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General News · 4th September 2011
Darlene Smith
Thanks to the August 17th welcoming committee and the delivery of a comfy new bed, via Brent’s deliver/ ditch rescue truck, I am rested and happy to be starting my new life. Saskatchewan girl moves to a Desolation Sound island (…not much difference really, except one is surrounded by water and the winters are warmer). It seems an improbable adventure. Pinch me; I am here. I’d like let the community get to know a bit more about Darlene the educator.
I was born to teach. Throughout my career I have been committed to my development as a teacher. I have been innovative in my pedagogical practices in order to provide a quality-learning environment for all of my students. I am an insatiable learner reflecting my most basic belief of education: learning is continuous, innate and flourishes when given a fertile context.
The most profound experience I have had as a teacher was creating a community of learners; a model in which all members are valued and contribute to the outcomes. Students are honoured for their individual expertise and unique thinking. They are encouraged to be inquisitive and innovative to determine their answers. My students and I developed a classroom environment committed to this underlying principle of how we learned: together. It was natural that I carry this philosophy into my approach as an instructional leader (principal). I asked myself how best to encourage learning and continuous improvement as the norms for every student and teacher, in every classroom every day. As a school administrator I have learned truly effective leadership builds capacity in individuals, teams and the organization. I look forward to the challenges offered by this unique community. Let us build the best education program for our children: together.
Abuzz in the community is a three-pronged question about the Cortes Elementary Junior Secondary School’s (CEJSS) program, registration and funding. Please understand that our program is part of the public system. K-10 grade configuration, learning outcomes and standards are directed by the Ministry of Education. At CEJSS, we are open to creating with parents unique, student-centered learning opportunities within that framework. The configuration of classes will be determined by September’s enrolment and attendance. Enrolling a child in two facilities is not permitted by the ministry. The ministry conducts a verification report on student numbers in late September. Please contact me at the school if you have additional questions.
Our new school year begins on Tuesday, September 6th. We welcome all registrations. Attendance at our school opening week is important. During the first week we will be working in multigrade learning pods to examine the big question, “Where will our footprints lead?” This learning adventure will end on Friday at Manson’s Lagoon for a beach clean-up and community potluck. We encourage you to call the school for more details if you wish to join us.