Kia ora tātou,
He aha te mea o te ao? He tangata, he tangata, he tangata!
What is the most important thing in the world? It is people, it is people, it is people!
This whakatauki is written on our school pepeha banner in the reception area. This people-centred approach is key to the way we look to work with all people, tamariki and adults alike, in striving towards our vision of a humanising education. The same message also came through really strongly at the leadership conference Jenny, Demelza and I recently attended in Hamilton. The idea of people mattering most and a people-centred approach was central to a lot of the presentations and discussions.
So what does this look like in action? It looks like focusing on the growth and development of people, not for the sake of our school or the sake of our tamariki, but for the sake of each person as an individual in their own right. It looks like seeing each person as a unique individual, with their own culture, identity, passions, strengths and shortcomings. It looks like multiple distinct groups functioning equally and well, without needing to give up aspects of themselves to fit in. It looks like understanding that everyone has their own story, and seeking to know and value that narrative.
The challenge we have as a school and a community is to continually look to honour and fulfil this approach. It is not something we always do well - I can certainly look back and see mistakes I have made, and I am sure I will make mistakes going forward. But as Maya Angelou said, “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” My challenge for myself is to do better in this area with each new idea, understanding or piece of information I gather. If we all look to do this, then we will continue to do better together.
Mā te whakarongo, ka mōhio. Mā te mōhio, ka mārama. Mā te mārama, ka matau. Mā te matau, ka ora.
Through listening, comes knowledge. Through knowledge, comes understanding. Through understanding, comes wisdom. Through wisdom, comes wellbeing.
Ngā mihi nui,