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A World of Endless Possibilities

Updated: May 9

When I am invited to speak at school events, I often start with offering my congratulations to the staff for pulling together all the resources needed to build the lives of the children and young people in their care. It takes a lot of planning, evaluation, re-evaluation, discussions, arguments, convergence, time, effort….

Honestly, it takes a lot to run a learning organisation effectively such that the students who go through the school come out stellar. It takes diligence from everyone, including the grounds staff, to continue to deliver good quality service day in, day out.


I also congratulate the parents for choosing to partner with the schools on their journey of parenting. Schools and caregivers are strategic partners and when we don’t have the right partners, we end up building flawed systems and flawed families. I know that every school places a certain amount of pressure on parents to be involved in their children’s education – not only by asking for fees, but also by asking for their time. Parents should collaborate with the schools to raise fine young people.


As these young people move on, the task of parenting will evolve from direct handholding to indirect handholding so that the children can learn to become independent, responsible citizens of our nation and of the world at large. This is a transition point for parents: transitioning from primary to secondary, secondary to tertiary, or tertiary to the workforce. It is important that parents continue to collaborate with schools who will support them as they parent their children. It is equally important for schools to understand this partnership and set up touchpoints for discussions, so that both parties consistently work towards to agreed goals.


As children transition into young adults, they still need guidance to ensure that they arrive at the desired destinations successfully. As they expand on their knowledge and skills, their gifts, and talents, it is useful to walk that journey with them so that you can help them self-actualize, according to the psychologist Maslow. Walking with them doesn’t mean to micro-manage but to oversee and to redirect as necessary, in conjunction with the school leaders, teachers, and the learning support assistants that you will entrust them to.


Finally, I also congratulate the graduating students for a job well done. I encourage them, as they grow, to believe in themselves and in the endless possibilities that lie ahead of them. The world has been described as a global village because distances between continents are covered in the speed of technology and we can now be transported to any part of the globe via virtual reality apps and via high-speed trains and planes. Some of them may find this transition very scary because they will miss being in a familiar space. Some, on the other hand, will find it very liberating – exploring new spaces and beginning a new adventure. Wherever they are on that line of adventure, whether they are scared or excited, I share three important points to be mindful of, and I have summarized them in the word – BAM.


  • (B) Be independent. Don’t expect to be reminded to take responsibility for the things you are required to do. Don’t forget to do your homework by yourself. Don’t forget to make decisions concerning places to go to and friends to keep and those to walk away from. Be independent.

  • (A) Ask questions. There is a Chinese proverb that teaches - He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes; he who does not ask a question remains a fool forever. Don’t hesitate to ask questions and get the help you may need to succeed. Speak up if you need help.

  • (M) Make informed decisions. Don’t go with the flow, because someone else says it’s a good idea. Get the information you need about where you are and what you want to do before you embark on it. Understand the pros and cons of actions before making a decision about what to do. You might be unpopular for a while but like Nelson Mandela said, it always seems impossible until it’s done. It seems impossible to resist peer pressure until you do it and discover that you can! Make informed decisions – don’t go with the flow!


Think about a message you’d like to share with teachers, parents, and students around the world. Put it in a fun acronym and give it a go! There is a world of endless possibilities out there for all of us as educators to inspire our students and their parents as we help them grow. Start inspiring!

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