People who are interested in my ideas sometimes ask me for a list of books that I would recommend. This is the latest version. Some of them are almost impossible to get hold of, and some of them are not published in English, but here is the complete list, in alphabetical order according to the authors' names.
Dartington Hall: by Victor Bonham Carter
This has just been reprinted, I think. Most of it is about the Dartington Estate, but it has a wonderful 30 pages or so at the end about the school, by W. B. Curry. The copy I have was published by the Scolar Press in 1970, but the original was published in 1958 by Phoenix House.
The School I'd Like, by Catherine Burke and Ian Grosvenor
(Routledge Falmer, 2003, ISBN 0-415-30115-7)
The Guardian newspaper ran a competition for children's ideas about the school they would like. This book contains many of these ideas with rather too much adult comment. Some of the imagined ideal schools are very like Sands.
Education for Sanity: by W. B. Curry
A book about Dartington Hall School by the man who set it up in its general form. Published by Heinemann in 1947 and unfortunately almost unobtainable. Perhaps you could get it from Amazon.
Dumbing us Down, the hidden curriculum of compulsory schooling by John Taylor Gatto
New Society Publishers, 4527 Springfield Avenue, PA 19143, USA
Books about Sudbury Valley, by Dan Greenberg, for instance:
The Sudbury Valley School Experience
Free at Last
Obtainable from Sudbury Valley School, 2 Winch Street, Framingham, MA 1701, USA
Real Education: Varieties of Freedom, Lifelines and Worlds Apart by David Gribble
Obtainable from Libertarian Education, 19 Greville Road, Southville, Bristol BS3 1LN, or www.libed.org.uk, with payment by Paypal
How Children Fail
In my opinion the best of many by John Holt published by Pelican Books in 1969, and probably often since
The Idiot Teacher by Gerard Holmes, Faber and Faber, 1952
This is a book about Prestolee School and its Headmaster E. F. O'Neill. Prestolee is the only state school in Britain I would heartily approve of that survived more than a few years. It survived from 1918 to 1951.
Dummheit ist lernbar (You can learn to be stupid)
Angst macht krumm (Fear screws you up)
Both byJürg Jegge, published by Zytglogge Verlag Bern, Switzerland, 1991
Obtainable from www.amazon.de
Your competent child: by Jesper Juul: ISBN 0-374-52790-3
Published originally in Denmark: the translation is published in America.
Books about Summerhill by A. S. Neill, for instance:-
Summerhill (published by Hart in 1960)
That Dreadful School (Herbert Jenkins, 1937)
Hearts Not Heads in the School (Herbert Jenkins, 1945)
Freedom to Learn: by Carl Rogers and H. Jerome Freiberg: ISBN 0-02-403121-6
The bits by Carl Rogers are lovely, and the bits by H. Jerome Freiberg are not: it's easy to tell them apart.
Offener Unterricht Band 1 by Falko Peschel, Schneider Verlag Hohengehren,
A account of Peschel's eventually successful search for a primary classroom where children were working enthusiastically and autonomously, and his experience working in the same way with a primary class in an ordinary state school for four years.
Only available in German.
The Enquiring Classroom by Stephen Rowland
Published by the Falmer Press, about thirty years ago. I've lent my copy to someone, so I can't give any more details.
Educar para Ser (Education for being)
Ser para Educar (Being for education)
translated into German as
Erziehung zum Sein
Sein zum Erziehen
by Rebeca Wild, published by arbor-Verlag, Am Saisen 4, D-7838 Freiamt, Germany, obtainable from www.amazon.de
(There is an English translation called Education for Being, but I have never seen it anywhere, and the only mention I can find on the web is from a library in California)
The Barns Experiment by David Wills
David Wills' own account of his work with deprived children in Scotland during the second world war, published by Allen and Unwin, 1935
Throw away thy Rod by David Wills
A description the school for problem children that he ran after the war) published by Gollancz, London, 1960
Both virtually unobtainable - possibly second-hand from Amazon?
I have not mentioned Maria Montessori or John Dewey or Francisco Ferrer or Célestine Freinet or Paolo Freire but I think (a) they are well enough known not to need special recommendation and (b) some of them are often either difficult or dull or not always concerned with what I would describe as democratic education.
Other recommended reading about democratic education