RE: [Discuss-sudbury-model] 7 Lessons Taught in School

From: <>
Date: Mon Nov 27 22:31:01 2006

The "exclusion" of parents occasionally distresses me as a parent, not
because I do not want my daughter to be independent and have her "own"
place, but because I feel like I am missing out on watching her grow. I
do not want her to need me, but I do enjoy seeing her in her discovery


-----Original Message-----
[] On Behalf Of Scott David
Sent: Monday, November 27, 2006 7:12 PM
Subject: Re: [Discuss-sudbury-model] 7 Lessons Taught in School

Actually, one aspect of Sudbury schools that have caused *some* parents
distress, is that -- while encouraging a broad open community with
parents -- the schools themselves see it as their mission to encourage
independence. In the day-to-day life of the school, parents are *not*
welcome. The school is the *child's* place, not the parents'.

To the extent that such independence is the parents' mission, we are in
perfect concordance. But some parents feel awkward at the sense that
their child might not *need* them so much, even if the child (being
given the vantage point of independence) can more clearly demonstrate
respect, love and caring for his/her family life.

Hanna writes it much better than me, in a short paragraph in an earlier

> I also think that no matter how democratic a family is it is a too
> small unit for children to grow up in. I believe that they need an
> "outside the family community" to belong to as well as to the family.
> The old villages in the non-western world provided just that and here
> in the west we are obliged to create a psuedo village for them and
> call it a school. The children get to belong to a family and to a
> community which hopefully is in harmony with the family but which is
> separate from them. It provides kids for a place of their own to make
> relationships, to observe people of all ages, to learn skills that are

> not the family's skills such as carpentry or putting on make-up (
> skills that my children enjoyed acquiring in the school), and above
> all it is a place in which they can make mistakes in privacy from
> their parents. (staff kids don't get the latter and it's really bad
> for them).

On the question of national distribution. . . . The question of paths by
which society may change has come up frequently here. I don't
(personally) feel that the schools as they stand can be *fixed*. Just as
with some old buildings, they have to be torn down before something
better can take their place. I suspect a more organic change, in which
Sudbury schools come to be more and more accepted broadly, and
eventually laws are made friendlier for people who don't wish to attend

I don't picture Sudbury schools *replacing* public schools by some broad
sweep of a legislative pen. It wouldn't work -- one can't impose a
culture and community of respect by wishful thinking, and telling the
old school staff that they are functioning differently from that point
on. I picture our ideas spreading, more and more traditional schools
closing, and (if the public remains involved at all) the library model
extending and including resources that we are used to seeing belong to
school (such as sports teams).

On 11/27/06, Andrey Fedorov <> wrote:

> Schools based on the Sudbury model seem to be serve as
> counter-examples, but it's not possible to say if such a model can be
> distributed nationally. For example, could it be that the Sudbury
> model depends on heavy participation of parents in their children's
> education, which (at the moment) is unfeasible on a national level?
> This is just a guess from the impression I have of the model... am I
> talking nonsense?
> - Andrey

-- Scott David Gray _______________________________________________
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Received on Mon Nov 27 2006 - 22:30:33 EST

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