Epilogue: The Long Retreat from Democratic Education

Part of the Historical Studies in Education book series (HSE)


Helen Heffernan and Corinne Seeds took different pathways in retirement. Seeds removed herself from public life; her long-promised book summarizing her educational philosophy never appeared. The University Elementary School underwent a series of changes after she retired, eventually becoming a highly desirable private school, still located on the UCLA campus. Seeds, who had had cancer in the early 1950s, seems to have become ill again in the mid-1960s. Heffernan remained supportive but was preoccupied with her own struggles. In Los Angeles, Seeds relied on old friends from UES such as Diana Anderson, who had taught physical education at the school for many years. In 1965, Anderson convinced Seeds to move to a rest home. Describing the move in a letter to Afton Nance, Heffernan wrote: “I am glad Diana was able to get Corinne out of her apartment. She is a better man than I am.”1 Seeds died in March 1969 and was buried next to her parents in a West Los Angeles cemetery.


Social Conscience Compulsory Heterosexuality Rest Home Eightieth Birthday Multicultural Curriculum 
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  1. 3.
    Helen Heffernan and Vivian Edmiston Todd, The Tears Before School, Second Edition (Macmillan, 1970); Helen Heffernan and Vivian Edmiston Todd, The Years Before School, Third Edition (Macmillan, 1977). She also published three articles: Helen Heffernan, “Fostering the Child’s Potential,” Childhood Education 44, 2 (October 1965): 98–107; Helen Heffernan, “Needed: New Compacts in Education,” Childhood Education 43, 7 (March 1967): 382–84; and Helen Heffernan, “Early Childhood Education: Influence on the Elementary School,” Today’s Education 59 (April 1970): 41–42.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

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© Kathleen Weiler 2011

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