Well…. at least it’s over!

Whatever your perspective we at least have a decision and a sense of momentum, whether it’s in the right direction only time will tell.

It’s not so much the result as the process which has stimulated some reflection: what could it mean for education and young people?

What is abundantly clear is that the world has changed in (at least) three respects: social media has had a major influence; fact checking has become even more important; and the integrity of our leaders is defined by how they respond to the previous two points!

One of the key drivers of our culture as a Trust is that we try to under promise and over deliver.  Politicians (of every hue) seem to offer the exact reverse but now have the chance to change the landscape and address the challenges that have constrained us in recent years: funding cuts; recruitment and retention (largely affected by a punitive inspection regime) and the impact of austerity on our most vulnerable communities.

Churchill’s famous quote that ‘Democracy is the least worst option’ is worth repeating as the alternatives are unthinkable.  We must therefore engage our young people in the political process and give them the belief that they can affect change. Above all they must develop their critical faculties and digital literacy in an age of post-truth politics.

Whatever the political weather, our values of Trust, Respect and Optimism and commitment to mutual support and collaboration, should at least demonstrate that local communities have most of the solutions, if they are properly resourced and share a common purpose.

As we prepare for a well-earned rest and reflect on a very successful term (see the newsletter for a record of the depth of our work) I will take the opportunity to remind our students of their responsibility to live our values, acknowledge the risks of social media disinformation and make a difference by small acts of kindness.

As we enter a new era of politics and with the potential for profound change, I hope our political leaders will follow suit.

May I wish all our readers a restful Christmas and Happy New Year.