ALPHA ALTERNATIVE SCHOOL 1972/2012

ALPHA Alternative School, one of the oldest free schools in Canada, recently celebrated its 40th anniversary. It seemed like a good time to take a look at the lives of some of its earliest students, in order to get a sense of the long-term effects of this radical experiment in cooperative education. [Read more about the project]

Mag­gie Mar­relli (née Garrard)
Jen­nifer Ferrari
Jamie Leonard
Stefan Lynch Strassfeld
Craw­ford (Crocky) Teasdale
Kether Gra­ham (née Beaulieu-Urbanski)
Flan­nery Fielding
Mor­gan Jones-Phillips
Lucy Falkner

Mag­gie Mar­relli (née Garrard)

ALPHA 1976 to 1984, ages 4 – 12. Stud­ied Fine Arts. Works in Home Improve­ment. Cre­ates art.

Jen­nifer Ferrari

ALPHA 1973 to 1984, ages 4 – 14. Stud­ied at Trent Uni­ver­sity. Works as an Auto­mo­tive Technician.

Jamie Leonard

ALPHA late 1970s to 1980s, ages 4 – 13. Stud­ied Jour­nal­ism at Ryer­son Uni­ver­sity. Works in Infor­ma­tion Technology/Server Sup­port. Rides, col­lects, and writes about motorcycles.

Stefan Lynch Strassfeld

ALPHA 1977 – 1984, ages 5 – 12. Ran an inter­na­tional orga­ni­za­tion for kids of LGBTQ par­ents. Stud­ied Nurs­ing at Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­for­nia, San Fran­cisco. Works as the direc­tor of the health clinic at Juve­nile Hall, San Francisco.

Craw­ford (Crocky) Teasdale

ALPHA 1973 to 1978, ages 7 – 8 & 10 – 11. Stud­ied at the Royal Con­ser­va­tory of Music. Works as a graphic designer at Maple Leaf Sports and Enter­tain­ment. Makes music.

Kether Gra­ham (née Beaulieu-Urbanski)

ALPHA 1975 to 1979 or 1980, ages 4 – 9. Stud­ied Law Enforce­ment at Seneca Col­lege, then Bak­ing and Pas­try at George Brown. Works for the City of Toronto.

Flan­nery Fielding

ALPHA 1977 to 1985, ages 4 – 11. Stud­ied Nurs­ing at Ryer­son Uni­ver­sity and Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­for­nia, San Fran­cisco. Works as a Nurse Prac­ti­tioner in Pal­lia­tive Care. Cre­ates art, sings, and plays the ukelele.

Mor­gan Jones-Phillips

ALPHA 1975 to 1981, ages 4 – 9. Stud­ied Lan­guages and Lin­guis­tics at York Uni­ver­sity, French as a Sec­ond Lan­guage at Uni­ver­sité du Québec à Trois Riv­ières, and Para­medics at Cen­ten­nial Col­lege. Works as a Para­medic. Does stand-up comedy.

Lucy Falkner

ALPHA 1975 to 1978, ages 4 – 7. Stud­ied dance. Owns and oper­ates a Van­cou­ver dance com­pany, Rhythm City Pro­duc­tions. Teaches dance.

Mag­gie Mar­relli (née Garrard) thumbnail
Jen­nifer Ferrari thumbnail
Jamie Leonard thumbnail
Stefan Lynch Strassfeld thumbnail
Craw­ford (Crocky) Teasdale thumbnail
Kether Gra­ham (née Beaulieu-Urbanski) thumbnail
Flan­nery Fielding thumbnail
Mor­gan Jones-Phillips thumbnail
Lucy Falkner thumbnail

Colour photos by Michael Barker
Text and Interviews by Ariel Fielding
Black and white photos by F. Robert Openshaw

Portraits and Texts


Press: Canada.com, The Toronto Star, The Huffington Post, Yahoo, Petapixel, Daily Mail.