Re: DSM: Interest increasing?

The Booroobin Sudbury School (
Sat, 6 Jan 2001 09:02:02 +1000

Hi Connie, Joe and others,
Although it may be the case that the SVM does not insist on any particular
means of governance, my experience suggests that to operate a School that is
described as democratic without bringing people together in regular,
predictable meetings where everyone knows they have an equal right to be
heard and to put forward Motions and vote on those and other Motions, would
suggest that decision making power and authority is vested in some, but not
all the people. In terms of the important justice element that underpins
democracy, it also seems to me that people ought to decide together the
standards, Rules, Laws which apply to everyone in the School community.
Recourse needs to be then available to ensure that a person that violates
the community's standards, can be sanctioned in a manner suitable to the
community. Hearing from all parties in a regularly convened meeting of a
representative cross section of the community is a sensible way to do this.
I believe that the SM and the JC in their evolved forms make a lot of sense,
and are valid components of a SVM School. They also replicate what happens
in the larger community, that all Schools are a part of.
Connie, in looking at the Living School web site I also find that there are
similarities with the SVM and similar terms are used. In fact the campus
setting could be similar to our own. I guess I will wait to see what
Regards, Derek (a Founder and elected Staff)
The Booroobin Sudbury School
Ph/fax +61 07 5499 9944
----- Original Message -----
From: "Connie Shaw" <>
To: <>
Sent: Saturday, January 06, 2001 2:29 AM
Subject: RE: DSM: Interest increasing?

> Joe writes:
> > I believe that structures such as School Meeting and JC are not
> necessarily
> > part of the model, and in a Sudbury Model school, the participants DO
> decide
> > what structures to use...
> and
> > I'm interested, since the only real constants of the model is that the
> > students and staff see to the day-to-day governance, and that learning
> > student-led (two concepts you are in harmony with), why aren't you
> starting
> > a Sudbury School?
> By this definition, we are a Sudbury school. I was taking care not to use
> that label, because my previous interactions with staff at a Sudbury
> I visited, and with a founders group in California led me to believe that
> the model included the forms of governance.
> So, my question now is, is it helpful to use the label? I'd be interested
> hear what people on this list have to say about this. In talking to people
> about the Living School, I find that when I mention Sudbury, very few
> have heard of it. For those that have, it does offer a good reference
> for what we're about. For those who haven't, there is the possibility that
> they will look at the SVS website and learn more.
> Does anyone know why the schools that Joe mentions that apparently *are*
> Sudbury schools by his definition (New School and Tutorial School), choose
> not to use the label?
> -Connie Shaw

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