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☰ Back to School, Who Cares?

Head's Blog

Back to School, Who Cares?

Posted on September 14 2018

The first day of the new academic year arrived with aplomb this year for most parents. Well, it certainly did for the Tucker household. One minute you’re strolling along at a gentle pace drinking coffee and reading the newspaper in the mornings without a care in the world, the next it's alarms, brushing teeth, school uniforms, book bags, snacks and a monumental rush out the door!

The first day of the new academic year was a special day for my eldest child as she began the next phase of her education and started secondary school. Looking far too grown up for her own good (Are you wearing lip gloss? Is that skirt too short? Do you really need a phone at school?), and far more independent than I ever was at 11 years of age, she appeared slightly embarrassed when her mother wanted to take the obligatory first day back to school photo outside our house. The eldest child in school uniform photo taken, my wife then posted this online for various friends and family to celebrate and wish her good luck. I’m sure this is something that many Forest Park families mirrored too, as they set about their first day back at the school last week.

However, to my dismay, amongst the positive likes and comments wishing my daughter the best of luck, was a far more negative take on the first day back at school. One particular ‘friend’ stated that she was 'sick and tired of seeing so many photos of kids in their school uniform, I mean who really cares?’. Now as much as everyone is entitled to their opinion, I defy any parent or educator at school not to be proud of the first day back at school. Whether it be their child or not. It is a huge milestone in so many of the children’s lives and, at Forest Park, we welcomed so many pupils back to school, each with a proud parent who wanted to savour their special day.

These pupils (or kids as they were referred online) are far more than just an annoyance on their first day back to school. They are pupils who may have cried that morning as they are nervous to go into school, but found the courage to do it anyway. They are pupils who may have laughed and smiled that morning but still felt apprehensive. They are pupils who struggle to read, yet try their hardest to learn. They are pupils who are starting their very first day not knowing anyone, yet are looking to make friends. They are pupils who are taking the first steps on their learning journey, willing to throw themselves into school life. They are pupils in their final school year, trying to figure out what they want to be in the world.

They are pupils who have been fed, kissed, cuddled, dressed, carried, cherished and loved by parents and staff at Forest Park who are embarking on the next chapter of their lives. They are pupils who are the next generation of teachers, doctors, lawyers, firefighters, nurses, police and everything else in between, that all of society will rely on and need one day in the distant future.

So, contrary to some who may diminish the first day of school as yet another day (so why the photos and pride?), we at Forest Park embrace each and every pupil’s start of a new year and support their learning journey, because we aim to create the most well-prepared individuals for the future. As the late Whitney Houston put it, we believe that the children are our future!

Best Wishes

Nick Tucker

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