About Kokosing Valley School
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Kokosing Valley School is a new alternative school that began in the fall 2015. It is located just outside the village of Gambier, OH, close to the Kokosing Trail bike path and the Kokosing River. It is housed in a residence on 19 acres of land, comprised of 2 creeks, 16 acres of forest with trails and a 3 acre field.
Learning is entirely self-directed at Kokosing Valley School. The school serves students ages 5-19 in a fully democratic, mixed age environment where students decide for themselves how to spend their days. The school is open to all, is affordable, and is a proven model of education, following in the footsteps of numerous schools in the US and internationally.
The school follows the Sudbury model of education, in which students have the time and support necessary to develop into people who think for themselves, motivate themselves and work hard. The school prioritizes people, not evaluation. All kinds of learning and all types of intelligence are valued. The school is open to any student who is willing and able to be responsible for their own time and behavior, from children who want to play and explore the world around them, to teenagers who want to find and pursue their passion.
The school, despite the freedom accorded to students, is extremely challenging. Through fairness, equality in governance and a peaceable community, students are given the time and respect needed to face their challenges. It is essential that these challenges are of their own making, and are not determined for them by others. Learning takes place in many ways: through play, school governance, judicial meetings, conversation, art, computer activities, reading, building, and the exploration of nature. The school itself is young, and students will also learn through the process of creating their community, establishing its rules and cultivating its culture.
The school is governed by the School Meeting, and all students and staff people are members. This body governs all aspects of the school, from budgeting to staff to rules and issues of justice. No matter the age of the School Meeting member, each person has one vote, has the opportunity to voice opinions and can expect them to be taken seriously. There is no authority beyond that of the School Meeting.
KVS believes in the innate sense of justice, curiosity and responsibility of all young people, and strives to cultivate this. Students have the time and support they need to remain curious, responsible, creative and innovative adults who look beyond themselves to the world at large, and who pursue their passions within it.
S T A F F
Anastasia Congdon, Founder/Staff
Margaret Lewis, Founder/Staff
Kay Gunderson, Staff
Jim Dennen, Founder