Taking the long view

Once upon a time there was a boy in Bolton with no interest in his schoolwork. He tended to spend time with his mates or watched comedy VHS tapes that he had recorded. He gained one GCSE then after school did a series of seemingly dead-end jobs such as in the bingo hall and at the local cinema. Because he enjoyed cracking jokes and fooling around he started to do some stand-up comedy gigs in local pubs. Eventually he developed a comedy stand-up act. He was officially entered in the Guinness World Records book for the planet’s biggest-selling stand-up tour. […]

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Inspiring day at SML College!

Inspiring day at SML College!

Thank you to everyone who came to our Open Day yesterday. Some of you traveled quite a distance and we really appreciate you taking time to visit. It’s encouraging to meet so many parents / carers & young people who feel that the traditional school setting and one-size-fits-all educational model are no longer fit for purpose and that there has to be a better way. Even more encouraging is that so many of you believe that managing one’s own learning & being part of a democratic community are the way forward.   Special thanks to all our students who helped […]

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October Open Day Invitation

Wednesday 19th October, 2-4pm With the Autumn term now well under way, we’re looking forward to our first Open Day of the season. Our Open Days are very informal, drop-in events where you can meet and chat to some of our current students and parents, as well as tutors and governors. There won’t be any ‘presentations’ and our community members will answer your questions in a totally unscripted way so you can be sure you’ll have some interesting & authentic conversations! If you’ve read our free ebook* and are interested in finding out more about our unique approach to learning, […]

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Gaining an Arts award at SML College

At SML College we provide the facility for students to achieve an Arts Award, set up by the Arts Council to provide a route for young people to develop their creative and leadership skills and gain GCSE and AS level equivalent qualifications in the arts.  To achieve their Arts Award, students take on various challenges in an art form of their choice and create a portfolio of work with the support of an Arts Award adviser, who acts as assessor, facilitator and mentor. We provide the facility for our students to gain an Arts Award at Bronze or Silver level. Bronze […]

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What is a parents’ role in education?

What is a parents’ role in education?

Much has been written about how important parents are to a child’s education, but often the advice is not all that helpful. Here are a few thoughts on the what, how, when, where and why of education that parents might consider.   WHAT. The press and the education establishment go on about GCSEs, grades, exams and so on as the most important areas for parents to assist their children. A recent research report suggested that children doing Saturday jobs could get lower grades at GCSE. What the report did not mention is that if school students want to learn about […]

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GOING TO THE BIG SCHOOL? Choices in secondary education.

GOING TO THE BIG SCHOOL? Choices in secondary education.

SIZE MATTERS The transition from a small primary school into secondary education is an issue for many parents. There are serious choices to be made for children at this age. We know that many children feel nervous about going into a large, more impersonal school where they do not feel known by teachers. In a typical secondary school a teacher might see over 250 children in a week and cannot get to know all of them really well. In addition the national data show that schools are getting larger year by year. This issue of size is serious. The research […]

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Charley’s art workshop

Charley’s art workshop

  Last Thursday Charley came into SMLC to give an Art workshop on dreams and nightmares. She started by giving us lots of magazines and scissors. Then she told us what ever picture that looked interesting to us to cut them out and put them on a black background. We could make what ever would be in our dreams or nightmares. I made a picture about evolution. It was about how we came from a fish to animals and a picture of every animal I could find. I was quite happy about how it all came together. I think Charley […]

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Libertarian education: marginal experiment or instrument of social change?

Listen to the talks by Luca Lapolla. “Is libertarian education really possible within a neoliberal society? Why have libertarian education experiences always been marginal? What role can libertarian education have in overcoming the present situation? To think about possible answers to these questions, we held our fourth Applied History Network event at MayDay Rooms in London on 19 April 2016. The idea to organise this event came after a reflection on my personal experiences as a teacher in mainstream schools, and took shape when I noticed that the debates on libertarian education at the last London Anarchist Bookfair (October 2015) […]

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Governors opportunity at SML College

Due to growing popularity of the College both nationally and internationally, we are will be expanding our governing body which is made up of a diverse group of academics, professionals and members of the College community. This is an opportunity to be part of a unique and expanding educational venture. If you’d like to proactively support our work and play a part in our progress please contact Ian Cunningham for more info. ian@csml.org.uk        

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Visit to eco-architects ARCH angels

Visit to eco-architects ARCH angels

One of our students, Jack, is interested in considering architecture as a career so along with tutor Gillian, a visit to local eco-architects ARCH angels, was arranged to find out more about their work. They chose ARCH Angels because they have an emphasis on Green Architecture and are working on some interesting projects.  They are also extremely local being just around the corner from the College and we are keen to make connections with the local community. Here’s what Jack had to say about the visit. “Archangels are a Brighton-based architecture firm. Their main ethical focus is being environmentally aware. […]

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