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August 2001 - June 2017

The School Survival Forums are permanently retired. If you need help with quitting school, unsupportive parents or anything else, there is a list of resources on the Help Page.

If you want to write about your experiences in school, you can write on our blog.

To everyone who joined these forums at some point, and got discouraged by the negativity and left after a while (or even got literally scared off): I'm sorry.

I wasn't good enough at encouraging people to be kinder, and removing people who refuse to be kind. Encouraging people is hard, and removing people creates conflict, and I hate conflict... so that's why I wasn't better at it.

I was a very, very sensitive teen. The atmosphere of this forum as it is now, if it had existed in 1996, would probably have upset me far more than it would have helped.

I can handle quite a lot of negativity and even abuse now, but that isn't the point. I want to help people. I want to help the people who need it the most, and I want to help people like the 1996 version of me.

I'm still figuring out the best way to do that, but as it is now, these forums are doing more harm than good, and I can't keep running them.

Thank you to the few people who have tried to understand my point of view so far. I really, really appreciate you guys. You are beautiful people.

Everyone else: If after everything I've said so far, you still don't understand my motivations, I think it's unlikely that you will. We're just too different. Maybe someday in the future it might make sense, but until then, there's no point in arguing about it. I don't have the time or the energy for arguing anymore. I will focus my time and energy on people who support me, and those who need help.


The forums are mostly read-only and are in a maintenance/testing phase, before being permanently archived. Please use this time to get the contact details of people you'd like to keep in touch with. My contact details are here.

Please do not make a mirror copy of the forums in their current state - things will still change, and some people have requested to be able to edit or delete some of their personal info.

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"stop making grades and scores their measure of self worth"
Author Message
xcriteria Offline

Posts: 3,090
Joined: Oct 2005
Thanks: 814
Given 930 thank(s) in 612 post(s)
Post: #1
"stop making grades and scores their measure of self worth"

Facebook post:

"Last night another Palo Alto teenager took their life. He attended Gunn - my son's high school. The pressure cooker atmosphere at Gunn (and in our community generally) has to end. We need to move from wringing our hands over it to marching in the streets. Our children are killing themselves. Nothing is more urgent. The change starts with US parents - what messages are we sending and what messages should we be sending? We have to value them for who they ARE and stop making grades and scores their measure of self worth.

They're canceling classes. Everyone is a mess. I'm going over there to support our children. Gunn parents, join me."

As one person commented on that thread, it's also students that need to start speaking up. There are so many people who see what's wrong with school-as-usual, but so many students are still stuck in it, not speaking up, and in many cases, parents remain unaware of the larger conversations about what "education" should really consist of.


Peter Gray & allies launching the Alliance for Self-directed Education

ASDE Newsletters: #1 Announcement | #2 History of ASDE | #6 Education Liberation

School Survival & Catalyst Learning Network featured on AlternativestoSchool's blog
“Mom, Dad, can I stop going to school?”

Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking when the Stakes are High

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11-05-2014 05:04 AM
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GamerGurl Away
"Queen of Cosplay"

Posts: 676
Joined: Sep 2012
Thanks: 172
Given 233 thank(s) in 157 post(s)
Post: #2
"stop making grades and scores their measure of self worth"

Yes, we need to speak up, but more authority figures need to start being compassionate and agree with us in order for things to change. This is just a general comment and not aimed at anyone in particular.

Hell, sometimes it's the other way around. Sometimes we do speak up a lot, but after we're met with unwavering opposition, we give up. In terms of schooling, there are extremists on the pro-school side. My parents were more or less a part of that opposition. I consider myself one who never gives up, but when faced with the fact that I'd face a judge and the worst-case scenario would be that I could be sent to juvie, what other choice did I have?

The internet is really the only way I can continue my fight against compulsory schooling... for now, and thankfully I'm out of school so I have lots of time on my hands in order to work on the movement, no matter how small our impact may be. Hopefully, sooner rather than later, the size of our impact will expand.

Seven crappy hours of our lives.
11-08-2014 09:43 AM
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 Thanks given by: xcriteria
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