Each school has its peculiarities and oddities. But these strange, unique, and bizarre educational institutions are unlike any other in the world.
While most people start their relationship to education at school or college, for some learners it’s not always a case where there are long divisions and blackboards. It may not even have a proper place for sitting! While some students are bored of school buses and prefer to order homework from DoMyHomeworkNow because they are bored, others are sitting in a cave or on a boat! That sounds like an adventure, isn’t it? In this article, you will explore ten of the most unique schools in the world, from unusual and innovative environments to surprising curriculum content.
1. Dongzhong Mid-Cave Elementary School
Modern western schools are often built in an open-plan layout with high ceilings that look like caves and open spaces. Partially transparent glass walls give classrooms an airy feeling. One school, however, took this idea to the extreme: The Dongzhong Mid-Cave primary school in Mao village in Ziyun county in China was actually located inside a cave.
However, this was not a design decision. Dongzhong’s story is about determination and perseverance in the face of deprivation. Mao’s hometown of Guizhou is one of the poorest regions in China. The lack of basic living standards meant that schooling was impossible. But Dongzhong was founded by locals. After Chinese intervention, the school was closed down in 2011.
2. Trabajo Ya School
Uniquely, the Trabajo Ya School in Valencia, Spain offers a EUR100 course that provides students with a basic course in professional prostitution. Prostitution, which is considered the oldest profession in the world, has received different levels of moral and legislative acceptance. Privately run Trabajo Ya School was put under scrutiny by the Valencian government, which launched a legal challenge to close the school’s doors.
The challenge was rejected by the prosecution soon after it was filed. However, Trabajo Ya was granted the go-ahead to admit more students.
3. Floating schools in Bangladesh
This is a break in the structure of the rest. We are referring to a group of schools, not an institution. The country is often flooded by Bangladesh, so the education system had to adapt and overcome these floods. Local non-profit Shidhulai Swanirvar Sangstha built schools that can float on boats after the country was hit by severe floods twice a year. These schools combine all the features of the classroom under one roof but are unusually placed on top of a wooden hull.
These learning centers are open all year. They collect learners from riverbanks or pontoons and then dock to begin the school day. After class ends, the boats take their students home and prepare for another group of learners to join them.
4. Karachi’s mobile school bus
In keeping with the theme of blurring commute and classroom lines, a Karachi non-profit has given new meanings to the term “school bus”. What image do you have in your mind when you think about a school bus You’d probably picture a large yellow bus picking up children from suburban North America and transporting them to the city for classes. You might be wrong.
Citizens Education Development Foundation has been using innovative methods to reach its core goal of functional literacy for everyone since 1993. The bus travels through neighborhoods in four shifts and delivers four sessions each of two hours to approximately 160 students every day. The CEDF mobile school bus provides tuition to students aged five to fourteen years old. It also supports them in their application to mainstream academic institutions.
Although a noble idea in principle, the mobile schoolbus relies almost exclusively on volunteer contributions. Only their teachers receive a salary. The project was unable to expand due to a lack of manpower and key support roles. The project’s electricity and water supply are provided free of charge, allowing it to continue running and reaching more students.
5. Abo Elementary School
There have been classrooms in caves and blackboards on boats, but this installment takes it up or down a level… to an underground bunker! Abo Elementary, which was built in Artesia in New Mexico, USA, was completed in 1962. Although the school featured all of the modern elements you would expect from a modern school, it also had a decontamination centre and ration stores that could be used underground to provide refuge for up to 2000 people.
Abo Elementary was located below ground and relied heavily upon its ventilation system. The mechanical equipment needed to maintain the building’s functionality deteriorated as the building grew older. In 1995, the school closed its doors due to rising maintenance costs and growing criticism for this “windowless” approach to education. A new above-ground alternative was built. Abo Elementary is now a storage facility.
6. Salem’s Witch School
This entry is distinctive not only for its structure but also because of the curriculum. The Witch School is located in Salem, Essex County Massachusetts, and offers students the chance to learn witchcraft and magic. Yes, really! The school had more than 240,000 students who completed this course. However, it is still far from Hogwarts. You’ll be happy to learn that most of its students are part-time learners and have studied online on a distance learning basis.
Based on the Ancient Germanic principle of wisdom and folklore. The Witch School is deeply connected to religious education, touching on the relationship between witchcraft & the rise of Christianity.
7. Ruchika platform schools
There have been many examples of innovative uses of space that would otherwise be inaccessible to provide educational opportunities for children who are otherwise not able to attend school. Another great example is the Bhubaneswar Railway station.
Ruchika Social Services Organisation, India, runs the Ruchika. Its goal was to provide education for children from underprivileged families at major railway stations in Odisha. These schools provide additional nutrition and medical care for students, advocacy for their families, and mentorship in order to access mainstream education.
8. Gulu Elementary School
Shen Qijun was the only teacher at Gulu Elementary School. Students had to climb five hours to reach the school, which is located in a mountainous area. They had to climb steep turns and narrow passages every day on the Luoma Way each day.
In November 2011, the school was closed and the students and their teacher were moved to another school located below the mountains.
9. Harvey Milk High School
The Harvey Milk High School was created to provide safe learning spaces for LGBTQ+ students.
The school’s name is derived from a California politician who was a pioneer in gay rights and the first openly homosexual man elected to public office in the United States.
Many anti-LGBTQ hate organizations have attempted to burn the school to the ground over the years. However, the school is still open today and continues to provide a safe environment for its students.
10. Forest kindergartens
These outdoor schools, which are based on the German Waldkindergartens model, educate children aged 3-6 years in the great outdoors all year.
These schools, just like other kindergartens, help children to be more connected with their environment. This is achieved by having students connect with nature and create things from materials found in the forest.
Although all schools focus on education, teaching, and learning, each example outlines a different aspect of the educational system.
These schools offer unique opportunities to students to learn on a bus converted for education, or to help young witches re-connect with their spirituality at Salem.