In our busy lives it is always helpful to retain perspective and this week we have had a couple of occasions that have provided just such opportunities.
We had the School Council (Governors) with us yesterday and having a set of objective eyes and ears amongst us is so useful – rather like when someone else makes a positive comment about your own children where you may have fallen into the trap of focussing on their shortcomings. They very much enjoyed time with children, sitting in classes, being in the woods, dining with them and also chances to chat to staff about all manner of things. We have several Council members who are very experienced educators and they bring a great deal of wisdom, common sense and support, yet are not worried about addressing matters for attention through supportive critique. I am very grateful for all they do across our age range 2-18.
Earlier in the week I was at the Heads’ conference for all boarding schools nationally and as with all sectors no doubt, one of the more beneficial components is to exchange views, situations, anecdotes, case studies, trends and generally chew the cud with your peers. All the time you are subliminally collating intel and also benchmarking against your own setting. Not denying that in a world of some uncertainties the strains and stresses do not exist, and also fully accepting that it is not always true for everyone, I certainly felt that from all aspects of child, parent, staff and whole school we are in a good place: happiness in the community, collective endeavour, richness of experience, positive outcomes and healthy mental state.
I say again, no organism of human beings is perfect – we are imperfect animals – but it has been reassuring to touch base recently with external sounding boards and sense we continue along the right lines.