Sud­bury School’s fundrais­ing cam­paign for per­ma­nent home


Wicklow People (West Edition) - - NEWS - By MYLES BUCHANAN

IRE­LAND’S first demo­crat­i­cally run school, Wick­low Sud­bury School, has launched a GoFundMe crowd­fund­ing cam­paign to go to­ward the con­struc­tion of a per­ma­nent home.

The school opened in Kilpedder three years ago and cur­rently has 23 stu­dents and 5 mem­bers of staff. The school’s cur­rent lo­ca­tion only has ca­pac­ity for up to 30 stu­dents and won’t be able to house the grow­ing school num­bers.

‘We have just about reached our ca­pac­ity. We have a wait­ing list and will be tak­ing on more stu­dents dur­ing the course of the school year. We face a lot of chal­lenges and aren’t en­ti­tled to Govern­ment fund­ing. Even get­ting grants is prov­ing dif­fi­cult,’ said Rachel Kuhn.

Wick­low Sud­bury School is Ire­land’s first demo­cratic school for self-di­rected learn­ing. Stu- dents are free to de­ter­mine their own learn­ing path and struc­ture their days in what­ever way works for them. All stu­dents and staff have an equal vote, and ev­ery­one is en­ti­tled to have a say on all de­ci­sions and rule mak­ing. Stu­dents vary in age from 6 up to 18.

Stu­dents at­tend­ing the school come from the likes of Bray and Grey­stones in north Wick­low, but also from the east of the county and the south. Other stu­dents travel from north Dublin and County Kil­dare.

‘This is the very early stages of our cam­paign. We will be more than likely look­ing for a new build so we need to look around and see what is around, We know the whole process will take two to three years. We would like to re­main in the same gen­eral area and may need an­other in­terim school in the mean­time to cope with the level of de­mand from stu­dents’ said Rachel.

A num­ber of fundrais­ers are in the pipe­line, in­clud­ing a din­ner and raf­fle due to take place in No­vem­ber. Wick­low Sud­bury has launched a GoFundMe crowd­fund­ing cam­paign at­low­sud­bury-school.

Funds from this cam­paign will go to­wards the ar­chi­tec­tural fees needed to be­gin the process of build­ing a per­ma­nent home.

The suc­cess of the fundrais­ing cam­paign would not only mean that Wick­low Sud­bury could con­tinue to be­come more sus­tain­able and eq­ui­table, it would also mean they could help other Sud­bury schools to open across the coun­try, like the one that just opened in Sligo and the ones set to open in Cork, Dublin and Gal­way.

Stu­dents and staff at the Sud­bury School in Kilpedder.

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