vOf the five members of the Brunswick Heads Public School Primary Ethics team, three have children at the school while two are community members who were inspired to train to be volunteers for altruistic reasons.
Maryke Bleeker is in her sixth year of teaching ethics. ‘I had done other voluntary work since retiring and when I saw this advertised in the newspaper, I thought: “That’s me.”’
In an era where awards tend to be the domain of self-promoters, this award is extra-special as it’s not open for self-nomination. The Brunswick Heads team do not know who put them forward. ‘It was a total surprise,’ says the team’s co-ordinator, Libby Tooth.
Primary Ethics is a statewide program prompted by parents seeking a way of enabling young people to explore ethical dilemmas.
‘We use reasoned arguments and always look for facts,’ says Lorrie Cruickshank. ‘We explore topics through scenarios and metaphor,’ explains Martin Killips. The current topic is friendship while topics like fairness, forgiveness, laziness and lying are also included.
This team all have teaching and youth work backgrounds, yet this is not essential to be an ethics teacher. The only ‘pre-requisites’ for interested volunteers are enjoying working with children, having a strong interest in learning, relevant police and child safety checks, and being able to commit up to two hours per week in term times (for planning as well as…
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