Head of College

Rites of Passage

Last Saturday evening, the Class of 2017 celebrated their Valedictory Dinner. Despite the inclement weather, the evening was a wonderful occasion. Red Carpet arrivals at the Chapel forecourt were via interesting modes of transport. As they exited their vehicles, our young ladies looked very beautiful in their formal dresses, and our young men looked dapper in their suits. This was followed by what seemed like a million photos to remember the occasion (Has there ever been a more photographed generation)? From there, it was on to St Lucia Golf Course for an evening of fine dining, speeches and dancing. The Year 12’s thoroughly enjoyed themselves on their special night.

In many respects, the Valedictory Dinner is an important Rite of Passage for our young people. There will be other Rites of Passage for our Year 12’s in the coming weeks as they end their time at St Peters, such as their final Chapel and the Guard of Honour.

We don’t just do these and other ceremonies because they are nice things to do. Rites of Passage are important. They address the physical, social, psychological, emotional and spiritual changes happening in students’ lives in a safe and structured way, and celebrate the growth of students in these areas. They also help to show students by example that they are cared for and loved. Additionally, they provide a safe means for young people to share and discover who they really are. Finally, they encourage students to consider the ‘childish’ behaviours and attitudes they are ready to let go of and to begin considering the adult they will become and the contribution that they might make to the world.

St Peters does Rites of Passage well. It does so because they are an important part of a true education – an education that has both breadth and depth; an education that focuses on the whole person.

Tim Kotzur, Head of College