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General News · 19th August 2008
John Kerr
In the waning days of summer, thoughts are turning to the start of another school year. At Cortes Island School we are excited about the possibilities that come with a new year, seeing returning students as well as new students, new parents, and new staff members. This year we will have continuity in our teaching staff with the return of teachers who will be familiar to the community.

Returning for her second year to teach our Kindergarten to Grade 2 class will be Christine Duketow. In the secondary class which will have students from grades 6-10, Shannon Jonassen will be teaching English and Socials, while Tim Hicken will have Math, Science, PE, and electives including cooking and woodworking.

I expect to have Aaron O’Shannessy back to teach our Grade 3-5 class, but his appointment has not yet been completed due to immigration department requirements. I anticipate that this will be taken care of in the near future and that Aaron will be back with us in September. It is also our intention to continue our very successful Pre-Kindergarten program with Paola Filippin. We are planning a mid- to late-September start to the program and will notify parents when classes will begin.

Our support team has seen some changes but we will have experienced people returning. Jane MacDonald will continue as our Educational Assistant and will be working with students from all three classes. Bruce Brown returns as our bus driver and maintenance person. Continuing as our custodian, Debra Pryce will be joined by Janet Gazdik who will be our on-call custodian. Derek Armitage joins us as our on-call bus driver.

The major change in our staff this year has been the addition of Liesa van Rossem as our school secretary. Liesa brings a great deal of experience to our school and we are fortunate to have her knowledge and skills to help us provide the best education opportunities for the children.

Finally, I am delighted to be returning to Cortes Island School for another year. My teaching duties this year will include working with primary and intermediate students, as well as teaching English and Math to the Grade 6 and 7 students. Being at Cortes School is the highlight of my educational career, and I am looking forward to seeing our school build on the successes of last year. I cannot emphasize enough how crucial community involvement and support has been in our success and it will continue to be a very important part of how we provide a great learning environment for our children. Thank you for your support over the past year and please let us know if you would like to contribute to the education of our children in upcoming year.

John Kerr