Leading Teaching and Learning in a GSE School
It is not an easy task to get Good Samaritan educators from all over Australia to come together and attempt to incorporate teaching and learning elements with the Benedictine flavour of “faith… good works… (and) guidance of the Gospel”. Yet that’s what we were able to achieve in just one beautiful day at the Mount Saint Benedict Centre in Pennant Hills. The Leading Teaching and Learning in a Good Samaritan School six-hour course provided opportunities for the various participants to:
- find out more about the history of the Good Samaritan Sisters
- engage with the Good Samaritan Benedictine tradition
- become part of the ‘shared journey’ within Good Samaritan Education schools.
Sister Meg Kahler sgs and Monica Dutton made us feel right at home as we began our day by finding out more about our ourselves and our ‘Good Sam’ professional colleagues. The caring and serene environment in which we were immersed helped us quickly forget about our numerous work pressures back at our respective schools.
Our keynote speaker for the day was Dr Mark Askew, Head of Educational Services in the Diocese of Broken Bay. He is a gifted speaker who highlighted the need in our schools for ‘servant type leadership’ based on St. Benedict’s model. Mark ably incorporated current research and data into his presentation to highlight the importance of professional development and ‘holistic’ teaching/learning leadership in schools. In doing so he stressed the need for all of us to reflect on the Good Samaritan history and the key values associated with the Benedictine tradition.
Meg and Monica finished off the day with engaging stories about the Good Samaritan sisters. The remarkable resilience of the sisters and ‘love of neighbour’ was evident in all that they recounted about the history of the order. The strength and courage of the women who preceded us and, indeed, those who continue their work in our society today, provide a model of Christian love from which we all can gain inspiration and hope.
A lovely and highly recommended experience for all educators who seek to understand more about the charism of St Benedict and how it can be lived in the school setting.
Pedro. F. Moreira
Assistand Rel. Ed. Coordinator – Rosebank College, Five Dock