Re: DSM: Re: Getting it

Eduardo Cortina (
Wed, 22 Nov 2000 13:56:10 -0500

Note to Rick:

If I were you, I wouldn't respond to this post ( and at least not on this
forum, if you feel inclined to do so). It's obviously become a personal
quible at this point between you two, and as a reader and participant in
this discussion, I am interested in people discussion the Sudbury Model
only this forum. If you and Dawn want to work out your personal
differences, I suggest you exchange emails at this point.


On Wed, 22 Nov 2000 12:45:56 -0500 "Dawn F. Harkness" <>
> WARNING WARNING WARNING - Dawn's opinion follows, all the nervous
> nellies
> get out of the pool! Rick, I am assuming that since you asked
> specifically
> for my opinion you will be able to handle it. I have given your
> questions
> some serious thought and I find them to be disingenuous and
> self-serving.
> Let's review:
> >So I hope that you all will be patient with folks like me, people
> who
> >have worked in the trenches and are honestly searching. If you had
> met
> >me 8 years ago, some of you might have called me evil and weak,
> just in
> >it for the money. (I would have laughed, by the way, knowing how
> little
> >money there is in teaching.) And I probably would have given up on
> the
> >sudbury model in sadness -- and probably given up on education
> >altogether, thinking there was no good alternative.
> >Maybe I'm the only one with this kind of history. But what if
> there are
> >millions like me? I don't know, but if there are, the appearance
> of
> >irrational anger will drive people like us away. What if we're
> the
> >second stage in the spread of the Sudbury model?
> How does this jibe with previous posts where you have flamed others
> with a
> level of hostility I have not seen matched in this forum over the
> years I
> have been reading these exchanges. For example:
> >> I shuddered when
> > > you suggested rat-lab stuff for children and I
> > > wanted to knock you on your butt.
> or my personal favorite:
> >"Growl! Snarl! Snap!" Come on, Dawn, be cool. Unless you are the
> proud
> >owner of a secret police force and several thousand goon squads,
> you aren't
> >going to further the SVM revolution by being haughty.
> I would point out that it was also you who wrote:
> >This reminds me of some of the in-your-face discussions I had with
> my
> >classes. The word "discussion" says it all -- comes from the Latin
> meaning
> to
> >break apart. We hammer at ideas (and sometimes each other) until we
> find
> out
> >what's inside. I'm having fun.
> What a hypocrite! I gotta tell you, your lack of consistency on
> this and
> other topics demonstrates to me a lack of any real convictions on
> your part.
> That is why I don't take you very seriously. You drift with
> whatever
> political whim seems to be in vogue for the moment. It worries me
> that any
> fool can decide, "Hey, what a neat idea. I'm going to go out and
> start a SVM
> school." People like you make me wish that the founders of SVS had
> a
> copyright on the "look and feel" of SVS to prevent misguided
> tag-alongs from
> doing just that until they passed some sort of certification
> process. (If
> SVS kids have to get certified to used the microwave, I think SVM
> school
> founders ought to have to get certified to use the model, but that's
> just
> me.)
> For all your assertions that you "get it" I really don't think you
> do.
> From your description of your life story combined with your other
> postings,
> I don't see enough evidence that you've done your homework. My 10
> year old
> gets the model better than you do (and she should because this is
> her 7th
> year as a student.) How much time have you spent in an SVM school
> in any
> capacity?
> I'd like to see the SVM expand as much as anyone else. But the
> founders of
> SVS had some very deep convictions which they would not compromise
> for
> ANYONE no matter who was made uncomfortable by their style. From
> your
> postings, I have come to the conclusion that you are no
> Danny/Mimsy/Hanna/Joanie and I worry that if you represent the
> second stage
> of SVM schools, it will be the start of the end of the model as it
> was
> originally conceived. If you are serious about starting a SVM
> school, then
> I urge you to get a spine and adopt the entire model with
> conviction. Don't
> try to manipulate folks into seeing the value of enrolling in your
> school.
> If you can't do that, please call it something other than an SVM
> school.
> Call it Rick's School or anything else, but don't water down what
> these
> special people have created.

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