We Talk Education With Sir Robert Dowling, Head Of St Georges’ School, Edgbaston.

We Talk Education With Sir Robert Dowling, Head Of St Georges' School

Catchy title but the words are not mine. They are a young man’s description of feelings that seemed to be overwhelming him, that forced him to run out of a lesson.

Young people trying to discover and understand their place and prospects in a world that continually lurches from crisis to crisis, often find themselves in a debilitating war with the force we call anxiety, a force that seems to incapacitate, and sometimes consume them.

They don’t understand it, they just know it hurts. Their numbers are increasing at an alarming rate. The plague of anxiety grows and the system, the state, parents, all of us; we create it and nurture it. The internet has opened up the wonders of the world but has an underbelly of rampant evil.

The young and curious often gravitate to this dangerous place, their journey unchecked by indifferent adults. We give them gadgets that allow them be ever in contact with each other, where innocents are stalked by predators and bullies. We confuse them by pretending that notions of right and wrong are outdated; that only personal choice matters. We can reduce the confusion and anxiety that is damaging many of our young people if we replace indulgence with values such as respect, empathy, generosity and understanding.

Real love makes children feel safe. Right now too many of them feel anxious, lost and alone. Children value parents who set clear boundaries and have high expectations. I have been a headmaster for over thirty years and have seen previously unimagined opportunities and horizons become available for young people. I have also seen many youngsters become crippled by the demands of this new world. We can change things, we can do better. Let’s help the birds with broken wings
fly again.

Sir Robert Dowling Executive Headmaster and Chair of the Board of Trustees, St Georges School, Edgbaston.

You May Also Like