Re: Help for an article on l

John Gould (
9 Dec 1994 13:01:39 -0500

Mail*Link(r) SMTP RE>Help for an article on learning

Hi Steve:

I work with 25 school districts (PA) in developing the concepts of a learning
organization and the tool of systems thinking. The response that comes to
mind to your first question about needs:

School are very difficulate organizations to change because of deep seated
mental models. What underlies these models is the fact that most people
working in systems are sucessful "products" of the system. And when one looks
at how long one works in the system, the avg. (in PA) is 18 yrs, a sense of
security become strong.
Looking at just these two variables, it is very hard to get educators to see
the need for change because of complexity in the external world. They don't
believe it effects them! But, they must prepare kids for that world.
The tools found in the framework of Learning Organizations can help. Personal
Vision to Shared Vision to Systems Thinking to Mental Models to Team Learning
and back (its a dyamic loop) does allow people to see how the system has
taken away their abilities to act. If educational systems are going to act on
a generally held vision of preparing students for the 21st Century (what ever
that means), we must break a cycle that prepares kids to look like us! LO can
start the process.

The assumption that I use about the concpts of a LO is that it allows people
to find their relationship to the organization and shape its direction. From
this interaction, the organization that one works for, or is part of,
develops a "soul."

I find myself at times asking the question of how ironic it is the school
systems must explore the issues of becoming a learning organization. We
should be the model!

Hope this helps.

Live long and posper!

John M. Gould
Dir. Center for Systenic School renewal

Date: 12/8/94 9:31 PM
To: John Gould
Bonjour chers collegues,


To what organistional needs does the learning organisation approach
attempt to provide answers?

What assumption is the learning organisation based on?

Steve Gildersleeve
10650 rue St. Firmin
H2B 2H1