Hudson Valley Sudbury School Blog

The Individual in Community at Sudbury

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Last week we had a trial that raised some interesting questions about the age-old problem of individual rights vs. community - an intense philosophical, political, and metaphysical problem that still vexes human society and makes the news every day.

In a certain respect, Sudbury is an experiment in finding the balance between individual and community; individuals have freedom, but that freedom is limited by the freedom of others.  Sudbury thus hangs - like the rest of nature - in a delicate balance, and that balance is protected by our justice system.

Here’s what happened: the Judicial Committee needed a replacement member, and the next student on the list was asked to serve.  He was in the middle of something and initially refused.  This is a clear violation of the JC policies; service is not optional.  After a minute or so of haggling, though, he consented, and reported to the JC room in an angry huff.  He stormed in, did not answer a friendly greeting, plopped into a seat, and glared.  He did not vote on the first item that came up, and when he was asked if “this is the way it’s going to be,” he responded, “yeah, I’m pissed off.” JC then decided to replace him.  Later, he was charged with violating JC rules and procedures, essentially because he disrupted their process and ultimately refused to participate.  He plead Not Guilty.

 

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Chemistry at Sudbury

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Every day, somewhere on the Sudbury campus, students are engaging in scientific pursuits. In the last couple of days this has included cooking in the kitchen, making homes for wooly bear caterpillars, tending the garden, pulling out a magnifying glass to get a closer look at “diamonds” discovered in an old broken brick (“No, that’s QUARTZ!”…“No, it’s a diamond!”)...

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My Depression

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After a few months, my parents realized that grounding me was making it worse. I got new medication. They sat me down and asked me if I would like to try out a private school. A Sudbury school. A non-stressful, no curriculum, democratic school that lets its students choose how they spend their days, learning through everyday experiences and play. 

 

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Images of Sudbury

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This year – my tenth as a staff member at the Hudson Valley Sudbury School – I have been given a gift; I get to follow my ever curious toddler as he explores campus and interacts with the big kids.

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The Qualities of a Sudbury Education

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]Last year I spent my afternoons tutoring students who came to me mostly from high-powered traditional private schools. I didn't do much during sessions; I spoke casually with the students, commiserated, encouraged, laughed, asked occasional questions, and tried to stay out of their way as they navigated the difficulties of compulsory performance. But the students, their parents, and the owner of the company all thought I was doing a lot, and they happily bestowed upon me the credit for improvements...

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Right to Remain Silent Law?

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I am a new staff member here at Hudson Valley Sudbury School.  I moved from Massachusetts with my wife Ana and our baby Susannah to be a part of this place, and this post is meant to offer some insight into why we would do that.  

Last Friday evening my friend Douglas called me up to ask how it was going.  We’ve both taught in public schools, and one way we liked to describe the atmosphere in those schools was “tense boredom.”  In was tense because we were charged with ensuring that at all times our students were behaving according to enthusiastically precise guidelines...

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Connor's List

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Why do you want to go to The Circle School, anyway, Connor? Connor attended the summer session and liked what he saw. He dictated this list of his own personal reasons, as part of his family's discussions prior to his enrollment this fall.

1. I'll learn Japanese at TCS.

2. I can do math at my own level and at my own speed....

 

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    Hudson Valley Sudbury School

    84 Zena Road
    Kingston, NY 12498
     
    Phone: 845-679-1002
    Fax: 845-679-3874