In urban neighbourhoods, the need for such knowledge is particularly evident, and urban residents are having to acquire new skills, new work and leisure patterns, new methods of analysis and problem-solving, and new ways to relate to the world and to each other. There has been investment in education with visible benefit, especially at the secondary level, but the needs go far beyond the normally available sets of manual and intellectual skills: formal education is unable to cope with the demands made on it and adult education is either insufficient in scope or inadequate to meet demands. Over-burdened educational structures are symptomatic of the need for an expanded and diversified approach to education in cities.
The needs for improved functional education is even greater in the many rural areas, where the burden of social participation lies mainly with the individual. Some people have a strong desire to engage in social activities but do not have the functional know-how to allow their participation. Families in rural communities are often without the skills they need to manage the complexity of their homes, budget, social rights or even family life. However, no extra training is provided to acquire such skills. Although some effort is being made to upgrade public education systems by providing supplemental programmes and access to vocational courses and specialized training, the skills needed for daily living are not taught or available.