St John’s Anglican College Middle School Precinct Official Opening
Representing Archbishop Aspinall, the Right Reverend John Roundhill; Chair of the College Council, Dr Carla Tromans; College Principal, Mrs Maria McIvor; Staff; School captains; students and guests.
Thank you for inviting me to this most significant event, and it is indeed an honour to be asked to unveil the plaque.
I begin by acknowledging the traditional owners of the lands on which we gather, and pay my respects to Elders, past, present and emerging.
I am always excited by innovation and especially when it has an education focus. I congratulate the Board and staff for this initiative which is both imaginative and future focused.
This new precinct provides the year seven cohort with a state-of-the-art flexible learning area, where students and teachers can work together in visually stimulating and highly practical workspaces.
As I look around, I couldn’t help thinking that this is all a far cry from those photos we see in books, depicting classroom scenes of a century ago; bleak rooms crammed with children at upright desks, equipped only with slates and chalk.
No dingy classrooms for the 2022 year Sevens, here at St John’s, you will be the first to benefit from this new precinct but it will be there for the many students who will follow you into an education environment, looking to the future.
Similar spaces to this are starting to appear on the more innovative University campuses as we discover they promote a different style of exchange between both teachers and students and between the students themselves.
Flexible learning areas both in the classroom and outdoors, featuring spaces such as withdrawal pods, encourage a more positive attitude to the acquisition of knowledge and skills. This whole environment promotes right brain learning where the creative and highly receptive, side of the brain ‘kicks-in’ and generates a rich, rewarding and highly effective learning experience.
But it is no accident that some of the most forward-thinking companies in the world have completely re-organized their offices and created working areas incorporating similar creative design and function to what we see here. Companies like ProQuest, HBO even Dun & Bradstreet (a long established company that has been around since 1841) and of course Google are all notable for these workspace innovations – And why have they introduced creative workplaces? Because they have discovered that these spaces create happier and more productive working teams. This I have no doubt, will be the measure of success here at St Johns College.
And so, I wish you all; staff and students, a happy and highly productive education experience in this new precinct.