Goodbye… How do you say it?

I am fast approaching the end of my service to only my second full time school. I have been an Assistant Head Teacher there for just under four years. I started this blog when I joined there and have since held many different roles and have learnt a great deal. I am truly grateful for all that I have been involved in.

The first school I worked in, The Bulmershe School, was also the school I attended as a student. My farewell was grand and lots of people went to an extraordinary effort to show that I will be missed. It meant a lot. My students gave me some amazing gifts, most of them I still have today, some on display in my current office. However, it was, all about me.

It was all about saying good bye to me, and what I have done and where I am going…

In my current school I am planning on saying good bye in a different way. I will of course do the usual, go out for a few meals, drinks and say goodbye in briefing too. However, this coming week, I will be holding short assemblies for each year group. Years 7-11.

Why?

I will be going in to share these messages accompanied by the images below. As this time round me leaving isn’t about me, it is about them. It is about me saying good bye to the students and thanking them and hopefully, inspiring them, one last time.

Slide1

I will share the news with the students, that the rumours are true and that I am indeed leaving.

I will wait for the cheers!!

My opening slide features the work of Banksy. Students that have spent any time in my offices will have noticed these images on the walls. I always ask them to tell me what they see, what they think they mean and how life can be viewed so differently depending on your perspective. We then often have discussions about this further…

Slide2

I will then go on to tell the students that I have been at Cheney for just under four years and share with them how long they have been here. I will ask them to remember their first day and think how quickly the time has gone…

Slide3

My main messages will be these six points.

  1. Be Selfish– I will tell the students that they must be selfish with their learning. They must seek out all the help and support they need. They must ask questions to find out more. They must enquire from others, they must be persistent with their approach to learning. They must make it about them. This is not to say, they disrupt, that they must distract and they must deduct from others. They should think for themselves and then act for others.
  2. Be The First- I will tell students, remind students, share with students that I was the first person in my family to get any qualifications, go to University and get a professional job. I will ask them, what they will become the first of, doing what? I will also share that even if they aren’t the first, that doesnt stop them making, creating and shaping others to become The First Ofs. I will tell them not to be put off by inequality but to challenge it head on. With clarity, intelligence and a clear head. I will tell them to remember to be themselves to help others. 
  3. Now For Later- I will talk to the students about my motto. Is what I am doing now, worth more or less than later. I will implore students to think about delayed gratification and not always want the quick fix. I will tell them to ask themselves the question is this worth the rest of my life?
  4. Never Too Late- I will be aiming this mainly at Year 11s, however, the message is important for all. I will beam to the students that it is never too late to make a change, to straighten up, to work harder, smarter, longer, faster. That we can all have a chance of success, just we need to determine what success looks like for us.
  5. Stand Up- I will briefly talk about the idea of putting one self forward. Never wait for the opportunity. Seek it out. Don’t leave yourself wondering, what if and I wish I had of…I saw a great example of this by NCS, the speaker simply said I need a volunteer. A student stood up, he walked over and handed him a voucher for Nando’s. He said, thats just for standing up and putting yourself forward. The others that wondered should I, could I, are now thinking, I wish I…
  6. Action Leads to Motivation- I will finish my main messages by saying, by doing, you become motivated. Not by being motivated will you do. You will always do better when you start and when you continue…

Slide4

It is also important for me to remind students to believe in themselves, laugh with their families and friends, to dance, live life by inspiring themselves and others. Always imagine what love is like and to dream big. If they have not been fortunate enough to be loved, ensure they love others.

Slide5

I will end by saying sorry to anybody I have shouted at, been ‘mean to’ or ‘picked on.’ But, I will say, those who I have done this to most, has been because I care.

So, my leaving method will be through year group assemblies. Followed up by a personal postcard to EVERY single one of my students. In these postcards I will write what they do well as a student, what they need to do to improve and one life tip for them. It will just be my view, but hopefully, I can be more like Mr Wickens for these students.

 

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One comment

  1. Many congratulations on your new role, Amjad – I had missed this!

    I always found leaving schools hard. I don’t at all mind public speaking or being the centre of attention, but when I’m feeling emotional, it’s different. But one of the things I realised is that it’s absolutely fine to show the emotion, as it shows you care, and to a degree I think the pupils and staff expect it. I just needed to ensure I could control it so that it didn’t stop me saying exactly what I wanted to say!

    Enjoy your leaving events, and very best wishes for the future.

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