The Wayward School is an upcoming series of co-operatively facilitated skill and knowledge-sharing events and gatherings in various venues throughout the GVR.
Lecturers and instructors are people who have a skill or idea that they are excited to share with others. They might be professionals in their field or hobbyists with a little-known passion. They could also be relatively new to the subject they teach, but can research it further and try it on for size in a group setting. Teachers teach in exchange for a complimentary membership (which gets them a discount on all other workshops), and the opportunity to flex their teaching muscles without needing a doctorate or other lofty credentials.
Because the school is user-driven, content will change based on what people can and want to offer, or what they seek to learn from others. An overarching theme will guide content within 2-3 month seasons, e.g. “Home Economics” or “The Cosmos”. Multidisciplinary skillshares, academic lectures, swap meets, film nights, podcasts and public debates will create a kind of “festival of learning” that contributes to civic literacy and community engagement by giving people room to think and a chance to act.
I am a writer, educator and artist currently living in Victoria, British Columbia. For the past three years, much of my work has centered around political theory and political ecology, as I’ve both worked and studied soil as an amateur gardener and an MA student at Acadia University in the Annapolis Valley, Nova Scotia.
I am inspired by organizations like the Galileo Society, a 19th century Hungarian student association, whose members sought to educate those who, for whatever reason, could not attend university. This organizational model has been repeated (Paulo Freire’s work, the Workers Education Movement, etc.) because it is worth repeating. Teaching, and the sharing of ideas and skills with others, regardless of one’s level of expertise, has always been a passion for me and given the present state of the world I think we all have a lot to learn from one another.
In partnership with me on this project is Heather Cosidetto, an artist, writer, educator, and program facilitator with a talent for drawing people together to accomplish a little more than they thought they could. Our long term goal with this project is to secure a permanent facility in a semi-rural location which can play host to any number of creative and educational projects. Our inaugural season of programming is to be an important first step in making that larger vision possible.