FACE2FACE conference2018-10-29T12:32:22+10:00


Festival of Alternative and Creative Education

FACE2FACE is an annual festival designed to unite, celebrate and uplift our alternative and creative education sector!

Saturday 17th – Sunday 18th August, 2019

at the School of Creative Education

6 Rainy Hill Rd, Cockatoo, Melbourne, Victoria

Saturday, 9am – 4.30pm, with dinner 6.30pm

Sunday, 9am – 4.30pm


Our alternative education sector is unique, growing and spread right across our country. Because of this, we have very few opportunities to:

  • get together
  • celebrate the amazing work we do
  • share our stories and experiences
  • learn and grow from each other, and
  • unite and work together to overcome the challenges of our sector and uplift it, and ourselves, to new heights!

FACE2FACE brings together:

  • students
  • educators
  • parents, and
  • visionaries

from our educational alternatives including:

  • Democratic education
  • Montessori education
  • Home and un-schooling education
  • Reggio Emilia education
  • Creative education including inquiry and project-based learning
  • Free-schooling
  • Play-based education, and
  • Ecological education including forest, bush, beach and farm schooling.
Alternatives worldwide
Aussies home-schooled
Aussie kids drop-out


Unite. Celebrate. Uplift.


FACE2FACE doesn’t seek famous speakers… instead we are longing to hear from our grass-roots people.

We want to hear from you! Every application will be considered.

FACE2FACE encourages students, educators and parents across all sorts of alternative educational settings to present:

  • ideas
  • experiences
  • projects
  • stories
  • curriculum
  • research
  • arts and crafts
  • thoughts
  • student work
  • resources
  • reflections
  • opinions
  • pedagogy
  • strategies
  • learning outcomes….

things that show-off and celebrate how fabulous we are!

Apply to present

Closing date:

Applications are due no later than the close of Sunday 16th June, 2019.

Discounts to presenters:

Registration discounts apply to participants giving presentations.


FACE2FACE offers equality throughout the conference and works to ensure it is as accessible as possible.

Length of presentations:

Keynote talks should be approximately 45 minutes long with 5 – 15 minutes of Q&A

Shorter talks should be approx. 20-25 minutes long, including 5-10 minutes of Q&A

Workshops can be between 30 minutes to 2 hours long, including setting and packing up


We will not disclose personal information about you to anyone outside FACE2FACE without your consent.

All presentations including keynotes may be filmed and photographed and published on the FACE2FACE’s web page and may be shared across our schools’ social media with consent.

All participants will be asked to complete an image authorisation form stating their requests for privacy.


Early-bird registration… $230     (closes 16.6.19 only for full registration)


FACE2FACE program
more info about the presentations


Come, be in the experience! Students too! (free under 17 years)

Would your students like to make a presentation, form a panel for Q&A, or raise an issue?

Not only will we be learning from people right across our sector, FACE2FACErs will also be able to participate in:

  • the renowned Changing the Dream Symposium
  • creative reflection experiences including journalling
  • a sound activation circle
  • deep ecology meditations
  • African drumming and dance, and
  • felt medicine doll making

as well as facilitated democratic circles:

  • sharing our stories
  • uncovering our sector’s problems
  • forming a future vision
  • exploring solutions, and
  • creating a map that collectively empowers our Australian alternative education sector in ’19

as well as a whole section dedicated to campfire unconferencing:

  • this means, at the beginning of the day, those who have an issue, concern, idea on a topic they would like to discuss, present and explore with others, can offer it and schedule it into the day

as well as special panels talking about:

  • how to start and build an alternative school, and
  • ways to build community, including social media, website development, and events.

Saturday 17th August


Watering Hole… share

Campfire… unconferencing

Lifespace… presentations

9.00-10.00 ——————— Welcome and housekeeping

Introductions and sharing of stories

10.00 – 11.00 Sound activation circle Story Presentation
11.00 – 11.30 Starting a school?  Story Presentation
11.30 – 12.30  Starting a school?  Story Presentation
12.30 – 1.30 ——————— Lunch ———————
1.30 – 2.30 African drumming Story Ways to build community
2.30 – 3.00 Problems in our alternative sector? Story Art of journaling and portfolios
3.00 – 4.00 Problems in our alternative sector? Story Presentation
4.00 – 4.30  ——————— Reflections and ideas for tomorrow  ———————
6.30 – 10.00  ——————— Dinner, music and dance  ———————

Sunday 18th August


Watering Hole… share

Campfire… unconferencing

Lifespace… presentations

9.00 – 9.30 ——————— Welcome and housekeeping ———————
9.30 – 10.30 Deep ecology meditation & sound activation Story Creative Education… p’s and p’s
10.30 – 11.30 Future vision of our alternative sector? Story Presentation
11.30 – 12.30 Future vision of our alternative sector? Story Presentation
12.30 – 1.30 ——————— Lunch ———————
1.30 – 2.30 Solutions in our alternative sector? Changing the Dream symposium  Presentation
2.30 – 3.00 Empowering our alternative sector? Changing the Dream symposium Felt medicine dolls
3.00 – 4.00 Creating an Aussie alternative education organisation Story Felt medicine dolls
4.00 – 4.30  ——————— Reflections and ideas for 2020  ———————


At SoCE, we’re interested in Trevor Mackenzie’s inquiry-based learning model.

FACE2FACE is using his spaces during our conference… check them out below.

Here’s a little from his website… “With the belief that all students deserve a chance to dig into their passions and curiosities, MacKenzie has created a scaffolded approach to personalized learning by identifying the Types of Student Inquiry: Structured, Controlled, Guided, and Free Inquiry.  Each type requires students take progressively more control over their own learning.  This inquiry-based learning model equips students to become lifelong learners.”



FACE2FACE would love to host childrens’ presentations. Do you know any who may like to speak or share projects or ideas, or form panels for discussion and Q&A?

We won’t have any childcare, however being on a school campus, kids’ play spaces will be open. Caregivers may make reciprocal agreements with each other where one stays with the children while others go off to the workshops. This can be a good way for adults to share the childcare and make sure they get good adult time.

Children 17 and under are free to attend the festival, however parents are asked they bring plenty of food and a full change of clothes, and contribute $10 per child towards lunches.


During FACE2FACE, lunch is provided every day along with fruits for snacking on.

Most likely, lunch will be suitable for your dietary requirements though please let us know in advance should you have any concerns. All meals are vegetarian and there will be gluten-free and dairy-free options. Please make a note of any special dietary needs when you register. Nuts are not allowed on campus.

We recommend to bring additional snacks as workshopping can create an unexpected appetite. Just in case.

Ice-cream is good 🙂


Fortunately, Cockatoo is surrounded by some of the most beautiful areas of wilderness. The Yarra Valley and the Dandenong Ranges have hundreds of B&B’s, a few camping grounds, and many friendly people who may be happy to have you visit.

Please check out Airbnb to find a large range of affordable and gorgeous hide-aways.

We cannot offer camping facilities on campus we’re sorry!

Doors Open2018-09-28T17:11:29+10:00

Doors are open from 9am – 4.30pm unless arriving early to assist with set up.

Please enter through the main car park.

One-day Registrations2018-10-29T12:22:54+10:00

Can’t get away for 2 days?  One-day registrations are also available.  They can be bought prior to the festival.

Day passes include all talks, workshops, lunch, chai, tea and coffee on the given day.

Refunds for one-day registrations are the same as for full registrations. See above!

Registrations and Refunds2018-10-29T12:23:32+10:00

Registrations are on sale until the day before the festival online only and are not available at the door.

Saturday’s full-day registration and the full registration DO NOT INCLUDE DINNER on Saturday night.

If you have purchased a registration and can’t attend the festival, you can:

  • let us know within 7 days for a full refund, or
  • change the name the ticket is booked under (please let us know of name changes via jane@schoolofcreativeeducation.org.au)

Full refunds are only available for cancellations prior to 7 days of the festival.


The decision to take part in the festival is ultimately yours, as is the responsibility for whatever results come from that decision. Some workshops involve the use of body movement, sharp tools and/or use of fire or hot objects, and facilitators will do their best to make all participants aware of the inherent dangers of their particular workshop and relevant safety guidelines, however you (or you for your child) are responsible for using your own judgement and common sense when doing anything. If you (or your child) don’t feel ready/strong enough/whatever for something, then you don’t have to do it. We aren’t going to force you to do anything. We will also hold no judgement either way if you choose not to do something. If you (or your child) do attempt something and suffer injury at the conference, we will of course do everything we can to help.


Phone: 1300 11 66 54

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Our campus is at 6 Rainy Hill Road, Cockatoo. We occupy the new building.