Focus On: Re-Imagined Learning Centre

The Re-imagined Learning Centre is a school that believes in the traditional African saying: “It takes a community to raise a child”.

re6It was founded by Che’vanni Davids, Cheree Springfield and Nkululeko Phakati in 2016. The initial intention of the founders was to start a home schooling initiative for a group of kids who had a history with conditions such as OCD, ADHD and other anxiety related illnesses. Che’vanni calls it “Institutionalised trauma” from a schooling system that is failing to meet the needs of these children. At the Re-imagined Learning Centre these kids are finally feeling good enough after assimilating the idea of failure from early ages.

This model of schooling finds more lessons in an outdoor environment which allows for more running, screaming, dancing and falling. The environment is less authoritative with fewer rules, no bells and no school uniform. The Re-imagined Learning Centre embraces the idea of a human occupying a space full of stimuli and promotes human interaction on various levels. The serene classroom environment is characterised by many plants, trees and tiny animals.

To the students of the learning centre, it is a place that is full of knowledge with groups of people who gather to share wisdom, creativity and love. -This is the ethos of the Re-Imagined Learning Centre

re1The learning centre has officially been afforded the opportunity to occupy the renowned Troyville Tea Garden. This had previously been the scene for artists from around Africa to share ideas, music and art. The organisation began with a community learning and resource centre that included books, a study area, WiFi and computers. The Centre has expanded and now has the ability to accommodate more kids, teens and adults. Tests and assessments are managed differently. Students are always encouraged to try again, where as previously they may have feared being wrong. The students at the Learning Centre are encouraged to collaborate instead of compete in their learning environment.

There will be a lot of activity at the school with a variety of workshops and events scheduled for this year. The school has plans to host music camps where young individuals have the opportunity to exchange artistry and skills in an intimate space with successful and talented artists from around the world. This Centre has initiated the construction of workshops to teach communities how to begin living more sustainable, healthier and holistic lives. The garden project is an additional strategy to help feed and educate the existing community of Troyville.

The Re-imagined Learning Community echo’s its philosophy in the chosen name. It welcomes people of all ages to ‘Lead and Create’ their own journey.

Firstly, by exploring a stimulating environment that nurtures your development holistically and collaboratively.

Secondly, by promoting innovative learning that recognises the infinite potential of each human being. Attempt to enable people around you to continuously ‘learn, unlearn, and relearn’.

Thirdly, develop your capacity for deep thinking, reflecting, feeling, understanding, sharing, creating and taking on personal responsibility.

On the 4th of March 2017 they plan to share their space with the public through an official launch and fundraiser for The Re-imagined Learning Community “Cabanga uku’sasa”.  There will be a market, live music, round table conversations, dancing, live graffiti and mural art. The organisation believes that our society needs more spaces such as these for young people of the world. This is their effort to help bring unity, humility and love to a world that seems so broken at times.


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