14 August 2017

Respect and Integrity

In school we spend a lot of time talking about the values we want to see demonstrated by our students. We put in place programmes and policies, approaches and events that, we hope, will lead our students to understand and demonstrate the qualities we value. The IB learner profile is a set of qualities we believe will develop a well-rounded person who is internationally minded and committed to learning. Supporting the learner profile are the IB attitudes - a list of qualities we want our students to demonstrate.

Two of these qualities are respect and integrity. The IB defines these as:

Respect: respecting themselves, others and the world around them.

Integrity: being honest and demonstrating a considerable sense of fairness.

The journey to achieving these may take some students their entire time in the IB. Others may still be working on aspects of the profile and attitudes as adults. Being at school each day and seeing our boys at work and play, I am fortunate to see them develop in many ways. They show their respect for themselves through the effort they put into their learning and the way they conduct themselves, proclaiming the type a person they are growing to be. They treat each other fairly, most of the time, whether at play or in the classroom. They approach the opportunities they have been given with enthusiasm and show great respect for their learning environment, their teachers and their classmates.

Developing integrity in young boys is a challenge in many ways, as the drive to win or to be first is strong in many of them. They engage in sport outside and inside school that progressively focuses on winning. Being able to compete, whether structured or unstructured, in a fair manner is key. We work with our boys to instil a love of taking part as well as a love of competition. We hope and expect that they will see the value of fairness in all they do, in their approach to their learning, sport and play. It can be easy to fudge the rules or copy something from sources and not credit it if you do not fully understand the impact on your own integrity and self-respect.

In the Junior School we begin the work of the developing the boy into an adult who will show these important qualities in all aspects of his life. We teach them that breaking rules in a simple playground game is as unfair as cheating in more significant endeavours. This journey is long but witnessing the boys understanding the importance of these qualities, even after a time, is greatly rewarding.

I was fortunate to witness our boys compete with great integrity at the Inter-House Swimming Carnival and the JPSSA Inter-School competition. They supported each other, cheered on the success of their friends and classmates, and demonstrated respect and fairness for themselves and their fellow competitors. These events are but one of the many ways we teach, develop and celebrate the respect and integrity of our boys.

John Stewart

Head of Junior School