Moulding good citizens

Peter FiorenzaGeraldton Guardian
Music man, Jordan Moore.
Camera IconMusic man, Jordan Moore. Credit: Supplied

Often, when people ask me what I do, I tell them that I try to be a teacher.

Inevitably, the next question is:

“What do you teach?”

My answer is always” “Students.”

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Now, that might seem a bit cheeky, but, honestly, it sums up the way I see my job in life.

Even though I have been a teacher for almost 20 years, and have a degree of experience, I am certainly nowhere near an expert.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the topics that I teach, however, the individuals who I teach them to are far more important.

This might seem a bit “old school”, but I have always believed that my role as an educator is to ultimately contribute to producing good citizens.

A good citizen, to me, is simply an individual that secures a good, honest job, and contributes to the greater good of the wider community.

This is a broad definition, and, so it should be.

In round figures I have technically taught around two thousand individuals.

Many have gone onto university and to becoming doctors, lawyers and teachers, while a number have taken up trades and run their own businesses.

A few have served in the armed forces and others have shone in the sporting world too.

Every now and again something comes along that reiterates my passion for the job I do.

Recently, a young musician achieved a remarkable milestone.

Next year, Jordan Moore will take up the position as the 2020 Young Composer with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.

No, I’m not a music teacher by any means, so I certainly cannot have any claim to fame there in respect to Jordan, but I know Jordan, and have been there during his formative years.

Recently, I had the good fortune of interviewing the talented young man and spoke with him about his career as a budding composer.

At the end of the radio chat, I played one of his latest compositions.

As I listened to the piece, I felt so very proud — the same way I feel when I see our AFL products kick a goal or take a mark or hear of those in our armed forces who have returned from a successful tour of duty.

I’m not afraid to say it brought a tear to my eye.

Yes, Jordan’s achievement is fantastic.

But you know what?

So, is the lad who completed his apprenticeship, the girl who’s now a fully-fledged hairdresser, the new mum and the corporate barrister.

Not everyone is made from the same cloth, yet they can all contribute.

They can all achieve the status of Good Citizen.

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