e f o r the i n t e r e s t s and a s p i r a t i o n s of the i n d i v i d u a l . T h i s emerging v iew, as expres sed i n the f o l l o w i n g o b s e r v a t i o n o f Jane Roland M a r t i n (1987), c h a l l e n g e s both the means of c u r r e n t e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s , as w e l l as the ends o f a s t a n d a r d l i b e r a l a r t s c u r r i c u l u m : The l i b e r a l l y educated person w i l l have the knowledge about o t h e r s but w i l l not have been taught to c a r e about t h e i r w e l f a r e . That person w i l l have some u n d e r s t a n d i n g of s o c i e t y but w i l l not have been taught to f e e l i t s i n j u s t i c e s or even be concerned about i t s f a t e . Our educated person i s an i v o r y tower 116. p e r s o n : one who can r e a s o n but has no d e s i r e t o s o l v e r e a l problems i n the w o r l d ; one who u n d e r s t a n d s s c i e n c e but does not worry about the uses t o which i t i s p u t ; and one who can r e a c h f l a w l e s s moral c o n c l u s i o n s but has n e i t h e r t h e s e n s i t i v i t y nor the s k i l l t o c a r r y them out e f f e c t i v e l y . (p. 206) What Ought To Be I have proposed t h a t e d u c a t o r s c o n s i d e r the c r e a t i o n o f a new s e t o f c i r c u m s t a n c e s i n which the means and the ends of e d u c a t i o n s e r v e the needs of the s t a t e as w e l l as the i n t e r e s t s of the i n d i v i d u a l , a s e t of c i r c u m s t a n c e s w hich w i l l s u p p o r t s i m u l t a n e o u s l y the c o e x i s t e n c e o f d i v e r s e e d u c a t i o n a l approaches from which s t u d e n t s then have the r i g h t t o choose. The a b i l i t y t o f a c i l i t a t e d i v e r s i t y and p r o v i d e s t u d e n t s w i t h adequate c h o i c e s i n e d u c a t i o n a r e n e c e s s a r y and e s s e n t i a l elements l a c k i n g i n our c o n s i d e r a t i o n s of e q u a l e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t y t h a t must become a f o c u s o f f u t u r e e d u c a t i o n a l p l a n n i n g i f s c h o o l s are t o move c l o s e r t o r e a l i z i n g t h i s g o a l . At the p r e s e n t time the s t r a t e g i e s o f s t a n d a r d i z a t i o n , u n i f o r m i t y , and c o n f o r m i t y a r e embedded i n our s c h o o l systems t o such a degree t h a t genuine c h o i c e w i t h i n p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n i s v i r t u a l l y n o n e x i s t e n t , and t h o s e c h o i c e s t h a t do e x i s t a r e o f degree r a t h e r than k i n d . C o n s i d e r f o r example the n o t i o n " S c h o o l s o f C h o i c e " , one o f the most r e c e n t a t t e m p t s i n our e f f o r t s t o acknowledge the need f o r 117. freedom of c h o i c e i n e d u c a t i o n w i t h r e g a r d s t o s t u d e n t i n t e r e s t s and the s e l e c t i o n o f s t u d e n t programmes. To b e g i n w i t h , the name i t s e l f i s a misnomer. From the s t a r t t h e r e i s v i r t u a l l y no genuine c h o i c e i n v o l v e d . I t has a l r e a d y been d e c i d e d t h a t a l l c h i l d r e n w i l l p a r t i c i p a t e i n a f o r m a l , s t a t e approved, s c h o o l programme. That's the law. But t h e n a f t e r g i v i n g c h i l d r e n no c h o i c e i n g o i n g t o s c h o o l , we p u r p o r t t o g i v e them a c h o i c e o f s c h o o l programmes which they haven't asked t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n and, f u r t h e r m o r e , a c h o i c e of s c h o o l s u b j e c t s t h a t they have e x p r e s s e d no r e a l i n t e r e s t i n s t u d y i n g . T h i s i n d e e d i s an a b s u r d n o t i o n o f freedom of c h o i c e . We o f f e r no v i a b l e a l t e r n a t i v e s t o s c h o o l i n g and y e t speak f r e e l y of c h o i c e . How can t h e r e r e a l l y be genuine c h o i c e s when t h e r e a r e no genuine o p t i o n s from which t o choose? The fundamental r i g h t t o e d u c a t i o n makes i t c l e a r t h a t a l l l e a r n e r s be a l l o w e d t o pursue a c o u r s e of e d u c a t i o n t h a t i s " d i r e c t e d t o the f u l l development of the human p e r s o n a l i t y " ( A r t i c l e 2 6 ) , which by way of r e a s o n a b l e d e d u c t i o n must a l s o i n c l u d e the freedom of the i n d i v i d u a l t o choose c o u r s e s o f s t u d y i n areas o f i n d i v i d u a l i n t e r e s t . I have c o n s i d e r e d the words of N e l Noddings (1992) who w r o t e , "The f i r s t s t e p towards weakening the hegemony of academic d i s c i p l i n e s i s t o cease t e a c h i n g them f o r t h e i r 118. own sake e x c e p t f o r those who show the p a s s i o n a t e i n t e r e s t i n them... Pedagogy s h o u l d b e g i n w i t h the purposes, i n t e r e s t s , and c a p a c i t i e s o f s t u d e n t s " (p.150), and I have r e f l e c t e d upon t h e i r meaning i n my t h i n k i n g o f the problems we now f a c e . C u r r e n t l y s c h o o l s t e a c h d i s c i p l i n e s and t r y t o c r e a t e i n t e r e s t i n the s e s u b j e c t s a r e a s by l o o k i n g f o r the r e l e v a n c y t h a t w i l l hook s t u d e n t s and m o t i v a t e l e a r n i n g . What I have proposed i s t h a t i f we want s t u d e n t s t o be i n t e r e s t e d i n what i s b e i n g t a u g h t , then perhaps we are a p p r o a c h i n g the t e a c h i n g - l e a r n i n g p r o c e s s backwards. Why not t e a c h what i s a l r e a d y o f i n t e r e s t t o s t u d e n t s and, where a p p r o p r i a t e , use the t r a d i t i o n a l s u b j e c t a r e a s t o enhance and e n r i c h the l e a r n i n g e x p e r i e n c e ? I n t h i s manner the hook i s a l r e a d y i n the s t u d e n t and the m o t i v a t i o n t o l e a r n i s i n t r i n s i c , o r as W i l l i a m James (-1 890/1 980) o b s e r v e d , "the more i n t e r e s t the c h i l d has i n advance of the s u b j e c t , the b e t t e r he w i l l a t t e n d " (p. 275) . L e a r n i n g was never meant t o be s y s t e m a t i z e d o r s t a n d a r d i z e d . No s t a n d a r d i z e d system o f e d u c a t i o n can ever presume t o d i c t a t e the growth o f i n d i v i d u a l human p e r s o n a l i t y . I t i s even more i n c o n c e i v a b l e t h a t a system, which must c a t e r t o the needs of m i l l i o n s of c h i l d r e n , s h o u l d r e l y upon a s i n g l e s t a n d a r d i z e d c u r r i c u l u m and a 119. s i n g l e dominant model of s c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s and ex p e c t t o meet the d i v e r s e needs of a l l l e a r n e r s and i n e q u a l p r o p o r t i o n s . Nature r e l i e s upon d i v e r s i t y t o ensure the s u c c e s s o f l i f e i n t h i s o f t e n h a r s h and c o m p e t i t i v e w o r l d . P u b l i c s c h o o l s by c o n t r a s t have t r a d i t i o n a l l y chosen c o n f o r m i t y , s t a n d a r d i z a t i o n , and a s s i m i l a t i o n as s t r a t e g i e s t o pursue the same g o a l s . C u r r e n t r e s t r u c t u r i n g s t r a t e g i e s aimed at c o n s o l i d a t i n g and s t r e a m l i n i n g our system o f e d u c a t i o n c o n t r i b u t e t o i t s demise, as u n i f o r m i t y and c o n f o r m i t y l i m i t the c a p a b i l i t i e s of a system t o adapt t o change. And I would suggest t h a t the s t r a t e g y o f d i v e r s i t y , upon which mother n a t u r e has come t o depend upon f o r b i l l i o n s of y e a r s , may s e r v e as a b e t t e r b l u e p r i n t f o r s u c c e s s than the c o m p a r a t i v e l y r e c e n t paradigm o f p u b l i c e d u c a t i o n . 1 2 0 . BIBLIOGRAPHY Aleichem, S. ( 1 9 5 3 ) . The adventures of Mottel (T. Kahana, Trans.). New York: Henry Schuman. ( O r i g i n a l work published i n 1918) Apple, M. (1 990) . Ideology and curriculum (2nd Ed.) . New York: Routledge. A r i s t o t l e . ( 1 9 8 0 ) . The works of A r i s t o t l e (W. D. Ross, Trans.). In M. J . Adler & R. M. Hutchins (Eds.), Great books of the western world (Vol. 3 0 , pp. 542). Toronto: W i l l i a m Benton. Bacon, S i r F. ( 1 9 8 0 ) . Advancement of l e a r n i n g : F i r s t Book. In M. J . Adler & R. M. Hutchins (Eds.), Great books of the western world (Vol. 8 , pp. 1—29). Toronto: W i l l i a m Benton. Beane, J . A. 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Research c u r r e n t s : C u l t u r a l - e c o l o g i c a l i n f l u e n c e s on m i n o r i t y s c h o o l l e a r n i n g . Language A r t s , 6 2 ( 8 ) , 860-869. Ohanian, S. (1996). I s t h a t penguin s t u f f e d or r e a l ? P h i D e l t a Kappan. 7 8 ( 4 ) , 277-284. P e t e r s , R.S. (1966). E t h i c s and e d u c a t i o n . London: George A l l e n & Unwin L t d . P i a g e t , J . (1977). C o g n i t i v e growth. I n N. A. S p r i n t h a l l & R. C. S p r i n t h a l l ( E d s O , E d u c a t i o n a l p s y c h o l o g y : A d e v e l o p m e n t a l approach (2nd. ed., pp. 118-147). Don M i l l s , Ont: Addison-Wesley. P l a t o , (1980). The D i a l o g u e s of P l a t o (B. J o w e t t , T r a n s . ) . I n M. J . A d l e r & R. M. H u t c h i n s ( E d s . ) , Great books o f the w e s t e r n w o r l d ( V o l . 7, pp. 295-441). T o r o n t o : W i l l i a m Benton. 126. R i k e , C . J . & W e n d l a n t , G . E . ( 1 9 8 7 , M a r c h ) . We s o l v e d o v e r c r o w d i n g a n d b o o s t e d e a r l y l e a r n i n g . A m e r i c a n S c h o o l B o a r d J o u r n a l , 1 7 4 ( 3 ) . 3 8 . R o l a n d M a r t i n , J . ( 1 9 8 7 ) . T r a n s f o r m i n g m o r a l e d u c a t i o n . J o u r n a l o f M o r a l E d u c a t i o n . 1 6 ( 3 ) , 2 0 4 - 2 1 3 . R o l a n d M a r t i n , J . ( 1 9 9 5 , J a n u a r y ) . A p h i l o s o p h y o f e d u c a t i o n f o r t h e y e a r 2 0 0 0 . P h i D e l t a K a p p a n , 76 ( 5 ) , 3 5 5 - 3 5 9 . R o u s s e a u , J . J . ( 1 9 8 0 ) . A d i s c o u r s e o n p o l i t i c a l e c o n o m y ( G . D . H . C o l e , T r a n s . ) . I n M . J . A d l e r & R . M . H u t c h i n s ( E d s . ) , G r e a t b o o k s o f t h e w e s t e r n w o r l d ( V o l . . 3 8 , p p . 3 6 7 - 3 8 6 ) . T o r o n t o : W i l l i a m B e n t o n . S a r a s o n , S . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . The c u l t u r e o f t h e s c h o o l a n d t h e p r o b l e m o f c h a n g e ( R e v . E d . ) . B o s t o n : A l l y n a n d B a c o n . S a r a s o n , S . ( 1 9 9 6 ) . B a r o m e t e r s o f c h a n g e . S a n F r a n c i s c o : J o s s e y - B a s s . S c h l e c h t y , P . C . ( 1 9 9 0 ) . S c h o o l s i n t h e t w e n t y - f i r s t c e n t u r y : L e a d e r s h i p i m p e r a t i v e s f o r e d u c a t i o n a l r e f o r m . S a n F r a n c i s c o : J o s s e y - B a s s . S e r g i o v a n n i , T . ( 1 9 9 4 ) . B u i l d i n g c o m m u n i t y i n s c h o o l s . S a n F r a n c i s c o : J o s s e y - B a s s . S h i e l d s , C M . & S e l t z e r , P . (1 9 9 5 , O c t o b e r ) . C o m p l e x i t i e s a n d p a r a d o x e s o f . c o m m u n i t y i n m u l t i -c u l t u r a l s e t t i n g s . U n i v e r s i t y C o u n c i l o f E d u c a t i o n a l A d m i n i s t r a t i o n , S a l t l a k e C i t y . 1 2 7 . S t r i k e , K . A . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . L i b e r t y a n d l e a r n i n g ( p p . 1 5 7 -1 5 9 ) . O x f o r d : M a r t i n R o b e r t s o n . S t r i k e , K . A . ( 1 9 9 5 ) . The e t h i c s o f s c h o o l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n . New Y o r k : T e a c h e r s C o l l e g e P r e s s . S w i f t , J . ( 1 9 8 0 ) . G u l l i v e r ' s t r a v e l s . I n M . J . A d l e r & R . M . H u t c h i n s ( E d s . ) , G r e a t b o o k s o f t h e w e s t e r n w o r l d ( V o l . 3 6 , p p . 1 - 1 9 0 ) . T o r o n t o : W i l l i a m B e n t o n . ( O r i g i n a l w o r k p u b l i s h e d i n 1726) U n i v e r s a l d e c l a r a t i o n o f human r i g h t s . I n W o r l d B o o k E n c y c l o p e d i a ( V o l . 9 , p p . 4 1 4 - 4 1 6 ) . T o r o n t o : W o r l d B o o k I n c . W e b s t e r ' s t h i r d new i n t e r n a t i o n a l d i c t i o n a r y ( 1 9 7 6 ) . C h i c a g o : G . & C . M e r r i a m C o . W e r n e r , W. ( 1 9 9 1 ) . C u r r i c u l u m i n t e g r a t i o n a n d s c h o o l c u l t u r e s . Formum o n c u r r i c u l u m i n t e g r a t i o n , ( O c c a s i o n a l P a p e r # 6 ) . B u r n a b y , B C : S i m o n F r a s e r U n i v e r s i t y , T r i - u n i v e r s i t y I n t e g r a t i o n P r o j e c t . W e r n e r , W. ( 1 9 9 5 ) . S c h o o l s t r u c t u r e s a n d t h e s t r u c t u r e s o f g h a n g e . ( L e c t u r e h a n d o u t - E D C I 5 7 2 ) , U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a . V a n c o u v e r , B . C . W h i t t i n g t o n , E . H . ( 1 9 8 5 , F a l l ) . E f f e c t s o f c l a s s s i z e o n f i r s t g r a d e s t u d e n t s . S p e c t r u m , 3 ( 4 ) , 3 3 - 3 9 . 128. APPENDIX 1 The U n i v e r s a l D e c l a r a t i o n o f Human R i g h t s A r t i c l e 2 Everyone i s e n t i t l e d t o a l l the r i g h t s and freedoms s e t f o r t h i n t h i s D e c l a r a t i o n , w i t h o u t d i s t i n c t i o n of any k i n d , such as r a c e , c o l o u r , sex, language, r e l i g i o n , p o l i t i c a l o r o t h e r o p i n i o n , n a t i o n a l o r s o c i a l o r i g i n , p r o p e r t y , b i r t h or o t h e r s t a t u s . A r t i c l e 26 1. Everyone has the r i g h t t o e d u c a t i o n . E d u c a t i o n s h a l l be f r e e , a t l e a s t i n the e l e m e n t a r y and fundamental s t a g e s . E l e m e n t a r y e d u c a t i o n s h a l l be compulsory. T e c h n i c a l and p r o f e s s i o n a l e d u c a t i o n s h a l l be made g e n e r a l l y a v a i l a b l e and h i g h e r e d u c a t i o n s h a l l be a c c e s s i b l e t o a l l on the b a s i s of m e r i t . 2. E d u c a t i o n s h a l l be d i r e c t e d t o the f u l l development of the human p e r s o n a l i t y and t o the s t r e n g t h e n i n g o f r e s p e c t f o r human r i g h t s and fundamental freedoms. I t s h a l l promote u n d e r s t a n d i n g , t o l e r a n c e , and f r i e n d s h i p among a l l n a t i o n s , r a c i a l or r e l i g i o u s groups, and s h a l l f u r t h e r the a c t i v i t i e s o f the U n i t e d N a t i o n s f o r the maintenance of peace. 3. P a r e n t s have a p r i o r r i g h t t o choose the k i n d o f e d u c a t i o n t h a t s h a l l be g i v e n t o t h e i r c h i l d r e n . 1 29 . APPENDIX 2 Eighth Concurrent Session PULLING THE PLUG ON APPEALS TO IRRATIONALITY. IMMATURITY AND EXPEDIENCY Roland Case University of Alberta The topic of the paper Is the Justificatory grounds for Interference with the liberty of children and. In particular, the self-regarding (I.e. paternalistic) grounds for compulsory education. The title of the paper mentions three explanations most frequently offered In support of what Klelnlg calls the received doctrine.1 Roughly, this doctrine states that children, as a class, have no or, at best, few rights to liberty. Where children are seen to have prima facie rights, the doctrine holds that Interference with them Is more easily Justified than Interference with adult liberties. We have ' Inherited this categorical discrimination essentially unchanged from Mill. In the case of adults, he held: the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community against his will. Is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral. Is not a sufficient reason.* ' Almost Immediately following. Mill added: It Is, perhaps hardly necessary to say that this doctrine Is meant to apply only to human beings In the maturity of their faculties. We are not speaking of children, or of young persons below the age which the law may fix as that of manhood or womanhood. It Is consistent with this tradition that, for example, the Criminal Code of Canada makes It an offense to deprive a parent or guardian who has lawful possession of a child from possession of that child. This Is so even If the child Is escaping from someone who mistreats him or her.' A comic, yet touching affirmation/repudiation of this Inferior status Is represented In the \3>D. Philosophy of Education 1985 film Irreconcilable Differences. After being Innocently used and manipulated by her parents, ten-year old Casey Institutes divorce proceedings because, h In her words, "You both treat me like a chattel." For my part, I wish to take up this theme. There are'Irreconcilable differences between the proffered defences of virtually wholesale exclusion of children from certain liberties and what would count as adequate Justification for this received doctrine. Ultimately I argue that entitlement to liberty should not be categorical (I.e., It should not be based on a particular status such as adulthood or (full) personhood). Rather, entitlement should be conditional. It should be based on the presence of the relevant factors In particular Instances. In the last section of this paper, I argue that the relevant justificatory factor associated with liberty Is the authenticity of a particular choice. And on this grounds, many school-age children often qualify. However, before developing this alternate conditional position, purported Justifications of the received categorical doctrine will be examined. Anyone who upholds a categorical distinction Is committed to the following: Class or group X can be treated differently than class/group Y with regard to exercise of right R only If there Is a reason for doing so that Is both relevant to R and characteristic of X but not of Y. In other words, proponents of a different status for children's liberties must provide a condition that Is both empirically representative of children (and not of adults) and morally relevant to the exercise of freedoms.' This means, for example, we cannot Justify compulsory education for children solely because they may be better off because of It. The possibility of beneflt-enhancement/harm-avoldance does not differentiate between children and adults. (Surety, many adults would be better off being educated.) Nor, for example, can we Justify compulsory education for children on the basis of age. Although age differentiates between adults and children. It does not Justifiably discriminate between them. While more will be said about age-based limitations, there Is nothing about age, per se, that Is relevant to the exercise of rights. The three most plausible arguments offered In support of categorical exclusion of children are based on (i) lack of 6 7 fl rationality (proponents of which Include Locke, Hart, Magslno, and g i n Sutton ); (II) lack of mature faculties (proponents of which Include Mill, Gerald Dworkln,1 1 Hablbl, 1 2 and Sutton1 3); and (III) an appeal to expediency (a position Implicitly held by many of the above). I. IRRATIONALITY Proponents of the Irrationality view assert that (I) children have not reached the "age of reason" and (II) entitlement to liberty Is dependent on 131 Roland Case attainment of this prescribed level of rationality. The Initial plausibility of these claims begins to dissipate when the concept of rationality Is examined. To begin, a basic distinction can be made between what has been termed I B formal and substantive rationality. To be rational In the formal sense means, simply, that the Individual has a reason (any reason) for acting. Substantive rationality Implies more. It requires that the action or decision be judged reasonable In light of accepted standards or norms. In the case of formal rationality. It seems that most children clearly meet this require-ment. This Is true even if It Is Interpreted as Implying the possession of a disposition to have reasons for one's conduct. The fact that we frequently characterize children's behavior as actions Implicitly corroborates this point. As Danto suggests: "without reasons there would be no actions, since reasons are presupposed by the very existence of an event being an action." 1 5 The reported Irrationality of children must therefore be substantive and refer to a failure to meet standards In quality of reasoning. These standards may be concerned solely with means-end deliberation (i.e., what Aristotle called practical reasoning) or they may also Include an assessment of the desires. Interests and wants which are the motivations for action. In the case of the former, as practical reasoning, the concern Is solely with the efficacy of the deliberation In selecting means appropriate to the satisfaction of the want. There Is, ex hypothesl, no concern over the goals. Obviously this Is the sense of rationality Hume had In mind when he taunted: "It Is not contrary to reason to prefer the destruction of the whole world to the scratching of my finger."' 6 I doubt that proponents of the Irrationality view would be satisfied with this Interpretation.1'' I take It that much of the motivation for restricting the liberty of children stems from concerns about the types of Interests/desires children are wont to pursue. A more acceptable Interpretation of Irrationality would Include consid-eration of the reasonableness of the motives. There are. In turn, two ways to establish standards of reasonableness of this type and they are suggested by Brian Barry's distinction between want-regarding and Ideal-regarding 18 Interests, Ideal-regarding Interests refer to what a person could and should want based on what are perceived to be Ideals for that person (e.g., knowledge, virtue, autonomy). Want-regarding Interests refer to what a person really wants when all of his/her desires. Interests, ambitions and so on have been considered. Rationality In the Ideal-regarding sense Is consistency of actual wants with Ideals of what' ought to be wanted. An example of Irrationality In this sense Is the student who desires to be an accountant when he/she ought to pursue a more ennobling career In phil-osophy. Want-regarding rationality Is consistency of a particular want with the balance of that person's wants. An example of Irrationality In this sense Is the person who wishes to have a sexual affair even though It will likely Jeopardize those things which mean most to him/her (e.g., trust, spousal 132 Philosophy of Education 1985 happiness, family cohesion). In essence. Ideal-regarding.rationality Is what perfectly rational persons would choose. Clearly, no one Is going to argue for this as the minimal standard of entitlement to liberty. We will presume, then, that the rationality criterion can be described In terms of choosing/ acting In a manner consistent with the balance of the person's wants. I take It that this Is what Sutton has In mind when he describes rational choice as the "blending of desires with the Intelligent anticipation of the conse-19 quences." Can this Interpretation satisfy the empirical representativeness requirement? Viewed In Its minimal sense, merely as a capacity. It Is not at all convincing that children are deficient. As one philosopher writes: Even a five-year old Is a master of a complex language, has a person-ality structure and an awareness of his own Identity, and Is quite capable of Implicitly Invoking a generalization principle to protest unfair treatment by a parent or teacher.2" In a similar vein, Robert Young claims: Children are far from always being too Immature or Irrational to know, and to be able to express opinions, when their Interests are affected.2 1 In short. If the grounds for entitlement are simply a capacity for want-regarding rational choice, then many school-age children qualify as title-holders. If a stronger claim Is Implied, namely a dispositional trait, then Sutton and others run the difficulty of categorically excluding many adults from a right to liberty. Many "average" adults are disposed to act on Impulse, habit and compulsion. I can think of countless activities (e.g., smoking, overeating, getting drunk, wasting money, procrastinating, whim-sical risk-taking) that are "irrational" for most participants. Yet we do not consider that sufficient grounds to Interfere with an adult's decision to do such things. Put simply, the problem Is that either the "average" child Is not Irrational enough or the "average" adult Is not rational enough. In summation, I suggest no plausible interpretation of Irrationality will supply the distinction that proponents need to differentiate children's rights. II. IMMATURITY Appeals to the Immaturity of children often collapse Into a concern over the ensuing lack of rationality. For example, Hablbl laments children's tack of "perception, rationality, discrimination. Judgment and planning." 2 2 However, there are Interpretations of Immaturity distinct from Irrationality which focus on undeveloped psychological/mental states. Here again, Hablbl talks of nascent Individuality and character formation.23 In an article. 133. Roland Case subsequent to the one cited In the previous section, Sutton shifts emphasis towards an Immaturity argument. Conceding that children are "In some sense rational," he claims they are not full persons. On this latter point, there Is a tendency to equate Immaturity with lack of personhood. While It Is analytically true that an "Immature" person Is not a "full" person, the notion of what constitutes being a person must be spelt out with adequate precision If a more compelling claim Is Intended. Significantly, In concluding his account of the concept of person, Daniel Dennett observes that while his conditions' are necessary, the degree to which they must be met Is Inescap-ably normative: Human beings and other entitles can only aspire to being approxima-tions of the Ideal, and there can be no way to set a "passing grade" that Is not arbitrary. 2 5 Rather than attempt to equate Immaturity to the more global, less manageable concept of personhood, I will consider three plausible candidates repre-sentative of the concerns lurking behind the Immaturity appeal: (I) fc children are weak-willed (I.e., they are uniquely Impressionable and vulnerable because they have little or no will of their own); children are blind-willed (I.e., they do not have a "free" will but are driven by whatever desire/want Is strongest); children are Impermanent willed (I.e., while they have wills of their own, their ambltlons/alms are likely to'change significantly as they grow up). (II) (III) The third suggestion meets neither of the conditions for categorical exclusion. The Implications of Immaturity as Impermanent will are (I) that unlike children, adults are stable and have relatively set alms and aspira-tions; and (tl) that permanency of Interests over extended time Is relevant to entitlement to liberty. Empirically, It Is not clear that the first presumption Is an adequate portrait of the average adult. One of Hart's objections to Mill Is that Mill attributes normal adults with the "psychology of a middle-aged man whose desires are relatively fixed, not liable to be artificially stimulated by external Influences; who knows what he wants and 26 what gives him satisfaction." Lack of this type of permanency could be leveled against all adults who do not have the settled consistency of middle-age. On the second presumption, the likelihood that adults' aspira-tions-are less prone to change than children's Is not a convincing reason for denying children the right to pursue their current desires and preferences. It Is. often retorted that present Interference Is necessary to develop children's ability to fulfill the desires they will have as adults. There are a number of difficulties with this defense. One, treating childhood 134. Philosophy of Education 1985 substantially as means to adulthood Is not to treat children with respect. As 27 28 Pekarsky and Klelnlg remind us, childhood Is a period having character-istic needs and Interests of Intrinsic value Independent of any role In preparing for adulthood. Two, It Is not obvious, except In cases of Immediate harm, that our Interventions are likely to secure the desired results. On the contrary, the resentment that may accompany being required to do things frequently eclipses. If not exceeds any benefit. It Is an Interesting question whether those who benefit from compulsion wouldn't have benefitted eventually If left on their own. Certainly, In the case of schooling, we may Insist on compulsory attendance, but we cannot Impose an education. While the remaining two candidates, weakness and blindness of bill', are relevant to the exercise of liberty, they are not sufficiently representative of children to lustlfy categorical exclusion. Many children are strong-willed. Often they are perfectly clear about what they want and are' determined to persevere In the face of opposition. Even for those who are not character-istically strong-willed, the fact they are susceptible to external Influence Is not sufficient reason for blanket exclusion. In law, we do not deny someone his/her liberty merely because the suspect Is prone to Illegality. We Insist on proof beyond reasonable doubt of specific Illegality. Although, as we will see, we may accept the presence of outer-Impulsion as grounds for condi-tional Interference, fairness requires rejection of mere vulnerability to external Influences as sufficient grounds for categorical exclusion:• In support of the blind will appeal, Sutton suggests that pre-adolescents 29 are unable to critically evaluate their Inner wants. As such they do not possess free will. Even If we accept Sutton's assertion that Plaget's developmental stage of formal operations Is a bettweather of children's ability to evaluate their wills, this means many children, beginning around eleven years old (and some younger), possess the requisite capacity. In addition, there Is Intuitive and, perhaps, more valid evidence that children are capable of exercising free will even earlier. If children's behavior was always the product of unassessed urges, then we could not hold them responsible for their behavior. It Is because we believe they often "know better" or "should have known better" that we can punish them for their actions. The salient difference between conditioning and disciplining rests upon the ability of the recipient to see the Tightness and wrongness of acting on certain desires. In short. If we are prepared to discipline children, we have already recognized the freedom of their will. III. EXPEDIENCY One final argument for the categorical exclusion of children from liberty stems from an appeal to expediency. This view holds that for practical Roland Case purposes, perhaps because the Incidence of harm Is significantly large among a particular group, and since It may be Impossible or, at least, extremely costly to Identify potential victims. It Is reasonable to categorically exclude the group as a whole. Magslno uses a version of this line of argument as the reason for the exclusion of children from option rights. However, he acknowledges that deprivation of such fundamental freedoms requires "demonstrable Incapacity to make acceptable use of one's liberties."3 0 Unfortunately, he assumes, but does not establish, that children have this demonstrable Incapacity. Clearly, the onus Is on the Intervenor to substan-tiate the claim. Notice also, the argument from expediency does not hold In cases of Interpersonal and parental paternalism. Having first-hand know-ledge of a child and being able to supervise him/her Individually means that a categorical exclusion from all prima facie option rights Is obviously untenable on these grounds. Where the appeal to expediency Is appropriate Is In the area known as legislative paternalism.31 In such cases. It may be necessary to establish a legal age at which certain entitlements are officially recognized. However, It must be remembered that age-based restrictions are empirical generalizations and are not equivalent to moral entitlements. Therefore where practical or legal constraints dictate use of age or other statistical norms, a number of qualifications are required before the practice Is Justified. One, the dlsenfranchlsement should be localized to criteria related to the activity under consideration and not refer to the overall capacity of the Individual. For example, fifteen-year olds would not be allowed to drive cars, not because they are too young to enjoy legal rights, but because statistically they make bad choices while driving. The same principle now applies to repeated drunken drivers. This type of provision would entitle groups such as children, mentally disabled persons, and mentally disturbed persons who. In the past, were dismissed as categorically Incompetent to exercise discretion In matters not specifically legally, prohibited. Two, the ascertainment of the normative cut-off point should be carefully scrutinized. It must be demonstrated that statistically few persons below the cut-off point meet the criteria and most persons above the cut-off satisfy the minimal requirements. Three, provision must be made for Individual exemption from the generalized restriction based on ability to demonstrate competence. For example. In discussing the fairness of adult sufferage, Schrag reports that six percent of eighth graders have the sophistication In political discourse of the top half of the adult population.32 This suggests that competent young persons below the guaranteed legal age of sufferage ought to be allowed to demonstrate voter fitness and be granted early franchise. Four, as Dworkln argues, legislation should Impose only the minimal Interference necessary to safeguard well-being.33 ' These limitations on legal paternalism significantly alter the notion of categorical exclusion. I suggest that although age-based restrictions may Philosophy of Education 1985 look like categorical exclusions, they are not Justified unless they have the effect of generalized conditional exclusions. IV. AUTHENTIC CHOICE The received doctrine, at least as defended by appeals to Irrationality, Immaturity or expediency. Is suspect. Instead, I propose that children be recognized as tltleholders to the same basic liberties as adults and that the grounds for overriding these prima facie rights are the same for children and adults. In support of these claims I will briefly explain what I take to be the most defensible grounds for entitlement to liberty. The key, as Felnberg suggests. Is to determine whether a choice really Is attributable to an Individual, rather than to evaluate Its wisdom or 34 worthiness. For Mill, each person Is the proper guardian of his/her welfare. It Is not one person's prerogative to Interfere Just because he/she disapproves of another's choice. In fact. Mill's defense of liberty was 'expressly to fortify the Individual against the wills of others. Significantly, a decision which emanates from an Individual but does not represent the person In any faithful way Is, In an Important sense, foreign to that person. 3 ' The Justification for liberty Is the value of pursuing one's own will. If an action does not reflect the Intentions and volitions of that person, then It Is not his/her will. As such. It Is not the proper object of a right to liberty. This Is consistent with Vlastos' principle of Just-exceptions. It states that the only defensible reason for exclusion from human rights must be the very reason we have for ascribing the right In the first place. 3 6 In self-regarding situations, this would mean that a necessary condition for denial of liberty Is evidence that the Individual's choice Is In. some way attenuated—It Is not. In a full-bodied sense, his/her choice but Is attributable to other causes.-Attenuation arises either where acting on a particular decision will not secure the Intended objective or where the Intended objective was not freely chosen. 3 7 More specifically, attenuation of Intention of choice occurs because person X, although voluntarily choosing C, did so not fully Intend-ing the eventual outcome. This occurs either because deliberation concern-ing choice C failed to predict Important mediating events or consequences, or was based on mistaken beliefs, or because the choice of C was largely undellberated. Attenuation of volition of choice occurs because person X, although Intending C, did not do so freely. This occurs because the normal functioning of the person's choice-making mechanism was overridden. Either (I) the normal consistency In prlorlzatton of goals was absent (e.g., self-deception, chronically undisciplined); or (II) the mechanism for selection among goals was Internally short-circuited (e.g., stress, personality disorder, Internal compulsion, mania); or (III) the mechanism for selection 13^. Roland Case among goals was affected by foreign Intervention (e.g., hypnosis, brain-washing, threats, peer pressure). The upshot of this account Is that Interference with children's liberty can only be Justified to the extent that one or more of these attenuating conditions can be shown to be present. The received doctrine must be replaced by recognition that the choices of children do count. In the case for compulsory education It means merely being worthwhile Is not sufficient Justification. t . John Klelnig, "Mil l , Ch i ldren , end Rights," Educational Philosophy and Theory 8 (1976): 1-3. 2. John Stuart Mil l . "On Liberty ." In Three Essays, e d . Richard Wolhelm (London: Oxford University Press . 197S), p. IS. 3. Reported In John McMurty, "Response to Winchester - Y e s , Children Need Liberation," Interchange 10 (1979): 35. » . Reported In John Peary, "Children and Others Strangers." Macleans 97 (Octo-ber 22. 19S4): 78. 5. I take these formal requirements of empirical representativeness and moral relevance to be relatively uncontroverslal. At least implicitly, they have been defended by S. I . Benn according to his principle of noninterference, by H . L . A . Hart and his theory of a natural r ight , by Brian CrIUenden In terms of the moral status of human beings, and by Victor Worsfold and Thomas Sutton In light of Rawlslan princi-ples of Justice. 6. John Locke, "The Second Treatise of Government," In Two Treatise of Govern-ment, e d . Peter Lasletl (New York: The New American L ibrary , Inc. , 1965), sec. 55-58. 7. H . L . A . Hart , "Are There Any Natural Rights!", The Philosophical Review 64 (1955): 175-191. 6. Romulo F. Magslno, "freedom and Rights In Schools: Towards Just Entitlements for the Young ," Educational Theory 29 (1979): 171-11)5. 9 . Thomas L . Sutton, "Human Rights and Chi ldren," Educational Theory 21 (1976): 106-110. 10. Milt, p . 15. 11. Gerald Dworkln. "Paternalism," In Morality and the Law, ed. Richard A . Wasserslrom (Belmont, C A : Wads worth Publishing Co . Inc. . 1971), p. 117. 12. D . A . Hablbl , ' T h e Status of Children In John Stuart Mill's Theory of Liberty," Educational Theory 31 (1983): 65-72. 13. Thomas Sutton, "The TBSk of Education," In Philosophy of Education ISBI, ed . Daniel R. DeNlcola (Normal. IL: The Philosophy of Education Society, 1962), p p . 2S7-267. 1*,. D . Clayton Hub ln , "Prudential Reasons," • Canadian Journal of Philosophy 10 (I960): 69-70. 15. Arthur C . Danto. "Constructing an Eplstemology of Human Rights: A Pseudo Problem," Social Philosophy and Policy I ( 1 9 8 « ) : 25. 16. Henry D. A i k e n , e d . , Hume's Moral and Political Philosophy (New York: Hafner Press, 1948), p. 25. 17. There may be proponents of the received doctrine who would be satisfied with a practical rationality argument. In that case, I would challenge the empirical represen-tativeness condition. It strikes me that many children In the elementary grades are extremely shrewd In devising ways to get what they want. Conversely, adults are often unable to see what must be done to accomplish their goals. 16. Brian B a r r y , Political Argument (London: P.outledge t Kegan Paul, 1970), pp . 173-186. 19. Sutton, p. 108. 20. D . G . Brown, "The Rights of Chi ldren," The Journal of Education 17 (1971): 15. Philosophy of Education 1985 21. Robert Young, 'Education and the 'Rights' of Children and Adolescent* ,* Educational Philosophy and Theory I 1197*): 29. 22. Hablbl . p. Sa. 23. Ib id . , p. <S. 2* . Sutton. "The T a l k of Education.* p p . JS«- IS« . 23. Daniel Dennett, 'Conditions of Personhood,* In The Identity of Persons, e d . Amelia Rorty (Los Angelesi University of California Press. 197SJ, p. 191. 2* . H . L . A . Hart , Low. Liberty and ttorallty (Stanford) Stanford University Press , 1969), p. 33. 27. Daniel Pekersky, "Education and the Mirth of Chi ldhood,* In Philosophy of Education 1911 (Normal, IL: The Philosophy of Education Society, 1992), p p . 1M-1S6. 21. Ktelnlg, p. ». 29. Sutton, ' T h e Task of Education, p p . 2SS-2SS. 31. Rosemary Car ter , "Justifying Paternalism,* Canadian Journal of Philosophy 1 (1977)t t33 - tW. 32. Francis Schrag , "The Child's Status In the Democratic State." Political Theory 3 (1975)t WO. 33. Dworkln. p . 11*. 3 « . Joel Felnberg. "Legal Paternalism," Canadian Journal of Philosophy 1 (1971)i 113. 3S. Ib id . , p . 11*. it. Gregory V las los , "Justice and Equal i ty ,* In Human R ights , e d . A . l . Meldon (Delmont, CAt ttadsnorth Publishing C o . , 1970). p p . (3-IH. 37. Th is account of attenuation t o f choice Is based on a conception of action con-tained In S . C . Coval and J . C . Smith. Law and Its Presuppositions (London: Routledge t Kegan Paul , upcoming). Chapter 1. 

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