Re: DSM: Sudbury Charter Schools

Date: Tue Mar 05 2002 - 23:15:37 EST

Dear Travis,

Thank you.

If you are "educating" yourself at Sudbury, then we could more simply use the
word "learning". You are "learning". If someone else is "educating" you at
Sudbury, then I may not sufficiently understand the model and you could
educate me by telling me who is educating you and what their agenda is and
what their method is. If you say it is education without agenda and without
method then maybe we could move on to definitions of education.

We are having a converstion in something called cultural anthropology. The
strongest definition possible in this area is something called an
'operational definition'. All an operational definition means is that there
is an actual example of what we are talking about. And there is, Sudbury
exists, it is extant on planet earth. There are also many many examples of
education on planet earth. I have seen hundreds, maybe I need to see
thousands, however, none of the hundreds of things calling themselves
education that I have seen, are without agenda and without method. In the way
I am using the word, I am talking about things that have an agenda and a
method. Also in the hundreds of things calling themselves education, there
certainly appears to be a unanimity in their view of the child. They
consistantly view the child as deficient, not OK as they are, in need of some
improvement, some development, some progress.

You of course are an expert in the operational definition of Sudbury. If you
tell me that you experience Sudbury not as freedom but as education, I will
believe you.

On the operational definition of education, though, I believe I can simply
show hundreds and hundreds of examples that have all three of the above
elements, an agenda, a method, and a prevailing view that the child is an

Warmest Regards,
Bill Richardson


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