As we head into the Federal election on the weekend, I have been reflecting on the privilege we have to be part of a democracy. Whilst we might be frustrated with some of the behaviour of our politicians, or we might have strong preferences in terms of where our own political allegiances lie, there is no denying that we are fortunate to live in a country where we each have a voice, where we can enjoy robust debate about a range of issues and where, on the whole, we are represented by individuals who want our country to thrive. In seeking to educate our girls for “the whole of life” so that they can be engaged and productive members of society, we take every opportunity to provide experiences that will help them to develop their voices, build their understanding of the world and foster a passion for making a difference.

This week, I have had a number of opportunities to see this enacted. At Year 4 camp I watched the Year 8 leaders mentor the Year 4 girls through a range of activities. For some of the girls, this meant overcoming shyness to find their leadership voice so that they could provide direction and encouragement to the younger girls. In Senior School, students have embarked on “House Fundraising” where they have selected causes that they wish to promote and raise funds for in the coming months. Individuals have made presentations in assembly and groups have begun devising a range of activities in support of these goals which are soon to be shared with the broader school community. In addition, our Social Justice and Faith and Worship Prefects have been having meetings with various charity organisations to explore possible partnerships for overseas aid in areas such as education, health and the environment. All these experiences provide girls with confidence, understanding and a disposition to make the world a better place and give them a framework from which they, as adults, will exercise their own democratic power to shape the direction of our nation. I am confident that we will be in good hands!