Dear All,

3 September 2018 marked the first day of work for Nova Škola primary school, the first free-democratic school in Croatia. We are very happy and proud of finally making our dreams come true. 

Our biggest obstacle was finding an adequate facility. We entered into negotiations with the City of Samobor representatives to be given a venue that was not in use for years and were prepared to renovate it and make it work for us, but have not been successful in this.

After two years we found a venue and started renting. The premises are located in a smaller settlement, close to nature but still not too far from the city centre. We are surrounded by beautiful fields, woods and serenity. Continue reading “NEW DEMOCRATIC SCHOOL IN CROATIA!”


(A revised version of Derry Hannam’s keynote talk at the EUDEC conference held at Korfes, Crete, August 2018)

There are two pillars to Democratic Education.

Pillar number one consists of self-directed and self-managed learning and education which is free from coercion, competition, compulsory testing and fear of failure where, above all, young people learn to manage their own time. We aim to bring an end to meaningless schoolwork that is preparation for meaningless work. Much meaningless paid work in the wider world is coming to an end anyway, which I am totally in favour of so long as we have democratic control of the consequences. We in the democratic education movement aim to create schools where children can think and choose for themselves and that no longer produce obedient factory workers and soldiers. Continue reading “WE HOLD THE KEYS TO THE FUTURE – AND SHOULD NOT BE AFRAID TO SAY SO!!”

Latest Report from Sudbury School Ammersee

Dear friends of Sudbury,

(Deutsche Version unten)

A good week ago we received the negative decision of the court, and now we are waiting for the details. We prepared for the hearing intensively and for many months, and during it we described the many-faceted ways that learning happens at a Sudbury school, that many pupils only rediscovered a way to continue their education there at the school, how they burgeoned, grew as personalities – and that the Sudbury pupils not only match the performance of ‘normal’ pupils, but likely do better.
Continue reading “Latest Report from Sudbury School Ammersee”

Sudbury Schule Ammersee Needs Your Support!

News from EUDEC member school Sudbury Schule Ammersee (Germany), which was closed by the government in 2016 and has taken its case to court. Here is a report from the group following the first hearing on 2 July:
It started off with the case wildly overrunning its estimated duration: Some rumours had suggested that the basic stuff had already been reviewed in advance, and the hearing would be something of a formality, but that certainly wasn’t the case.

Continue reading “Sudbury Schule Ammersee Needs Your Support!”

New Democratic-Education Project in France Has Spaces Available as Boarding School

Dear friends,

Last year, in March 2017, we founded an eco-village called Village de Pourgues, in Le Fossat, France. Our foundations and structures are inspired from Sudbury Valley School. We are now 30 people living together, including 9 children from ages 1 to 10. Where so many have failed since the 70s, we succeeded in forming a stable and harmonious community of individual freedom.

Enrollment is now open for young people (age 15 minimum) with room and board for a duration of at least 3 months. Details about our offer and fees are all available on this page.

If you think that someone you know may be interested, please invite them to contact me directly. Also, please share these news on your networks.

All the best,



School Students Need Time to Think – A Modest Proposal

It seems to me that the crucial commodity that children and young people need in order to find and deepen their interests and identity is TIME. Time to think, time to wonder, time to create, time to hang out with their friends, time to find out who they are, time to relax and just be idle for a while. Yet this is the one thing that English state funded secondary schools, and increasingly primary schools as well, deprive them of. Lunch hours and playtimes are shortened or cut. The encroachment on their free time is not just during the school day but also at home, in the evenings and at week-ends with endless homework and test/exam revision. We know that it is perfectly possible to have a school system with high attainment that does not do this. Continue reading “School Students Need Time to Think – A Modest Proposal”

Dates announced for IDEC&EUDEC 2019 in Vinnytsia, Ukraine

Dear friends!

We are happy to announce that IDEC&EUDEC 2019 will take place in Vinnytsia, Ukraine from 30th of June till 6th of July.

The site we’ve chosen is a summer camp in a wonderful pine forest near Vinnytsia by the river. It will take 15-20 minutes by bus to get to Stork School from the camp. The main part of a program will take place at the camp. Continue reading “Dates announced for IDEC&EUDEC 2019 in Vinnytsia, Ukraine”

Freedom to Learn Forum held at Summerhill School

Derry Hannam’s Introduction to the AERO report on the Freedom to Learn Forum held at Summerhill School, UK on 6th-8th April 2018.

A big thank you to Jerry Mintz and AERO for his consent to reproduce this report in the EUDEC Newsletter.

The event was an outstanding success in networking people some of whom desperately wanted to find friends and allies in their struggle to humanise and redeem for childhood the barbaric testocratic developments currently happening within the English state school system. Continue reading “Freedom to Learn Forum held at Summerhill School”


The Council of Europe is launching a new campaign to bring together schools that are actually implementing the democratic competences identified by the Council’s  Education for Democratic Citizenship/Human Rights Education project . This would apply to every member school of EUDEC! Continue reading “COUNCIL OF EUROPE CAMPAIGN – “FREE TO SPEAK, SAFE TO LEARN.” DEMOCRATIC SCHOOLS FOR ALL.”