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The Rite Journey (Year 9)

The Rite Journey is an unique educational program designed to support the development of resourceful, responsible, respectful and resilient adults. Throughout this year long program, our Year 9 students are given many opportunities for growth, to start making the transition from childhood to adulthood. To become the best version of themselves. In small class groups, highly trained teachers integrate physical challenges, group discussion and mentorship to deliver this special and highly regarded program.

The program is designed to:

  • be taught in single sex groups with small numbers to allow for quality discussion and sharing
  • acknowledge and celebrate each student’s shift into adulthood
  • offers conversations and experiences to guide this transition
  • foster connections with positive adult role models
  • educate and include parents/carers in the process
  • connect students with their strengths and build self-awareness
  • transform school culture by developing responsibility

‘Every culture in the world had safeguards, and one of those was a rite of passage. The Rite Journey is a very specific and targeted teaching of how to be a good man, along with an actual transition process to make it stick. Andrew Lines, an Australian educator, developed a year-long program called the Rite Journey, which is now in hundreds of leading schools in Australia and increasingly overseas. Grafted to the Year 9 curriculum, it makes this a year of becoming a man or a woman.’

Steven Biddulph
Leading expert and author of Raising boys and Raising girls.

The Rite Journey acknowledges the lack of this process in western culture and reinvents this transition into adulthood using a Hero’s Journey. It expands the three elements into seven stages

1. The Calling

A significant event for the child which signifies the beginning of their journey from childhood to adulthood. Students spend the night at school in their Rite Journey classes where they are asked to reflect on their childhood, share their story and all that they have to be grateful for. The Calling gives students an opportunity to express this gratitude in a letter to their parents/caregivers.

2. The Departure

To mark this moment, students are woken before dawn to undertake an independent, silent walk up to the summit of Mount Coot-tha. When reaching the summit, students observe the sunrise over the city of Brisbane which is symbolic of the start of their journey. Students return to school and meet their parents/caregivers, exchange letters of gratitude and share breakfast whilst reflecting on special moments in their lives.

3. The Following

The students are guided throughout the year by a number of supportive adults including teachers, parents/carers and mentors. This process is key to developing and strengthening  connections with positive role models. Students will be given opportunities to interact with adults through organised events including cultural day and elder’s day. They are also encouraged to complete a challenge or project with a family member/mentor which will be presented at the end of year graduation.

4. The Challenges

Resilience is built by giving students challenges and helping them acquire the skills, resources and mindset necessary to overcome them. Throughout the Rite Journey students are challenged in a variety of ways.

Group challenge examples: staves, drumming, and camp activities.

Individual challenge examples: learning to juggle, make a meal for the family, acts of kindness, sharing a personal story, reciting a poem in front of peers.

5. The Abyss

The biggest challenge of the year is the Solo Camp which is incorporated into the Year 9 camp program. Students will experience approximately 20 hours of independent, uninterrupted solo camp time. The ultimate goal of the solo experience is to provide students with an opportunity to reflect on their life, the natural world and their place in it. It is also designed to provide students with opportunities to practice decision making, experiential learning and provide students with challenging situations where they will be able to continue to build their resilience.

6. The Return

Students reflect on what they have learned and experienced over the year and the gifts and skills they will carry into adulthood. This ceremony takes place separately in each Rite Journey class. Students take turns to reflect on their journey, the characteristics they have developed and areas they would like to continue to work on. Peers also offer positive affirmations acknowledging growth and strengths of others in their class.

7. The Homecoming

Students are celebrated and honoured at a gratitude ceremony involving teachers, parents/carers and mentors. It is a night of reflection where students and teachers look back on the year, the milestones made and the students’ growth and development into adulthood.

To read more about The Rite Journey, please visit:

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