We are a democratic school that provides a self-directed learning environment for students aged 5 to 18 years old. Our school is founded on the six principles of Trust, Respect, Freedom, Responsibility, Equality and Inclusion. 

Our exact location is currently in development and we look forward to announcing the future home of our school in the coming months. Join our mailing list or follow us on social media to keep up to date with our progress.

At Midhe Democratic School students can learn through play, at their own pace and follow their passions. We trust children’s innate curiosity to engage them in activities and learning that is meaningful to them. We respect their right to choose what they learn and how they learn it.  We believe children have an important voice and right to be heard, as such students are encouraged to be actively involved in the running of the school. Through the forum of the school meeting, students can make proposals for change or debate how their school works.  Contact us to book a place on an upcoming information evening, or arrange a phone call to discuss whether Midhe Democratic School may be a good fit for your child.

Our Name

We are Midhe Democratic School, based in the midlands of Ireland. Our name comes from the old stories and traditions of a fifth Province of Ireland called Midhe (meaning middle). The saying goes "Wisdom to the West, Music to the South, Battle to the North, Prosperity to the East and Kinship at the centre".

Core Principles

MDS trusts the child’s own curiosity and need to learn as part of the natural process of growing up, maturing and evolving as an individual. We trust that learning happens as the person needs it. 
The ability to manage and understand your own learning process is the most valuable skill we can develop. 
MDS believes that a culture of respect is foundational for a healthy community and true equality. That respect must be given and received between all members of the school. This is a skill and practice that must be modelled and nurtured within the school through restorative practice. 
At MDS our respect extends towards the Natural world and recognising that many of our needs are met through the work of natural systems. Respect includes recognising that our way of seeing the world is not the only one and there is value and much to be learned from a diversity of world views and traditional knowledge. 
MDS respects the child’s right to choose, as long as it does not harm themselves or another. They can choose what they will learn, how and when that will occur and with whom they wish to learn, whether independently, as part of a group or from a mentor. 
Children at the school are free to self-direct and find their own path with their personal learning journey, in a safe, supported environment. 
MDS recognises that with Freedom comes responsibility. This responsibility can be seen in the management and running of the school through democratic means. 
The students and the staff members together take responsibility for all aspects of the school through school meetings and collective decision making processes. 
This includes laws or rules the students make themselves; to ensure a fair and safe community environment.
At MDS every school community member has one vote. There is no structural hierarchy. Each school member, staff and child have a say on all aspects of running the school with the one exception of safety, where a staff member may intervene if a child is at risk to themselves or another. 
The running of the school is managed through regular school meetings where everyone is welcome to attend, raise items for the agenda, vote on matters important to them. 
Conflict or disputes are worked out through the Justice Committee (J.C.) that aims to restore the relationship between the people concerned, understand what happened and how all people involved can work to prevent it happening again.

MDS recognises that to be inclusive, we must understand and accept that people are different; in how they identify themselves, what their needs are, and how they live their lives. 

For our environment to be inclusive we know we must actively work to make sure all individuals feel safe, respected and valued for who they are and what they bring to the school.  

Learn About Our School

Support Us

How you can support the school and help bring this project forward: