It is hard to believe we are about to start week 10 of Term 3! This week our Year 10-12 students were handed out information regarding course selection for 2019. The course booklets were also emailed out to all parents and are also available on our website. We strongly encourage parents and families to discuss their choices with their mentor teachers, and also if needed Mr Brendan Biggs or Mr Brad Milne.
The message to our senior students this week has been to “finish well.” I have been very impressed with increased awareness and attitude our students have displayed towards their academic achievement this year. The main focus, as we head into term 4, is to finish the year off well and not be determined by a credit limit but a will to be the best version of yourself. We do hear from some students that they have already attained the required amount of credits to gain the qualification they are entered for, my challenge to our students is to allow their true character to come through and go beyond the minimum requirements.
On Tuesday our Senior Leadership Team interviewed 20 Year 12 students who were short listed for leadership positions in 2019. The process for student leadership involves a written application, peer and staff voting and interviews. It is a very rigorous process. It was very humbling to spend the day listening to the hopes and aspirations of our young men. I was very impressed by the calibre of all applicants. We look forward to announcing the leadership team at prizegiving.
Last week members of our Edmund Rice family came together for the 5 yearly gathering “charting new horizons congress.” Over 250 delegates from 10 countries gathered to “seek new ways to be the inclusive, compassionate face of Christ in the world”. I include two paragraphs from Dr Wayne Tinsey, the Executive Director of Edmund Rice Education Australia. He comments;
“We commit to education that helps the young to become co-creators of their world,” Dr Tinsey told the Congress in his closing speech. “Education that encourages the cultivation of an inner life and generates autonomy from the demands and promises of our dominant culture. Education that celebrates the good within our culture but also offers alternatives to all that oppresses and enslaves the human spirit.
“We commit to education that skills the young to unshackle themselves from unexamined opinions and inherited prejudices and develops capacity to question and make meaning, to contribute and live reflectively and compassionately.”
I feel blessed to be part of a vision for our young men that will leave the world we live in a better place than when we entered it. The challenge for us all in education is not to be blinded by the success of academic results or extra-curricular achievements, but to see the development of the “whole” person in image of God, or as Dr Wayne Tinsey so eloquently describes “We hope to awaken in the young the desire to experience the Divine in their lives. We don’t want them to cast off their religious formation when they leave our schools, in the same way that they will cast off their school uniforms”.