Pittsburgh, PA

Remembering Daniel Greenberg, champion of democratic education

The Homepage, published by Hazelwood Initiative

By TRVS staff

At Three Rivers Village School and the other 50 or so similar schools across the US and the world, we paused this month to honor the passing of Daniel Greenberg (1934-2021). In 1968, Greenberg left his job as a professor at Columbia University to found Sudbury Valley School in Framingham MA, alongside his wife, other parents and educators. That school centered the humanity of children by committing to protect their freedoms and their right to be heard as full members of a community. Greenberg worked at the school and promoted the model until his death, along the way writing more than twenty books about education and democracy. That school provided the inspiration and structure that shaped the foundation of Three Rivers Village School.

As psychologist, professor and author Peter Gray put it, “He [Greenberg] believed in democracy (REALLY believed in it), trusted children (REALLY trusted them), played the major role in building a school that affords the rights and responsibilities of democracy to children, and taught everyone who was willing to pay attention that it works and why it works.” This is the work we’re trying to continue.

TRVS school meeting members and Hazelwood Initiative staff walk through the new building.Photo by Lauren McNulty

This month, students and staff at TRVS are imagining, planning, and creating the school we will grow into as we move to our new building on Chatsworth Ave. Day to day, that means students are keeping up their social lives, group activities, classes, personal pursuits and other projects while also attending and being major voices in all the discussions and meetings about the move. We’re grateful for and inspired by the work of every student at Three Rivers Village School, just as we are about the work of Daniel Greenberg, who always believed kids can do great things.

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The Homepage is a print newspaper delivered monthly to households in Greater Hazelwood, Glen Hazel, Greenfield, Hays, New Homestead, Lincoln Place and The Run. Hazelwood Initiative, Inc., a community-based nonprofit, publishes The Homepage through a grant from the City of Pittsburgh and advertising revenue from local businesses and organizations. The mission of Hazelwood Initiative, as a community-based development corporation, is to build a stronger Hazelwood through inclusive community development. Sonya Tilghman, Executive Director of Hazelwood Initiative, Inc. (she/her) Juliet Martinez, Managing Editor of The Homepage (they/them) Sarah Kanar, Layout and Design of The Homepage(she/her)

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