Our family loves SVS, but I am not sure I buy the argument that there are (FOR SURE) a higher percentage of graduates who are entrepreneurs than there are at other schools.
At least not BECAUSE OF Sudbury Valley. Well, maybe. But… here’s what I think:
1. Many students who attend SVS or other Sudbury schools probably are correlated with types of people who go on to be entrepreneurs. So it’s not SVS… it’s the people.
2. Also, many of the parents who choose to have their young kids attend SVS even before they have an inkling of their personalities, but rather based on the ideals of the school only (like my wife and I who knew we wanted SVS for our kids even before it existed) are probably also skewed toward entrepreneurial dispositions, so their kids inherit some of that.
I say “probably” in 1 and 2 above, but who knows. Switch that with “maybe” if you wish. Point is, we don’t know.
If you look at Table 14.7 on page 241 of “Legacy of Trust: Life After The Sudbury Valley School Experience”, 7 of 27 of the “SVS ONLY” category are classified as “Entrepreneurial Occupations (Any Category)”. That’s 26%. That’s probably still high (no way are 26% of the population entrepreneurs**…), but is it high among kids whose parents who are similarly entrepreneurial and able to afford private school but attend other schools? (SVS is very inexpensive as private schools go… ~$8,000, but not free).
Anyway, I guess my point is that this is an unknown as far as I am concerned, but this doesn’t concern me. What I *do* care is that my kids ARE FREE. AND HAPPY. RIGHT NOW. At ages 4-18. Not waiting for age 18.
So for me, SVS has some huge “every day, right now” positives, which will also certainly pay benefits for my kids in later happiness as well. And sure, it might have some “some day in the future, maybe” negatives. But for me the positives FAR outweigh any potential negatives, especially because they are completely uncertain.
**NOTE: I am also not sure what the definition anyone is using of entrepreneur. To me it’s not simply being self-employed. It has to (for me) include a business venture where one is taking on more risk with most of the work being delegated to employees and such.) See discussion: LINK