MPA Now Spring 2018
The terrible tragedy at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida has shaken many of us to our core. As parents, it gives rise to our fears and form to our frustrations. The instability and uncertainty of our local, national, and global communities can also be a source of disillusionment with the status quo. This edition of MPA Now is focused on the school's commitment to character education, not only as an important part of a whole-child education, but also as an imperative to make the world a better place.
In today's world, an excellent education is crucial, but it is not enough. As a parent, and as an educator, I see ever more clearly the need for moral, ethical leaders who are committed to creatively addressing the challenges we are facing. Cornell University psychologist Robert Sternberg notes that the average IQ rose 30 points in the 20th century, yet we lack answers to serious problems such as pollution, violence, political strife, income disparities, and climate change. Sternberg believes that the United States educational system has produced "smart fools." Intelligence, he argues, that is not "modulated and moderated by creativity, common sense, and wisdom, is not such a positive thing to have" and will not result in the change our world needs.
I recently heard a speech from Navi Radjou, innovation and leadership advisor and best-selling author based in Silicon Valley. His address, "Beyond Smartness: Leading Wisely in a Conscious Society," examines how our abundant inner resources such as love, ingenuity, and wisdom, can be consciously directed toward a better future beyond "smartness." In his book, "From Smart to Wise, Acting, and Leading from Wisdom," Radjou says, "Wisdom leverages your intelligence: Your thinking and your leadership become more adaptable, broad-based, and sustainable. Wisdom gives you ethical clarity and a sense of purpose—enabling you to apply your smartness in the service of others."
At Mounds Park Academy, we believe that the best educational path is one that instills passion for knowledge together with moral and ethical development. When children gain the confidence and courage to challenge status quo, they become equipped to make a positive impact on our world. Despite the uncertainty and challenges we face as a society, I have great hope for the future. Young people across the country have found their voice and are actively engaged in creating the future we need. At MPA, character education is at the heart of dreaming big and doing right Now, more than ever.
Dr. Bill Hudson
Head of School