Any organisations, perhaps especially schools, are able to compile long lists of their values. A lexicon of how we would like our organisations to be. Concepts that overlap or conflict or bear no relation to each other.
At the BOS we value learning above all, and it is our commitment to it that binds all that we value and all that we do.
We value learning not in its narrowest meaning: memorizing knowledge; not even in its next iteration: understanding. We value learning in its widest sense; a sense that incorporates curiosity, investigation and experimentation and leads us to reflection, creativity, and risk-taking. A sense of learning that ranges across the academic and the practical and takes in the emotional and the physical.
The value of learning is apparent across the whole school – from the youngest to the oldest. We are all learning, all the time. It sounds easy, but it isn’t. Whatever your age, learning demands courage. The courage to make mistakes, the courage to say “I don’t know”, the courage to be vulnerable amongst your peers. To encourage students and teachers to take the risk of learning we create an environment that is safe, secure and supportive. It is an environment in which we treat other with respect and in which we welcome thoughtful contribution. We encourage students and teachers to explore; we encourage them to try, we encourage them to wonder. Then, we ask them to reflect and to consider and to think.
This is learning. It is valuable at all times and at every age.