Convening Engaged Minds: Leader to Leader Program

Prime Minister Paul Martin chatting with me

I had the GREAT priviledge of participating in the C21 Canada Summit. It was fantastic reconnecting with people, many of whom were strangers just one year ago, but now strangely feel like long lost friends. The power of a face to face, social media to maintain contact and a common goal. Thanks for going out of your way to pick me up from Downtown TO Camille. Thanks to Zoe for making me feel so welcome and Thanks to Rod for challenging my perspective and making me feel my perspective is valued. The talk this year was great and necessary. I wonder if the next year needs to be the teacher, student voice. There seemed to be consensus that we agree with the 21C in principal, but few people in industry, or politics or classrooms have any real concrete examples to follow. They are out there, let’s show them off. Let’s give them glimpses of the promised land so that they can create their own!!

One of my educational mentors and friends won an award for international educational development. I was so happy when I realized you won this award.

Thanks for the inspiration personally and professionally, Bill.

And getting a chance to listen to former Prime Minister Paul Martin talk about education was inspirational. It means something more because he is waking his talk. He said many cool things, but there was one thing that he said that seems to obvious to someone as simple as me. It was almost a “self evident truth”. I am paraphrasing his content. He was much more eloquent.

Any jurisdiction that cuts funding to education, particularly in a deficit budget is causing an exponentially step spiral downwards. You cut out the hope of the future. It is paramount to child abuse to take away the education of a young person. We do not have the right. You can put off building a road for a year or two. You can put off having a balanced budget for a year or two. You will get there. But if you postpone funding for even 1 year, that 6 year old is damaged for life with impacts that last generations. If it is self evident, obvious and paramount, why is education often the brunt of budget cut??

It is like we know that smoking is unhealthy and complain about our level of health as we puff another cigarette. Maybe education should be politically agnostic somehow?

A particular thanks goes out to SMART Tech for sponsoring my attendance. Yet again, they are most generous. Thank you to RHS and Anglophone East for allowing me to be away.