Sudbury School News From Around the World

Sudbury Schools: Unschooling with babysitting?

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Mon, 02/17/2014 - 09:28
by Mimsy Sadofsky We often hear people talk about Sudbury schools as “unschooling schools.” Besides the fact that the actual phrase, to me, does not even make sense, I think the people who use it overlook a lot of dissimilarities … Continue reading →

Every One, The Best

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Mon, 02/10/2014 - 08:15
By Scott David Gray How can every person be above average? It sounds impossible, but it is a given in the community at Sudbury Valley. Living life with a measuring stick, watching to be certain that you are doing OK … Continue reading →

Winter Cafe 2014

News Article From: The Clearwater School - Tue, 02/04/2014 - 21:19
The Clearwater Winter Cafe is back on February 7 for its third year in a row. This year, the focus is on music. Music is a big part of life at Clearwater, due in part to our staff member, Matt "Rockstar" Garrity. Watching his patient, appreciative, enthusiastic joy with kids in the rehearsal room is inspiring. For a preview of what you'll see next week, check out this video. This is

New Windows!

News Article From: Fairhaven School News - Tue, 02/04/2014 - 11:04

Last spring, Fairhaven School conducted its first Indiegogo campaign, raising over three thousand dollars! Here is a short video clip showing our new windows and offering thanks. Look for news on other building upgrades in the near future!

Many thanks,

Fairhaven School Meeting

February, 2014

My special day

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Mon, 02/03/2014 - 08:05
Hanna Greenberg authored this week’s post. Hanging the photo exhibit on Friday, January 24th proved to be an exhilarating experience for me. It goes without saying that the photos are varied in their subjects, beautiful and interesting. What else would … Continue reading →

Ice and rose petals

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Mon, 01/27/2014 - 09:27
Maybe my memory is foggy but never do I remember the ice on our pond being as perfect as it was the week of January 6. On Tuesday, we were all, young and old, stuck inside as the “polar vortex” … Continue reading →

Can you top this?

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Mon, 01/20/2014 - 08:57
Some of you may have read the earlier post about making gingerbread houses at Sudbury Valley during this season.  Even if you missed it, you can find a delightful video of the activity on our website and tons of pictures … Continue reading →


News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Mon, 01/13/2014 - 09:13
This week’s post was written by Isabella O’Connell, who is currently a student at SVS. When I went to traditional high school, the place reeked of rebellion. Contempt for the establishment was a badge of honor and students impressed each … Continue reading →

New Republic article about Sudbury Valley School

News Article From: Fairhaven School News - Tue, 01/07/2014 - 07:45

Sometimes, people find Fairhaven School and wonder where we came up with the idea for such a unique school. In response, we tell them we are a Sudbury school, named after Sudbury Valley School, a visionary place that has been providing freedom and responsibility to young people in Framingham, Massachusetts since 1968. Hot off the presses, here is a late holiday gift: an excellent feature article about the school that has inspired and supported Fairhaven School for all of our fifteen years. Enjoy!

Sudbury Valley School Press also has a wonderful online bookstore that features reams of both digital and printed material to foster an understanding of the leading edge of education, and we encourage our readers to explore SVS in all its glory.

Fairhaven Staff

January, 2014


Looking back, looking forward

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Wed, 01/01/2014 - 09:10
Twenty-thirteen was a big year for Sudbury Valley School. Last Spring, we decided to dip a toe into the social media water and soon took the plunge for real, launching an “official” Facebook page and a blog, as well as … Continue reading →

INSIDE/OUT: Another way to celebrate Fifteen Years

News Article From: Fairhaven School News - Sat, 12/28/2013 - 16:00

(As we continue our series of posts celebrating fifteen years as a school, here’s one from staff member and parent Beth Williams. Enjoy!)

This collage is from Fairhaven School’s recent participation in the worldwide Inside/Out project. Many students, staff, parents and alumni joined! Follow this link to see a gallery of photos from the remarkable collaboration. Below is the group action statement we provided to the project organizers to describe Fairhaven School:

Fairhaven School is celebrating its 15th Anniversary.  Every summer, our students, ages 4-19, count the days to come back to school instead of counting the days until school lets out!

ð        As Maryland’s first Sudbury school, we believe education can look different! Without tests, grades, or standardized curriculum, students pursue their own educational paths. Students also run the school, sharing equal votes under a democratic framework.

ð        We promote self-directed learning.

ð        We acknowledge that children need time and space to figure out who they are and what they want to become.

ð        We trust that they will do just that, with adult support but without unnecessary adult intervention.

ð        Graduates of Fairhaven School are succeeding in a wide variety of colleges and careers.


We want the world to know that education can successfully happen in a different paradigm.


Inspired by the Inside/Out project, we created our own collaborative artwork as a way to dedicate the new Circle Garden. After collecting from School Meeting members what single word best described Fairhaven School, we sifted flour stencils, creating our own impermanent word cloud.

Still celebrating!

Beth Williams

December, 2013

... Read More

Sticks and stones

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Mon, 12/23/2013 - 10:59
Yes, they can break bones.  But sticks and stones, are more importantly, the life blood of a great deal of imaginative play here and indeed not used to wound at Sudbury Valley at all. People sometimes look around the our … Continue reading →


News Article From: Fairhaven School News - Tue, 12/17/2013 - 09:37

There’s a saying: when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. The 15 year anniversary was wonderful. We had planned to do s’mores by the fire, but the weather was not so conducive. Anyway, we had boxes of graham crackers left over. It being the holiday season there was talk of gingerbread houses. This is what came of that.



Ruth Yamamoto


Open House for Mrs. Peacock

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Mon, 12/16/2013 - 10:19
This week’s post was written by staff member Jay Flood. I’ve grown to love the interactions with the guests at Open House. It’s fun to stumble onto someone who has little or no knowledge of the school, and also to … Continue reading →

Morning at Sudbury Valley

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Tue, 12/10/2013 - 10:21
Mimsy is back this week with another behind-the-scenes look at the life of the school. Not so many of us are here at 8:30. Just enough for a gentle but lively start to the day. But when I retreat to … Continue reading →

Another Fifteen Years Post

News Article From: Fairhaven School News - Thu, 12/05/2013 - 12:07

(Staff member Mark McCaig offered the following at the November 23rd open mike commemorating Fairhaven School’s first fifteen years.)



So I looked up fifteen year anniversary gifts, and it’s apparently crystal and I thought crystal watches, so time, how do we mark time? People say wow, fifteen years of the school and I think sometimes it seems like a hundred and others it seems like none, still I cannot describe what happens here, not completely, so I fixate on little things, like words, even a minor word like “or”: in favor or opposed? Basketball or Apples to Apples? Lunch or knitting? Improv or iPhone? Pokemon or Smash Brothers? Poop smoothie or the name game? Thesis or return? And maybe this is it, this freedom to choose, maybe this is the epicenter of Fairhaven, like the student who’s chosen to chart sunspots or the one whose red shoelace I broke when tying his hightops on the basketball court who chose to come to the creative writing workshop and hung around after, dictating his first poem to me, titled The Galaxy In Front Of Ours, who pointed at his head saying the factory of ideas in here are trying to get out. Choices: skateboarder or ballerina? Fair trade chocolate or Hershey’s? American elm or black haw? Deejay or bank teller? Andrew or Joe? Mastodons or cougars? Now or later? Fifteen years, so now we know the answer can also be “and,” as in now and later, as in this room works for weddings and funerals, as in both, still the possibility for “or” even creates the “ands,” and that first year we wrangled about consensus, finally raising our hands in favor or opposed and “or” held the day, and downstairs you can read the record of that vote alongside ten thousand other votes, ... Read More

The thing about gingerbread houses

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Mon, 12/02/2013 - 10:53
This week’s post was written by our head gingerbreadologist, Mimsy. I often ask myself why I am so enamored of the December ritual of making gingerbread houses (and trees) at Sudbury Valley. It is a big deal! Everyone has to … Continue reading →

All The Difference: Celebrating Fairhaven School’s First Fifteen Years

News Article From: Fairhaven School News - Mon, 11/25/2013 - 10:52

(Last weekend we celebrated fifteen years of Fairhaven School with various activities on campus, including an open Microphone. Parent Lisa Speigner, who was out of town, wanted to share the following piece. Look for more posts from the evening soon!)


Although writing has always been a relatively effortless outlet for my creative expression, for some reason, whenever I try to write about the impact Fairhaven has had on me I find myself with a serious case of writer’s block.  I have found it hard to put into words events that have so profoundly changed me in such unexpected ways.  However, with Fairhaven School’s 15th anniversary coming, I was determined to get something on paper to share.  I hope I can do it justice.

Aside from the positive changes Fairhaven and the Sudbury model of education has had on my daughter, I continue to be amazed at how it has changed ME.  From my first school meeting, I began to realize that Fairhaven isn’t just about kids, a lack of homework, JC, the freedom to cuss if you want to, or some academic discussion about what education is or isn’t.  It is about people, acceptance, individuality, and learning to find joy in “being” rather than doing.

Even though, initially, Fairhaven was about finding a safe place for my daughter, it has become an oasis of peace for me.  As a black woman in America, I had come to expect to be judged harshly and treated unfairly because of stereotypical portrayals of what women who fit my profile are supposed to be.  Sitting in my first Fairhaven meeting, where I happened to be the only black person in the room at the time, I was acutely aware of a strange sensation…the feeling that no one was judging me.  I sensed that I was being observed ... Read More

Let’s put on a show

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Mon, 11/25/2013 - 09:07
I’m a sucker for live theater. It’s all magical to me, whether it’s a Broadway show or a local production. So when I went to see “An SVS Musical” last June, I had no doubt that I would be entertained. … Continue reading →

Anything you can do, I can do too!

News Article From: Sudbury Valley Blog - Mon, 11/18/2013 - 09:24
This weeks’s post was written by Hanna Greenberg. Walking into our art room is usually fascinating.  It seems that most young people love to do art in all sort of ways.  They make things out of clay. They draw and … Continue reading →