It all began with love over 50 years ago.
Last week, I wrote about the importance of the James River school culture to the value of the education we provide. This week, I want to extend that thought and describe why that unique culture exists, and persists, year after year.
I think it boils down to this statement: "Compassion bridges all constituencies.” Compassion brings us all together. Compassion concentrates on the positive aspects of life and looks for those characteristics in others. Examples of compassion include:
- Speaking with kindness.
- Apologizing when you've made a mistake.
- Listening carefully and without judgment.
- Encouraging other people.
- Offering to help someone with a task.
- Being happy for someone else's success.
- Accepting people for who they are.
One can also describe compassion as a belief in the innate goodness and talent of every human being. If we believe in the inherent worth of everyone around us, then it’s natural to show compassion and be positive about others and the world in general. A more specific version of compassion is expressed in the question that’s always on my mind: “What’s best for the child?” This question is inherent in the James River mission statement, which states that we “cherish children and challenge them.”
Compassion--innate goodness--the best thing for the child--cherish and challenge, all of these ideas begin and end with love.
For over 50 years, our James River community has striven to build and uphold a culture of compassion and love. I am proud and honored to have been a part of it for the last 15 years. I wish you and your families all the best in the future. Thank you for being a part of my life.