Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Is sex necessary? And why we feel the way we do

'Sometimes there are moments, periods and years in your life that are a one off. You can't retrieve them, replace them. You simply have to think of them with a massive smile on your face'

Wise words from my friend Sally in my leaving card accompanying the amazing photo book she'd created filled with too many photos of karaoke nights out, school trips and students. Not together. So many people said so many lovely things I feel more inspired to spread the love.

My last day at the best school I have ever worked in was one to remember. Love was the theme of the day with even our Principal talking about love in the final assembly. So many incredible people who all work there because they believe that all young people no matter where they live and whatever their background deserve the best chance in life. That love that they show the students can sometimes be tough love but it is always love. Big love.

Like Sally said, to be part of something so incredible - setting up an Outstanding school with the most amazing group of staff I have ever worked with has been special. Though it is so good, as I said in my leaving speech, it almost feels bad to stay. And I would like to grow a little piece of The City Academy elsewhere. All children deserve the best chance in life.

As Margaret Mead said ...
'Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it's the only thing that ever does.' Everyone has that super power - to change the world around you. It's just whether you choose to use it.

In fact Mead was an impressive woman. Born in 1901 she was the most famous anthropologist of her time. Her work across the world led her to the conclusion that 'human diversity is a resource, not a handicap, that all human beings have the capacity to learn from and teach each other.'* Her research challenged views at the time that saw so called primitive societies as inferior. She clearly had love for human beings and understanding that it is conventions and cultures that shape our lives not our genes. She was also one of the first people based on her research in New Guinea to propose that 'masculine and feminine characteristics reflected cultural conditioning'.* Radical at the time.

Mead had an unconventional personal life with three marriages, close female relationships and a life travelling the world. Some of her suggestions were seen as madly radical at the time including paying students to go to college (Educational Maintenance Allowance anyone?), while another was to have a "trial" of "student" type marriage. Who would do that?

So changing the world? Cycling round it? The other quote that another friend posted on Facebook recently was by the author of the very wholesome Charlotte's Webb and the lesser known 'Is sex necessary? And why we feel the way we do'.*** (Look it up - it's a bizarre spoof on sex manuals of the 20s) - E. B. White. He said .. 'I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve (or save) the world and a desire to enjoy (or savor) the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.' True indeed.

So cycling round the world ... An indulgent hedonistic year, a great anthropomorphic study or a test of whether sex is necessary?

Only the year will tell.

And a final note to everyone at The City Academy. Thank you. You have left me with a massive smile on my face.




1 comment:

  1. We are waiting to welcome you to CA - and rooting for you all the way!