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

PWSD Good News Report – October 26, 2017

October 24, 2017

The following Good News Report from Peace Wapiti Public School Division (PWSD) and its schools will be shared at the upcoming Board Meeting on Thursday, October 26, 2017.

News from PWSD:

PWSD schools generate nearly $50,000 for cancer research at annual Terry Fox Run events

Seventeen PWSD schools honoured the 37th anniversary of the Terry Fox Run with fundraising campaigns and school run events this fall, generating a total of $49,460.22 for cancer research. For a list of totals by school, read the full press release at http://bit.ly/TFR2017-PWSD. Pictured: Students from the combined Harry Balfour and Whispering Ridge Community Schools (left); Bonanza School Terry Fox Run (right).

Official results of 2017 Trustee Election –
Incumbents Wendy Kelm and Stefanie Clarke re-elected in Wards 5 and 7

PWSD is pleased to announce the official results of the 2017 School Board Election, held on Monday, October 16. Re-elected for the 2017-2021 term are incumbents Wendy Kelm in Ward 5, representing Grande Prairie West and Wembley, and Stefanie Clarke in Ward 7, representing Grande Prairie East and Grovedale. Acclaimed newcomers Kari Scheers, Ward 1, and Lori Grant, Ward 3, along with incumbents Sharilyn Anderson, Kim Moodie, Wendy Kelm, Dale Crane, Stefanie Clarke, Robert Knull and Dana McIntosh – representing Wards 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 respectively – will be officially sworn in during the organizational meeting of the new Board at PWSD Central Office at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, October 26. The first regular meeting of the new Board will follow at 11:30 a.m.

Remembrance Day Ceremonies at PWSD schools

With Remembrance Day falling on a Saturday this year, and Friday designated as a planned district-wide day off in lieu of parent-teacher interviews, many schools will host ceremonies earlier in the week. At press time, the following schools had provided Remembrance Day ceremony details. A more extensive list of school events will be published closer to Remembrance Day.

Thursday, November 9:

  • Bezanson School: 10:45 a.m. in the school gym.
  • Teepee Creek School: 10:40 a.m. -11:40 a.m. Families and community members welcome.
  • Harry Balfour and Whispering Ridge Community Schools: Kindergarten - Grade 2 at 9:45 a.m.; Grades 4-8 at 10:45 a.m. Both ceremonies will take place in the large gym.
  • Elmworth School: Time TBA. Parents and community members are welcome to attend.

Teepee Creek School Principal selected to participate in Teachers Institute on Canadian Parliamentary Democracy in Ottawa

Casey Brown, Principal of Teepee Creek School, has been selected to participate in the Teachers Institute on Canadian Parliamentary Democracy in Ottawa on November 5-10, 2017. The annual one-week professional development opportunity brings 85 outstanding teachers from across Canada together in Ottawa for an inside look at how Parliament works. Throughout the program, participants collaborate to develop strategies for teaching about Parliament, democracy, governance and citizenship. Attendees will meet Speakers of the Senate and the House of Commons, observe Question Period and other debates and meetings, analyze critical issues, and receive important resource materials. The program is open to those who teach in a subject area related to citizenship, civics and/or social studies. Read the full release at http://bit.ly/TICPD-Brown.

PWSD Communications Officer wins national award

In October, PWSD Communications Officer Angela Sears (second from left) was awarded a Bravo Award of Merit from the Canadian Association of Communicators in Education (CACE) for her work on PWSD's "I Will Be" viewbook. The national program recognizes outstanding work in the field of communications.

News from PWSD schools:

Bezanson School

Bezanson student places first in Legion Remembrance Day essay contest

Bezanson School Grade 9 student Elena Ewert (pictured) was recognized at the Legion's Pinning of the First Poppy Ceremony in Calgary on October 21, for her first place finish in the 2015-2016 Legion Remembrance Day essay contest. Her essay, entitled If Ye Break Faith, scored first place at all three Legion levels in the province – Local, District and Command. First Poppy Ceremonies are held to symbolically pin the first poppy of the year. Read her essay below.

If Ye Break Faith

Do you wear a poppy or do you just wonder why anybody would wear one? What's the reason? Do you ever wonder why any sensible person would take 45 minutes out of their day to go to a Remembrance Day Ceremony? You might think it's only a ceremony. However, the truth is that people will take years and years out of their life and offer themselves to go and protect Canada even though there is a chance that they will die. I think we can take two minutes out of our day and stand in silence to respect those who fought.

The First World War took place in 1914 and stretched to 1918. Many people died in the first weeks of the war. It took the lives of more than 60,000 Canadians. It was considered the bloodiest war of all time. Nobody could tell the amount of suffering these people and their families went through. Many young Canadians went to flight schools to learn how to fly planes in the military. The economy dropped and unemployment affected Canada very much. Women had to wear badges that said, "Knit or fight". So basically, they either would make provisions or go fight. At last, the enemies backed down and the First World War had ended.

The Second World War stretched from 1939 to 1945. Nearly 50,000 Canadians died and at least 50,000 Canadian soldiers were injured. With new technologies, this war went on even longer with a military, a navy, and a flight force. With new guns and bombs, people became more strategic but the costs were very high. Not many people survived an injury without doctors. The medics' lives were in danger at all times even though they weren't serving on the front lines. It was a hazardous job to keep the soldiers healthy. Hitler and his Nazi party killed many people and many were put into concentration camps. Surviving was a hard thing to do and then finally Hitler backed down and killed himself. The war was finally over.

The brave soldiers fought on even in the worst conditions. They didn't hesitate when it came to protecting Canada. I think we can give up time to go to a ceremony to honour those men and women who generously gave their lives. They gave more than two minutes of a day. This year on Remembrance Day, wear a poppy, and give two minutes of silence. Remember, "If ye break faith with us, who die, we shall not sleep, though poppies grow in Flanders Fields."(John McCrae)

Upcoming events at Bezanson School:

  • October 25: Canadian singer/songwriter Michael Mitchell's Canada is for Kids! performance.
  • November 2: Canadian Métis poet, speaker, and author David Bouchard will present "More Than Words" to students.
  • November 9: Remembrance Day Ceremony in the school gym at 10:45 a.m.
  • November 24-30: School book fair
  • November 30: Parent-teacher interviews

Eaglesham School

Annual 'Night in the Trenches' planned for November 10
Eaglesham School teacher Mr. McKay and Grades 7-12 students will begin their annual march from Eaglesham School to the Ag Society Fairgrounds on Friday, November 10 at 3:30 p.m., carrying gear on their backs. The crew will set up camp and take turns digging trenches and keeping watch throughout the night. Students will lead the annual Remembrance Day ceremony at Eaglesham Hall, beginning at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, November 11.

Volleyball news

Senior Girls Volleyball won their third straight tournament, placing first in Grimshaw, Mayerthorpe and Valleyview. Junior Boys and Girls Volleyball teams are both playing well, and made it to Semis at the Sexsmith tournament earlier in October. Both teams are looking ahead to Zones in early November. Boys competed at Divisionals on Saturday, October 21 but lost in the Semis, while Junior Girls hosted a mini-tournament at home on the same day.

Other news
The Eaglesham School Outdoor Pursuits class had a successful kayak trip and will be completing another overnight trip in October. The school will participate in the Students Against Drinking and Driving (SADD) liquor bag program. The school held its first Terry Fox Run, generating $2,512.15 for cancer research.

Elmworth School

Identity Day at Elmworth School

Students shared a piece of themselves during Elmworth School's annual Identity Day on October 19. Parents viewed projects later that evening during parent-teacher interviews. Pictured: Identity Day projects by Grade 3 student Maddy Jean and Grade 2 student Brooke Funk.

Upcoming events at Elmworth School:

  • October 24: Juno Award Nominee Mary Lambert will perform at the school.
  • October 31: Halloween Carnival hosted by Student Leadership.
  • November 9: Remembrance Day assembly. Time TBA. Parents and community members are welcome to attend.

Helen E. Taylor School

PWSD teachers meet former PM during Evening of Empowerment

A group of social studies teachers attended Odyssey House's first annual Evening of Empowerment and talked with the event's keynote speaker, The Right Honourable Kim Campbell. Helen E. Taylor Principal Jen Clevette said the event provided an amazing opportunity to talk politics, curriculum and democracy with a former Prime Minister. Pictured left-right are PWSD teachers Sarah Vogan of Peace Wapiti Academy, Sandi Busch of Hythe Regional School, Anna Underwood and Principal Jen Clevette of Helen E. Taylor School, and The Right Honourable Kim Campbell, along with GPPSD's Chantal Gallant of École Montrose School.

Wonder Book Club

During KNIGHT block, Grades 6-9 personal learning time at HET, school librarian Anna Underwood is hosting a multi-grade book club that meets once weekly to read and discuss the book Wonder.

New events partnership formed between WES, HET and Wembley community
October marked a first for Helen E. Taylor and Wembley Elementary School Councils and community members – a joint meeting with a goal to host events for Wembley community members. Representatives from the Phillip J. Currie Museum, Parks and Recreation, and Wembley Town Council also attended the inaugural meeting. Three events have been planned for the 2017-2018 school year:

  • December 14: Wembley Community Caroling Night, with hot chocolate and a bonfire.
  • January 26: Night at the Museum, in connection with Literacy Week. The Phillip J. Currie Museum will host the Wembley community for an evening of board games.
  • May 2018: Community Fun Run, details to be announced.

'Only One You' rock project

Based on a book by Linda Krantz, students created unique rocks that will be used as paving stones around the school. HET teacher Rhonda Johnson spearheaded the project.

Annual Fall 5K Run awards handed out

HET students ran through the community for their annual Fall 5K Run. Pictured left-right:

  • Top Elementary Girls: Neala LaFond, Hailey Coombs and Alex Bromling
  • Top Elementary Boys: Camron Buckland, Ryan Knaus, Trevor Knaus, Andrew Sangrias
  • Top Junior Girls: Keanna MacDonald, Brooklyn Bonke, Dana Schlauwitz
  • Top Jr Boys: Layton Berg, Josh Boissonnault, Matt and Zack Oakley

Hythe Regional School

Hythe Grade 1 students take a unique approach to learning math, enjoy fall art projects

Mrs. Godel's Grade 1 students have had a marvelous time in math in September. Students have been learning to sort based on one attribute. This included taking apart VCRs to remove and sort as many objects as possible. The activity was hard but students had fun and cooperated well. The class has also been comparing numbers to 20, and developing a better understanding of more, less and equal. To celebrate fall, students made fall corn pictures and apple dolls.

Peace Wapiti Academy

PWA hosts Cross Country Running Zone Championships

On October 11, 250 cross country runners from 23 high schools and 28 junior high schools in 23 race categories converged on Peace Wapiti Academy (PWA) for the Alberta School Athletic Association (ASAA) Cross Country North West Zone Championship. Thanks to the combined efforts of nine PWA athletes, the school was named the 2017 Cross Country North West Zone Champion. Kirsten Tangen, PWA's lone Grade 9 competitor, pulled off a third place finish. Other rankings included Junior Mens category competitors Hayden Zavacky, 15th; Anson Tangen, 16th; and Gavin Driedger, 17th. In the Intermediate Mens category, winner Jordan Lundstrom achieved a 30-second lead, despite a nagging knee injury, while Caleb Farnsworth placed seventh. In the Junior Womens category, Lydia Steinke took bronze and Ashley Morrison placed seventh. Haley Friesen took silver in the Senior Womens category. For the official results, visit https://wolvesxcseries.com/2017-nw-zone-xc-running-championships. Pictured: Photo PWA Cross-Country Team with Coach Mr. Camsell (center).

Emergency Equine First Aid course for PWA's Painted Ponies class

PWA offers a Painted Ponies class to Grade 10 students interested in learning about therapy horses and their care. Through the class, students also learn leadership skills, and how to care for their own mental and physical health. On October 16-17, the class completed Emergency Equine First Aid certification, led by instructor Leah Batchelor of Safe Haven Stables in Sexsmith. On the first day, students learned equine First Aid and injury prevention, including how to make a donut bandage using polo wraps or tube socks. On the second day, the group met at Ms. Batchelor's farm for hands-on scenarios with three of her rescue horses – Whimper, Mooshoo and Jackie – that will live out the remainder of their lives on her farm. The students met the requirements of the course and received equine First Aid certificates good for the next three years. The Painted Ponies class runs throughout the school year and includes a once-weekly visit to the Peace Area Riding for the Disabled Society (PARDS) facility for hands-on learning with the horses.

Job Readiness preparing PWA Grade 9 students for employment

Grade 9 students in the Job Readiness class at Peace Wapiti Academy have been busy researching employability traits, career prerequisites, job trends and more. The class includes firsthand experience in various employment opportunities and careers offered by the local area. This year's expanding list includes museum curator, museum program coordinator, wildlife biologist, archaeologist, and the RCMP. Students have also met with local entrepreneurs, including A.P.E Parkour and OMG Cupcakes, and studied past employment in the Peace Region. Students focus on how to become employable and plan for their future by investigating personal strengths and challenges. Teachers Sarah Vogan, Kaila Villiger and Shannon Schipper say the course keeps them very busy and students are enjoying learning about career options. Pictured: Students in the Grade 9 Job Readiness course at Peace Wapiti Academy learn about a career in policing from local RCMP officers.

Upcoming events at Peace Wapiti Academy:

  • October 25: Lee Thomas will present during iPlan period on reducing the stigma associated with mental illness.
  • October 26: Eva Olsson, 93-year-old survivor of the Holocaust, will present to all PWA students during iPlan period. 
  • November 1: Grade 9 students will participate in the national Take Our Kids to Work Day. Learning about work and career opportunities is an integral part of the Grade 9 curriculum.
  • November 3: Fundraiser steak dinner at the Dunes Golf and Country Club. PWA's Band, Travel Club, Pride Club, and the Football, Girls Basketball and Cross-Country Running Teams are selling tickets for $30.00.

Savanna School

Junior High students prepare food for Saddle Hills residents through Community Kitchen initiative

This year, Grades 7-8 students at Savanna School are building relationships and gain skills outside the classroom through a monthly Community Kitchen initiative at Fourth Creek. The successful program, already in operation for a number of years in both Spirit River and Rycroft, sees students working alongside adults to create frozen meals for Saddle Hills County residents who are unable to cook for themselves, or who are limited in their ability to use cooking utensils. Students were bused to Fourth Creek Hall on October 13 to participate in their first meaningful monthly citizenship opportunity that also meets specific learning outcomes for Health, Physical Education, and Career and Technology Foundations curriculum.

Savanna Gazette – New monthly student newspaper debuts at Savanna School

October marked the first edition of the Savanna Gazette, a four-page monthly e-newspaper produced by Savanna School's senior class. The lead story, "Inside the minds of the graduating class and the next to come" is a series of short interviews with the current Grade 11 and 12 students. A story on the ill effects of drug abuse reaches out to youth who may not heed the advice of an adult. The final page includes a crossword puzzle, student council update, and a joke of the month. Newspaper staff includes student writers Tymea McCarlie, Kelsey Dolen, Wyatt Chipps, Amber Bergen and Bailey Spence, with Zoya Leiske and Miss Spence handling photography. Read the newspaper online at http://enewspaper.makemynewspaper.com/savannaschool/first-edition#.WeY-1Emou70

Spirit River Regional Academy

SRRA students prepare annual Thanksgiving lunch

Harvest soup is an annual tradition at SRRA. Kindergarten-Grade 6 students bring in vegetables to make the communal soup in celebration of the fall harvest and Thanksgiving. This year's lunch included a special treat – apple tarts prepared and baked by the Grades 1 and 2 students and the Foods 30 class. The entire student body, made up of Kindergarten-Grade 12 students, gathered to enjoy the lunch on Friday, October 6.

Teepee Creek School

Upcoming events:

  • October 24: Canadian singer/songwriter Michael Mitchell's Canada is for Kids! performance at 10:00 a.m.
  • October 26: Author Karen Bass will spend an afternoon with Grade 3-8 students, discussing writing and being an author.
  • October 31: Classroom Halloween fun during the afternoon, followed by a spooky dance in the gym at 2:40 p.m.
  • November 9: Remembrance Day Ceremony, 10:40 a.m. -11:40 a.m. Teepee Creek School families and community members are welcome to attend.
  • November 13: Start of a food drive for the Sexsmith Food Bank and sock drive for Grande Prairie shelters.

Whispering Ridge Community School

New learning options for Grades 4-6 WRCS students
Teachers of WRCS Grades 4-6 Options classes are working hard to plan authentic and engaging enrichment opportunities for students throughout the year. Grade 4s will explore bracelet making and beading during the week of October 23. Grade 5 Option classes will include a visit to the Grande Prairie Library and Art Gallery on November 3, followed by yoga on November 15. Gr 6 students will enjoy an Athletics course at GPRC on October 30 and November 6.  

Pictured: In October, Grade 4 students visited the Aquatera Water Treatment Facility and Landfill. Grade 6 student Aurora Fisher casts her ballot during Student Vote.

Upcoming events at WRCS:

  • October - December 7: Grades 4-8 are participating in an after school Curling Club on Thursdays, run by Mrs. Fisher and Mrs. Rohatinsky.
  • October 27-28: Volleyball tournament at Peace Wapiti Academy
  • October 28: HBS and WRCS students will be participating in the Science Olympics at Charles Spencer High School
  • October 31 - November 2: Telus Science in Motion
  • November 1-2: Parent Teacher Interviews, 5:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Parents should use the online booking system for Kindergarten – Grade 6 appointments; Grades 7-8 will be drop-in interviews in the large gym. This year, the school is excited to hold interviews prior to Term 1 report cards, keeping students at the heart of the conversation instead of focusing on the report cards. WRCS teachers look forward to meeting with families earlier in the year to work together to best meet student needs.
  • November 3-4: Volleyball tournament at Ecole Montrose
  • November 9: Remembrance Day Ceremonies in the large gym: Kindergarten - Grade 2 at 9:45 a.m.; Grades 4-8 at 10:45 a.m.

Recent Press Releases:

Other news:

  • PWSD and its schools were featured in 52 media stories to date during the month of October 2017.
  • To keep up-to-date with the latest news from PWSD, and local media coverage, check out PWSD's online Media Room at http://www.pwsd76.ab.ca/mediaroom.