In the Hands of the Future
Take a nondescript rock, dark grey, brittle, thin layers, like shale. Bury it deep in the earth, raise the temperature a bit and squash it severely with what geologists would say is a “moderate” amount of heat and pressure. Let it cool down very, very, very slowly. So slowly it takes an age. The formation of this rock could possibly go back to the time of the dinosaurs. Our young men might say “back to when you were born sir” — there are definitely days when I feel this old. However, what eventually emerges from this whole process is a layered rock. Alternating bands of light and dark —with sparkles — forming the structure of an interesting clump of minerals called schist.
This is the gist of a conversation I had with one of our young men the other day. On an occasional wander through a classroom, a unit on geology was the focus of intense attention. My knowledge of geology is somewhat limited. However, as happens every now and then, some random facts tend to stick. This one enthusiastically escaped from the deep recesses of an older mind into the incredulous attention of a younger one. “Schist!?” It took a bit of further convincing that this was indeed the name of something real and not a joke. Eventually, after some to and fro, more questions, some robust suggestions and one “are you serious sir; schist!?” a truce came about that would end in going to a higher power: Google, which confirmed, this novel fact was now the basis of new knowledge and hopefully further learning. I didn’t have the courage, however, to explain that from the same starting point, with a different journey, shale can also form gneiss (and I will not even go into how to pronounce this one).
The path to learning can take many forms, lessons, reflections and conversations, in classrooms, on playing fields and at workplaces. The final result of what is learned is often in the hands of the future: conceivable, unpredictable but not inevitable. This result for our young men will initially mean a choice between entering university or entering the workforce. Ultimately they all seek employment.
Over the last week the College has undergone a number of reviews. One conducted by the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) titled the National School Improvement Tool. The other, conducted through Edmund Rice Education Australia (EREA) to gauge how the College is addressing Vocational Education and Training. Both these processes will be learning for us and will form part of the foundation for our Strategic Directions 2021-2023. The results of our directions determine our future and the future is in the hands of our young men. How we get there will depend on all of us in the Eddies Team. We all play our part in creating the environment where learning can be successful, so that our young men graduate into the world and so that no matter what career they choose they will be skilled and ready for employment. Ably prepared, they will engage as spiritual, reflective and productive members of society, ready to make a difference as Eddies men.
Last week we had the pleasure of hosting the first Rookies afternoon in quite a while. Amid COVID-Safe planning our Rookies engaged enthusiastically in a range of Eddies activities. They played football on Morgan Oval; created stands for fragrant candles; made egg-safe parachutes to ensure there were no broken ‘humpties’ when dropped from level three of the Doody Building and a particular favorite, learned to sing “Dance Monkey”.
An eventful afternoon passed quickly, and it was rewarding to see so many Rookies preparing for next year when they will become full time Eddies men. Well done Rookies.
Please keep in your prayers the Iona Community. Over the last few months, they have experienced sadness in the loss of a number of students past and present. We pray for the families and friends of these young men that they may be supported and comforted by the love of their God in this time of loss. We keep in our prayers also Mr Tim Hill whose mother passed away this week.
Ray Celegato, Principal