September 06, 2018
A Big Shout Out to All of the Teachers on the Planet

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In the past 12 months I have spent 90 days working very closely with Al Siraat College, an Australian school in the Islamic tradition, located in the suburbs of Melbourne. Working at the school for a month at a time, I've had an extraordinary opportunity, to see, first hand, up close and personal, both the glory and the challenge of what it takes be a teacher in 2018 and also what's required to establish the kind of school culture that is conducive to real learning.

On the glory side of the equation, there is a lot to acknowledge -- countless opportunities for teachers to make a difference in the lives of the next generation of movers and shakers... never-ending chances to open eyes, open minds, and open hearts... chances to listen, connect, nurture, empower, encourage, inspire, awaken, educate, and be a catalyst for positive change. The audience? Kids! Children! Teenagers! Multi-cultural keepers of a very special flame -- the hope for our world. The ones Thomas Edison referred to when he said that "the greatest invention in the world is the mind of a child."

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On the flip side of the equation?

The extremely hard work required of teachers to deliver real value to class after class of kids who sometimes would rather be playing, texting, sleeping, googling, eating, watching TV, daydreaming, or any number of other pursuits far more interesting to them than algebra or sitting quietly at their desks. Toss in a few dozen X factors like one-parent families, stress, English as a second language, a multiplicity of learning styles, social media, distractability, bullying, and the rites of passage most kids go through daily and you have a formula for a very challenging profession.

I want to take this moment in time to deeply THANK all of the teachers in the world for taking on the challenge of educating our children -- and for staying with it even when it seems like nothing they do is noticed, working, or appreciated.

I also want to take this moment to thank all of the hard working teachers of Al Siraat for giving it their best day after day after day after day. I know it's not easy. I know it's not always fun. I know the path forward isn't always clear. But the efforts you are making ARE bearing fruit and will CONTINUE to bear fruit in ways you have not yet imagined. Stay with it! Hang in there! Trust the process! As they say, "Rome wasn't built in a day."

And to the Staff, Administrators, Directors, and Founders of Al Siraat, allow me to take this unofficial cyberspatial moment to acknowledge YOU for all your vision, commitment, perseverance, resilience, flexibility, collaboration, courage, and willingness to learn. The world needs more people like you! Stay with it! You are being called and you are responding, with nobility, love, and respect to the source of that call.

Thank you all, from the bottom of my heart, for the opportunity to be a part of what you are creating -- what one day may very well become a model for Islamic education in the West.

Heads of Learning
School Coordinators
Heads of Year
Middle Years Homegroup Teachers
Senior Years Homegroup Teachers
Junior Years Homegroup Teachers
Subject teachers
Specialist teachers
Counseling Services and Learning Support
Religion and Islamic Studies
Customer support
IT Support
Site Team
College Management
Executive Team

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at September 6, 2018 02:52 AM

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