Re: DSM: Graduates without essential life skills

From: Mark Ide (mide@rcn.com)
Date: Mon Nov 26 2001 - 10:49:12 EST


Dear Bill:

I have just signed up for discussions. I don't have Ardishir's original
message to which you replied, but nonetheless, what you wrote raised a
question for me regarding my interest in "furthering my understanding of the
Sudbury Model." If you, or anyone else, don't mind - here goes:

I understand that test scores and grades represent levels of knowledge and
indicate levels of intelligence in the traditional model of education. I
share the emerging belief that this is an antiquated and inadequate
interpretation. What is the Sudbury Valley model's interpretation of what
knowledge, learning and intelligence are?

As a brief intro, I am a parent of two boys at Sudbury Valley, Kenny (11)
and Jesse (7). I attended public schools in Massachusetts right through
college. I have read many of the school's books, and read the articles in
the journal every issue. I'm very happy with the school, and grateful. I
want to attend myself, but must be content on learning as an adult/parent. I
am grateful for this too. My kids love the school, and their freedom.

I look forward to your reply. Thanks.

Mark

----- Original Message -----
From: <Sugmapl@aol.com>
To: <discuss-sudbury-model@sudval.org>
Sent: Monday, November 26, 2001 9:37 AM
Subject: Re: DSM: Graduates without essential life skills

> Dear Ardishir,
>
> There are two choices. We can offer the child freedom wihout a
purpose.
> The freedom will be self-referential. We will hold no goals in mind for
the
> child. The child may use the freedom as they wish, as long as they abide
by
> the community norms. This offering allows for extremely creative outcomes,
> but we simply have no idea what they might be. In this choice, we have no
> agenda. We do not, for instance, hope or wish that the child prepares
himself
> or herself to become a responsible member of the larger community. We are
> content in our offering, and whatever they make of it, that is sufficient
for
> us. If we do this, we have created an alternative to education.
> In the second choice, we, in fact do have an agenda. We are not
totally
> content with the freedom offer, in and of itself. We hope that it will be
> used for some good or for the child's betterment. We hope that it will be
> used for some progress or development. The freedom becomes a treatment, a
> program. We have goals for the child. We have these goals, even if we
never
> ask, for years and years, but, only silently expect or wish or hope that
the
> child does, in fact, prepare himself or herself to become a responsible
> member of the larger community. In this choice, we have not created an
> alternative to education, we have created alternative education. We
ourselves
> have become the educationists we so soundly decry.
>
> Warm Regards,
> Bill Richardson
>
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