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ERIC Number: ED023711
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1966
Pages: 9
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
The Universal Trap.
Goodman, Paul
The compulsory system of education is criticized on the grounds that it has become a regimented "universal trap" antithetical to democracy. In contrast to the Jeffersonian concept of education in the service of citizen initiative for the preservation of freedom, current compulsory education is a tool of industrialism and of a rigidly stratified society. The schools do not even reflect middle-class values. Their significant strengths are, in fact, petty-bourgeois. When poor youth are confined in a situation which is useless and damaging to them, they drop out, either actually or behaviorally, a response which could be termed life-preservative. The sterility of traditional education and the conformity it demands are also questioned. Possible alternatives are having no school at all for a few selected classes, conducting school work in the community rather than in the school building, using community adults as "teachers," and establishing a policy of voluntary attendance. Other suggestions include decentralizing the urban school into small units, using store-fronts as classrooms, and sending urban children to farms for a few months, thus helping perhaps to stimulate a new kind of rural life. (NH)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Article published in Urban School Crisis, by League for Industrial Democracy/United Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO, New York, 1966.