Fiona Cock with parent, Rebecca O'Gorman

Broad Range of Experiences Forms Core of Education

A strong young person is best served by having had a broad range of learning experiences and being taught to think clearly, feel deeply and act dynamically. No matter what their subsequent work opportunities, these things are at the core of resilience and fulfilling lives.

This was the fundamental message that Fiona Cock, Principal of Sophia Mundi Steiner School delivered to a gathering of parents and teachers last Monday Evening in the Melliodora Hall at School.

Photo: Fiona Cock (left), principal of Principal of Sophia Mundi Steiner School with Mansfield Steiner School parent, Rebecca O’Gorman.

Sophia Mundi is an inner city Steiner School, located in the arts precinct of the Abbotsford convent overlooking the Yarra River. The school offers a program from Early Childhood to Year 12. Sophia Mundi is also 30 years old, the same age as our School.

Fiona was invited to visit Mansfield to talk about the secondary program of her school, focusing on the Steiner Curriculum and how it fits with the International Baccalaureate.

The philosophy underpinning the IB has similar aims to the Steiner philosophy and is internationally recognised, so students are able to apply worldwide for tertiary studies.

Fiona spoke about how in secondary school students need teachers who are specialists in their field and who through their teaching challenge students to awaken their capacity for rational judgment and thinking.

The curriculum at Sophia Mundi is linked to the Australian Steiner Curriculum and builds on and extends subjects covered in the Primary School.

Students, particularly those in Year 9 need to be inspired and challenged as they find their way in an uncertain world; this is what gives them their ground for independence and frees them to follow a path into life that allows them to grasp and shape their future.

Sophia Mundi has an extensive Outdoor Education program in Year 9, the students spend forty days away from the school on a variety of specialist camps including farming, surveying, bushwalking and rock climbing. In Year 10 the students elect to spend a significant time on an international exchange program.

Mansfield Steiner School intends to offer Year 9 in 2018 and the vision is to continue to Year 12 and offer the Diploma of IB in the upper years.