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Message from the Chair – January 2024

In June we focus on our value of celebration and there are many opportunities to practice and demonstrate our value of celebration this month. One of the celebrations that has become increasingly important during my time on the Board is Pride. And June is Pride month!

Submitted by Chair Amanda Amaral

January 10, 2024

Happy New Year and welcome back to the Sunshine Coast learning community! Just like September, January brings with it as much excitement and hope about what the year ahead can be. 2024 will hold some significant milestones for the Sunshine Coast Board of Education:

       – Welcoming our new trustee Tracey McClelland in to our work

       – Continuing the journey of developing our new strategic plan

       – Celebrating and commencing our journey as set out in our new strategic plan

       – Celebrating the class of 2024 and all of their contributions to our learning community

The Board holds hope for each of the year’s milestones. Each one is notable for the significant work and effort that is required to achieve it and each one represents a journey of which the experience to arrive has the potential to provide value that rivals the milestone we are celebrating. For example, the experience of the December DSLT student strategic planning forum has significant value on its own. The time spent with our learning community and the ideas and wisdom gathered from discussions will strengthen our plan. This wisdom will live on in the work that we do because it becomes part of our strategic plan, and over time these contributions can have a more powerful impact than the milestone of launching the new plan. Pause and think about the milestones you will celebrate this year and what has made them possible. Is the sum greater than its parts or is the journey better than the destination? Can it be both?

In January the Chair’s report has typically started to enter into monthly reflections on our values. With our new values approved I am going to take this opportunity examine our values month by month. This month we will explore the value of:


Growing through holistic, reflexive, reflective, experiential, relational and personalized learning.*

  (*As reflected in the First Peoples Principles of Learning)

The First Peoples Principles of Learning were created nearly a decade ago to support the teaching of English First Peoples. The spirit and intention of these principles is about honouring the individual and the communities that the individual is part of. Learning is understood in the context you practice it in. These principles also have an expectation of a growth mindset and a lifelong commitment to learning.

With this, I encourage us all to take some time to understand and explore the context in which we arrive at learning. What has been modelled to you in home and in your community about learning? What are your beliefs about learning? What powerful experiences have you had that confirm your ability to learn? How do experiences become learning for you?

Amanda Amaral


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