On this 11 July…

This year, I’m going to go out on a limb and ask you to, for the benefit of your emotional and mental health, evaluate your relationships. Consider the people around you, and make sure that they are not emotionally depriving or detrimentally affecting you. As you grow older, I find people are more susceptible to simply giving on all the unfair BS that people in your life give you. Don’t let that happen! You are like a great, aging tree which grows grander and grander. Cut away all the sick branches and roots which hurt you. You don’t have to care about people and keep them close because of their old relationships with you. Think about yourself, and your health, and make your decisions for you. Not anybody else.

[Aiman Khan]

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A New High School Principal Introduces Himself…

To the students and faculty of our high school:

I am your new principal, and honoured to be so.

There is no greater calling than to teach young people.

I would like to apprise you of some important changes coming to our school.

I am making these changes because I am convinced that most of the ideas that have dominated public education in Australia and are now pervasive, have worked against you, against your teachers and against our country.

First, this school recognises that learning per se is an individual effort.

You attend this school because you want to learn as much as you can from those willing to help you.

We cannot make you learn if you are not willing to do so.

You will want to learn because we want to teach you how to learn and because you want to achieve.

The rest of your life will be learning focussed and will be measured by you, according to your personal achievements.

We undertake to help you to learn HOW to learn according to your individual abilities. and interests.

Second, this school respects your rights to humane treatment. You will be treated as a person, with emotions and wants and needs.

No fear laden tests that classify your individuality or intellect, will be used or made known to anyone but yourself.

We will share the evaluation of everything that you learn with you. You will measure your progress and we teachers will help you to do so.

Together we will aim for the very top, and ignore those static one-hit useless blanket tests, mandated by government, used by some schools. Any forms of in-class testing will be pertinent, related to the current learning enterprise; and motivational.

We believe strongly in the supremacy of basic literacy and numeracy skills and you will achieve very high in these aspects of learning because you will want to.

Third, this school will no longer honour race or ethnicity.

I could not care less if your racial makeup is black, brown, red, yellow or white. I could not care less if your origins are African, Latin American, Asian or European, or if your ancestors arrived here on the Endeavour or on convict ships.

The only identity I care about, the only one this school will recognize, is your individual identity — your character, your scholarship, your humanity.

And the only national identity this school will care about is Australia.

This is an Australian public school, and Australian public schools were created to make better Australians.

If you wish to affirm an ethnic, racial or religious identity through school, you will have to go elsewhere.

We will end all ethnicity, race and non-Australian nationality-based celebrations and this school will be guided by Australia’s values. This includes all after-school clubs.

I will not authorize clubs that divide students based on any identities.

This includes race, language, religion, sexual orientation or whatever else may become in vogue in a society divided by political correctness.

Your clubs will be based on interests and passions, not blood, ethnic, racial or other physically defined ties.

Those clubs just cultivate narcissism — an unhealthy preoccupation with the self — while the purpose of education is to get you to think beyond yourself.

So we will have clubs that transport you to the wonders and glories of art, music, astronomy, languages you do not already speak, carpentry and more.

If the only extracurricular activities you can imagine being interested in are those based on ethnic, racial or sexual identity, that means that little outside of yourself really interests you.

Fourth , I am uninterested in whether English is your native language.

My only interest in terms of language is that you leave this school speaking and writing English as fluently as possible.

The English language has united Australia’s citizens for over 200 years, and it will unite us at this school.

It is one of the indispensable reasons this country of immigrants has always come to be one country.

And if you leave this school without excellent English language skills, I would be remiss in my duty to ensure that you will be prepared to successfully compete in the Australian job market.

We will learn other languages here, but if you want classes taught in your native language rather than in English, this is not your school.

Fifth , because I regard learning as a sacred endeavour, everything in this school will reflect learning’s elevated status.

This means, among other things, that you and your teachers will dress accordingly.

Many people in our society dress more formally for Horse Racing events than for church or school.

These people have their priorities backward. Therefore, there will be a formal dress code at this school.

Sixth , no obscene language will be tolerated anywhere on this school’s property — whether in class, in the hallways or at athletic events.

If you can’t speak without using the f -word, you can’t speak.

By obscene language I mean the words banned by the Federal Communications Commission, plus epithets such as “Abbo,” even when used by one black student to address another black, or “bitch,”even when addressed by a girl to a girlfriend. It is my intent that by the time you leave this school, you will be among the few of your age to instinctively distinguish between the elevated and the degraded, the holy and the obscene.

Sixth , we will end all self-esteem programs. In this school, self-esteem will be attained in only one way — the way people attained it a generation ago — by earning it.

Seventh , and last, I am reorienting the school toward learning-to-learn and achievement.

Your achievements will not be measured by any one-hit external external standardised tests but by yourself and your teachers. You will be proud of your achievements no matter how modest they are nor how inadequate you think you are. You are a proud learner and you will be good at it

We will have failed if any one of you graduates from this school and does not consider him or herself inordinately fortunate to be alive and to be an Australian.

Now, please stand and join me in the singing of ‘Advance Australia Fair”’.

If you are new to the school and do not know the words, your teachers will hand them out to you.

 

 


Link: www.treehornexpress.wordpress.com/2016/03/05/a-new-high-school-principal-introduces-himself/

Inspiring Letter from a Principal on NAPLAN

A Letter to all Students who sat NAPLAN this year

This week you would have received your NAPLAN test results. We are pleased that you tried your very best in these challenging tests and during the weeks and months leading up to them.

I’d like you, your family, friends and teachers to remember that these tests are unable to measure all of what it is that makes you the valued person who you are. The people who have created these tests and those that mark them don’t know you as well as your teachers know you, to the extent to which I know you and certainly not the way your family and friends know you.

They don’t know that many children at Beechboro Primary School speak one or more languages other than English. They also don’t know that you may be a great singer and dancer or that you can play a musical instrument really well. They also don’t know how well you can draw beautiful pictures.

They don’t know that you have a sense of humour which can bring a smile to your friend’s faces and make them laugh or that they can rely upon you to support them when they need a kind and encouraging word. They wouldn’t know that you can write poetry and stories, play all types of different sports and have interesting and enjoyable hobbies.

They also don’t know that you probably accept responsibility for taking care of your brothers or sisters from time to time. They don’t know that you have travelled to or come from fascinating places and had amazing experiences.

They don’t know how much you love spending time with your family and your close friends and they won’t know how much you are appreciated and loved by them.

You are trustworthy, kind and thoughtful and you try to do your best every day. Do they know that?

The NAPLAN test results give you some very specific information about yourself but it can’t say everything about who you are and what you have achieved.

I hope you are happy with your results and that they inspire you to do even better in literacy and numeracy. Just remember that there is so much more to describe who you are that can’t be shown in these scores.

Len Christie
Principal
Beechboro Primary Schools


Link

Prophet Muhammad’s ﷺ Letter to the King of ‘Oman, Jaifer, and his Brother ‘Abd Al-Jalandi

“In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.

From Muhammad bin ‘Abdullah to Jaifer and ‘Abd Al-Jalandi.

Peace be upon him who follows true guidance; thereafter I invite both of you to the Call of Islam. Embrace Islam. Allah has sent me as a Prophet to all His creatures in order that I may instil fear of Allah in the hearts of His disobedient creatures so that there may be left no excuse for those who deny Allah. If you two accept Islam, you will remain in command of your country; but if you refuse my Call, you’ve got to remember that all your possessions are perishable. My horsemen will appropriate your land, and my Prophethood will assume preponderance over your kingship.”

 

 

‘Amr bin Al-‘As, who was chosen to carry the letter, narrated the following story that happened before he was admitted into the audience of Jaifer.

“When I arrived in ‘Oman I contacted ‘Abd, who was known to be more mild-tempered than his brother:

‘Amr: I am the messenger of Allah’s Prophet ﷺ coming to see both, you and your brother.

‘Abd: You have to see my brother and read to him the letter you are carrying. He is my senior in both age and kingship. Incidentally, what is the purport of your mission?

‘Amr: The Prophet ﷺ calls upon you to believe in Allah Alone with no associate, discard any other deities and testify to the slavehood and Messengership of Muhammad ﷺ.

‘Abd: O ‘Amr! You come from a noble family, but first of all, tell me what was your father’s attitude concerning this Faith? You know, we used to follow his steps.

‘Amr: Death overtook him before believing in Muhammad’s ﷺ mission; I wish now he had embraced Islam and been truthful to it before his death. I myself had adopted the same attitude until Allah guided me towards Islam.

‘Abd: When did you embrace Islam?

‘Amr: When I was at Negus’s court. By the way, the latter did also enter into the fold of Islam.

‘Abd: What was his people’s reaction?

‘Amr: They approved of him and followed his steps.

‘Abd: The bishops and monks?

‘Amr: They did the same.

‘Abd: Beware ‘Amr of lying for this soon betrays man.

‘Amr: I never tell lies; moreover, our religion never allows it.

‘Abd: Has Hercules been informed of the Islamization of Negus?

‘Amr: Yes, of course.

‘Abd: How did you happen to know that?

‘Amr: Negus used to pay land tax to Hercules, but when the former embraced Islam, he swore he would discontinue that tax. When this news reached Hercules, his courtiers urged him to take action against Negus but he refused and added that he himself would do the same if he were not sparing of his kingship.

‘Abd: What does your Prophet exhort you to do?

‘Amr: He ﷺ exhorts us to obey Allah, the All-Mighty, the All-Glorious, be pious and maintain good ties with family kin; he forbids disobedience, aggression, adultery, wine, idolatry and devotion to the cross.

‘Abd: Fair words and fair beliefs are those you are calling for. I wish my brother would follow me to believe in Muhammad ﷺ and profess his religion, but my brother is too sparing of his kingship to become a subordinate.

‘Amr: Should your brother surrender himself to Islam, the Prophet ﷺ would give him authority over his people and take alms tax from the wealthy people to be given to the needy.

‘Abd: That is fair behaviour. But what is this alms tax you have mentioned?

‘Amr: It is a Divine injunction that alms tax be taken from the well-to-do people who have surplus wealth and be distributed to the poor.

‘Abd: I doubt if this can work among our people.

‘Amr stayed for some days to be admitted into Jaifer’s court until he was finally granted this permit. “He asked me to hand him the letter to read it. After that he asked me how Quraish reacted and I answered that they had followed him, some out of their own freewill and others overpowered by military fighting. Now, people have chosen Islam in preference to other creeds, and have realized through their mental insight that they had been straying in darkness. None, except you, is now out of the domain of Islam, so I advise you to embrace Islam so that you can provide security to yourself and your country.”

Here, he asked me to call on him the following day. The following day he showed some reluctance in receiving me but his brother, ‘Abd, interceded and I was given the chance to see him again but this time to address me in a threatening arrogant tone. However, after a private talk with his brother and reconsidering the whole situation, both brothers embraced Islam and proved to be true to Islam that had begun to make its way into this new area.

The context of this story reveals that this letter was sent at a much later date than the others, most likely after the conquest of Makkah.

Through these letters, the Prophet ﷺ managed to communicate his Message to most monarchs at that time; some believed, while others remained obdurate and persisted in their disbelief. However, the idea of embracing Islam, and the advent of a new Prophet preoccupied all of them.

 

Prophet Muhammad’s ﷺ letter to Harith bin Abi Shamir Al-Ghassani, King of Damascus

“In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.

From Muhammad, Messenger of Allah to Al-Harith bin Abi Shamir.

Peace be upon him who follows true guidance, believes in it and regards it as true. I invite you to believe in Allah Alone with no associate, thenceafter your kingdom will remain yours.”

 

Shuja’ bin Wahab had the honour of taking the letter to Harith, who upon hearing the letter read in his audience, was madly infuriated and arrogantly ordered the Muslim emissary to return and said he declares a state of war against the Muslims.

Later on when his cousin Shurahbil Ibn ‘Amr Al-Ghassani the governor of Balqa’, caught the Muslim emissary to the governor of Busra, he had him beheaded. This led to the battle of Mu’tah which was discussed earlier in this text, and the Muslims’ struggle against the Romans’ tyranny and their Arab allies ensued.

Killing envoys and messengers used to be regarded as the most awful crime, and amounted to the degree of war declaration. The Prophet [PBUH] was shocked on hearing the news and ordered that a large army of 3000 men be mobilized and dispatched to the north to discipline the transgressors. It was the largest Muslim army ever mobilized on this scale except in the process of the Confederates Battle.

[Za’d Al-Ma’ad 3/62; Muhadarat Tareekh Al-Umam Al- Islamiyah 1/146; Za’d Al-Ma’ad 2/155; Fath Al-Bari 7/511]

My Trusty Elephants…. 💕💕💕

You know, eight, sixteen and twenty-three can be difficult birthdays… 🙂 …..all in their own very ways.

“This is when we really start to grow up and our decisions and actions in life really begin to weigh in on us. Life pressures us to look to the future, to start building ourselves, to ready ourselves for the onslaught that is going to arrive soon in university, in student debt, in independence, and in our society. But, with all these loving people by my side, with all these prayers, and best of all with the help of Allah the Almighty, I feel like I can take it all on. I feel empowered, ready to jump onto the wagon, and begin the journey, no matter how many bumps in the road there are.

Though you all are far away, you are here in our hearts, and you’ve always been so, even as we grow and change. I’m so glad I was blessed with such a wonderful family. You’re the best 😃😃😉

Stay strong, my friends. United, we stand stalwart against the hardships of life. Stay happy too, for life is not all so long, and the best thing to do is enjoy it as best we can. Thank you everybody for your beautiful wishes, and keep praying for a better future! ❤️❤️”

Prophet Muhammad’s ﷺ letter to Haudha bin ‘Ali, Governor of Yamama

“In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.

From Muhammad, Messenger of Allah to Haudha bin ‘Ali.
Peace be upon him who follows true guidance. Be informed that my religion shall prevail everywhere. You should accept Islam, and whatever under your command shall remain yours.”

 

The envoy chosen was Sulait bin ‘Amr Al-‘Amiri, who after communicating his message, carried back the following reply to the Prophet ﷺ, “The Faith, to which you invite me, is very good. I am a famous orator and poet, the Arabs highly respect me and I am of account among them. If you include me in your government, I am prepared to follow you. ”

The governor then bestowed a reward on Sulait and presented him with clothes made of Hajr fabric. Of course, he put all those presents in the trust of the Prophet ﷺ.

The Prophet ﷺ did not accept Haudha’s demand. He usually turned down such peremptory tone, and would say that the whole matter was in the Hand of Allah, Who gave His land to whoever He desired. Gabriel later came with the Revelation that Haudha had died.

The Prophet ﷺ , in the context of his comment on this news, said: ” Yamama is bound to give rise to a liar who will arrogate Prophethood to himself but he will subsequently be killed.”

In reply to a question relating to the identity of the killer, the Prophet ﷺ said “It is one of you, followers of Islam.”

[Za’d Al-Ma’ad 3/63]