A Season of “Lasts”
They say that you know when it is time to retire. I honestly can’t say that there is any one particular reason, but here are a few things –
Trying to log on to a website to get something important done on an online form but needing to first find my log in details and my password from a secure file I keep of important usernames and passwords. Then finding that it does not work. Then sending off for a new user name and password and then copying it across into the special file before re-entering the site and finding that my time has lapsed. I used to fill in a form and fax it.
Travelling in a separate car to a family event and apologising for being late, or not making it at all, due to a crisis at the College.
Watching footy, cricket or motor racing but thinking of the next newsletter article.
Ignoring family conversations or offering some vague half-hearted answer whilst thinking of the next newsletter article.
Accidentally entering my alarm security code on the microwave (that didn’t really happen but it was only a matter of time).
Proudly answering 86 emails during a day then checking to find there are 130 new ones.
Waking up in the middle of the night to write down an inspirational idea (Yes I do keep a pen and notepad next to the bed).
Answering the phone at home with “Wollondilly Anglican College” or accidently giving the College number as my home number.
Calling Rhonda, “Roslyn”, or vice-versa.
Battling a serious disease part-time. It is better to retire when you can play another season like Billy Slater (then Australian fullback) than Jonathan Thurston (maybe one year too many).
The fact is that with the College earning a substantial surplus per year to apply to the debt, with the final classroom building to be commenced in 2020, the second College road entry submission endorsed by the local Council and with the Lakeside Campus at Wilton back on the agenda, it is a good time to hand over the reins of the College to a successor.
And the people here are first rate. I could not image leaving the College in better hands with our current College Council, College Executive, Senior Managers and staff. This was no more evident than in the recent crisis which was managed sensitively and professionally.
I will miss this Community. I will miss the little kids who run across the playground to say G’day. I will miss watching them grow into bigger kids with all the trials and tribulations; successes and challenges along the way. I will miss the hard working staff at the College. We have been through so much together. It takes a higher class of professional personnel to roll up their sleeves and commit in the pioneer years of a rapidly growing College like ours. I will miss the parents and our community partners. A few years ago, when I was younger and was still considered a prospect to move on to a few bigger and “better” schools, I was flattered but my answer was always the same: “Thanks, but I cannot leave my family.”
The plan was always to retire at the right time and July 2020 is it. Leading this College in 2020 will be a highly sought after professional position and will attract the best of the best. It is well established, going places and is considered a prize catch amongst Independent Schools. Back in 2003 this was not the case. The field was a little less salubrious and they took a chance on a bright eyed, bushy tailed, wet behind the ears raw recruit with more bark than bite. Sometimes I still pinch myself.
God bless and thanks for the privilege!