Radicle Roots Now Enrolling for 2018-2019 school year!

We are happy to announce that Radicle Roots Community Schoolhouse will continue to serve its community in 2018-2019!

Come see us at the 2018 Alternative School Fair TODAY! (Saturday, February 17th) at the Spider House Ballroom from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and schedule a parent information tour (email info@radicleroots.org).  We can’t wait to share Radicle Roots Community Schoolhouse with you!

We are an experiential learning community where each child is seen, heard and supported in discovering their passions and building the skills to pursue authentic learning in a safe and nurturing environment.  Our culture and curriculum honor the whole child, build agency through democracy, foster nature connection and develop collaborative critical thinking through real world connections and interactions.

Candace Kretchmar, schoolhouse parent, will be taking the helm of Radicle Roots next year. From Candace:

I am passionate about education, about providing kids with opportunities to grow their interests, discover their passions and explore their abilities.  I’ve spent the last 7 years studying and working with various education methodologies and curricula, community schools and networks of homeschoolers and unschoolers.  I believe in trusting a child’s inherent curiosity to develop their interests and lead their educational pursuits; however, I believe it is the educator’s duty to provide children with diverse and rich experiences to spark those interests, as well as the scaffolding to pursue them in meaningful and authentic ways.  I believe in the importance of nature connection and have trained in the Art of Mentoring (Jon Young / Wilderness Awareness School).  I have a diverse educational background, including language arts, biology and chemistry and want to implement classroom practices based on the latest research in neuroscience and learning.

We are grateful to Caitlin for creating the place our kids love to go each day, for guiding them so deftly in resolving their conflicts, for her dedication to authentic experiential learning, for her own deep nature connection and commitment to sustainability and for creating the community in which our children continue to learn and grow.

Thank you Caitlin…for your drive and inspiration…for the vision that made a home for us all!

Come see us at the Alternative School Fair today to meet Candace and some of the wonderful community of Radicle Roots and hear about this thrilling new phase!

Announcement for 2018-2019 school year

**February 2018 Update: Candace Kretchmar, current schoolhouse parent, will reopen Radicle Roots! Enrollment now available for 2018-2019. Please contact info@radicleroots.org for more details. We hope to hear from you soon!**


Message from Caitlin, the Schoolhouse Organizer:

It is with a heavy heart that I have come to the hard truth that I need to close the doors of Radicle Roots next school year. I have done a lot of soul searching to reach this point, and I know I have to admit it, despite it being an extremely tough call.

Several things have influenced the decision to close. The bottom line is I really want to be with my own family and child more, and am planning on growing my family soon. The growth of the schoolhouse has also brought several challenges that have accumulated beyond the limits of my mental health and energy level.

Here are some other options to consider as an alternative to Radicle Roots:
Whole Life Learning Center
Clearview Sudbury Valley School
Progress School
Inside Outside School
Integrity Academy
And if unschooling / deschooling is an option for your family, there are great networks, list-serves, and resource centers to plug into (such as Yawp! in Mueller, Austin Area Homeschoolers, and the Austin Unschoolers FB group), plus many enrichment programs listed in the Directory at Alt-Ed Austin.

In closing, I want you to know how deeply I have appreciated the opportunity to work together with families to create a more just and sustainable future through learning and growing with beautiful young people. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Love and Light,


Late Summer Garden Update

The early gardener gets the cherry tomatoes!

Thanks to all the garden-sitting volunteers, the schoolhouse garden is alive and thriving as we reconvened after the summer. It was no small feat, considering how hot and dry it was. The garden looks great!

A special shout-out to Nicholas Koch and his company, Equitable Green Group, for installing our brand-new awesome rain barrel! And thanks to the city of Austin for the grant that paid for it! Caitlin and I applied for the Bright Green Futures grant almost two years ago; the city gave us the grant last fall; Nick installed the rain barrel this summer; and Hurricane Harvey filled it up. And thanks to a generous donation from a friendly neighbor, it’s now hooked up to a new garden hose. We are ready to put it to work. 😀

Rain tank overflowing with Harvey’s rain.
The kids have been busy in the garden too. They made tea from mint that they picked and that they shelled dried black-eyed pea pods last week. Many mornings you can find children harvesting black-eyed peas, a few tomatoes, and lots of Tatume squash. They also helped pull up bindweed, which makes pretty flowers but spreads like crazy and out-competes the more useful plants.
Showing off the harvest!
We have a small number of okra plants, which are producing a few pods. One of the pods is almost mature enough to pick and dry for seeds to plant next May! The kids also like to nibble on the perennial herbs, including mint, oregano, and garlic chives – a fave snack during Democratic Meetings each Friday. Yarrow and aloe are also on hand in the garden for cuts, scrapes, and itchy bug bites.
By Angela
(Our Permaculture Guru and Sam’s Mom)

Radicle Roots Organizer, Caitlin Macklin, interviewed by Family Pedals

Radicle Roots has always had a commitment to sustainability, since its origins as 9th Street Schoolhouse. For a slice of schoolhouse history, and more about my personal experiences biking with a kid in Austin, check out this interview with friend and fellow cyclist Sarah Kopper on her new podcast Family Pedals. Video of the 2014 schoolhouse move-by-bike linked in the show notes!

Creative Car-Sharing with Caitlin Macklin

Immediate job opening: Extended Day Counselor (K-5th)

Radicle Roots is NOW HIRING!

Immediate job opening: Extended Day Counselor (K-5th)

We are looking for a creative, flexible, and hardworking Extended Day Counselor for our new Radicle Roots extended day program, beginning this school year. This program is an extension of the Radicle Roots Community Schoolhouse day where our mission is to be a diverse and accessible learning community that has the freedom to pursue meaningful learning, joy, and connection.

We believe that giving children the freedom to pursue their own interests and to follow their innate curiosity will build a love of learning that will carry them into adulthood. Read more about our philosophy at www.radicleroots.org.

Radicle Roots is committed to building a culturally and racially diverse teaching staff, and strongly encourages applicants who identify as people of color to apply. LGBTQIA applicants strongly encouraged to apply. Applicants of the teaching profession minority (aka male-identified) are encouraged to apply.

Details of Position:

15 hours/wk. Monday-Friday 2:30-5:30pm @ $10/hr.

Start date:

August 28th (a week of training prior to schoolhouse start date)

Duties include:

  • Train in and carry out the Radicle Roots teaching methodologies
  • Plan and implement arts and crafts, games, free play, and nature activities
  • Coordinate with parent volunteer teachers and schoolhouse Organizer
  • Responsible for attendance, student health and safety, materials, and parent communication

Required qualities:

  • Excellent organization and communication
  • Love and trust of children
  • Self-motivated, reliable, follows through


How to apply:

Send your resume, including references, to caitlin@radicleroots.org.

Reference Extended Day in the subject line.

2016-2017 Enrollment Continues Through Summer


Although the deadline for 2016-2017 has passed, it’s not too late for your child to become part of the Radicle Roots learning community!

We are seeking the following students:

  • 5th grade – all genders
  • 4th grade – girls
  • 3rd grade – boys
  • 2nd grade – all genders

Please go here to sign up for a summertime tour appointment. Simply include a $20 late fee with the application fee. We’re looking forward to sharing this real-life learning path with your family!

Noah’s tiger project!

I’m a Calvin and Hobbs fan and Hobbs is a tiger so that’s why I’m studying tigers. I found out that Siberian tigers usually prey on deer and wild pigs. They also like fish. I found out that the habitat Siberian tigers live in is the birch forests of Siberia in Eastern Russia. They live in cold climates where temperatures fall as low as -50 degrees Fahrenheit and there is lots of snow. Finally,  I learned about
tigers’ stripes. I learned that scientists are not entirely sure but since tigers’ stripes help them blend into their surroundings, the ancient tigers that developed stripes have survived. Boom!
1. Wildlife Fact File – Siberian Tigers
2. National Geographic website

Gardening/Identifying By: Emery Christian

For my project, I did gardening and identifying plants. IMG_3822This is swiss chard, a vegetable. It’s better cooked, like kale or spinach. IMG_3823This is strawberries. I love strawberries and I have them for my snack today. There is one that just grew ripe, and I’m thinking of telling it at announcements.IMG_3824This is a cucumber. It looks like squash, but how you tell the difference is it’s more spiky and fuzzy. IMG_3825 This is Seminole squash, like I said don’t get it mistaken for cucumber. This one kind of feels like lambs ear, it’s soft and it’s a tad spiky.IMG_3826This is the mint. It’s an herb. It is kinda sourish spicy. It’s used in lots of tea, if you’ve seen mint tea. Another way I would describe it is tangy. IMG_3827I’m pretty sure everyone will know this one, TOMATOES! I love tomatoes, they’re one of my favorite fruits, but they’re not vegetables!

I love gardening, it’s one of my favorite things to do, but I’ve never really done it, I usually just pick things from the ground with the root still on with it and plant it somewhere else. Or I used to get beans that my mom never used and I used them for planting. One time they grew, but I never really got to see the beans, because I always forgot to water it. This time I got to water these plants in our garden and now they’re growing. I’m thinking about keep going with gardening for my next study. And I hope you like gardening too!

Parade!Club 2015 was Awesome! Thank you!

paradeclubI just wanted to send a shout out and huge Thank You to all the families that came out Sunday – y’all made Parade!Club awesome this year! We had a great time playing music, waving at onlookers, struttin’ in our costumes, and dancing in the streets to the Hey Lollies and the Yes Ma’am Brass Band. It was a lot of fun with old and new friends.

Honk!TX couldn’t be the beautiful transformation of public spaces without your participation, and the parade would be a lot more drab without the youthful rainbow energy that Parade!Club brings. It’s a really cool thing to see kids be ambassadors for peace through music and joy.

We especially want to thank Laura N. and Mollie for incredible seamstress skills, Kami for letting us have our open shop at the Tinkering School, ALL the families who donated materials and time for our crafting, Boone at Whole Life Learning Center for bringing out ukelele playing students, Aaron and the RRCS kids for puppet creation, and Laura B. for leading the kid krewe through the streets.See you next year!