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  1. Anhang

Material I: Skizze von Summerhill

Material II: "timetable"

Material III: "Summerhill Laws from November, 1995"

(Der Eintrag zu Sumerhill-School in der englischen Wikipedia klärt viele der hier verwendeten Abkürzungen und Begriffe: WP,en: Summerhill-School)

Downtown Laws

You can go out between 5:00 to 9:30 and after 12:00.

House kids must be back by 17:30, San kids by 17:30.

Shack and Carriages by 19:00 alone. 21:00 if more than one person.

First lunch kids not allowed downtown before 13:00.

A Carriage kid can take under 8s downtown.

A 12 can go alone.

A 9 and a 10 can go together.

One 8 can go with one 12.

One 12 can go downtown on bike (after they pass the test).

A 14 and over can take two 11s on bike.

A 13 can cycle in a 5 miles radius (& test) if you give all details to your houseparent. Two 14s can go to a radius of fifty miles.

Mao can go 15 miles radius from school cycling provided he checks details with his houseparent.

A 16 can go to a radius of one hundred miles.

No sheath knives downtown.

No one allowed on railway track.

No one under 16 can smoke downtown.

Staff and parents can take you downtown after dark.

Hill Farm is an annex to the school but not after 20:00.

Cinema-goers can come back at 21:30.

On a cinema trip with House and San kids: - Staff must supervise kids crossing roads.

- You must walk on the pavements.

Kids must sign out on the board if they are going downtown; elsewhere tell your houseparent.

You are not allowed to go to people's houses unless you have been invited by an adult and they have been in touch with the school.

Sitting Rooms

Communal TV & video: only to watch a video, put it back straight afterwards; sign them out.

You can't eat or drink in LKSR (Little kids sitting room). You can watch TV after you have finished your meal.

No TV or computer games during lesson times (including Game-Boys).

Catriona can watch TV from 17:00-18:00.

Little kids allowed to chuck big kids out of little kids' sitting room.

You can't take cushions out of the sitting room or the library.

Videos that aren't for a certain age group can't be shown in the LKSR during the little kids' times. The people watching have got to make sure that no-one under age is watching.

BO (Bed officers) turn off corridor lights at night (1 Lounge, backdoor, bathroom(toilet)


People can smoke around Michael's caravan but not past it.

Only Shack and over can smoke.

You have to be 16 or Carriage to smoke downtown.

You can bring people up for having full ashtrays in their rooms.

If someone smokes in your room you get fined.

No smoking by the dining room bench, the front porch.

Not allowed to smoke on the carriage path: from top of girl's carriages to bottom of boys' carriages.

You have to announce at the beginning of term that you are a smoker, and you'll have to go to the seminar. Smokers must read and sign the certificate each term.

Smokers list: Lizzie, Will, Nao, Sara, Jesse, Aimee, Sophie, Bruce, Camilla, Hana, Tsuyoshi, Maureen.


Gram: the gram committee people have to go on the ground to evaluate sound level.

You have to be 13 to be on the gram committee.

New gram members can't play the gram until someone has shown them how to do it properly.

Only gram committee can play the gram or touch records.

Only 3 people allowed in the gram box at once.

No gram records allowed outside of the gram box.

On EOT (End of Term) the gram must be turned down at 1:00 to a reasonable level.

Everyone in the lounge must agree on this.

Gram times: Tues, Fri and Sat: 19:00 to half an hour before San lights out.

On EOT Sunday, Gram can be played during Clear-Up, and 19:00-20:00.

Gram box locked during EOT decoration.


Little kids can't go in the theatre without a big kid or staff.

Julie or Sara can't go downtown on their bikes.

Hana & Mao: no contact with San/House kids after lights out or goes home; banned from top corridor; can't talk to Ruri or Tatsuo without a big Japanese kid present.

Roger can't play fight with house and San kids; can only borrow money/things from Shack and over.

Josh and Roger can't buy things out of each other's bill.

Damian & Chris banned from Pei Shuen's room.

Damian: banned from the San area (from front stairs or from fire door); not allowed to talk to San kids; banned from Misha's room and not allowed to ask him for anything, ever.

Jamie can go upstairs but ombudsmen can ban him again until tribunal. Damian not allowed in the Beeston.


No-one can't take class 1 kids out of the class.

No-one can call Vita "flea" or Carman "car".

No-one is allowed in people's rooms unless invited.

Shops: Put sign up on notice board and make it clear if they have no food.

You can't have a shop when a committee is raising money.

You can't camp or make a hut on the hockey field.

Pets: You can't bring animals back here without asking the meeting.

You can't have more than one pet - except if that's already the case.

Litter goes in the fire. It is carried in bin bags.

Rabbit shit goes on compost heap.

If you don't clean your rabbit's cage once a week - 50p fine.

Committees need an external treasurer to help with the account books; all transactions have to be signed and dated.

New kids and staff cannot be on committees in their first term.

Bar committees cannot transfer money to the fines.

You need to announce it at the meeting if you quit a comittee.

You can't run for a committee if you are taking the book around.

Library: no food, no drink, no mess.

Sign out the books you take out.

School magazines go to the library.

Don't use jos-stick in the top corridor before lunch.

No playing with water inside.

No balls inside.

No littering in S'hill or downtown (50p fine).

People must leave any area the cleaners are cleaning.

No one must harrass day staff.

No-one allowed in Beeston except for washing.

You must be over 12 and have been here 2 terms to be an Ombudsman.

No baths 9:00-14:00 or 16:30-19:00 in the house.

Only House kids can use the house baths between 21:00 and lights out.

No-one can sit on the table-tennis table.

Investigation committee's powers: - search any part of anyone's room at anytime.

- see people's bank books.

- contact with parents.

- force people to talk to them.

No one can take any one else's stuff out of the school without writing formally to the Office.

Poc (pocket money)

If you collect kids poc they go to the front of the queue.

You can only owe up to £1 less than your POC.

San kids

San kids cups don't go out of the kitchen & dining room. Fine for using them - if you are not San.

Don't eat noodles in bed after lights out.

No-one allowed to stand on Sophie's bed.

San kids need 2 Carriage kids or staffs before they can swap, lend, buy or sell anything.

San kids can only have ½ their poc on Pay on Poc and can't owe more than 50p to any shop.

San kids can't do Pay on Poc with private traders.

San and House kids cannot have TV's, cassette recorders, computer games etc. (but battery rechargers and gameboys etc.-yes):

Nathan & Neillie & Yuu can go downtown together.

San kids can't chuck each other out of their rooms.

Dangerous things

Swimming Pool: No running around the pool.

Pool: you can't play with the whistle (£1 fine).

When the whistle blows, Everyone has to leave the water immediately.

No jumping in or diving from the side past the filter.

After diving no swimming back from the ladder under water.

No pushing people in.

You can't stand or walk on the pool dividing wall.

Fire: During the fire drill, everyone must be IN the theatre.

The outside fire exit door in the top corridor can only be opened in a fire or fire practice.

Only Shack and over are allowed matches and lighters.

House and under must be with a Carriage to light a firework.

No matches and lighters inside.

Fireworks are only allowed on the hockey field.

Fire escapes are out of bounds except in case of fire or fire practice. Roofs are out of bounds.

Big Beech is out of bounds when it's dark or wet.

You can't build tree huts by the road.

12 and over can have sheath knives.

Modelling knives, scalpels and stanley knives can only be used in class.

Only House and over are allowed pen-knives.

Shurikens and catapults are not allowed, including balloon ones.

Cross bows and arrows allowed only on Hockey Field if noon is around.

BB guns are banned from Summerhill forever.

San and House cannot fit electrical plugs.

Doors must not be locked at night.

No one may lock people in rooms (including using ropes).

No weapons with blades against DT's even if they come into Summerhill.


You must have a working front and back brake on your bike.

House & up can't ride San kids bikes even with permission.

House and under must pass Simon's test before they can cycle downtown.

No wheels inside.

You can't ride bikes near moving vehicles, especially vans coming into the school.

You can't leave your bike by the back door.


You can't ride on the hockey field.

You have to wear a motorbike crash helmet to ride.

£5 fine to the rider if the warning signs are not up.

You can't ride motorcycles on the shack field when it's too muddy.

You can't go out of first gear going to the woods.

Parents and visitors

Ex-pupils have to ask the community in advance if they want to jam at the EOT.

Parents can only take other people swimming in a public pool with a qualified life-guard.

If an under 16 wants to come to Summerhill they must be accompanied by their parents.

Ex-pupils, visitors and families can arrive on: Saturday of Easter and Winter EOT, Friday after lunch on Summer EOT, and must leave before Monday lunch time.

Ex-pupils, visitors and families can stay for Saturday, Sunday and Monday at Summerhill half-term.

Visitors can only video if they ask people first.

Visitors can't swing off the Big Beech.

The meeting

You can't propose the "business is closed" in the middle of the business.

After 1 hour, there is no "meeting open".

You must ask the meeting if you can camp out in the Autumn and Spring term.

People who sell things privately can't get the meeting to sort out debts.

The chair has ultimate power.

If a chair does not take bedtimes e.g. walks out... no one gets late nights.

You have to have the community's permission to record a meeting or discussion.

Gram box is out of bounds during meeting.

No appealing after two weeks, except from bans.

If an outsider asks the meeting's permission for something they may not be present while it is discussed.

You can't watch TV during the meeting.

You can't change the law in the last meeting of term.

People who are brought up must come to tribunal (20p fine). You have to tell people you are bringing up by Friday lunchtime.

You have to be at the meeting if an ombudsman brings something up for you.

No-one can call a special meeting during a party to extend it.

You can't ask for a case during another case.

No-one allowed in the library during meetings.

Ombudsmen have to come to tribunal.

If you keep money under your pillow or on your shelf - the meeting can refuse to deal with it if it gets stolen.

Dining room, food and drinking

Staff guests: Staff write on the board if they have guests.

Guests go to the back of meal queues.

Only one piece of fruit at at time.

You can't walk on tables during meal times.

Staff, if intending to not come to dinner, have to write it on the board before 5pm.

Kids are not allowed to drink alcohol. Not even one sip.

Staff get £5 fine if drunk.

You may queue up before the bell but only behind the light switch.

No cutlery or plates etc. outside the dining room except on the picnic table.

Class 1 & 2 teachers allowed to got to 1st lunch;


Silence hour is from house bedtime until 8:00 weekdays, 10:00 Saturdays, 11:00 Sundays in the House. In carriages, silence hour is: weekdays: 9:00, noon at weekends. No one is allowed in carriages at weekends until 10:30.

Bedtimes: San: 20:00 to 21:00. Half an hour later on late nights.

House: 22:00 to 22:30. Half an hour later on late nights.

Shack: 22:30 to 23:00. Half an hour later on late nights.

Carriages: 23:30. Half an hour later on Friday nights; 2:00 on Saturdays.

Carriage kids must be alone in their rooms by 23:30.

Shack kids allowed lamps on.

You can't play music in the theatre during Carriage silence hour.

Morning wake up is at 9:00. You have to be out of your bed and dressed at 9:20.

You are not allowed to go back to bed before lunch time.

If you are ill, you need to tell your house parent before 9:30 and you can't get up before lunch.

You are not allowed on the top corridor after house bedtime.

House doors must be kept closed after lights out or whole room is fined half an hour work fine.

All carriages kids must have their curtains open from 9:30 until 13:00.

You have to change into sleeping clothes before you go to bed.

No one may play the piano after house lights out.

You can't go to the toilet, or get medecine straight after lights out, you have to do everything you need to do and be ready 5 minutes before lights out.

You can't sleep on the floor unless you arrange for someone to put the matress back, and have to ask the BO.

BO can fine Shack & Carriage kids if they're in the house corridor during or after bedtime.

BO's can deputize two Carriage kids (any) to be BO's.

BO can give breakfast fines: you have to be first in the queue or you get fined.

On Fridays BO can let people stay up 10 minutes or so later than their lights out to watch the end of a film.

San kids must ask BO's before tea time if they want to camp out.

BO can fine Shack and Sarriage kids to clean up at break, instead of pudding fine. The person on rota has to supervise it, or do it if no-one has been fined.

BO decides if you can sleep in another room.

Material IV: Interview mit Zoe Readhead, der Schulleiterin (1.März 1996)

Interviewer: How many pupils do you have at the moment?

Zoe Readhead: 67.

Interviewer: How many non-English students do you have?

Zoe Readhead: I don't know. I guess about half.

Interviewer: Are there also any non-white students?

Zoe Readhead: Yes, he's from Germany.

Interviewer: How many German children do you have?

Zoe Readhead: About 12 or 14.

Interviewer: How are students accepted for Summerhill?

Zoe Readhead: Well, it's very informal. They come and visit and the parents come and visit. If I don't detect any problems, then we just go ahead with it. But if I feel that there is a problem, then I would try to investigate it further.

Interviewer: Which countries do the children normally come from?

Zoe Readhead: Well, at the moment, we've got English, Germans, Japanese, Taiwanese, Koreans. In the past we have had children from Brazil, Spain, America, Indonesia, France. Oh, we've got a French and a Swiss boy here as well.

Interviewer: Can you say that there has been a certain tendency for children to come from a certain area?

Zoe Readhead: Well, it does seem to go in phases. In the sixties there were a lot of Americans here. I think it depends on how well the books are selling. But we've always had a good connection with Germany. We have had a lot of German children over the years and we've continued to always have a good batch of children. In the last ten years we've had a good steady stream of Japanese children. The Koreans and Taiwanese are quite new.

Interviewer: How long do the children normally take to be able to talk in English?

Zoe Readhead: The Europeans very quick. I mean Louis came last term and he spoke very little English and now he speaks very passable English. He came from France. The German child Nathalie came at the beginning of the last term and she is very small. She is already speaking good English. I think with the German children - they become understandable within two terms very easily. But the Japanese take longer. It very much depends on the child. Those children that are outgoing, tend to learn it quicker. But it's much harder with the Taiwanese and the Koreans. They certainly seem to pick it up harder.

Interviewer: When they first come, would you say that they do not attend so many lessons because their English isn't good enough?

Zoe Readhead: Well, we don't expect new children to attend lessons anyway, because most new children have been to other schools and in other schools there are forced to go. So, obviously the first reaction when they come here is going to be not to go. But the language will make a difference, we make no doubt about it. But on the other hand the two junior classes do EFL (English as a Foreign Language teaching). They have their own EFL teacher. So, I don't really think it is a problem. I think by the time they are ready to go they've all learned it.

Interviewer: What is the average age of the children coming to your school?

Zoe Readhead: I have no idea but I would guess the average between 10 and 12, it' s the biggest we take.

Interviewer: How many students will take an exam?

Zoe Readhead: I think all of them will take one exam - at least one. But you get occasions when they don't take any exams, but most of the children will take two or three exams.

Interviewer: Is it possible to take A-levels?

Zoe Readhead: No.

Interviewer: How many students go on to Further Education?

Zoe Readhead: I would say 80%.

Interviewer: What sort of professions would most of them like to do?

Zoe Readhead: Well, it's difficult. Those who are going into business will tend to go in businesses where they have their own responsibilities. But a lot of people go into the artistic side. I think because here they are able to develop it. But there really is no standard. Remember, we have students from Summerhill who have retired. 75 years is a long time and there are students who worked at Summerhill who have now died of old age. So, that the careers they have been into have been very diverse over the years. And it's not easy to give a particular thing. Some of them will do very well in their jobs and some of them will be very poor. There will be very different sorts of people.

Interviewer: How much pocket money do the children get?

Zoe Readhead: The San-kids get £2.50, the House-kids get £3.50, the Shack-kids get £5 and the Carriage-kids get £8. And that's each week. But then they get maybe their own money from home as well.

Interviewer: Are there friendships between students from Summerhill and students from town?

Zoe Readhead: Rarely. Whenever they do it causes problems. Because the children outside school have no alliegiance to the school. They are a little bit jealous anyway.

Interviewer: Do you accept day-time children?

Zoe Readhead: Yes, we do. 6, I think.

Interviewer: Do they get along with the others? Do they attend meetings?

Zoe Readhead: Yes, I like them to come in on Saturday; although some of them don't - particular the littles ones. It's not as good as boarding. But a lot of children gain a lot out of it - have a good time here. But I think they would gain more if they were living here. You see living here is a very important part. And it's probably one of the main things about the school. And it's one of the things which at this stage is very unfashionable because boarding schools have such a bad name. Parents feel that they should have their children with them. You're bad if you send your child away, but they're wrong because the children want to be here. Children need the company of other children - more than they need their parents, really, as long as they have their parents, when they want them but all the time they need the company of other children more.

Interviewer: How often do they see their parents?

Zoe Readhead: We have three long holidays each year so they have plenty of time.

Interviewer: Would you say there is a difference when they come back from home? Do they react differently?

Zoe Readhead: Some children do, other children are a little bit wild, some children get worse just before the holidays - sort of anticipating going home. Well, but it would tend to be those children who have perhaps problems at home.

Interviewer: Which social class do parents of Summerhill students belong to in general?

Zoe Readhead: It's difficult to say. Obviously, in order to pay £ 5.500 to £ 6.000 a year they must have more money than very poor people. But on the other hand a lot of them make great sacrifices to send their children to school. So, I mean I know of one couple who have actually borrowed money to send their child here. Undoubtably, some of the Japanese parents are probably very healthy. It's difficult to know because we don't know them personallly. Sometimes we have children from wealthy families but mostly I would say they were lower-middle class, no higher than that.

Interviewer: Have there been any important changes concerning the long-time running of the school?

Zoe Readhead: Not really. I think that it reaches a new understanding of itself. I think Summerhill has become more aware of itself. Probably, because I'm an ex pupil and people that I associate with often are Ex-Summerhill-pupils. I think that you come to fully understanding if you were a pupil here. It is a big advantage for me. To be able to talk to kids knowing exactly what's like for them because I did it as well. And it was a disadvantage that Neill had is that he didn't experience it as a child. Although he may have many advantages because he didn't that I don't have. That- I think - the school coming to a better understanding of itself. Perhaps being able to analyse itself a little bit more. But I wouldn't call it a major change at all. I think we are much more streamlined in our academic department now. If Summerhill is to survive, it has to have pupils and although Summerhill will never change it's outlook and never change its philosophy - because that's what makes it Summerhill - but on the other hand if you can make it a little bit more sellable to parents, then you are going to get children more which is why one of the reasons why we continue to rebuild the place - not only is it falling down but also we want it to look good when parents come, when we have the family here, we want it to look nice. Now, we wanted to look clean and warm and cosy because the children don't notice it, but parents do. And the same with the classes - we want to be offering plenty so that when parents come they'll think: Oh, yes, my child is going to maybe learn something and some of it is just glossy but if it does the job then that's good.

Interviewer: Do you always have enough applicants?

Zoe Readhaed: We are never full. We usually can take somebody else.

Interviewer: How would you describe your principle aim today?

Zoe Readhead: To keep the school running. I think the aim is what it has always been: to produce well-balanced, happy individuals who are well-equipped to cope with life, whatever life happens to throw at them. Here is reality. We deal with people every day. We deal with human problems. We deal with one anothers feelings and problems. And when you go outside it equips you very well for meeting and dealing with other people's problems.

Interviewer: How would you describe a typical Summerhill student?

Zoe Readhead: Responsible, caring, gentle, honest, warm, mature, with a great sense of humour, very relaxed.

Interviewer: Have the children changed in the last ten years?

Zoe Readhead: I mean children come and go and there are different emphases on different things but fundamentally children don't change at all. And that's one of the mistakes that education has made. Everybody assumes that things are a different thing for instance. People think now that schools are much better because we're all very liberal now and it's the ninety's and everything is much fairer- but it's not! It's all just pretend. The children are still unhappy - they are still being forced to go to classes. They're still being talked to as if they were "this big" by teachers. They're still being treated badly by teachers and in the old days it used to looked worse because they used to get smacked and the teachers used to wear suits and things. But it's just the same, it's only a little bit better, not really. The children haven't really changed. The stil want the same things. They want to play, they want to be with their friends, they want to have fun and basically it doesn't matter whether they are playing with skateboards, listening to rock n' roll or listening to jungle music.

Interviewer: Do you get any children with serious problems?

Zoe Readhead: I don't really take children with serious problems anymore. I try not to take very damaged children.

Interviewer: Could you define "freedom" and "licence"?

Zoe Readhead: Freedom is that you can wear whatever you want to wear, whatever you like . It doesn't matter what you wear if boys want to wear dresses that's fine, it's not a problem but you can't have a pee in the middle of the lounge or you can't play your trumpet at night because those things interfering other people.

Interviewer: Would you say that running your school will be more difficult in the future?

Zoe Readhead: No, not necessarily. I mean there are many difficulties now that did not need to be faced twenty years ago. There are many more responsibilities now. It can't get much worse - to be honest.

Interviewer: In which way has the "Thatcherism" had an influence on Summerhilll?

Zoe Readhead: Well, I don't really think that it has any particular influence on Summerhill- to be honest. We've had school inspectors, but any government would have sent school inspectores. I think we've been very lucky in that we've got our philosophy and that's what we are going to do. We just do it anyway.

Interviewer: Do you say that it is more easy or more dificult to run your school under Labour government?

Zoe Redhead: I don't think it makes any difference. As long as we can continue with pupils then we are going to continue. We dropped very low two years ago we went down to 46 children which was a little bit alarming. But we are back up again with plenty of enquiries and I mean as long as I am happy to fill my school with Koreans, Taiwanese and Japanese I can keep going but it's a pity that we don't get more English, German, French children. I think things are looking pretty good. That's always the assuming that the government inspectors leave us alone occasionally and don't demand too much and - I sometimes wonder whether they've got plans whether or they've got what we call a hidden agenda.

Interviewer: When did the last inspection take place?

Zoe Readhead: A year ago in the autumn. They' ve been coming almost once a year. We've had five visits since 1990. They did a report last time. They said standards were low. And all the newspaper printed that we're going to be closed and in Germany they got terribly worried about it and everybody said we were going to be closed. It wasn't true at all - it's absolute rubbish.

Interviewer: What is the most common form of criticism you receive from the public?

Zoe Readhead: The general public think that our children are wild, rude, unruly and they misbehave all the time

Interviewer: What about swearing?

Zoe Readhead: The kids do swear a lot. People outside the school think that means that they are wild.

Interviewer: What is the most common form of praise?

Zoe Readhead: I think the most common form of praise will be people who meet our pupils, our ex-pupils and are delighted with them. People who have preconceived ideas about the school will come aiming to criticise . But when they meet the children they realise that there is something special here and people who meet our children when they've left again they find them particulary delightful people. So I think probably our greatest praise is for that.

Interviewer: Is there still a chance of getting "Private lessons"?

Zoe Readhead: Neill gave private lessons up. He realized that it wasn't him that was curing the children, it was Summerhill that was curring the children. Occasionally I offer private lessons to children, we call them "PL's", just because the children like to come and talk. What normally happens is that they tell me about their love-life or it's usually that they like to have someone to talk to.

Interviewer: Have you recently heard a child using the words "I'm bored"?

Zoe Readhead: Yes, I have about a week ago. A fifteen-year-old girl said she's bored. It's boring here. She wants to go to a party, dating and having a good time. She hasn't been here very long. And being bored is actually a constructive thing in this particularcase. In her particular case I think it's just because she wants to be a grown-up and she's not. For the other children bordom is an important thing. It's very constructive. It teaches you how to amuse yourself and how to manage your spare time.

Interviewer: How would you describe your childhood?

Zoe Readhead: Brillant.

Interviewer: You were once described as the happiest child in the world. Can you give me some adjectives that describe your character today?

Zoe Readhead: I'm very contented. I'm very happy, yeah, well-being. If I die tomorrow I would have no regrets at all. I feel that everything in my life has been wonderful.

Happiness is a strange thing to describe. What is happiness? I think if you describe someone as happy, you mean that they are generally happy with their general life. It doesn't mean that they're happy all of the time. So, yes I could have been described as being happy although I had a happy time the same as any other children. My childhood was very happy on the whole.

Interviewer: And the most unpleasant thing?

Zoe Readhead: Considering my life the worst thing that ever happened in my life is the "Channel 4"-Film. In my childhood, I can't really think of things. I went to Switzerland to school for two terms and that was a complete waste of time. I was very unhappy there. There were occasions when I wasn't very happy when things weren't going nicely for me: maybe my boyfriend and I had an argument. But I can't look back and criticize anything in my childhood.

Interviewer: You have four children of your own. Have they all been to Summerhill?

Zoe Readhead: Yes they all were. William still works here with me. Amie has been to agriculture. She's the oldest one. She is now 23, nearly 24. She went to agriculture college and did a national diploma in Agriculture. She is now working with my husband on the farm and Henry is living in Norwich and doing a bit of college and a lot of other things. He is now 19. They all slept here, but Neill doesn't, he comes homes. Sometimes they stayed at home but mostly they slept here.

Interviewer: Would you interfere in the meetings?

Zoe Readhead: I often talk in the meeting, yes. But I can't change the rules.

Interviewer: How necessary do you find it to make safety rules?

Zoe Readhead: I don't usually have to make any. The most recent safety rule I made was that I banned BB Guns. That was around the time - the term after the Channel 4-film was made. I felt that they were too dangerous and that if somebody got injured in the eyes or something, we would be held accountable for it. And I discussed it with one or two staff perhaps but basically I'm going to make that decision because I'm responsible.

Interviewer: What are most English people's attitudes towards Summerhill?

Zoe Readhead: Well, they think it's awful. But they wouldn't understand it.

Interviewer: Do you ever have problems with boys and girls when they like each other?

Zoe Readhead: I don't have a problem with it because I like it. I think it's great. They are very aware of the fact that having sex is not legal in England under 16. And they are very aware of the fact that Summerhill is special and that it is very vulnerable and they are careful.

Interviewer: Do you wish that one of your children will sooner or later become the head of school?

Zoe Readhead: Well, if Summerhill is going to survive then one of them will have to. I would like it because I think it's a very fulfilling thing to do. I obviously would like Summerhill to continue. But I think you don't want to get involved really until you are over 35 because it's a huge committment. You need to have your family and your life first. And then do Summerhill afterwards. And you need to be very self-contained. I think one of the real values for me to run the school is that I have my own family and my own life. And so although everything matters to me very much, I can go home at the end of the day and I have still got support in my family even when things are going very badly at school, even if I am having fights with some staff or something awful like that, I can go away and I have my own life. Whereas if I was 30 and I hadn't got my own life and family then Summerhill was everything to me, then everytime there were problems it would just be too heavy. So, I think it would be lovely for one of my children to do it. I've got four, one of them is bound to do it!

Anlage für die Wissenschaftliche Hausarbeit

Ich versichere, daß ich die Arbeit selbständig und nur mit den angegebenen Quellen und Hilfsmitteln angefertigt habe. Alle Stellen der Arbeit, die ich aus anderen Werken dem Wortlaut oder dem Sinne nach entnommen habe, sind kenntlich gemacht.

Heidelberg, den .........................................