Since way back in the 1970s, I have loved the idea of free and open education. I remember being inspired by sessions of the Free University that ran in Redfern from 1967 - 1972.

Frontyard's current series of free workshops is called a Summer School, not a free school, but in many ways, it is a similar idea.

I've been thinking all year about the lack of local investigative journalism and how many stories remain hidden from public view, particularly because of a lack of outlets but even more because of a lack of people who feel able to tackle them.

So when I saw an invitation to offer a session at Frontyard's Summer School, I jumped at the chance.

Here's the program, on the Frontyard Wiki.

Luke Bacon and crew at the Frontyard Summer School 2018

Both my sessions on Tuesday will cover similar content, although I may use different case studies. The case studies are a surprise - but will post some information about them on Monday night.

The ideas and skills we will discuss are all relevant to digging deeper in journalism and other media projects but they could also be useful to anyone involved in residents' rights and actions, development and planning actions and environmental issues. Students are also welcome. You don't need any previous experiences - just a nose for hunting down what's going on behind the scenes.

We'll brainstorm ideas - and get some basic information about researching planning proposals, land and company ownership and environmental licenses.

There will be snacks and coffee at both sessions.

You don't need to register. Just turn up. If possible bring a laptop or smartphone. But it you don't have one of those, you're still welcome.

Frontyard is at 225 Illawarra Rd,Marrickville. It's easy to reach by bus and it's just a short walk from Marrickville Station.

Frontyard Open-Door Dinner January 2018