Thank You and Farewell

It is with mixed feelings that I write this post; excitement at the prospect of beginning new adventures (whatever they might be), sadness at the thought of leaving such a wonderful school community, and even a little fear caused by the unknown path I’m about to tread.

I’ve said to many already that one of the greatest things we can do is to find and follow our passions. To never accept mediocrity in our lives. To take a chance and push beyond our comfort zone, even though it risks failure. To have the confidence to believe in our decisions and to back ourselves, especially when we really don’t know what the future holds. This is what we ask of our students each and every day in their learning, so it makes good sense for me to do the same.

I’m unsure what the future may hold but I’m excited by not knowing. For all of us, there are countless opportunities we can choose to embrace, as long as we’re open to exploring whatever comes our way.

There are so many things about our exceptional little school that I’ll miss, because MOPS is such a big part of who I am and what I’ve come to be. Being in the education sector is so much more than just a job. Taking responsibility for nurturing young minds and caring for young people is way too important to be ever just a job. It’s a privilege. It’s a special honour bestowed upon us for only a short time and it’s up to us to make the best of that opportunity through giving as much of ourselves to the people in our care that we can. And through all of the fun, mistakes and challenging times, that’s what I have attempted to do.

Over the last ten years I feel we have grown as a school community and have come to sit at the cutting edge of future-focused teaching and learning. And there is no other place we should be! We mix evidence-based decisions with an innovative culture that questions the status quo, and it works. It delivers the best there is in education.

The students, staff and families who make up our school are all deeply invested in this place and the collaborative way in which we go about our business gives us strength. It provides a clarity of vision for understanding what the school stands for; our collective values, beliefs and aspirations.

With the changing of leadership in any organisation comes inevitable change, and that’s a good thing. Tiffany Sinton will bring her unique and creative talents to the role of relieving Principal from the start of next term and she will be wonderful. She will have full authority to lead the school and I have complete trust in her ability to do it exceedingly well. Our school will be in good hands!

Further down the track when my position is filled substantively, the new Principal will also bring unique strengths, talents and ideas to our school. This is something to embrace. It doesn’t mean that everything will suddenly change. It can’t. It would be wrong to try. Whoever comes in as Principal will certainly have their own way of doing things and some things will be different. What’s important is that the school maintains its directions and of course everyone has a part to play in that.

Our school is all about people and relationships. It’s about trust and respect. It’s about looking after the wellbeing of everyone and caring for one another. It’s about being future-focused in teaching and learning, and embracing the world around us. It’s about being innovative and fearless in putting into practice what we all hold dear.

We are not a traditional school and nor do we wish to be. MOPS pushes educational boundaries because it’s in the best interest of students to do so. This is the responsibility of all schools and education systems and we thrive in that environment.

Make sure your voice is heard and that any changes that come to MOPS are in keeping with our school’s identity. Change is good and change is necessary, as long as the change fits within the ethos we’ve all worked so hard to create. This school is greater than any individual or any group of people. It belongs to you and your views matter. Continue to support our school by advocating for it at every opportunity. The way in which we all work together is what makes us who we are.

But for now, after almost ten years at the helm, it’s time for me to say goodbye. Thank you for your support, your friendship and your kindness. Thank you for the extraordinary times we’ve had together and for the fun we’ve had. It’s been a truly amazing journey. Be kind to yourselves and to one another. I’ll miss you all!