At Houston Sudbury School, children are trusted to make their own decisions about how they spend their time, who they socialize with and what they learn (as well as how and when). Through making decisions for themselves, children learn to make better decisions. Children who grow up experiencing the freedom of Sudbury schools are uniquely prepared for adulthood, having grown up in a system where they are not being told what to do every day, all day. Given freedom, children develop a strong sense of self, learn to manage their lives, and cultivate an entrepreneurial approach to life.
Hand-in-hand with freedom, comes a high expectation for personal responsibility. HSS students are responsible not only for their own lives and learning, but also for their school and its culture. Students participate in all major decisions of the school (through School Meeting, Judicial Committee and elected clerkships). The community votes on the rules, staffing, budgeting, and the management of the daily functioning of the school. Through learning to take responsibility for themselves in a supportive, compassionate community, children learn that mistakes are not failures, that personal growth is part of life, and that taking on responsibility can be extremely rewarding.
A healthy community of mixed-age cohorts who all share the same freedoms, responsibility, and equality, is the glue that binds individual freedom with personal responsibility. At Houston Sudbury School, students experience the real-world effects of their decisions and behavior on their larger community, learning how to maximize their freedom without infringing on others. Sudbury students learn how to conduct healthy relationships, how to respectfully disagree, how to advocate for themselves, and how to work with a diverse group in a stable and compassionate community.
The "curriculum" of Houston Sudbury School is life. Sudbury students get a chance to tackle the big questions of life: Who am I? What do I want to do in my life? What are my strengths and weaknesses? How can I relate to others in a healthy way? What is my role in larger society? How do I set goals and achieve them? What can I learn from others? How can I best advocate for myself? The learning that happens in Sudbury schools (which is organic, natural, and constant) is authentic, relevant, and meaningful. Students learn through their interests, their passions, their friends, their community, and from their unique life experience.
Houston Sudbury School is a non-profit, democratically-run, Sudbury-model (100% self-directed learning) community for Houston area children ages 6-16. We offer a tuition-based, full-time program, Monday - Friday from 8 am-4 pm, with extended days available as needed.
Why Choose HSS?
We are so stuck on the idea that children must be forced to learn that we can't even imagine that a child might be better off learning without being forced.
Dr. Peter Gray
We need to look at learning as the product of educational self-organization. It’s not about making learning happen; it’s about letting it happen.
You can always learn skills when you need them. But you can't undo an unhappy childhood