The year is off to a great start with everyone getting back into routine. For many, the places are new. For others, the routines are new. For still others, both are true.
The construction project at Peter Skene Ogden Secondary means the gymnasium at 100 Mile Junior Secondary remains open to accommodate PE classes. While the new auto shop and gym addition are being built at PSO, every single PE student travels on the bus across the highway and down a few blocks. Whole-school assemblies will also be held at the 100 Mile Junior gym with an entire cavalry of buses likely involved in the process. It’s all very interesting for a school that doesn’t use bells. Everyone at PSO (staff, students, and parents) is to be commended for the smooth start they have had.
A new timetable at Lake City Secondary means four longer, non-rotating blocks for students in Grades 8 through 12 (the Grade 7 timetable complements the timetable for the older students) . This also means lunch hour comes earlier, and the mornings and afternoons are exactly the same length. Longer times between blocks allow many students to travel between the two campuses. Many staff and students have switched buildings this year. In fact, 5/6 of the students in Grades 7 to 9 are taking the majority of their classes in a different building than they were in last year. Again, everyone deserves kudos for making the transition easier for those around them.
Meanwhile, our elementary schools also see many new people in new places. Cataline Elementary has two classes devoted to the Balanced Calendar program. Nesika Elementary has welcomed four divisions of the French Immersion program, while Chilcotin Road Elementary has said hello to most of the former Kwaleen Elementary students. 100 Mile Elementary has added more students to their already large school, and Forest Grove Elementary has added many new students to its school population. Wildwood Elementary has reintegrated intermediate students back into the fold after a few years of being only K-3.
While many schools have increased in number, many of our rural and remote schools are getting smaller. These schools are marked by dedicated principals who are teaching most of the week, dedicated teachers who are teaching in four, five, even eleven-grade split classes, and dedicated support staff who wear many hats during the day as they switch between secretary, teacher assistant, and library tech positions.
All in all, the welfare and education of our students continues to be a first priority. As resources are stretched to maximum, I am confident that students continue to get a great education in our school district.
I invite feedback and comments to any of my blog entries. As the administrator of the blog, I approve all comments before they hit the public domain. While I do not mind comments that disagree with my point of view, I will not post comments that I deem to be inappropriate, those which are personal attacks, or those which refer to specific personnel. I also will not post comments from anonymous or nicknamed sources. While one of my goals for this blog is open a dialogue, it needs to be a safe environment for everyone involved. Thanks for considering this before making a comment. – Mark