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The Rite Journey

The Rite Journey is an integral part of the College’s pastoral care program and focuses on students in Year 9. The program was created by South Australian physical education teacher Andrew Lines and is a modern-day version of the traditional rite of passage that transforms adolescents from dependency to responsibility. The program’s simple rituals aim to give students a positive pathway into adulthood and is the ideal platform to prepare them for the College’s Mt Binga program which all students attend in Year 10. 

The Rite Journey is a year-long, school-based program that teachers are trained to deliver. The program uses a mixture of rituals, physical challenges, discussion and guidance to start the process of turning Year 9s into responsible, respectful and resilient adults. Lessons are held sitting on the floor, instead of behind desks, and boys discuss topics such as mateship, how to deal with anger and how to talk to girls. Girls examine issues such as body image, self-worth, friendships and cyber-bullying.

The program is taught in over 70 schools in Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Belgium and South Korea and is delivered in single gender, small classes. It is designed to:

  • Acknowledge and celebrate a young person’s transition into adulthood
  • Provide them with gender-specific guidance and role models in this transition
  • Educate and include parents/carers in the transition process of their children

The importance of providing some form of rite of passage for young people is recognised by experts in education and psychology such as Michael Ungar and Steve Biddulph, who extol the virtues of rediscovering such a process in today’s society.

“We’re living in a society where young people are being bubble-wrapped and not able to experience risk and failure which builds resilience… Young people are spending more time in front of screens and so little time in front of people. This lack of human connection is a real issue because it is really only by being in front of an adult that you can learn how to be an adult – and there is no software program that’s going to help a young person learn those skills.” 

Andrew Lines, Creator and Director, the Rite Journey