Happy endings.

 

A proud group of new MA graduateswith tutors and representatives of the University of Northampton

A proud group of new MA graduates with tutors and representatives of the University of Northampton

All of the stresses of recent days are past. Today was a great day of celebrations with a proud and well deserving group of students receiving their MA degrees in special and inclusive education after two years of dedicated endeavour. I must confess to feeling quite emotional as each student in turn was called to be awarded their degree certificate. Each one has a personal story to tell. Along the way several have encountered challenges which would have thwarted lesser individuals, but this group supported each other throughout the course and demonstrated commitment to achieve that was truly inspirational.

Working with these colleagues over the past two years has been a remarkably rewarding experience. They have produced work of outstanding quality, have debated and discussed issues with intelligence and enthusiasm, and have shown a willingness to deploy their learning in classrooms and to report on their many successes and the obstacles they have faced, in a reflective and professional matter.

The contribution that these teachers are making in their schools is significant. They are supporting children and their colleagues by developing more inclusive approaches to assessment, planning and teaching, and have become real advocates for inclusion, and leaders in the field of education. It will be interesting to watch their careers develop over the coming years as they become increasingly influential and establish themselves as leading professionals.

In offering a vote of thanks at the end of the graduation ceremony, one of our students, Samina, emphasised that whilst graduation signalled the end of a course of study, it was in many ways the beginning of a new phase in the lives of all who were graduating. The challenge ahead lies in applying their learning and taking others along with them on a journey towards more equitable teaching and learning.

Watching these new MA graduates today I felt immensely proud of what they have achieved, and I was pleased that their successes were witnessed not only by their families, but also by many people who have been influential in ensuring the success of the course, and who have taught me so much along the way. I was also filled with a sense of how fortunate I am in working with tutors of the quality of Mary, Jayashree, Johnson and John. It is undoubtedly true to say that working in Bangalore has not been without its challenges and occasional frustrations. But these are far outweighed by the rewards that have come through engagement with a group of committed students and tutors who have been willing to take on new ideas and consider their application in a diverse range of teaching situations.

Today was indeed a day for celebration. I do hope that the excitement of the day carries on for many weeks to come, and that each individual has an opportunity to reflect upon their great accomplishments and the value of the efforts that they have made during the past two years. They take away with them not only those skills that will enable them to develop inclusive classrooms, but also a set of principles for the promotion of a more equitable education system and society. I have every confidence that the children and staff with whom they work will reap many benefits from the work that they have put into their studies. I am both proud and humbled to have had an opportunity to share in a great learning experience and to be associated with such a fine group of individuals.

Many thanks to all involved
Photographs courtesy of Varsha Rajanahally and Time Loop Photography

7 thoughts on “Happy endings.

  1. Fantastic to see this lovely photograph, Richard. Congratulations to all the students on their tremendous achievement! And congratulations to you, John, Johnson, Jayashree and Mary for your hard work and tenacity in ensuring that the students were able to achieve what they have done. A really wonderful achievement, and one that I am sure will have a massive impact in the lives of many. Well done to you all!

    • Many thanks David. Your kind words are greatly appreciated. I am incredibly proud of what these tremendous students have achieved.

  2. Hi Richard, My warmest congratulations to all the staff and students involved in this memorable achievement. I recognise a few familiar faces amongst the graduates and am absolutely thrilled – so I can only imagine your levels of pride and joy, having shared each of their journeys. I had also been following the saga of the “sisterhood of the travelling academic gowns” these past few days and had said a many a prayer for their speedy release! Now fingers crossed for their safe passage home too.

    • Thank you Saneeya. Great levels of celebration here amongst these students as you can imagine. It is a joy to have played a small part in their learning

  3. Congratulations to the graduates and to the amazing facilitators who made it possible for them to achieve this great success!!

  4. Heartiest congratulations to all graduates and your spirited team..wishing a great success and many more to come…

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