Around the world educators and philanthropists, for a multiplicity of reasons, seem to be taking a fresh interest in devoting time and resources to what is variously called ‘character development,’ ‘character education’ or ‘positive psychology.’ In the United Kingdom, the wealthy businessman, Sir John Templeton has declared that character, and specifically its neglect, is the number one issue of our age. A society that is not grounded in deep values, that doesn’t know who are its heroes and which lacks commitment to the common good, is one that is failing. Such we have become.’
Have you ever given serious thought to what sort of people you hope your school will produce? Whether you are a school leader, a teacher or a parent, do you have an expectation that the school you are working in or sending your children to will do more than teach their students to read and write and pass exams? Are schools just places to prepare students for their life in the workforce and community or should they contribute to the formation of character? If schools have a broader function than exam preparation what might this look like?