RE: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Re: [Discuss-sudbury-model]

From: Joe Jackson <shoeless_at_jazztbone.com>
Date: Thu Apr 1 10:31:00 2004

> Do people ever get kicked out? Do you think the selection
> process may
> filter out people who wouldn't do well there?

Yeah, but it's not really a "selection process"; the students at the school
are self-selecting.

I think many tend to fall into the traditional thinking wherein students are
"placed" into situations. At our schools, the student really has to want to
be there - unlike traditional schools, we're not set up to "keep students
in" the school who don't want to be there.

It's very easy to get out of our schools, one merely needs to demonstrate
that they are unwilling to come to terms with the impact of their behaviors
on the culture. On the other hand, sinced traditional schools are set up in
the attempt to promote external responsibility for the behavior of school
members, merely not taking responsibility for one's self is generally not
going to get you out of the school.

So in the vein, the schools are highly self-selecting, which may be the
reason you aren't going to find many students that regreted their experience
there.

Out of the close to two hundred students who have attendede Fairhaven since
we opened in '98, I can think of maybe a half-dozen students that probably
regretted their time at Fairhaven, but without excepotion they are students
that for one reason or another did not have the benefit of spending enough
time there.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: discuss-sudbury-model-admin_at_sudval.org
> [mailto:discuss-sudbury-model-admin_at_sudval.org] On Behalf Of
> Sam Patton
> Sent: Wednesday, March 31, 2004 8:14 PM
> To: discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> Subject: RE: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Re: [Discuss-sudbury-model]
>
>
> First, I'd like to thank you for an amazing response. It was truly a
> wonderful piece of writing.
>
> I've never heard anything negative about SVS. It sounds
> incredible in every
> way. Isn't there anyone who has found some flaw? Some disgruntled
> graduate?
>
> Do people ever get kicked out? Do you think the selection
> process may
> filter out people who wouldn't do well there? Is there
> something special
> about the people who go there that could explain the success
> of the system?
>
> I'm playing Devil's advocate because I want to have good
> responses to any
> objections that get brought up. I love everything I've read
> about SVS, but
> it seems too good to be true.
>
> sam
>
>
> >From: Scott David Gray <sgray_at_sudval.org>
> >Reply-To: discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> >To: Discuss-Sudbury-Model Mailing List
> ><discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org>
> >Subject: RE: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Re: [Discuss-sudbury-model]
> >Date: Wed, 31 Mar 2004 19:20:09 -0500 (EST)
> >
> >On Wed, 31 Mar 2004, Sam Patton wrote:
> >
> > > Have you, or others you know, found that you hadn't
> > > learned something that was needed later in life? I'm thinking
> > > specifically of something like calculus or algebra. Do a
> lot of the
> > > students (is that the right
> > > term?) at SVS choose to learn that kind of thing?
> >
> >Nope. Certainly, when I was a student, I never chose to
> >learn calculus. I did, however, want to calculate probabilities
> >(trying to win a long-running war-game), and figured out how
> to do it
> >(looking some things up in books). I never was motivated to 'learn
> >calculus' -- I was motivated to solve the issue that I cared about
> >right in front of me!
> >
> >Hrm, correction. I guess that I _have_ frequently realized
> that there
> >was something that I wanted to know that I didn't know. It
> just never
> >felt a handicap, because as soon as one _needs_ (or wants) to know,
> >it's very easy to find out. I certainly don't think that I encounter
> >difficult problems that I need to know more to solve any
> more (or any
> >less) than most people. I do feel more confident in my ability to
> >find out such things than most people in traditional school
> >though (having not been misled into believing that such
> >things are difficult).
> >
> > > Another question: you are free to just sort of sit
> around and hang
> > > out. Do some students choose to spend their entire school
> > > experience doing pretty much nothing? What do you find motivated
> > > you?
> >
> >"Notihing" is a somewhat negative word, and hard to define.
> "Notihing"
> >is a somewhat negative word, and hard to define. When I sit and talk
> >with others about politics, science, theology, pop culture,
> etcetera,
> >is that "nothing?" If so, then indeed many students do "nothing" for
> >most of their career at SVS. When I sit and read fiction or watch
> >movies with friends, or play games, is that "nothing?" If so, then
> >many students do "nothing" at Sudbury schools.
> >
> >Many people think that "something" in a school means sitting down
> >_in_order_ to acquire facts. In which case very, very few
> students at
> >Sudbury schools ever do "somethinng."
> >
> >But facts are easy! Even learning to read -- something that
> traditional
> >schools think takes 12 years -- is just a 26 letter code. If you've
> >ever chosen to study a foreign language with a non-latin
> alphabet, you
> >know that learning to read takes DAYS or WEEKS at most. Most
> people at
> >Sudbury Schools just absrob" reading the same way that infants
> >absorb language -- very little actively trying to read, but
> >happening naturally when struggling with the computer, video
> >game, or being read to.
> >
> >Facts are easy. What's tough is balance, perspective, humanity,
> >responsibility. You can't learn responsibility as easily in an
> >environment where others are responsible for you. When you're
> >responsible for yourself, then you learn to wrestle with the _real_
> >issues that face humanity. Kids who study for the SATs can
> get all the
> >math they need to get into the college of their choice in a couple
> >weeks. When someone first sits down to do his/her taxes s/he somehow
> >figures out how to do them. Learning as it comes up is more
> >natural, and much easier.
> >
> >People are motivated to do what people are motivated to do!
> Look at how
> >kids spend their weekends, summers, and free time when in
> the company
> >of other children. That's what kids do at SVS.
> >
> >I know that when I was a student at SVS, I was deeply
> motivated to do
> >"nothing" all day, and was extraordinarily busy doing it!
> There were
> >never enough hours in the day to have all the conversations,
> play all
> >the games, fight all the (verbal) fights and horse around!
> Most people
> >would call what I did with my time "nothing" -- I found the opposite,
> >and that I never did more "nothing" then when I wasted four
> >years in college passing tests and parroting back what
> >professors and graduate students wanted to hear; it was so
> >terribly anti-intellectual! SVS is _deeply_ intellectual,
> >because it doesn't assume that people _need_ scheduled
> >classes, grades or gold stars as incentives to _think_ and
> >_feel_. This stuff is _innately_ interesting -- we don't
> >have to cajole or persuade or force anybody to do anything!
> >
> >Sudbury schools are _not_ about motivating people to learn. They are
> >about letting people learn as an aside to doing whatever it is that
> >they are motivated to do. When I was a student, nothing external
> >'motivated' me; motivation -- all motivation -- is internal.
> Including
> >the hokey motivation "I want to Ace this test" -- which
> inspires people
> >to turn off their heads and to turn on their capacity to BS
> the tester.
> >
> >Side story: When I was a student at Boston College, one of
> >my dearest friends, Father Madigan, was a professor who one
> day asked
> >me 'why are you one of the only students who does the reading? don't
> >they know that they could get better grades doing the reading?' I
> >responded that I was an anal-retentive jerk who felt he
> should read it,
> >but that I felt reading didn't have a lot to do with passing
> the tests.
> >We made a gentleman's bet -- I would skip one of the
> >readings at random, and _he_ would have to tell from my
> >mid-term which reading I skipped. Suffice to say, I won the
> >bet -- I aced that section of the mid-term, despite the fact
> >that he asked an essay question (the hints for the answer he
> >was expecting were embedded in the question).
> >
> > > sam
> > >
> > >
> > > >From: Scott David Gray <sgray_at_sudval.org>
> > > >Reply-To: discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> > > >To: discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> > > >Subject: RE: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Re: [Discuss-sudbury-model]
> > > >Date: Wed, 31 Mar 2004 08:23:39 -0500 (EST)
> > > >
> > > >I have often looked back at my life, certain that it would be a
> > > >less happy one had I not attended SVS. Of course this is
> > > >subjective -- I can't prove what would / could have been. But I
> > > >know that I am not the only SVS alumnus who looks back
> at the path
> > > >he was on in traditional school (self-hatred, boredom which was
> > > >blamed on the self rather than the restraints around, total
> > > >disrespect) and thinks that SVS almost certainly saved
> him from a
> > > >life of crime, mind-altering addictions, and bitterness.
> > > >
> > > >On the more positive side... Other alumni who've gone on to
> > > >college and I have talked about that experience. For
> each of us, we
> > > >clearly found college easier than our contemporaries from
> > > >traditional school (not that college matters, but hey). I think
> > > >that there are two reasons. First, each of us watched our peers
> > > >swimming waiting to be told when/how to get their
> readings / papers
> > > >/ etcetera done -- while each of us were used to being
> responsible
> > > >for ourselves and therefore not waiting to be handheld. Second,
> > > >each of us was able to take college with a sense of
> humor -- we all
> > > >knew that the grades and tests were meaningless -- only games to
> > > >be played or ignored, rather than things over which to tear
> > > >ourselves apart. These experiences in college also seem to
> > > >be mirrored by alumni who've gone on to various professions
> > > >-- that they had a better sense of what was / wasn't
> > > >important, and took charge of their needs themselves.
> > > >
> > > >Any disadvantages? Again, there's a problem trying to
> imagine what
> > > >could have / would have been. But I guess that there is one
> > > >disadvantage. Given the innate disrespect in which children are
> > > >held in our wider culture, I know that I am not the only
> alumnus of
> > > >the school who has lost friends in the wider community
> because we
> > > >were unwilling to tolerate injustice. This actually tends to
> > > >extend beyond injustice to kids -- SVS alumni tend to look with
> > > >horror on injustice of all sorts, and so are much less prone to
> > > >shrug and say 'that's life' -- as such, SVS alumni are prone to
> > > >have more people who deeply like and respect them, but also more
> > > >people who disrespect them and think of them as arrogant or
> > > >foreward because SVS alumni are generally more willing to
> > > >'shake things up.'
> > > >
> > > >On Tue, 30 Mar 2004, Sam Patton wrote:
> > > >
> > > > > I completely agree that badly is in the eye of the
> beholder. My
> > > >definition
> > > > > would probably include whether they were happy after
> graduating.
> >Were
> > > >they
> > > > > able to feel fulfilled and satisified living in the post-SVS
> > > > > world.
> >In
> > > >SVS,
> > > > > everyone seems to be taken seriously and has a voice that is
> > > > > heard
> >and
> > > > > respected. Sadly, that is considerably different than most of
> >society.
> > > > >
> > > > > I'd love to hear how SVS prepared you for post-SVS
> life. What
> > > > > have
> >you
> > > >done
> > > > > post-SVS?
> > > > >
> > > > > sam
> > > > >
> > > > > >From: "Tay Arrow Sherman" <spiregrain_at_mad.scientist.com>
> > > > > >Reply-To: discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> > > > > >To: discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> > > > > >Subject: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Re: [Discuss-sudbury-model]
> > > > > >Date: Tue, 30 Mar 2004 17:57:38 -0500
> > > > > >
> > > > > >Hi Sam,
> > > > > >
> > > > > >Turning out badly is very much in the eye of the
> beholder, isnt
> > > > > >it?
> > > >Whats
> > > > > >your definition, can we use that?
> > > > > >
> > > > > >If you'd like to ask me about how SVS prepared me
> for post-SVS
> >life, I
> > > > > >would be happy to have extended dialogue with you.
> > > > > >
> > > > > >Peace,
> > > > > >Tay Arrow Sherman, SVS graduating class of 1996
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > > >Is there any information about people who went through a
> > > > > >government
> > > >type
> > > > > >school or any other type of school and turned out
> badly? Pick
> > > > > >any definition of badly you'd like :)
> > > > > >
> > > > > >~ David ;)
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > > >----- Original Message -----
> > > > > >From: "Sam Patton" <sam_patton_at_hotmail.com>
> > > > > >To: <discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org>
> > > > > >Sent: Tuesday, March 30, 2004 3:13 AM
> > > > > >Subject: [Discuss-sudbury-model] Sudbury Valley
> graduates who
> > > > > >fail
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > > > > Is there any information about people who went through a
> > > > > > > Sudbury
> > > >Valley
> > > > > >type
> > > > > > > school and turned out badly? Pick any definition
> of badly
> > > > > > > you'd
> > > >like :)
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > Sudbury Valley sounds too good to be true. I
> don't have any
> >kids,
> > > >but
> > > > > >I'm
> > > > > > > already arguing with my girlfriend about whether
> this would
> > > > > > > be a
> > > >good
> > > > > >way
> > > > > >to
> > > > > > > educate our "potential future" children. One of
> the things
> > > > > > > I'd
> >like
> > > >to
> > > > > >know
> > > > > > > is how the students turn out in later life. Do they miss
> > > > > > > out on
> > > > > >anything
> > > > > > > that they really needed that a more traditional
> school would
> >have
> > > > > >provided?
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > sam
> > > > > >--
> ___________________________________________________________
> > > > > >Sign-up for Ads Free at Mail.com
> > > > > >http://promo.mail.com/adsfreejump.htm
> > > > > >
> > > > > >_______________________________________________
> > > > > >Discuss-sudbury-model mailing list
> > > > > >Discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> > > > >
> >http://www.sudval.org/mailman/listinfo.cgi/discuss-sudbury-mode
> > > > > >l
> > > > >
> > > > >
> ________________________________________________________________
> > > > > _
> > > > > FREE pop-up blocking with the new MSN Toolbar - get it now!
> > > > > http://toolbar.msn.com/go/onm00200415ave/direct/01/
> > > > >
> > > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > > Discuss-sudbury-model mailing list
> > > > > Discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> > > > >
> http://www.sudval.org/mailman/listinfo.cgi/discuss-sudbury-model
> > > > >
> > > >
> > > >--
> > > >
> > > >--Scott David Gray
> > > >reply to: sgray_at_sudval.org
> > > >http://www.unseelie.org/
> > > >============================================================
> > > >If two men agree on everything, you may be sure that one
> of them is
> > > >doing the thinking.
> > > >
> > > >-- Lyndon Baines Johnson
> > > >============================================================
> > > >
> > > >_______________________________________________
> > > >Discuss-sudbury-model mailing list
> Discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> > > >http://www.sudval.org/mailman/listinfo.cgi/discuss-sudbury-model
> > >
> > > _________________________________________________________________
> > > Check out MSN PC Safety & Security to help ensure your PC is
> > > protected
> >and
> > > safe. http://specials.msn.com/msn/security.asp
> > >
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Discuss-sudbury-model mailing list
> Discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> > > http://www.sudval.org/mailman/listinfo.cgi/discuss-sudbury-model
> > >
> >
> >--
> >
> >--Scott David Gray
> >reply to: sgray_at_sudval.org
> >http://www.unseelie.org/
> >============================================================
> >A man who has never gone to school may steal from a freight
> car; but if
> >he has a university education, he may steal the whole railroad.
> >
> >-- Teddy Roosevelt
> >============================================================
> >
> >
> >
> >_______________________________________________
> >Discuss-sudbury-model mailing list Discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> >http://www.sudval.org/mailman/listinfo.cgi/discuss-sudbury-model
>
> _________________________________________________________________
> Find a broadband plan that fits. Great local deals on
> high-speed Internet
> access.
> https://broadband.msn.com/?pgmarket=en-us/go/onm00200360ave/direct/01/
>
> _______________________________________________
> Discuss-sudbury-model mailing list
> Discuss-sudbury-model_at_sudval.org
> http://www.sudval.org/mailman/listinfo.cgi/discuss-sudbury-model
>
Received on Thu Apr 01 2004 - 10:30:42 EST

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.2.0 : Mon Jun 04 2007 - 00:03:08 EDT