By Tom Kline, WISS Former Director
I fell in love with education by mistake. I was teaching while I was deciding what my life’s work was going to be. I was young and silly and selfish, but helping people learn made me feel great and that feeling was addictive. In teaching skills and values, I began to understand them better, and in turn became a better teacher and a better person. I didn’t have to find my life’s work – it found me.
Being young isn’t easy. Stress and strain can build up inside and you don’t know why. You can feel desperate and alone; think there is no-one who understands. The greatest contribution you can make to our world is to be the person who helps someone in pain; the person who listens, who understands, who cares. As a teacher, I wanted to be that person. As a principal, I wanted all our teachers to be that person.
In the early days of WISS, we were a small school and a big family. Coming to school was fun, holidays made you miss your friends, everyone knew everyone else. The challenge in growing was to create more opportunities for our children – more sports, more arts, more clubs, more choice, more everything – but keep being a place that really cared. It was important to build a great school with world-class opportunities, but it was just as important to know everyone’s name.
As WISS moves into its teenage years, it continues to be a warm, exciting place to learn. Our job remains the same: to unlock the talent inside every child, to nurture our little ones as they grow into fulfilled young adults, and to cry uncontrollably at graduation. WISS will always have the confidence to be human, to understand, to love, and that is why we are different and why being together is a joy.