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Each of these papers focuses on an aspect of the overall task of noticing and understanding forms of education that spring directly from human existence.
This is the education that addresses the particular conditions people find themselves in and is not directly controlled by the state. It is what is generally referred to as "informal education" or "out of school education" though we are looking for a label that does not, by implication, indexes the formal or the school as the default mode for education. Thus our use of the phrase "comprehensive education."
The papers are designed to accomplish two tasks. First, to review the most significant research on the particular topic. Second, to suggest what kinds of future research is needed to fill the gaps revealed by the review. The authors of the papers are leaders in their fields. They have conducted significant research in education, in and out of schools. They are all committed to viewing education comprehensively as a broad process of continuing transformation. They are all concerned with finding new ways to capture this process without reducing it to what schools must do or measure--particularly when they are personally committed to transforming schools.
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