I have 2 boys sitting across me on two occasions. Both are about the same age but both see me for different reasons.
Both are thinking hard for their future, the pursuant to their dreams, both are motivated and determined, but they decided on different pathways.
One has decided to end his formal education to pursue vocational training even it is just 6 months to complete his rightful education journey, the other is motivated to complete this path to embark to move to his “dream” university. Both have urgent tasks. They need to make decisions.
It leads me to ponder over Autonomy and Mature decision-making in teens.
In today’s world, many teens spend time out of adult’s supervisions; hence, with friends or peer influences, they develop Behavioural autonomy from their peers or social contact where they build a bond in the recent. It simply means they make a decision based on influence from peers.
Various factors can add on to decision-making as serious as quitting school or grit through the rigor truth of education.
All budding young adults can be guided if parents and educators play the pivotal role of offering a platform for them to assume responsibility, assure their values, be ready to discuss politics, spiritual and morals values to them any given time, allow them to explain their opinions, be able to lead conversations and discuss consequences, importantly, to be ready to accept the changes in them.
As a Principal, my role for them at that moment changes to be a listener, someone whom they can talk with. Share their dreams and reveal their fears.
It’s nothing unusual for teachers in HWA. In fact, HWA’s teachers do it daily, silently, behind the scene. They ensure students come to school on time, remind them to eat at regularly, worry over student’s academic performance, organise activities to ensure they learn soft skills, at any given chance, they share moral obligations and they are constantly looking for ways to interest and engage students.
Why? Because they care, they love their jobs, they know it’s about giving, from the heart.
Thankfully, this is HWA’s team, HWA is proud to have them!
As for the boys, eventually, their decisions are made, and I sincerely wish they can reach their checkpoint in due time.