Dear Parents and Students
Welcome to week 5 of this new academic year!
Cycle 1 of our Extra-Curricular Activity (ECA) programme started last Sunday. The activities on offer cover a wide range of interests and skills, and so many of them were over-subscribed. The popularity of the programme supports the outcome of a research conducted in the United States in the past year. The research explored what parents want most from the school they choose for their child/ren. The study shows that parents take for granted that schools should deliver high-quality teaching in order to achieve the highest academic performance possible for each of their students. However, the study highlights that parents expect more than a focus on academics. Parents expect schools to not work towards building good students but to work towards building good people. Indeed, parents want schools to foster a holistic aspect in their child/ren’s school-life experience, where social and emotional skills are nurtured in parity with intellectual ones.
Taking part in activities like the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award, Model United Nations, or again team sports or the Community Service club, helps students develop a set of skills that contributes to building their character. Learning how to work with others whilst strengthening their ability to be self-reliant, how to problem solve whilst remaining calm under pressure, how to share ideas constructively whilst providing feedback positively, are an array of strings at one’s bow that will become useful throughout life and work experiences.
At NAISAK, in addition to those skills, we emphasise the need to ‘Be Nice’ (as part of our High Five values) or in other words, the need to display kindness towards one another at all times. Kindness helps establish a welcoming and supportive learning community in which each actor, children and adults alike, feel a sense of belonging and finds a role to play. I see kindness every day at school and could share dozens of examples: an older brother carrying the bag of his younger sister, a student picking some litter from the floor to bin it, a student encouraging a friend to ask the teacher a question, a student reminding a friend to hurry up so they reach their lesson on time, a group of friends including others in their game at break time, …
What has always struck me in my experiences across the world, is that kindness is one of those attributes that transcend time and space. Kindness is a conscious decision each of us makes, not an innate trait of character.
Have a kind week ahead!
Head of Secondary