#AdventBook2016 – Week 2: Thursday

The Parable of Clean and Unclean – Matthew 15.10-20

It is not what goes in that matters, but what comes out. It is not the keeping of the rules that counts, but a heart tuned in to what is right.

I’ve been thinking about this in relation to the several hundred school children I have seen this week, and the hundreds more I will see next week (it’s the school carol service season!). What is it that makes a ‘good’ education? Is it learning information, is it learning to play by the rules, or is it learning to be who God created you to be?

I think I know, and I hope my answer is reflected in the way I lead my school as Chair of Governors, and also in the way I serve many local schools as part of my ministry.

It is, as Jesus says, what proceeds from the heart that really counts. As an educationalist, I am less interested in “what are we teaching the children?” and more interested in “what sort of people are we teaching the children to be?” I think that is part of the gift which church schools have to offer – a focus on the ‘who’ and the ‘how’, rather than just the ‘what’. A vision of education which sees the whole child as being made in the image of God, uniquely precious and loved.

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