Tuesday 16th August 2016

A sure and steadfast approach reaps rewards.

Thrilling Finish
Thrilling Finish

While witnessing the First XV’s historic and valiant win against Otago Boys' High School at the weekend, I was aware of the great sense of community that existed on the sideline as we watched the game. The support was vocal and tangible from a huge number of pupils, parents, grandparents, relations, friends, old boys, staff and ex-staff, and their elation was obvious at the end of the game. It was a wonderful spectacle of healthy rivalry and sportsmanship between the two schools. Many teams are facing finals in their codes this week, and I am sure we will see an equal display of support for those teams. Good luck in all your finals boys; represent the College with pride and honour, play with courage and heart, and above all show discipline and good sportsmanship. We are with you all the way. 

During the 1980’s, I belonged to the 14th Dunedin Boys' Brigade based in Wakari. In those days, it had a membership of well over 180 boys and was led by a group of local men and women, mostly parents themselves, who, like those in the McGlashan network, were committed to the education and wellbeing of the young people in their community. The motto of the Boys' Brigade movement was 'Sure and Steadfast' (Hebrews 6:19) and while I thought that was a bit trite as a teenager, the lessons I learned then have stuck with me and have provided me with a moral compass, both professionally and personally. I see countless examples of the 'sure and steadfast' approach at McGlashan: teachers dealing with pupils in a consistent, even-handed manner; boys who are encouraged to work methodically and establish good routines; high expectations in all pursuits - academic, sporting, cultural and moral. As Reverend Barry Kelk reminded the staff this week, we are the all-important steadying hand in the lives of the boys in our care.

All the best for a rewarding term.

Neil Garry