Welcome to the start of the school year and learning in a new decade. Imagine what will be possible in 2030. What will the world look like and what will be your role in it? How will we be learning? In a rapidly changing world it is important that we do not just think and act in terms of what is needed now but also in terms of what is needed in the future.
In considering how we live in this world of change, we could see ourselves as sitting on a sailing boat, with someone else in charge, carried along by the decisions of others and the winds and currents of change or as a boat stubbornly anchored, buffeted by change but unmoved as change streams past us and around us. Alternatively, we could see ourselves as having the resources to navigate and to be able to move forward with change, to be able to take firm hold of the helm, trim the sails and in doing so, influence and shape the world we experience.
All of us can choose to navigate life in such a way as to improve life for ourselves, for others and for the environment. The OECD Learning Framework 2030 is based on the principle that students need to have the ability and the will to positively influence their own lives and the world around them. This year’s theme of Excellence through Student Agency and Efficacy draws on this principle.
Agency is defined within the OECD document as the ability to set a goal, reflect and act responsibly and we would add purposefully. At Pacific we see this involving intentional action in the moral, social- emotional, economic, creative, physical, environmental, spiritual and intellectual realms of our lives. We can navigate a way forward in all circumstances. In order to act, we need to have the personal resources, that is, the necessary skills and capabilities in each of these areas and a belief that we can make a difference. Having these resources and believing we can, is about having personal efficacy. In putting these two things together we see that there is an interplay between the growth of efficacy and agency.
Throughout life and particularly here at Pacific, we are constantly given opportunities to enhance our efficacy and agency across all dimensions of life. Each of us has to take the helm of our own learning. We need to be intentional about growing our capacities, individually and through collaboration and co-creation with our crew and those beyond our boat. Learning and living requires us to bring our best selves into the moment, being fully aware and connected. To be able to respond flexibly to the winds of change and opportunity. To be open to grow deeply within and then to act with purpose and discernment.
As we move into the new year, we look forward to navigating a year of possibility as we take advantage of enhanced facilities and programs. We do this in community with each other and with a loving and gracious God who walks with us and equips us. Every day, every moment is a gift of opportunity. May we all have the grace and courage to embrace this gift to navigate with confidence and purpose.