Episode 20


Episode 20: The Circle School

On the 20th episode of the Alpine Valley School podcast, we depart from life on our own campus and explore how things are done at the Circle School, a fellow democratic school in Harrisburg, PA. Guest Jim Rietmulder is both a founder and a staff member at the Circle School and he talks extensively about the philosophical tenets of the school. In addition, he shares how their graduates go on to successful college careers and tells a story about the day where the Circle School had no rules at all! Jim is an inspiration to many in the democratic schooling community, and after hearing this episode you will definitely know why!

This episode is also available on YouTube


How to contact Jim: 

Jim Rietmulder
The Circle School

727 Wilhelm Road

Harrisburg PA 17111


In this excerpt from his 2015 presentation at Alpine Valley School, Jim Rietmulder argues that we must go beyond education as filling a bucket or lighting a fire. As he says, "The fire is already burning, and lighting a fire - another fire - is both difficult and counterproductive.