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Sept 10: Sudbury School Rental Town Hall

  • Greater Nashville UU 374 Hicks Road Nashville, TN, 37221 United States (map)

Sudbury School Rental Town Hall

We have the opportunity to share our space with a new school that is forming starting Fall 2018! The Founders of the Nashville Sudbury School have been working for nearly two years to plan for the opening of this new-to-Nashville opportunity. The model and vision for this type of school is a secular, open-learning style that will feel very familiar to Unitarian Universalists.

We are excited both about the potential for our wonderful space to be used during the week, as well as potential rental income.

We are in the "gaining knowledge" phase, and their decision won’t be final until January of 2018, but we wanted to share this chance we have to positively impact education in Bellevue and the Greater Nashville Community.

How would this partnership help/change GNUUC?

  • The rental income would provide support for our programs.
  • These folks would have an interest in our spaces being beautiful, too.
  • Education in Nashville is a concern for many of us and this group is providing a fantastic resource for the families who choose to be involved.
  • This is planned to be a multi-age, multi-cultural, socio-economically diverse group.
  • The Sudbury School philosophy shares many of our core beliefs and social justice goals.
  • Seeing our spaces and paths and playground filled with laughter and learning all week long, not just during our Sunday service.

This potential partnership is still in the decision-making process on both sides.

GNUUC Frequently Asked Questions

What GNUUC spaces will be used?

  • The school would use the RE Building with the ability to request the kitchen/fellowship hall. We will probably end with a priority of use agreement:
    1) GNUUC, 2) paying rental groups, 3) other groups.

  • They would be given a corner of the RE building and a portion of the RE closet for a cabinet and bookcase and space to store their totes.

  • They would have access to the playground, trail, and meditation area.

What kind of agreement would be in place?

  • GNUUC would employ an attorney who is well-versed in these types of contracts to ensure we’ve thought through the potential liabilities and outcomes.

  • In addition to the contract an attorney would draft, we would develop a covenant with the Sudbury folks around our expectations for space use and our relationship. They really liked the covenant idea because it fits so well with the democratic school model.

  • We would have open, frequent communication with the leadership team of the Sudbury School to facilitate a great relationship.

Duration of agreement?

The original contract would be for the 2018/2019 school year.

Sudbury School Frequently Asked Questions

Here’s information the Sudbury folks shared with us:

What is Nashville Sudbury School?

Nashville Sudbury School is a school where students, ages 5 to 18 years old, can direct their own learning in a civic minded environment. It is modeled on the Sudbury Valley School in Framingham, MA, which has been in successful operation for over 40 years, and has spurred over 40 schools to open using the Sudbury model. We are a TN non-profit and have applied for 501c3 status.

What is the Sudbury model?

“The fundamental premises of the school are simple: that all people are curious by nature; that the most efficient, long-lasting, and profound learning takes place when started and pursued by the learner; that all people are creative if they are allowed to develop their unique talents; that age-mixing among students promotes growth in all members of the group; and that freedom is essential to the development of personal responsibility.”

–Mimsy Sadofsky, Sudbury Founder

In practice, what this means is:

Unlimited Opportunity to Develop Passions: Students decide how to spend their time and are free to learn and explore their passions.

  • Play is Important: Kids innately know that play is a powerful tool for creativity, learning, and problem-solving.

  • Democratic Decision Making: All decisions governing the school community are decided by students and staff at the School Meeting.

  • Age Mixing: Older students mentor and nurture younger students, younger students learn from and inspire older students.

  • Adults are Helpers not Judges: Sudbury staff is there to help, not evaluate, students.

What are Nashville Sudbury School’s facility needs?

We anticipate opening with 15-20 students and 3-4 adult staff members.

  • We would like to have access to a minimum of 2-3 classrooms, restrooms, and a playground/outdoor space.

  • We would need the space from 7:30 AM to 3PM, but would love to be able to have the space until 5PM to allow families greater flexibility for picking up their children.

  • We would not need exclusive access to this space. We would be happy to put our items in a storage area at the end of each day.

  • We would follow the MNPS calendar for days in session, holidays, and inclement weather.

Questions or Concerns?

Questions or concerns may be directed to Reverend Carmen or Kristin Reveal. We’d like those before the Town Hall on Sept. 10 to ensure we are able to share the answers on that day.

Please join us on Sept. 10 in the sanctuary at 12:30 for any follow-up discussion.