The history of the world is littered with the struggles of people to overcome oppression, whether the nature of the oppression is based in culture, politics or class or otherwise. The kernel for these revolts lie in the basic human desire for "lebensraum", space to live. Everyone I know wants their own piece of the "sun, land and the moon". And there is nothing untoward about this. It is normal and natural. It is a cause everyone should be on. The challenge though is what to do with it when we finally have it? And how do we ensure that the legacy of the journey remains in place when we have to move on? How many times have you not said or heard it said that "things are not the same", "times have change" or "it was different before". It is almost said with a sense of resignation and defeat. But it doesn't have to be that way.
Let us first acknowledge that the world is constantly changing. In fact, the body of new knowledge is doubling every two years. Given that things are changing at a rapid pace, we have a responsibility to nurture the next generation to assume their "right-of-passage" to provide future leadership. The next generation must know they have been adequately prepared to do this.
Let me share the following analogy to drive home the importance of "nurturing to assume leadership". It is from the world of birds.
Pigeons care and nurture their young from dependance to independence unselfishly. As a couple, the adult birds feed, protect, comfort and care for their young until they are ready to leave the nest. As the time nears, the young bird is weaned from the parents and prepared to assume their adult place. The day the young bird is finally kicked out, both the "adult and child" bird know flight will occur. It is a guaranteed event. The parents have meticulously prepared the groundwork to ensure this. The day of first flight concludes the nurturing phase.
In the world of Education, we too must play this role with the children in our care. And we must do it in the same unselfish way our feathered friends do. Our children will hold dominion over our piece of "the sun, land and the moon". They need to be well prepared for the baton exchange, with both us and them knowing that at the point of handover, the baton will not be dropped. Our feathered friends and the rest of the natural world depend on this event happening without a hitch. Education, successfully delivered, will guarantee this event. So, please, protect our kids while they are growing. In three words, NURTURE our CHILDREN.