Stuart Grauer Letter


Stuart Grauer, founder of the The Grauer School and author of Fearless Teaching, sent us the following email and scanned letter illustrating how important it is to not get discouraged.


In 1991, I opened The Grauer School (originally called North Coast Independent School) with $3 in a borrowed storefront in Encinitas, California, and the region had no experience with small schools education—at least for a hundred years or so.
I applied for accreditation and received this letter from the accreditation commission, written and signed by the Executive Director of WASC, the largest accrediting body in the nation, stating that the school was “unaccreditable.”
As we can see from the letter, their rationale was our school would need:

“to utilize alternative ways.”

The Grauer School was revisited the following year and received candidacy. It is now a $14 million site with 160 students and a network of 300 other small school educators. It is still using the original “alternative ways.”Stuart Grauer via email


Ivan Illich Letter to AERO 1992