While elementary and high school students are eking out the last bit of summer freedom this week, teachers are back to work.
For staff at Christ the Teacher Catholic Schools (CTTCS) it’s a week of preparation based around this year’s division theme: Trust. School activities throughout the year will focus on this theme.
The week kicked off yesterday with a mass at St. Mary’s followed by opening messages from director of education Darrell Zaba and school board chair Angie Rogalski.
Today the staff is engaged in the annual organizational meeting at which long-service awards will be presented.
Tomorrow, Ken Kasinski, a faith-based motivational speaker, will address the staff and lead them in in-service religious training with a focus on the trust theme.
Friday will be in-service educational training with a focus on the new academic assessment regimen the Province is implementing as part of its Vision 2020 initiative to improve high-school graduation rates and Aboriginal participation.
Chad Holinaty, the division’s superintendent of education said parents and community members can expect to be involved in the new reporting structure through parent and community information sessions.
“I think that will generate some good conversation about education in general,” he said.
Holinaty outlined some of the highlights of the new school year starting with a project that was started during the summer. Two elementary schools, St. Paul’s and St. Alphonsus, have new gym floors.
“The process went really good,” Holinaty said. “They look great and I think the students and teachers will really enjoy them.
In September, new floors will also be installed at St. Mary’s and St. Henry’s.
The division is also very excited about Sacred Heart High School’s new Academy Programs, Holinaty said. Starting this fall, qualifying students will be able to get advanced instruction in one of three extracurricular, for-credit areas: hockey, dance and soccer.
There’s something in the mix for First Nations students, too. The federal government’s Urban Aboriginal Strategy has provided funding so CTTCS can offer trades training through its Dreambuilders program.
Holinaty is also looking forward to working with the new deputy minister of education, Dan Florizone.
“I think that will create a greater priority of education in the province,” he said. “I think that’s a positive.”