Educating a generation of better leaders
Scotch’s calling to educate a generation of better leaders.
All around us we see leaders, but we do not necessarily see great leadership. A proliferation of Royal Commissions, regular turn-over of political bosses, divided decision-making over matters that should command consensus, biased thinking to support sinister stakeholders, unethical practice born out of poor culture and the headlong rush to meet inappropriate corporate or collective objectives all frustrate human progress.
We need to do better.
At Scotch, we are charged not just with getting our students high ATARs. Lots of well qualified individuals are damaging our world due to poor thinking and poor training in the responsibilities that surround the positions they hold. One might even say that the lack of emphasis on the broader skills required for strong leadership has been lacking in education for a generation.
What are these qualities?
Emotional intelligence, diverse thinking, values-led strategic planning, strong ethical frameworks, practice enhanced by reflection, inspirational adoption of worthy goals, resource management and consensus building are all skills that we nurture in our classrooms in both the Junior and Senior School. But that alone is not enough. Individuals of conviction are not inspired by school programs unless they have a chance to exercise their craft in a school’s way of life beyond the curriculum.
Who are our leaders?
Leaders come in all shapes and sizes. We know of the speaker from the podium and the one who occupies the named office or work space. Of course we need individuals who live up to the titles they have earned. But there is also the courageous researcher, the ones who speak truth to power, the unsung heroes and heroines who labour to deliver change in a meaningful, unseen way. Leadership can be exercised by the modest, the untitled, the uncelebrated just as much as by the one with their name on an honour board.
The Scotch way
At Scotch, all are inspired to consider their leadership profile. All have an opportunity to reflect on the many facets of leadership in both our Junior and Senior School. Leadership is an educational experience for all, in all its complexity. And the journey leads us to what is uplifting, ethically driven, environmentally sound, protective of the future not just the present, and deeply humane.
And yes, there are tasks to fulfil and titles to be earned. We need young people who spearhead and pioneer, and who challenge us in authority to do better, to think more widely, to dislodge ourselves from our complacency. Opportunities across the spectrum of Scotch life proliferate. As the range of leadership opportunities broadens, the richness of our life deepens and our education becomes more effective, more relevant, more purposeful.
But we cannot offer everyone such public acclaim. How we help students navigate rejection, but not to lose hope or momentum towards leadership in the future is equally important to us.
We are what we celebrate. We are what we celebrate with authenticity. Scotch will suffuse its students with a sense of mission and the tools to do whatever job of leadership they are called to do, whether they have a title or not. This is no mere educational process, but a launchpad to develop the problem-solvers, flagbearers and influential thinkers of the future, so our world evolves to a place of genuine peace and broadly shared prosperity.
A school with our history and prestige should aspire to nothing less.