Re: DSM: We like minded people 2

Robert Swanson (
Mon, 13 Nov 2000 22:36:22 -0800

Do we know that we can trust the students to find their way?

Do we know the extent of influence from outside school on the sense of
freedom inside the school?

Anybody taking data? I'd really like to hear opinions from students and past


on 11/6/00 6:07 PM, at wrote:
> From: Dana Bennis <>
> Date: Sunday, November 5, 2000 9:34 PM
> To:
> Subject: Re: DSM: We like minded people 2

>> Dana, how can any environment ensure that students follow their own path and
>> are true to themselves? One can only try to give them an atmosphere in
> which
>> they have to find a path (of course, paths) to follow and let them figure
> out
>> the rest.
>> Mimsy
> Yes, exactly . . . the atmosphere at Sudbury allows the students to find
> paths and follow them (instead of the paths being found by others as I
> believe is often the case in traditional schools). I guess the motivation
> behind what I wrote was that I am wondering if the effect of the wonderful
> atmosphere at Sudbury is limited and/or counteracted by the outside people
> and society with whom the children come in contact? Do some students not
> find a path as easily or at all because outside factors set up a conflict
> inside them?
> I imagine that the answer is that we just let whatever happen happen, and
> trust the children. And that sounds wonderful to me, as I do trust them.
> I think it is my idealism that is talking now, as I know numerous people
> who are going through their lives doing something they do not enjoy - it is
> as though they are following someone else's path, one that already exists,
> and I know that they are unhappy. Basically, I do not want any more
> people going through their lives in that way, and I want to give children
> the best chance for that not to happen. . .
> Dana

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