Summerhill Freedom School

1964 , Leiston (Suffolk)

Anglia Television documentary profiling the Summerhill Freedom School and Headmaster Alexander Neill.

Scenes of pupil activity; chatting, attending art classes, climbing trees, eating lunch, and playing in the school grounds, a testament to the freedom the pupils endure, are intercut with commentary from Founder and Headmaster Alexander Neill. Denouncing the fundamental principles that govern the pupils of Summerhill Freedom School, Mr Neill contemplates the reasoning behind the school’s libertarian ethos. Mr Neill champions the school’s alumni of lawyers and doctors, hailing his schooling methods a great success. Mr Neill explains the school’s self-governing practices and we witness a meeting where a pupil puts forward a new law. His personal opinions about parental control and behaviour management, and the standard school curriculum are given. The credits roll to the sound of pupils performing the folk song “where have all the flowers gone?”.

Featured Buildings

Westward House, Leiston, Suffolk (Summerhill Freedom School)

Keywords

Curriculum; Education; Schools; Teaching methods

Manifestations

Summerhill Freedom School

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