Lyn Lesch founded and directed The Children’s School of Evanston, Illinois for twelve years from 1991 to 2003. The school, an alternative, democratically run school for students six to fourteen years of age, received widespread attention in the Chicago print and electronic media as a unique approach to education; with lengthy articles being written about it in The Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, and the Chicago Reader, as well as being featured on National Public Radio and both CBS and CLTV in Chicago.
The students at the school negotiated and developed their own individual learning plans; voted at weekly democratic meetings on many of the rules by which the school was governed; had a significant hand in determining the subject matter of classes and group lessons; experienced freedom of movement throughout the day in pursuing their educational objectives; and were not subjected to standardized testing and grades.
Lyn has written and published four books with Rowman & Littlefield concerning education reform; all of them pointing to the need to consider what takes place inside a young person while they are learning, rather than rely on predetermined curricula which the student has had no hand in creating nor on external evaluations of learning such as grades and standardized test scores. Likewise, his books call for learning environments which are more democratic in nature, emphasizing the inner growth of students while connecting their learning to the world of professional expertise which exists outside the schoolhouse door.
Recently Lyn wrote and published another book, also with Rowman & Littlefield, Intelligence in the Digital Age: How the Search for Something Larger May Be Imperiled, which concerns how the Internet and digital devices may be affecting people’s minds, brains, and emotive lives to the point where it becomes increasingly harder for them to seek a larger, more expansive consciousness. Another book of his, Toward a Holistic Intelligence: Life on the Other Side of the Digital Barrier, which concerns the need for an intelligence grounded in direct insight and creative absorption in the details and dynamics of one’s world through one’s senses and emotions as a counterpoint to the potentially adverse effects of our current digital age, was recently published in December of 2021.
In 2020 Lyn moved from Chicago, Illinois to Ojai California, a town in the mountains approximately an hour north of Los Angeles.