FAQs

Is the school similar to any other educational model?

We are a Sudbury school. To better understand how our model differs from other educational approaches, please see our blog post Okay, you’re sort of... like

What is the school’s yearly schedule?

Our school year starts the first Tuesday after Labor Day and ends on the first full week of June. It includes a winter break and a spring break. For more information, see our calendar.

What are the attendance requirements?

We are open 8am to 5pm. Student are required to spend at least 5 hours at school during those hours.

When is the best time to start the enrollment process?

We enroll students throughout the school year. You can contact us today to schedule an interview and a visiting week. See our admission page.

Does the school serve meals?

No, the school does not provide meals. Student bring their own lunches and snacks. We have two kitchens available for students to prepare their own meals. Certification is required for students to use kitchen equipment. Our open campus policy allows students to drive to nearby restaurants and shops. Ordering food is also an option.

Is transportation provided?

No, the school does not provide transportation. As the only Sudbury school in the greater Washington, DC area, many families choose us despite their long commute. Many make carpooling arrangement.

Do you accept students with learning differences and special needs?

Students need to be able to function independently, take care of their basic needs, and be safe without constant adult supervision. Our experience is that many students previously diagnosed with some kind of label can seamlessly thrive in our setting, provided that they have chosen to be here and their family trusts them to be in charge of their own education.

What about screen time?

The school does not impose any restriction on screen time. Students are allowed to use computers of any shape and size as they please. However, everyone takes online safety very seriously. Students and staff are continuously working hand in hand to keep our online safety rules up to date with the ever-evolving usages of technology.

Homework?

There is no homework. Fairhaven School does not impose any curricular activity on students. However, students often carry their own projects back and forth between home and school.

Testing?

There are no standardized tests, nor any other forms of mandatory testing. Everyone is responsible for evaluating themselves.

How do students graduate? Do students receive a high school diploma?

Yes, we do grant high school diplomas. In order to graduate, students must attend Fairhaven School for at least three years and defend successfully the thesis that "their experiences while enrolled at Fairhaven have enabled them to develop the problem-solving skills, adaptability, and the abilities needed to function independently and responsibly in the world they are about to enter."

How many students are there in your school?

As of May 2018, we have about 60 students enrolled.

What age can attend the school?

Our students range from 5 to 19 years old. Young children need to be able to be responsible for their basic needs (like going to the bathroom and eating their food) and demonstrate that they can be safe without the constant supervision of adults.