Difficult conversations… We don’t exactly look forward to them! Yet, good teachers cannot afford to shy away from controversial topics. If our students are to develop critical thinking skills, our classrooms need to be places where questions –especially hard ones- can be asked. This is why, in this issue of The Stanboroughian, students explored capital punishment.
According to Amnesty International, at least 1,634 people were executed during 2015, the highest record in 25 years. As Christians, how do we form opinions on topics that are truly a matter of life and death? And what impact do our convictions have?
As I write these lines, Mel Gibson is working on a film based on the life of private Desmond T. Doss (http://adventist.org.uk/news/2016/buc/desmond-doss). A Seventh-day Adventist conscientious objector, Desmond T. Doss won a Congressional Medal of Honor for saving dozens of lives in the Battle of Okinawa -even though he refused to carry a weapon as a matter of religious conviction.
Our opinions matter greatly, thus, we should form them carefully! Looking for first-hand information, our students-journalists interviewed Harold Wilson (page 14), an American who spent 17 years in Death Row before being acquitted; and Shane Claiborne (page 18) a Christian activist and author. Additionally, the year 10 students ran an essay competition. You can read the winning essay (page 16), as well as some other conflicting opinions on this issue (page 17) side by side. Quite deliberately, no final verdict is reached on the topic of capital punishment. That’s your job, dear reader!
Our cover article is a tribute to Dr John Woodfield, a centenarian who served as Stanborough’s second Headteacher and penned the lyrics to the school song. It is with deep gratitude that we share his story of faithful service to God and our school!
The Stanboroughian would not exist without the dedication, support and skills of all its contributors. Thank you for making yet another edition possible!