In my experience, typical responses to that last question are along the lines of “because she cared” and “because he believed in me.” I rarely hear “because he/she was excellent in his/her subject matter.” These answers don’t disparage the importance of expertise, but they do emphasize the value of social/emotional learning and personal development.
While schools may be struggling with the debate between traditional teaching and innovative methods, it’s paramount to remember that it is our interactions – our emotions, feelings of belonging and sense of community – are essential to any teaching model or delivery. It is critical that students and teachers form a positive learning community in order to allow all facets of SAA’s gifted education experience to flourish.
We must both embrace innovation while drawing strength from our traditions. In the words of Richard Riley, "We are currently preparing students for jobs that don't yet exist... using technologies that haven't yet been invented... in order to solve problems we don't even know are problems yet." While daunting, I am confident our students will have the skills to succeed, whatever the future holds.
Head of School