Sure, now is the time of Waldorf and Montessori educations — an age where we let children learn and discover at their own pace by assembling corn husk dolls and baking pita bread — but the new millennium of progressive education has nothing on Burgess Hill, the 1960s boarding school in Hertfordshire, England. Populated by young, gum-chewing mods, Burgess Hill was a school where students were allowed to smoke, listen to records, make modernist paintings and do the twist. Said one student of the education, "We learn no more than we would at a normal school, but there are compensations, like being happy."

Other compensations? Taking your dog to class and wearing cat-eye sunglasses like Queen of the Beatniks.

Check out the full video at the link. It's worth the watch.

Beat School 1961 [British Pathe]