This account of the meeting held on a particularly cold, dismal, Sunday lunch time is designed to give a flavour for those who could not attend of the discussions and deliberations.
Our thinking, dialogue and reflections for the 90 or so minutes of the meeting were focussed around the following questions:
- What do we want our meetings to be about and how should we record them?
- What are we the meanings of the key words: Free, Co-operative, Higher, Education, that we are taking and using to shape the work of the SSC?
- What are the boundaries of the work of the SSC?
- What conceptually is HE outside conversational organisational settings? How does the concept of the Open Ph.D play into this ? How can the SSC facilitate people to do PH.Ds through accreditation of priori learning or via published work? Should we be doing this anyway and how do we ensure that we are not unintentionally supporting the ‘marketisation’ of Universities though supporting those that offer these routes?
- How can we make meaningful and impactful links between the current work of the SSC and work that other alternative higher education groups are doing?
- How are we securing a coherence between the work David and Vernon are doing vis a vis the Pathway’s Centre and that Gary and others s are looking to do other on the St Giles Estate? How can the work of other alternative Higher Ed groups nationally be embraced and benefited from. How do we co-operative advantage across groups and projects.
- How do we keep the links, in relation to ’levels’ of scholarship, with mainstream provision? Do we need to this ? How best can we do this?
Needless to say we merely scratched the surface !
These are important and challenging questions that we will continue to explore together and which as collective positions emerge will provide the substance of what the SSC, as an evolving organism, emerges into next.