Irregular Schools and Schooling

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperChapterpeer-review


The twentieth century witnessed the emergence of a number of alternative education choices in both the United States and Europe. Educational theorists including John Dewy, Maria Montessori, A. S. Neill and, Rudolph Steiner, promoted child-centred learning environments with an emphasis on democratic governance involving both staff and students. However, alternative education does not just embrace pedagogy within a physical setting, but also considers alternative spaces in which instruction may be given. Both these differing approaches challenge the philosophy of mainstream, state education. The aim of this chapter is explore the ideologies and spaces of alternative education that have historically challenged prevailing orthodoxies of this mainstream state education in Western countries by asking the question, what is 'regular' in terms of schooling? In examining the ideologies and spaces, the focus is on three case studies: 'home-schooling', 'distance education' and 'Rudolph Steiner schooling' and how each approach has evolved to become accepted alternatives to education provision offered by Western governments.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of Historical Studies in Education
EditorsTanya Fitzgerald
Place of PublicationSingapore
Number of pages24
Publication statusPublished - 2020


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