Education is a collaboration between the teachers, the students and the parents. During the adolescent years, perhaps more than at any other time in a child’s life, the level of advocacy and encouragement kids receive from their teachers and parents has the power to shape a future. The very words we say, the personal qualities we choose to stand and applaud, and the achievements we acknowledge have significance beyond anything we might ever know.
I was reminded of that in a very personal way today. My son, who is about to finish school, is a musician and composer. During the past few years he has received much and significant encouragement from a wide variety of people – teachers, family, friends and, of course, from my wife and me. And today that support was behind him being awarded a second place in a national songwriting competition.
I trust you will indulge me and allow me to do my job as an incredibly proud father. Please take a moment have listen to his (almost) winning composition. You’ll find Hayden’s name and a link to his composition in the middle of the list, and you will find some bio on him at the bottom of the page.
I trust you will always seek to recognise the unique individual wrapped up in the life of each adolescent in your Middle Years classes.