Joseph Roach (email@example.com)
Sun, 12 Nov 2000 08:07:53 -0800 (PST)
The discussion and polemics regarding democratic
schooling v. public schooling has been fascinating so
The most shocking, the most radical implication of
democratic schooling is for families -- the typical
family institutionalizes disrespect for children. The
assumption in most families is that parents know what
is best for their children, and that children should
obey their parents.
In democratic schooling, parents are forced to trust
the judgment of their children, parents are forced to
give up the role of benevolent despot.
In a post a few days ago, Kathleen asked, "If the
Sudbury Valley model [of democratic schooling] is so
good, why hasn't it gotten very far in thirty years?"
(Please forgive me, I paraphrase.)
The answer, quite frankly, is that parents are not
ready. I have been involved in a democratic school
for almost six years, and the life of my family has
changed drastically; yet, I am continually tempted to
return to old time parenting, where I can order my
children to bed without a thought, simply because I am
Democratic school is causing a social revolution, but
at an even more basic level than at schools -- in
The New School
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