RE: RE: DSM: Sudbury Schools - Summerhill

Jerome Mintz (
Sun, 31 Oct 1999 01:31:48 -0500 (EST)

Wow! I only check this server about once a week and was shocked at the
volume of responses my question brought out. But it seems some of you went
quite far afield and didn't answer the original question: Could a Sudbury
School be boarding?

We had a boarding component to our democratic, non-coersive school. About
a third of the kids were boarding. Some came from out of state because
there was no similar school near them. Some boarded because of family
situations, sometimes temporarily, and sometimes because they were placed
by state social services. Some were day students whose parents wented them
to have the boarding experience. All of the day kids could sign up to stay
over at the boarding location once or twice a week. TSometimes the
boarding kids stayed over at the dayschool kids's houses. Of course, the
boarding kids went home for vacations.

The boarding staff and students had their own seperate democratic meeting,
but decisions could be appealed to the general meeting. Meals were
discussed and decided upon by the boarding community's meeting, and
everyone shared in the cooking and cleaning.

A have always thought that this added a crucial dimension to the school,
and it always seemed that the boarding kids got much more out of the
school, and often became its leadership, no matter what their original

So, to repeat, could boarding be part of a sudbury school?

Jerry Mintz
AERO (The decision making process we evolved is on this site)

On Wed, 27 Oct 1999, Joseph Moore wrote:

> > << What is the point of boarding schools, anyway? Always seemed to me to
> > be an
> > attempt to assuage the guilt of wealthier parents who couldn't 'control'
> > or
> > didn't want to be bothered by their own children. >>
> >
> > There is no point when the children are in a situation where it is their
> > prefrence to live with their parents, however, this is NOT the case for
> > many
> > children. This says a lot about those parents in many cases, but it is
> > still
> > true, and makes there be a point to boarding schools... Would it be better
> >
> > for kids to live with those sort of parents?
> __
> Wow. Extreme caution should be exercised when proposing school as a solution
> to profound social, family or psychological problems. It's hard to imagine a
> younger child - say, 14 or less - would want to be away from his or her
> parents for months on end unless the situation was just dreadful. In the
> really dreadful cases, school - even a Sudbury school - is not the answer.
> In any event, how common is the situation you describe above, where:
> 1. Parents provide a bad environment for the child, AND
> 2. Parents can afford to send the child to a boarding school, AND
> 3. Parents allow the child enough freedom to choose whatever school she
> wants to attend.
> It would be reckless to make policy based on this sort of unusual, extreme
> situation.

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