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What Does Formation Even Mean

Strangely enough, this was a question I received from a learned teacher from a fellow EREA school. According to Webster’s Dictionary, to ‘form’ something is to ‘deliberately mould’. Interestingly, this is what parents and schools have been doing for centuries!

We consciously encourage our children to make strategic choices based on the values, successes and virtues we hope they will be capable of utilising as adults. We are ‘forming’ the boys for their individual futures. But Formation cannot occur through conversation alone. We learn by doing. A Catholic school is obliged to offer opportunities for holistic growth. Events where boys can learn through experience. A broad suite designed to challenge and inspire. In Term 2 alone, boys have experienced formation through:

  • Excursions to the Supreme Courts to examine Justice and Peace.
  • ANZAC Day services.
  • Fishing Club.
  • Shakespeare incursion.
  • Meals on Wheels and Glenleighden School visits.
  • Grandparents Day and Mass.
  • Jazz festival.
  • Edmund Rice Feast Day celebration.
  • Full football, rugby and cross-country seasons.
  • Mother’s Day breakfast.
  • Year 5 and Year 7 spiritual retreat.
  • NAPLAN testing
  • House breakfasts and lunches.
  • St Helena Island trip.
  • ‘Sorry Day’ Assembly

Formation comes in all shapes and sizes; in all year levels and in all activities – a lot like our boys and although not always obvious, it is always deliberate. At Ambrose Treacy College, learning and formation teams work in tandem to deliver complete possibilities for boys to find their niche. Along with all families, our continued collaboration on this heart-warming, and sometimes heart breaking, journey is essential.

Matt Warr
Assistant Dean of Formation
warrm@atc.qld.edu.au