Monday, August 31, 2009

Fraser Institute Award Honours Haultain

School performance study reveals Haultain's outstanding academic improvements.

The Fraser Institute has awarded our little school the Garfield Weston Award for being among the top thirty Alberta schools in the category for Improvement in Academics. This is an awesome acknowledgment of something we already know - Haultain is a great school and continues to get better.

Student's results data from all schools in Alberta were exhaustively studied and analyzed by the Frasier Institute and Haultain scored among the top 30 schools in the category. To view Haultain's School Performance data at the Institute's web site, click here.

From the Fraser Institute:

"These annual awards were established in Alberta in 2000 and they acknowledge school teams whose skill, hard work, perseverance, and enthusiasm have contributed significantly to their students' academic performance. The awards are generously supported by The W. Garfield Weston Foundation, a Canadian charitable foundation."

So join me in congratulating Mr. Barkley and all the dedicated staff at Haultain!

Haultain in the news!

Thanks again to Angela for her help with the baskets, and to everyone who volunteers their time to fundraise!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Alberta delays sex-ed opt out rule till fall 2010

As a follow up to Nick's post from June 2.

EDMONTON -- Alberta will wait a year to implement Canada's first legislation giving parents the power under its human rights code to pull their children from lessons on religion, sex or sexual orientation.

Full story here.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

School Newsletter

Please see the embedded newsletter for Haultain below. If you have trouble reading it - click on the little box near the upper right hand corner of the document to 'toggle full screen' mode.

Haultain Newsletter September 2009

School life better for kids than it's been in years: researcher

By Misty Harris, Canwest News Service

In a post-Columbine age of school shootings and bullying, the news seems nothing short of radical: according to a leading Canadian sociologist, young people's educational experience is actually better now than it's been in generations.

Reginald Bibby, whose findings are based on a nationwide survey of some 5,500 teens, reports that enjoyment of school is at its "highest level in almost three decades."

Although 15 per cent of our young people still harbour concern over bullies, the vast majority nonetheless feel safe at school — 84 per cent, compared to 78 per cent in 2000. Nearly half say teachers significantly influence their lives — a proportion that outstrips television, the Internet and advertising — while confidence in those running the education system trumps that which teens have in leaders of every other sector, including police, government, courts and the media.

A reminder of this year's calendar change

(From the CBE website)

As you know, the Calgary Board of Education prepares the school calendars three years in advance to help staff and parents and their families plan ahead. The Minister of Education has requested that school boards begin the school year three days earlier to accommodate the WorldSkills Calgary 2009 competition, to be held in Calgary, September 1-6. After careful consideration of the benefits, Superintendents’ Team, with support from the CBE’s union leaders, have approved a change in the dates for the 2009-2010 school year.

Click here for the full article.

Click here for a .pdf of this year's calendar.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"I Hate School"

How to help your child recover his love of learning
Scott Wooding

All kids love school — at least in the beginning. Visit any kindergarten class and you’ll see: The simplest question from the teacher inspires a forest of waving hands. Some children are so excited that they blurt out the answer. It’s obvious that for these young scholars, learning is fun.
When you see this excitement in your own young kids, it’s easy to take their love of school for granted. In fact, you tend not to think about it much, even when shifts in their behaviour should be cluing you in to the possibility that their enjoyment of school has changed. As a child psychologist with more than 35 years of experience, I’ve seen this happen over and over again.

Split Grade Classes

Is a combined grade the best for your child?
Danielle Harder

I was flattered the year my eldest son was assigned to a grade two/three split class. I was assured that because he was bright and motivated, it would be a great fit. A combined grade was sold as a kind of Darwinian survival of the educational fittest. Several split classes later, like many other parents, I wonder who’s winning in this scenario.

Across the country, school boards are increasingly using split classes to handle declining enrolment and class-size caps, while also juggling specialized programs (like gifted and French immersion). In Ontario, for example, about one in four kids is in a split class. The numbers are roughly the same across the country, and even higher in rural areas where there simply aren’t enough students in each class to warrant a single grade.

Click here to read the full article. (Thanks for sending this article in Roxanne!)

Monday, August 24, 2009

Teach 'em well...and early

By Anna Cabrera Cristofaro,
The Windsor Star

The summer vacation is coming to a rapid close, and parents will soon be hustling to purchase every last item on their student's must-have list: pencils, duo tangs, notebooks and lunchboxes.

But Julie Di Ponio Roy, owner of The Children's House Montessori and the newly opened Teach 'N' Toys on Provincial Rd., urges parents of little ones not to forget supplementary educational books and toys. She says these items are vital for a child's development and could provide a good head start for those just entering the school system.

Click here to read the full story.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Urgent Update!

Sorry, All - I mentioned that our first Council meeting was on the 17th of September, but it's actually on the 9th! Please take the opportunity to come and join us - these meetings are fantastic for those parents who are new to the school.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Where did the summer go?

Here we are - preparing to send the kids back to school again for the 2009-2010 year. Please remember that school starts up on Thursday, August 27th this year - bright and early. This, of course, is due to the WorldSkills competition which takes place on the Stampede grounds this year. It's going to be a pretty amazing event - see if you can find some time to go and check it out.

Also of note is that our first Parent Council/Association meeting is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, September 9th. For those parents who have students attending Haultain for the first time, these meetings are a fantastic way to get to know the culture and workings of our school.

Meetings are time-enforced, and very informative. We'd love to see you.

Please, if you have any questions or comments whatsoever, feel free to comment on any blog entry, or contact the council by using the link on the right hand side of this page.

Enjoy the last few days of summer! See you soon.