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Peace Wapiti Public School Division
Educating today for success tomorrow
Peace Wapiti Public School Division No. 76
News Item

Good News Report – November 24, 2016

November 22, 2016

The following Good News Report from Peace Wapiti Public School Division (PWSD) and its schools will be shared at the upcoming Board Meeting scheduled for Thursday, November 24, 2016.

News from PWSD:

PWSD JSET holds first meeting of 2016-2017 school year
PWSD's Jurisdictional Student Engagement Team (JSET) held their first meeting of the 2016-2017 school year on November 16 at the Stonebridge Hotel in Grande Prairie. JSET is made up of approximately 75 Grades 5-12 students and 20 teacher champions from across PWSD, who meet twice annually to provide student input on education, in addition to virtual meetings via Google Hangout. During the first half of the day, the JSET broke into small groups to offer feedback on PWSD's Quality Learning Environment (QLE) implementation. The second half of the meeting included a presentation by Joanne Bardak of the Northwest Regional Learning Consortium (NRLC), and Assistant Principal Stacy Rorem of Robert W. Zahara Public School, entitled Developing Leadership in My School. For more information, or to view additional photos from the event, visit http://bit.ly/JSET-Nov2016.

Remembrance Day observed at PWSD schools
Twenty-two PWSD schools held Remembrance Day ceremonies on Thursday, November 10. Ridgevalley School, Beaverlodge Regional High School and Eaglesham School participated in 'Night in the Trenches' events to commemorate war history. For a list of events, visit http://bit.ly/PWSD-Remembers-2016.

Second PWSD Google Summit planned for May, 2017
PWSD's EdTech Team is excited to host another Google Apps For Education (GAFE) custom summit for PWSD staff. This empowering and interactive two-day event, held on May 5-6, 2017 at Clairmont Community School, will include more than 40 breakout sessions. The event will feature presentations by talented and courageous educational leaders, empowered teachers, and creative thinkers from around the world. For conference information and updates, visit http://pwedtech.weebly.com. Think you know lots about Google and want to become a Google Certified Level 1 Educator? Register for the May 4th Google Bootcamp at R. W. Zahara Public School in Sexsmith at https://nvite.com/Gafebootcamps/z6zdzj.

News from PWSD schools:

Beaverlodge Elementary School

We Scare Hunger food drive­
On November 4, a group of BES Grade 6 Leadership students delivered boxes of donated food to the local Neighbourhood Resource Center. Food items were donated as part of the school's We Scare Hunger food drive, held in conjunction with other schools throughout PWSD. Thanks to all who donated food items. Pictured: Members of the BES Grade 6 Leadership Team with Patricia Fair, Beaverlodge Food Bank Treasurer.

The school's annual Stocking Stuffer Talent show will be held on Thursday, December 8.

Beaverlodge Regional High School

BRHS students place in Festival of Trees Gingerbread House Lane competition
A group of BRHS students have earned a third place ribbon for their gingerbread house design entry in the Grande Prairie Festival of Trees Gingerbread House Lane, which will be open to the public on November 25-27 at Evergreen Park as part of the annual Festival of Trees fundraiser in support of the QEII Hospital Foundation.

Pictured: A gingerbread AT-AT Walker from Star Wars, created by BRHS students (left-right) Ranen Calvert, Hunter Modrall and Alex Horseman-McIntyre won the Judge's choice third place ribbon in the Schools and Organizations category. Their creation will be on display throughout the festival and will be open for bids to raise funds for the Foundation.   

RAP scholarships awarded to Beaverlodge Regional High School alumni
RAP Scholarships were created to recognize the accomplishments of Alberta high school students participating in the Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP), and encourage students to continue their apprenticeship training after completing high school. A RAP Scholarship banquet was held in Edmonton on November 19. BRHS alumni receiving scholarships at the event were Sandra Nitschke, who is completing a Baker Apprenticeship at Grains Bakery Café Ltd., and Darby Brown, who is completing a Heavy Equipment Technician Apprenticeship at Cassity Equipment Sales Ltd. The pair are included among the list of recipients for 2016: http://tradesecrets.alberta.ca/Financial-Assistance/Scholarships/Scholarship_Recipients/?Type=RAP&Year=2016.

Clairmont Community School

'Rock Your Mocs' event at CCS
Students and staff at Clairmont Community School drew and decorated pictures of moccasins, which are currently on display in the school's hallways, in celebration of FNMI culture in November, to coincide with the 'Rock Your Mocs' event that originated in the United States. On Friday, November 18, the school wrapped up the celebration with a Friendship Dance round dance in the gym.

Eaglesham School

Eaglesham students embrace new learning opportunities
Three Eaglesham students attended the PWSD Jurisdictional Student Engagement Team (JSET) on November 17, and returned inspired and ready to affect change. PWSD's FNMI Education Coordinator Darrell Willier will present the Circle of Courage to Grades 5 and 6 students. The Grade 9 French class has been studying Tchoukball – a sport which combines elements of volleyball, squash and handball – and will instruct other classes on how to play the popular European game. Grade 10s and other students wishing to attain First Aid certification may complete the training at school. Prior to the Christmas break, junior and senior high school students will head to Jasper for a ski trip. The school's annual Christmas concert will take place at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 15. Junior and senior high students have started an archery club and plan to host a competition in the New Year.

Harry Balfour School

Upcoming events at Harry Balfour School

  • Grade 5 Science Fair will be held on Thursday, November 24 in the small gym, 2:40 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.
  • Telus Science in Motion returns on November 29 - December 1.
  • Christmas concerts will be held on Tuesday, December 6 at the Alliance Church in the Whispering Ridge subdivision. The K-Grade 4 concert will be held at 5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m., followed by the Grades 5-8 band and choir concert at 7:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

The Grade 4 field trip to Aquatera and the landfill.

Mrs. Fisher and the Grade 7 and 8 students who participated in the APEGA Science Olympics.

Junior high Volleyball teams enjoyed a wrap-up party to celebrate the end of the season.

Helen E. Taylor School

Classroom Champions

Grade 6 students at Helen E. Taylor School are participating in the Classroom Champions program which matches classrooms with Olympian and Paralympian athletes who act as mentors by participating in live chats and sending monthly videos to encourage goal setting, perseverance, community, and healthy living. In September, HET students reviewed the bios of participating athletes and followed a series of clues to determine who HET's athlete would be. After narrowing the list, students determined that they would be interacting with Kieran Block, a member of the Canadian National Sledge Hockey team.

At the end of his first video lesson in September, Kieran challenged students to set at least three short term goals which would lead to meeting a larger, long term goal. HET students created key chains containing puzzle pieces to represent each short term goal, and carried the key chains as a daily reminder of their commitment to their goals.

In October, Kieran challenged students to find daily examples of fair play for the entire month, which tied in well with Random Acts of Kindness Day. At the start of each day, students were given business cards and asked to pass them on to other students as they completed random acts of kindness. The students on the receiving end of the act of kindness filled out a form describing the act, and an amazing amount of forms were collected at the end of each day.

The November video lesson revolves around giving back to the community. Students brainstormed to determine what they can do for their classroom community, school community and the town of Wembley. Ideas included tidying classrooms, brushing snow off teachers' vehicles, shoveling driveways for seniors, collecting items for Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes, and organizing a food drive for the local food bank. Students are looking forward to a live video chat with Kieran and more exciting lessons to come.

Pictured: HET students prep shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child and show off their new Classroom Champions T-shirts.

Christmas musical – North Pole Exposure by John Jacobson and Mac Huff
Helen E. Taylor's Christmas musical will be a behind-the-scenes look at what really goes on at the North Pole. The event will be held at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, December 20 at the Wembley Rec. Centre, and will feature 50 Grade 5-9 performers directed by HET teacher Rane Grinde.

October Knights of Honour
Hugh Wall, 5G; Hailey Coombs, 5L; Tevye McCullough, 6H; Cassidy Quinton, 6J; Kenadie Jones, 7C; Sophia LeBlanc, 8B; Morgan Theissen, 8D; and Bailey Krushen, 9.

Peace Wapiti Academy

HIV North Society offering four evening sessions for parents
This school year, HIV North Society Grande Prairie will offer four evening sessions at the Peace Wapiti Academy library at 7:00 p.m., open to all PWSD parents/guardians, School Council members and staff. A session entitled Talking to Parents about Drug Use was presented earlier this month. Mark your calendars and make plans to attend the following upcoming sessions:

  • Tuesday, November 29: Talking to Parents about Fentanyl and Naloxone
  • Thursday, February 23: Talking to Parents about HIV and STI
  • Tuesday, March 28: Talking to Parents about Diversity and LGBTQ

Online help for youth – New Grande Prairie Youth Help website supported by Peace Wapiti Academy
Youth in search of help have a new place to turn, thanks to a website initiative supported by Peace Wapiti Academy (PWA) and created by PWA Youth Advocate Mhairi Elliot. The Grande Prairie Youth Help website, accessible at www.gpyouth.ca, offers free help and explanations of services to assist young people who are facing challenges, including self-help options for obtaining food and clothing, safe places to stay, counseling services, fighting addictions, academic help, sexual health resources, and reporting a crime anonymously. Links to external organizations offer assistance for dealing with anxiety, depression, eating disorders, suicidal thoughts, illness, sexuality and gender acceptance, and life-changing events. The site also provides links to social groups, bullying help, and volunteering opportunities. Learn more about this new initiative at http://bit.ly/2fyEmQN.

Upcoming weekend courses offer PWSD students additional opportunities to earn credits
PWSD high school students may register for weekend courses, offered at Peace Wapiti Academy, to earn one, two or three high school credits. Upcoming one-credit courses include Introduction to Animal Basics on Saturday, November 26 at 10:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m., and Companion Animals on Saturday, December 10 at 10:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. Students wishing to register should contact their school counselor or email debbieterceros@pwsd76.ab.ca.

Ridgevalley School

U of C Cybermentor workshop at Ridgevalley School for Grades 6-12 students
Approximately 40 Grades 6-12 students at Ridgevalley School participated in a Cybermentor workshop on November 15, hosted by the University of Calgary. Cybermentor is an online mentoring program for girls in Grades 6 to 12 across Alberta. After the school-based workshop, each girl is matched with her own carefully-screened mentor and the two connect online throughout the school year. By chatting with their mentor through a secure site, the girls learn about the wealth of careers and opportunities in science and engineering, discover new interests, and gain confidence. The mentors—inspiring women in diverse careers in science, technology, engineering and math—enjoy the experience of being a role model and motivating the next generation of scientists and engineers. During their workshop, Ridgevalley students participated in an engineering design competition to create a mechanical ball launcher; discussed the importance of design, creativity, budgeting and teamwork in order to solve a real world problem; learned about prominent women in engineering and computer science history; and learned the basics of coding and computer programming. Cybermentor operates out of the Schulich School of Engineering at the University of Calgary and in collaboration with the University of Alberta's Faculty of Engineering. Learn more about the program at http://cybermentor.ca.

Savanna School

Saddle Hills County hosts career fair at Savanna School to showcase local opportunities
On November 16, Savanna School partnered with Saddle Hills County to bring a Saddle Hills County career fair to Grades 7– 12 students, alumni of the school, and students from Bonanza School. Students moved through stations showcasing the types of jobs offered by Saddle Hills County, how to get a job with Saddle Hills County, and how to become a council member. TransCanada Pipelines Limited, Agriculture Financial Services Corporation and Grande Prairie Regional College also hosted booths at the event.

Busy November at Savanna School
Staff and community members who attended a cheese making course this past summer hosted a free course for students. The school's Remembrance Day service included members of the community and local emergency response team, and Mr. Anderson shared his family's wartime stories and slides. Grades 5-6 students are designing and building houses while learning how electricity works. Grades 3-4 students are excited about building cars propelled by air or battery power. Cars have been built using water bottles, elastics, skewers, pop lids and battery-powered fans. Kindergarten-Grade 2 students have learned about the joy of giving through the Operation Christmas Child campaign which saw 64 packed shoeboxes sent off to children in less fortunate areas of the world. The school also welcomed Mr. McGillivary as the new Grades 3-4 teacher.

Teepee Creek School

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas at TCS
TCS students and staff are collecting food for the local food bank and sock donations for the local shelter. The annual Christmas Silent Auction fundraiser in support of the junior high year-end trip will be held on December 21, in conjunction with the school's Christmas concert, entitled The 12 Canadian Days of Christmas, which will begin at 1:00 p.m. in the TCS gym. 

Woking School

Woking students attend first annual Mighty Peace Youth for Change Summit
On October 22, five members of Woking School's Grades 6, 7 and 8 Leadership Class attended the first annual Mighty Peace Youth for Change Summit. The group was among the 145 students from the Peace Country area who were joined by 30 teacher leaders at the summit. Students attended sessions on social justice, art to inspire, human rights and the history of the indigenous people. "I look forward to working with our students in the coming months to set goals in preparation for our attendance at Mighty Peace Day in May, 2017," says Principal Danelle Boychuk. "Stay tuned for updates from Taylor, Anna, Mena, Grace and Kaleb on the exciting events we are working on."

Recent Press Releases:

Other news:

  • PWSD and its schools have been featured in approximately 35 media stories, to date, during the month of November, 2016.