Tag: Democratic Education

Feb 27
Webinars for Start-Up Schools & Learning Communities

Are you thinking about setting up your own school or learning community? Or perhaps you’ve been running for a while but you’re still exploring different educational approaches and practices. This webinar series aims to guide you on your path to creating a progressive, holistic community where young people can thrive outside of the conventional, authoritarian […]

Dec 22
Irons in the Fire, by Tom Brown

Part 2: Progressive Education I [previously] wrote about the Montessori Landscape in the UK and what I’ve learned so far about the scene [since relocating from the US]. Inevitably, my network and understanding have continued to grow since. Here are just a couple of additions: I have met with Dr. Nathan Archer who leads The International […]

Aug 13
The 20% Project for Schools – A Modest Proposal, by Derry Hannam

What young people need It seems to me that the crucial commodity that young people need in order to find and deepen their interests and identity, and to learn how to live with others is TIME. Time to think, time to wonder, time to question, time to create, time to hang out with their friends, time […]

Mar 12
Democratic Empowerment: How do Students Feel About Their Student Council? By Hope Wilder

What Students Say Matters Most schools do not look like a democratic society at all. Imagine a school where democracy is lived on a daily basis, where students have a say in the rules of the school, from the schedule to the dress code or safety policies. These schools exist in the world of democratic […]

Jun 27
Progressive Education Events Line Up

June  15th, 11am BST – How can educators prepare students for adult life? Live webinar in the Progressive Education Group:- Ortal Green will share with us how, through Design Thinking, Glittering Minds programme for schools enhances students’ resilience, problem-solving, communication, creative thinking, empathy and collaboration skills. Simply join our Facebook group to attend and the webinar […]

Jan 01
Play, by Sean Bellamy

The desire to play is fundamental to the human condition and is impossible to suppress.  Even in the most challenging situations, it will find a way to exist.  Children played in the bomb craters of the Second World War,  Continue to play in the devastation of Syria and will play in the wasteland of our broken […]

Nov 06
Response to UNESCO’s ‘Education in a Post-Covid World’ Report

In UNESCO’s Progress Update on the Futures of Education, published in March 2021, UNESCO denied the value of Self-Directed Education and autonomous learning, despite much significant scientific evidence to support its efficacy. Considering such a stance could seriously jeopardise the UN agenda 2030 to lead to a regenerative education by 2050 for more just and sustainable futures. Gabriel Groiss, […]

Oct 23
IDECs at Summerhill from 1999 to 2021 – What’s Changed and What Hasn’t? What Needs to Change for United Nations ‘Sustainable Development Goal 4’ to be Realised by 2030?

Transcript from Derry Hannam’s talk at the online Summerhill Festival of Childhood, October 3rd 2021: My 1999 IDEC [International Democratic Education Conference] talk was given at Summerhill when the school was under threat from Ofsted inspectors. There had been a hostile hatchet job inspection earlier in the year and the school had been told to […]

Oct 02
Becoming a Learner, by Sean Bellamy

When I first went up to Cambridge University, I didn’t find Europe’s largest library for over six weeks. I never went to a single History lecture, despite being told that some of the country’s finest minds would be sharing their theories with me. When I did find the library, it was like a cathedral of […]

Jun 21
Books about Self-Directed Learning and Democratic Education are like London Buses, by Derry Hannam

…None appear for ages, then they all come at once! Does this mean that we are looking at a Post-Pandemic Overton Window for our ideas? And how do we feel about ‘for-profit’ democratic schools? I grew up in South London and my dad was a bus driver. There was supposed to be a number 47 […]

Jan 28
Right to Education and the French Authoritarian Context

Three European organisations advocating human rights and freedom in education – ALLI asbl (Luxemboug), Les Enfants d’Abord (France), and Full Human Rights-Experience Education – as well as independent philosopher, Bertrand Stern, have come together to write a letter to the Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights at the Council of Europe. They are concerned […]

Jan 13
The Student Experience of Self Managed Learning (SML): Evidence From Research

By Nicola Sankey, March 2008 (with Introduction by Dr. Graham Dawes) [At the time what is now Self Managed Learning College was Called ‘South Downs Learning Centre’. The name was changed after this report was produced.] Originally designed for adults, Self Managed Learning (SML) has more recently been adopted with young people through the work […]

Jan 13
‘This is the Best Thing in School’: Self Managed Learning at Uckfield Community Technology College

By Andrea Hazeldin, Deputy Principal and Head of College, Uckfield Community Technology College, 2013 Introduction The title is taken from a comment made by a Year 8 student at the College. This article outlines the approach that prompted that comment – and others such as ‘I’ve learned more from these five sessions than in my […]

Dec 06
Another Way is Possible: Becoming a Democratic Teacher in a State School, by Derry Hannam

Transcript from Derry Hannam’s talk at the International Democratic Education Conference (IDEC) on 30th October 2020 #WebIDEC2020: I must warn you that although this lecture is not a lecture or a speech or even just a talk – it is a story – and that still gives me the opportunity to say a lot!! “Another […]

Oct 28
Creating a Democratic Class and Curriculum, by Derry Hannam

Rather than impose my own idea of the kind of structures that the class democracy should have I decided that we would make it up as we went along by dealing with issues as they arose. The one thing I was clear about was the need for a class meeting. As the school required that […]

Oct 21
Our School Systems Are Not Working – Some Proposals For Change

This is a transcript of a speech given by Derry Hannam at the Holistic School, Taiwan on 18th October 2020: I am very pleased to be invited to give this talk at the Holistic school in Taiwan – the Summerhill School of Asia – and to follow in the eminent footsteps of my good friends […]

Sep 30
OK – You’re Certified, by Derry Hannam

“OK You’re certified,” said the friendly twelve-year-old boy. Throughout 25 years of advocating the democratisation of schools I have often feared these words yet when they were finally delivered the context was delightful. I was visiting the Sudbury Valley School in Framingham, Massachusetts. The introductory tour took us to the music room. As a one-time […]