The Canadian Pre-University Program where I work shares a building with two other educational programs: the Cambridge A-Level Program and the South Australian Matriculation Program. Both CAL and SAM are twice as large as our program. They are both well supported by the universities in the countries that promote them and well advertised in this growing Asian education market. Foreign language students studying in Australian universities are that country’s third largest industry.
By contrast, the Canadian program is not well-known, either in Asian, or back home in Canada. In fact the Canadian government just this month cut off funding for the small office that advises Asian students on the Canadian option. In addition, this program is expensive. In order to be licensed by the Ontario government, the school must employ Canadian teachers, which requires a salary that is high enough to recruit Canadian staff. Understandably, with a smaller per student profit margin, it doesn’t pay Taylor’s College to promote this program, despite its clear pedagogical superiority.
The CAL and SAM programs have continued to expand at this program’s expense, and in order to make room for all their new students, the Canadian program is being asked to leave. In two weeks. Yesterday we got a tour of the office building they are moving us to. It is enough to make one weep. The previous tenants have only just moved out, and the place is a disaster. Taylor’s has promised to renovate, but have set themselves no deadline for those renovations. When we were there we saw two painters working without much effort covering up the yellow stains on one wall. At the rate they were moving the renovations should be finished in a mere forty years.
I know that change is inevitable, and heaven knows I have been through enough of them in my lifetime to get used to it. I know that change can sometimes bring renewal; but I also know that change is not always for the better. From what I saw yesterday, this is one change that I could do without.
The upside on this (and there is always an upside) is that I don’t work for Taylor’s College, anymore than I ever worked for Thames Valley District School Board, or before them Elgin County Board of Education. Since He got hold of my life some 35 years ago, I have worked for the Lord. It is He that sent me to Malaysia, and it is He that will send me home when He is done with me here. As for the circumstances of my employment, well that is for Him to decide. He knows my frame. He will at times test me and try me in order to purify my motives and keep me in line, but He will never allow me to be overwhelmed, and if this change proves to be an impossible situation, then that will be His way of telling me it is time to move on.