Witch School

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Witch School is a Wiccan school offering both online courses as well as on their two campus in Chicago, Illinois and Salem, Massachusetts. It was founded by Rev. Ed Hubbard.[1] Original content of the site was provided by Donald Lewis and the site was programmed by Lisa Tuit.

Website[edit]

In 2001, the website witchschool.com [2] was opened to the public. The site offers a numerous different courses in Wicca, Paganism, Divinatory Arts, and more. Over 240,000 students have joined the site since its opening.

On November 11, 2005, Witch School began Magick TV, an online television station that has as generated over 400 videos online. Programming has included interviews with many major Pagan personalities, as well as covering rituals including the Animating Democracy Ritual in Washington DC to celebrate President Obama's Inauguration.

On April 1, 2009, Witch School added educational portals for the United Kingdom, Europe, and South Africa. Anna Rowe became Dean and Head of School for UK and Europe, and Raene Packery became Dean and Head of School for South Africa. Charlynn Walls currently serves as the Dean of Academic Studies for Witch School Central.

In June 2009, Witch School added a social network based on the Ning Platform. They also added a Headquarters in Second Life.

On July 27, 2009, Witch School Live! began as a daily radio show on BlogTalkRadio.com. Witch School Live! is no longer a current show on Blog Talk Radio, but Witch School does sponsor the show Pagans Tonight, a station on Blog Talk Radio. [3]

Campuses[edit]

The first campus was established in 2003 in the Chicago metropolitan area.

Sale[edit]

Due to pressure from the town in which Witch School was located, the owners decided to move to a more accepting location. The financial problems caused by this move forced them, on 10 April 2007, to put the witchschool.com website up for auction on eBay,[4] along with all the sites connected to them including the Minispells website.[5] The site was advertised as a great business investment, causing even more controversy over the school both from outside and within. The students were also worried about the well-being of the site if it fell into the wrong hands.

The auction of the sale of the witchschool.com website was subsequently removed from eBay. The site was sold to a friendly coalition of students, and it is expected that the site will remain exactly as it was prior to the selling.

On May 17, 2007 Witch School became Witch School International, Inc., a Delaware Corporation with offices in Illinois. Witch School International, Inc. is a shareholder company that has over 100 shareholders as of November, 2007.

Witch School moved its building to Rossville, Illinois in July 2007.

Controversy in Hoopeston[edit]

The creation of a Wiccan school in the nearby conservative small town of Hoopeston caused considerable uproar at first. Residents of the town and its surrounding areas mobilized with protests and petitions in opposition to the school, and lobbied the City Council to try to prevent it from moving there.[6]

The controversy over Witch School was the subject of the 2008 documentary film "Hoopeston."[7] The film premiered at the 2008 New York Underground Film Festival.

2009 move and Salem[edit]

Finally, on October 26, 2009, Witch School announced that it would close its Rossville-Hoopeston area campus; within the year, it continued to offer classes at both the Life Force Arts Center and the Occult Bookstore in Chicago (since April of that year), and also commenced a second branch of the school at Bewitched in Salem in Salem, Massachusetts.

Notes[edit]

References[edit]

Coordinates: 40°27′19″N 87°40′15″W / 40.45531°N 87.67090°W / 40.45531; -87.67090