free schools

Radical education in Liverpool

A very brief look at some examples of radical schooling in Liverpool during the 20th century. A version of this article appeared in The Blast, a non-regular publication of Liverpool Class Action.

Real education: varieties of freedom - David Gribble

Dartington Hall School photo, 1986

Gribble describes several different schools around the world with pupils from all backgrounds, and demonstrates how children do better when they are allowed to think for themselves. He provides evidence that discipline, curriculum and tests are irrelevant to a child's development and that the central issues are care, respect and freedom.

Talking schools - Colin Ward

A comprehensive school in the 1970s

A compilation of 10 talks given by Colin Ward on education from a libertarian and anarchist perspective.

“Power of the grassroots": reflections on a step into alternative education

This piece attempts to reflect on a preliminary step in bringing a radical, alternative education into mainstream institutions in our local area, delivered by external facilitators from our squatted social centre.

Summerhill education versus standard education - A. S. Neill

Summerhill school

A. S. Neill, the founder of the libertarian independent school Summerhill, on the differences between its educational style and that of conventional schools.

Anarchism and education: a philosophical perspective - Judith Suissa

Anarchism and Education offers a philosophical account of the neglected tradition of anarchist thought on education. Although few anarchist thinkers wrote systematically on education, this analysis is based largely on a reconstruction of the educational thought of anarchist thinkers gleaned from their various ethical, philosophical and popular writings. Primarily drawing on the work of the nineteenth century anarchist theorists such as Bakunin, Kropotkin and Proudhon, the book also covers twentieth century anarchist thinkers such as Noam Chomsky, Paul Goodman, Daniel Guerin and Colin Ward.

Oakland parents and teachers announce plans to sit-in to stop school closures

Protests against Oakland school closures

As 5 elementary schools are set for closure at the end of this school year, displacing around 900 children to schools 10 miles away with no transport provided, parents and teachers announce plans to sit-in to save their schools.

The origin and ideals of the Modern School - Francisco Ferrer

Modern School pupils in Barcelona, 1901

Works by Franciso Ferrer; the founder of the anarchist modern school movement. Introduction by Joseph McCabe.

The Charter of the Modern School

The ICEM (Institut Coopératif de l'Ecole Moderne) and the FIMEM (Féderation Internationale des Mouvements de l'Ecole Moderne) are the official organisations of Freinet education. There are over 2000 Freinet teachers in state schools in France, where head teachers have no authority over the teaching methods in individual classrooms in their schools.)

Even though the charter of the Modern School was produced some time ago (1968), its philosophy remains completely up to date. It represents a basic text to which all members of the ICEM and the FIMEM still adhere.

White Lion Free School Islington

A personal account of being a student at the White Lion Free School in Islington, London, which existed from 1972 to 1990. Its primarily to counter a negative perception given by a former teacher, who wrote a book called 'Free School: The White Lion Experience'.