Did you get a university offer this week?
Universities in Australia are sending out their offers to new students this week. For Western Australia, first round offers were released yesterday. Many students will receive an offer, hopefully their first preference, but many other students won’t. Why? For some it could be because their ATAR score was too low and beneath the cutoff score for course entry. However, it could also be because fewer students are being offered a place this year, as universities respond to the federal government budget cuts.
There is a phrase in the Address to the Parents, in our Form for the Baptism of Infants, that we may have overlooked a bit, even though we hear it every time when a child is being baptized. That are the words ‘as soon as he (she) is able to understand‘. What does that mean?
In education, including Christian (Reformed) education, the practice exists to place students in classes according to their calendar age. This is done with the conviction that it is vitally important for children to develop amongst peers, amongst those who match them in age. Whilst there is much to be said for this in terms of general development and in the realm of incidental learning, this author concludes that in the field of targeted, formal learning such an approach is actually detrimental to the academic pursuit of excellence at each individual’s level of ability. He, the author, would go so far as to state that many students in such a system are actually exposed to – albeit unintended – cruelty.
When have I finished learning? Has a graduating student finished learning when they graduate from high school? Have we completed our learning of the Heidelberg Catechism when we do our Profession of Faith? Or is it after we’ve graduated from college or university that we are finally finished learning? At this time of year, many are busy with intensive learning as they study hard and write exams, or are examined by Consistory, but then this period of learning ends when they graduate or do their Profession of Faith. However, learning itself never ends. Learning is a lifelong task that involves not only formal learning, but also informal learning that takes place throughout one’s lifetime. In fact, learning is a crucial component to the spread of the gospel!