I was flippant and I forgot we’re a year apart. I was responding to your dismissive participation trophy insult because I’ve been hearing that since I was a kid in public school about “kids today” and I’m tired of the cliche. I’ve followed education in America from about 5th grade on – I got myself into Vail-Deane as it was the closest thing to Summerhill I could find and that’s when I was in 8th grade.
[I had to do a couple of essays and also verbally explain myself and along with finances, got a full scholarship].
So I _know_ from myself that some kids are capable.
As far as rights? Kids have license that’s granted by their parents or teachers or local police and also taken away, but as far as rights go, it’s a different set of rights than you get 18+.
I was inspired to find a school after reading a book about Summerhill that was in my public library around 12 yrs old.
It was 1984 and pre-internet so my abilities were limited to public libraries and Roselle Park had a small one.
It wasn’t until 7th grade until my mom, who knew I was looking to get out of public, saw an ad for Vail-Deane in the Westfield Leader or whatever little newspaper Roselle Park had. There was a grant or scholarship or fund or contest thing. I found out what I could. It was very small and was all ages and while it wasn’t a democratic school like Summerhill, it was “close enough”.