Speaker Series: Dr. Jerome Cranston

PINTS Speaker Series and Centre for Mindful Engagement presents Beyond the Classroom Walls: Teaching in Challenging Social Contexts

The Okanagan School of Education is pleased to welcome Dr. Jerome Cranston, Professor and Dean, Faculty of Education, University of Regina to UBCO on Thursday, October 3 for two presentations. The presentations will focus on his recent bookBeyond the Classroom Walls: Teaching in Challenging Social Contexts, which provides a richly descriptive, research-based inside-look at informal education in some challenging international socio-political and ethnocultural settings.

“We live in an increasingly globalized world, yet teachers in the majority of North American contexts know relatively little about what teaching looks or sounds like in non-traditional settings,” says Cranston.

His presentation will highlight that by developing a deeper sense of critical, intercultural awareness of teaching and learning at a global-level, teachers will be better able to develop relationships with students and families who come from quite different life experiences than many of us have.

“I have two hopes from the research work reflected in ‘Beyond the Classroom Walls: Teaching in challenging social contexts,’” says Cranston. “I would like to believe that it offers a level of critical awareness and, perhaps, some level of understanding of the very real challenges that many teachers encounter across the globe as they try to create better futures for children and youth. And, I want to believe that the ethnographic narratives contained in it offer us all a sense that we collectively can make a difference in the face of some unimaginable challenges.”

Both events are open to the public, UBCO staff, faculty and students. While attendance is free, you still need to register as limited seating is available.

“As an educator who is committed to anti-racist, anti-oppressive and decolonizing approaches to education, I have been fortunate to find myself invited to work with some marginalized communities who want to be represented in the literature developed around the lives of teachers and their commitment to teach,” says Cranston. “It is my privilege to be invited to work with them and I see myself as related to them and the stories they share with me.”


About the speaker

Cranston holds a Ph.D. (Manitoba), M. Ed. (Lethbridge), B.Ed After-Degree and B.Sc. (Alberta). Prior to becoming an academic he spent 16 years in the K-12 education system as a teacher, principal and superintendent in a career that spanned Canada’s “prairie” provinces. He researches and teaches as part of an interdisciplinary, international “community of inquiry” on topics that explore formal and non-formal teacher preparation and the ethical dimensions of school leadership with a particular focus on how capacity building in the education system can transform a set of seemingly random acts – like teacher hiring – into a just enterprise.

His maternal grandparents originated from tribal communities in what are now Nepal and Burma/Myanmar and who were anglicized and evangelized as part of the colonial contagion. His paternal grandfather, a travelling book-keeper with the East Indian Rail Company was killed in 1941 during a Japanese bombing of a railway station. His then widowed grandmother, a mother of five, died in 1942 of malnutrition; an outcome of the British manufactured famine in West Bengal. He accepts a distant yet unvarying connection to the trauma that echoes through their colonized histories.