EDUCATION MATTERS BY RON MARKS
An Arabian proverb reads, “He who has hope has everything.” There will be a lot of people who agree with this proverb and probably as many more who do not agree. Dr. D. Ramsey, in his book, “What Matters Most for School Leaders,” lists “hope” as one of his 25 reminders of what is really important. He writes, “Hope is simply a one-word mission statement for all schools – especially public schools. Without hope, all is lost. With hope, all is possible. Hope is a choice that can become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Hope is a force multiplier. It can transform lives. And more. (“Of all the forces that make for a better world, none is so indispensable, none so powerful as hope” – Charles Sawyer, writer).
So there you have it. Our school leaders must have hope. This includes principals, vice-principals, teachers, even school board members. Hope is one of the most important characteristics that can live in a school. With the lack of adequate funding to provide all of the supports necessary for all of our children, hope may be all that is left. Giving up is not an option, we must continue to find ways to help all our children. It is hope that drives the passion for success. Hope looks for ways, new ways, to support our neediest children. We must also remember that hope is all some children have.
As leaders we need to nurture their hope and do everything we are able to do to create success for them. Dr. Ramsay writes “Like home and family, the public schools are a place where, if you go there, they have to take you in – a place where hope never dies.” He continues that “schools are sacred havens of hope and that they represent the hope of all parents who want their children to do better and be better and that schools represent the hope of all children who have dreams of happiness and success.” Hope never grows old, it may even help keep us all young.
An education advocate, Ron Marks has been an outspoken member of local and regional school boards and a former Stellarton mayor. His column runs weekly.