“I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent.” Mahatma Gandhi

Peace is the theme this week and what a wonderful quotation from a man who needs no introduction.

The thing about violence is that it is so unnecessary and never solves anything. As teachers, the one thing that is totally unacceptable in schools, is violence. When students get referred from other schools, or indeed to other schools, one of the first questions asked is “has this student been violent?” Most other things can be dealt with through education, talking, monitoring, tracking etc… but violence, or the threat thereof, is simply unacceptable as it can potentially endanger many others and do untold and long-lasting damage, both physical and mental.

Peace is something that we all, or should all, strive for. Living in harmony with each other, respecting and celebrating differences and learning from each other is what we want to see. Unfortunately, human beings are rarely like that. It is a large part of what we do here, however, and the results are so often extremely gratifying to see. It doesn’t mean that everybody has to be best friends, because that is unrealistic, but learning to accept differences and understand that people think in different ways is an important aspect of living in a global society.

When politicians, friends and parents are basing thoughts and actions on history and prejudice, it can be difficult to resist. Having friends from 25 different countries certainly helps, as one sees individuals and people rather than rhetoric and lies. And that is what I love about working in international schools. They are, or at least should be, a microcosm of the world, where we all get along, know that others are different from us and embrace it. If only politicians could do the same.

Have a great weekend wherever you are and don’t forget to pop in and see us if you are in the area

Best Wishes

Chris Randell