Podcasts

Special: The Music of School Sucks Podcast [PODCAST #600]

If you're a new listener this is not best place to start. Nick and Lizzie from Sounds Like Liberty accompany me on a melodious journey, where I'll explain how my tastes in music were formed and how those tastes are incorporated into the podcast. Please Support School Sucks We do cool things! Thanks to your support. School Sucks is one of the longest running liberty-minded podcasts on the web, and the only one completely devoted to the issue of education (versus public school and college). Your support keeps the show going and growing, which keeps us at the top of the options for education podcasts and leads to new people discovering our work. Please help us continue to spread this ...

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Nathan Fraser – Anatomy of A Failed Passion Project [PODCAST #599]

Nathan Fraser and I have both been participants and critical observers of an interesting scene over the last decade. During that time we've watched, and participated in, projects driven by a passion for liberty but doomed by a lack of foresight and direction. Today we'll discuss how a libertarian passion project can find a way to outwit the devil. We'll explain. Why are so many liberty activists attracted to entrepreneurship? The connection here is kind of obvious, but if freedom is the sole priority we risk becoming what Napoleon Hill called "aimless drifters." A Lesson From A Book Called The $100 Start-Up: Passion is only a third of the whole equation; you also need skills and customers.For a passion to ...

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Human Restoration Inside the School System? [PODCAST #598]

We've talked a little in the past about school survival. But we haven't given enough attention to those who work inside the schools to make them more survivable. My guest is Chris McNutt, a public school teacher and one of the founders of the Human Restoration Project. HRP is an educational movement to transform school systems, restoring students as human beings rather than a vessel for standards. The organization focuses on school reform, offering personalized professional development services and various materials geared toward changing mindsets in education. Chris is also the host of a progressive education-focused podcast called Things Fall Apart. So...what happens next? Do we fight? No. But I do ask for clarity on the term "progressive education." Chris ...

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The Apprenticeship Path Around College Debt [PODCAST #597]

There's big money and big opportunity in sales, even without 4 to 6 years of additional schooling. Unfortunately, the only six-figure number too many twenty-three-year-olds are looking at is on a collections letter from the Department of Education. Today's guest presents the story of his exciting and rewarding alternate path. Nick Rundlett is the first Praxis alumni that I've had the pleasure to interview on School Sucks. He's also a long-time listener of the show. We open our conversation talking about Nick's high school experience, including a long captivating tangent into his explanation of "impromptu Speech" competitions. For Nick, high school was an often undemanding path to college, and college merely the path to a career. He opted for community ...

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The Great Conversation In the Age of Screeching [PODCAST #596]

Scott Hambrick is a home educating parent, entrepreneur, strength coach and the creator (Reader In Chief) of OnlineGreatBooks.com. He returns to discuss the power of questions in the Great Conversation, how to read philosophy, and what the hell is going on out there. Can Philosophical Engagement Bring Serenity In the Current Year? Scott and I run through some current events including Covington, AOC/Trump - I'm realizing the media has decayed faster than I have been able to keep up with it - how does this work fit into our current world? - How to maintain calm and rationality and in a hysterical irrational world - Prioritizing the pursuit of truth while so many are willing to abandon it The Power ...

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Breakaway Learning – A New Solution For Self-Directed Teens [PODCAST #595]

self-directed learning for teens

Colleen Mascenik is a retired World Bank development economist, home-schooling mom, and now an innovator in self-directed learning for teens. Her new platform is called The Breakaway Learning Project. I was very encouraged to discover Breakaway Learning; I see it as a missing piece of the puzzle for many families trying to map the self-directed education process from early childhood through their child's first professional/entrepreneurial endeavor. Many home-educated teens opt into school, either because they're hungry for a novel social scene or they see it as a reliable path to college admissions. Colleen and I envision a future when those needs can be met through other means. In the first of hopefully many conversations, Colleen and I cover the following ...

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Zak Slayback – Proven Strategies For Landing A Great Mentor [PODCAST #594]

how to find a mentor

How to find a mentor - Zak Slayback returns to the Studio of Champ-yinz to discuss how self-directed learners of all ages can build a "Cabinet of Models" to propel their professional growth. This cabinet includes teachers, advisors, and mentors. Early in the show we'll make the distinction between teachers, advisors and mentors, outline the desirable attributes of each, how long each relationship should last, the type of knowledge and benefit you should seek from each, and the weight to give their advice in the context of your larger goals and plans. Later we'll focus in on how to find a mentor. Zak has gone through this process himself, building a strong relationship with Isaac Morehouse of Praxis that helped ...

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FREE A/V – The Dawn of A New Era [PODCAST #593]

Flashback… Trump and his wall.The rise of the Alt-Right and the Regressive Left.Identity politics and a race war.Media manipulation and increasingly impermeable echo chambers. In the summer of 2016 a group of freedom-loving friends stayed up all night and discussed where it was all headed. The Dawn of Freedom Part 3 - Recorded June 2016 The first sign of daylight arrives and things start to heat up. Derrick J Freeman also joins the conversation with Brett, Darrell Becker, Davi Barker, Nick Hazelton and Lou Feen. Discussed: The Trump coin - perception management - Derrick's thoughts on Milo and The Dangerous Faggot Tour - The Stonewall Riots - gays vs. Muslims - the European migrant crisis - culture clashes - terror ...

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Jamie Crane – Profiles In Male Enhancement [PODCAST #592]

Jamie Crane is here to close out the year with a feel-good show and a stroll down memory lane. Today's main topic was intended to be fitness. When I see someone go through a significant personal transformation, I like to know how and why they did it. What changed? What worked? What didn't? When I was visiting Jamie in Oklahoma last year, I assumed he was kidding or embellishing about Testosterone Replacement Therapy. Turns out he was serious and quite committed. But at SSP we offer no prescriptive diet and fitness advice; Jamie tells his story, and I listen skeptically. Here is a resource if you'd like to learn more about the basics of low T: Slideshow: A Visual Guide ...

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The T.M. Landry Scam – How A “Miracle School” Exploited A Corrupt System [PODCAST #591]

Nathan Fraser joins me to discuss the recent T.M. Landry scandal - revelations that threaten to dash many people's hopes about self-directed learning models disrupting and possibly even healing a corrupt and failed schooling system. T.M. Landry fashioned itself as a revolutionary college prep school. It was promoted to national (half) attention through viral college acceptance videos, while boasting an 100% college acceptance rate. An Inventory of T.M Landry's Educational Promise - student led - self directed learning - teachers or mentors who didn't jump through the state hoops to be "qualified" - no textbooks In reality, L.M Landry was a predatory operation against parents and charities looking to help disadvantaged teens escape failure and despair. T.M. Landry is a ...

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T.K. Coleman – A New Philosophy of Education [PODCAST #590]

T.K. Coleman joins me to discuss his personal journey through formal schooling and self-education. In this introductory conversation, we'll cover T.K.'s philosophy of education, a philosophy of work, the human thirst for novelty, overcoming permission mentality, the future of higher education, creativity and entrepreneurship. T.K. currently serves as the Education Director for Praxis. He is currently producing a video series for the Praxis You Tube channel; T.K.'s College Tour of Bad Arguments aims to help young people confront and overcome with common objections to opting out of college. He'll be back in the near future to discuss this series in more detail. Related Shows: [PODCAST] #499: Successful Dropout – With Kylon Gienger (Part 1 of 2) [PODCAST] #454: Building A ...

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Jeremy Stuart – Unschooling Comes To the Big Screen [PODCAST #589]

Jeremy Stuart is the director of the 2015 documentary film Class Dismissed and the upcoming follow-up film Self-Taught (2019). Class Dismissed is a film about learning outside the classroom, while Self-Taught examines self-directed learning outcomes through the lives of six adult unschoolers. Jeremy already had 25 years of experience in the film industry before making his directorial debut with Class Dismissed. We'll talk about how he came to embrace these ideas, who influenced him, and how the film took shape over four years. Jeremy is also the father of a 14-year-old unschooled daughter, who is "learning from experiences in life." We talk about some of the unschooling challenges including failure, distraction and boredom. Please Visit Jeremy's Kickstarter and Help Him ...

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The Great Conversation – With Scott Hambrick [PODCAST #588]

great conversation

Scott Hambrick is a home educating parent, entrepreneur, strength coach and the creator (Reader In Chief) of OnlineGreatBooks.com. He joins me today to discuss the Great Books of the Western World and the Great Conversation contained within, as well as tips on how we can improve our mental and physical strength. What are the Great Books? What Is the Great Conversation? - How was the collection created, criteria - Syntopical organization vs chronological order - Mortimer Adler's List over 500 books, goal: informed participation in a democracy - shared inquiry model - How to Read a Book The Benefits of The Great Conversation - diversity of ideas and presence of the clash of ideas - "breaking the script" from parents, ...

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The Life and Legacy of John Taylor Gatto – With Professor CJ and Richard Grove [PODCAST #587]

Professor CJ from the Dangerous History Podcast leads a roundtable discussion on numerous thought-provoking John Taylor Gatto topics. Topics: - How we each discovered Gatto's work, and how will all didn't take full advantage of our first encounter - Gatto as the Smedley butler of school - the authority of a voice from the inside - Gatto's Upbringing: the culture of Western Pennsylvania - How Gatto invites us inside the minds of the scientific managers - A brief debate on "the best of intentions" regarding the scientific managers - Justified sinning and pragmatism - The power of storytelling and Gatto's ability to make academic writing accessible "Education" by The Kinks In a deep dark jungle long time ago Lived a ...

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Pat Farenga – The Evolution of Unschooling [PODCAST #586]

history of unschooling

Pat Farenga is a leading unschooling advocate, and the father of three adult unschooled children. He worked closely with unschooling pioneer John Holt on the Growing Without Schooling Magazine, and in the mid-1980s he took over as publisher of GWS and the president of Holt Associates. Today Pat runs the website JohnHoltGWS.com, which archives all the issues of the magazine, plus a variety of unschooling books and resources. He joins me to discuss the history of unschooling (the idea and the movement), his experiences as an unschooling parent, his relationship with John Holt and the language we use to convey our ideas. Pat Discusses The Impact of John Taylor Gatto He met John in 1991 and they became friends. John ...

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Sandra Dodd – On Unschooling and Choice [PODCAST #585]

Sandra Dodd is a world-renown unschooling and natural learning advocate, and the mother of three adult unschooled children. Her website SandraDodd.com is one of the most comprehensive unschooling resources on the internet. She joins me for a fast-paced but fairly comprehensive discussion on unschooling and choice and her unschooling experiences, influences and philosophy. From Public School Teaching To Unschooling How did Sandra's revelations as a teacher help her embrace unschooling? How Sandra was able able to take ownership over her classroom. John Holt and others informed Sandra's approach to teaching Unschoolers and Reading Sandra share the stories of her three children learning to read, and how there might not always be clear incremental steps. A Mindset For Unschooling - "read ...

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Thank You, John Taylor Gatto [PODCAST #584]

john taylor gatto

In Remembrance 1935-2018 A monologue about the courageous life and work of John Taylor Gatto, and the story of how he changed my life. How many teachers reluctantly acknowledge the failure of mass compulsory schooling? How many become disheartened but then relegate themselves to quiet conformity? How many hunt for the villains, but simply wind up sniveling behind the closed doors of the teachers’ lounge, choosing to blame children and parents? If you've worked in or around the public schools - or even if you simply endured the requisite 15,000 hours as a student - you're likely able to form some rough estimations for these questions. Yet how powerful is the voice of the teacher with the conviction to take ...

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Zak Slayback – How High School Students Can Get Ahead In Their Careers [PODCAST #583]

21st century career advice that guidance counselors don't provide. Zak Slayback returns to discuss some helpful action items ambitious high school students can embrace to position themselves ahead of college graduates in the job market. This is a proven career building formula; Zak will share his stories about how these actions benefited him in his professional climb. It's a upward process of passion-driven learning, making connections, building new knowledge based on those connections, making richer connections based on that new knowledge, signaling that new knowledge, and building a broader network with those signals. Read Zak's blog article, How a High School Student Can Get Ahead in Their Career. Details: - Why young people need to start personal websites while in ...

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Skipping College Isn’t Easy – With Alex Bell [PODCAST #582]

Alex Bell was the teenager I had mind when I first started this whole School Sucks project. Struggling through school and variety of personal challenges, he was the kind of person I hoped to reach. Unfortunately, I didn't know this until we connected in Salem, MA in 2017. He discovered School Sucks Podcast in 2009, when the show was about three months old, and he has been a listener since then. Nine years later, Alex is in The Studio of Champions to talk about his journey from that discovery to the present day. Please Support School Sucks We do cool things! Thanks to your support. School Sucks is one of the longest running liberty-minded podcasts on the web, and the ...

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cinemaNUFACTURING – part three – “Last Looks” [PODCAST #581]

Part 3 of 3: "Last Looks" Tomas "Dutch" Deckaj and Scott Bowers are film makers and School Sucks Podcast listeners. I met them last spring in New Orleans where they were working together on a project. Dutch was the film's First Assistant Director, and he told me his job on set is similar to a principal at a high school. From there we discovered many connections between schooling and the film production process, including Hollywood's reliance on "factory model" of production. In this final installment, we discuss how to film us in the studio as a scene in a movie. Tangents: long takes, "letting the magic happen," and how Taxi Driver went off the rails. Please Support School Sucks We ...

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The Public School “Solution” [PODCAST #580]

A quick discussion about understanding the fears and motivations behind the development of the public schooling system in America. Shane Radliff and I discuss the radical school reform movement of the 1960s and how A Renegade History of the United States helped to add important nuance to my public school history narrative. We do cool things! Thanks to your support. School Sucks is one of the longest running liberty-minded podcasts on the web, and the only one completely devoted to the issue of education (versus public school and college). Your support keeps the show going and growing, which keeps us at the top of the options for education podcasts and leads to new people discovering our work. Please help us ...

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The Lessons of Location Independence [PODCAST #579]

Shane Radliff is a School Sucks listener and the creator of the popular website and podcast, Liberty Under Attack. In this joint production, we discuss the benefits, challenges and lessons of a location-independent lifestyle. Shane is preparing to live a more nomadic lifestyle, so we reflected on my extensive travels over the last year, including School Sucks Across America tour, Renegade University/SSP events and my recent relocation to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. We talked about why I decided to pursue such a lifestyle, the importance of being with like-minded individuals in physical space and time, the role past decisions have on limiting freedom, the role of education in personal freedom, our past missteps when trying to discuss the philosophy of liberty with ...

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cinemaNUFACTURING – part two – “Soft Prep” [PODCAST #578]

Part 2 of 3: "Soft Prep" Tomas "Dutch" Deckaj and Scott Bowers are film makers and School Sucks Podcast listeners. I met them last spring in New Orleans where they were working together on a project. Dutch was the film's First Assistant Director, and he told me his job on set is similar to a principal at a high school. From there we discovered many connections between schooling and the film production process, including Hollywood's reliance on "factory model" of production, hence the series title. Today's Discussion: - Dutch and Scott explain where they each started in the film business - Tangent: running the camera - How Dutch and Scott starting working together - Pre-production and the script - How ...

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Tom Woods For President? (No.) – With Tom Woods [PODCAST #577]

In this thinly-veiled 52-minute promotion for the Contra Cruise, happening October 21-28 (tickets available at ContraCruise.com), Tom and I open talking about the cruise, highlights from previous cruises, and the origins of the Contra Krugman podcast. What's up with the title? I recently turned someone on to Tom's show, and after listening for a couple weeks he asked me "why isn't this guy the Libertarian Party candidate for president?" I ask Tom to provide an answer. Before recording, I just listened to Episode 1236 of The Tom Woods show, called A Thousand Statist Arguments Smashed. Also I just moved to Pittsburgh and I have been meeting a lot of new people lately, and have been having some really frustrating political ...

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cinemaNUFACTURING – part one – “Film/School” [PODCAST #576]

Part 1 of 3: "Film/School" - Tomas "Dutch" Deckaj and Scott Bowers are film makers and School Sucks Podcast listeners. I met them last spring in New Orleans where they were working together on a project. Dutch was the film's First Assistant Director, and he told me his job on set is similar to a principal at a high school. From there we discovered many connections between schooling and the film production process, including Hollywood's reliance on "factory model" of production. Dutch, Scott and I will discuss that model in great detail, and we'll question whether or not such a complex process could even work by less efficiency-focused means. We'll also tangent into analysis of some of our favorite films ...

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