Just 5 days remaining for students and schools to register for the upcoming GSA Conference happening in St. John's next month!
May 4th, 2019: Gay the Force Be With You!
Macdonald Drive Junior High School is proud to host a Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA) Conference for LGBTQ2S+ students and parents, and their friends from grades K to 12.
Date: May 4th, 2019
Time: 10:00 am to 2:30 pm for K-6, and to 7:30 pm for grades 7-12.
Place: Macdonald Drive Junior High School (110 Macdonald Dr, St.John’s)
Registration: grades K-6: $20; grades 7-12: $40 (including meals and afternoon snack).
Conference t-shirts can also be ordered for an extra $12
Age-appropriate programming for all will be offered within the times indicated. Students groups should be accompanied by a teacher sponsor from their school.
The conference will include a parent support session in the morning co-facilitated by Julie Temple Newhook and Sarah Pickett, both of Memorial University. Parents may attend the morning only (opening session and parent support session) at no cost, or the full day (above registration fee applies).
Registration now open at the following link. All participants, adults as well as students, are asked to register individually and indicate the name and email of their teacher sponsor. An accompanying parent/guardian can take the place of a teacher sponsor. Older students from schools who do not have a teacher able to accompany them may attend the conference unaccompanied, upon recommendation of a teacher.
We ask that registration fees be collected by the teacher sponsor and brought to the Registration Desk on the day of the conference in the form of a cheque to Macdonald Drive Junior High.
For additional information, please speak to Mme Brunet by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Registration will be accepted up to and including the conference opening. Download the information from the link provided below.
On Friday October 27, 2017 physical education teacher Ron Simms of Long Range Academy held the school’s first indoor Tent City for students in grades 4 to 6. It was indoor camping in fine style. Tents were set up with air mattresses and sleeping bags, while outside were camping chairs to relax in.
The students took part in Halloween Fear Factor, fish pond and other fun activities, including hot chocolate by the campfire! They also participated in Nature’s Symphony, where students listened to a nature CD and wrote about the images they visualized, and Nature’s Forensic Scientists, an activity that had students view an object found in nature and determined the animal that could have made the object into its current form. The school guidance councillor also shared two great campfire books that aided in the stories and wind down for the night. In the morning pancakes and juice were enjoyed by all before packing up and heading home.
Inclusive education practices and Heritage Collegaite student Brett Smith profiled by CBC.
Read the story at the link below.
CBC News NL (November 20, 2017) - View full story HERE
Students and teachers from all around the province gathered in Grand Bank in late October to 'Find their Fit' - the first Provincial Student Leadership Conference held on the Burin Peninsula in 14 years. Approximately 260 students and teachers from 35 schools were eager to participate in the many planned sessions and presentations.
Throughout the three-day conference, students had ample opportunities to 'Find their Fit' through a variety of workshops that teach leadership skills and creative thinking skills. Leaders from the community and province hosted a number of various sessions for students with a wide range of interests. Also, setting the tone for the weekend were two keynote speakers; Katarina Roxon and Andy Thibodeau. The weekend provided student leaders with essential skills to build new clubs and activities in their own schools and communities. Host school, John Burke High School, would like to thank everyone involved in making this weekend a success and encourage everyone to find THEIR fit!
For a few weeks in advance of Remembrance Day, Roncalli Central High School students were creating artwork in honor of those who serve and have served. Students felt it was very important for them to accurately depict the lives of these individuals and, in essence, get it right!
Some of the images attempt to depict 'through the eyes of a soldier,' in which they drew an eye and then within the eye drew images of poppies, soldiers and memorials among other symbols.
By all accounts, students and staff felt it was a very successful project, which brought into focus a very important day in our school. The halls of the high school proudly displayed the student artwork for Remembrance Day and beyond. As noted by Art teacher Jeremy McPeake and echoed by the students who worked on the project, 'We will remember them.'
Congratulations to the recipients of the CUPE 1560 Support Staff Scholarships.
Details can be found within the associated picture or in the attached document.
Mid-October, students at Newtown Elementary learned that one of their own had placed among the top students in a poster contest sponsored by the Knights of Columbus throughout North America. Grade 6 student Noelle Lamb of Mt. Pearl created a poster for the 2016-17 Knights of Columbus Alcohol Abuse Poster Contest and was among some 10,000 youth to get involved. During the Thanksgiving Day Assembly at the school, Knights of Columbus State Deputy Brian Hurley presented Noelle with the Supreme Award for her efforts; one of six young people to recieve awards through this year's contest. Congratulations Noelle!
More information on the winners and their posters can be found here.
Students and staff at Copper Rodge Academy in Baie Verte surpassed their own goal for their first ever school-organized Terry Fox Run. The school had set a goal of raising $1,000 for the cause but quickly rose above expectations. In the end, their students more than doubled their goal, much to the excitement of students and staff alike!
Student who were successful in raising the most funds had the opportunity to dunk a teacher of their choice in the dunk tank - a feat surely desired by many students throughout the province! With this event, Copper Ridge Academy joined the ranks of numerous schools throughout Newfoundland and Labrador who regularly and routinely get involved in fundraising efforts for the Terry Fox Foundation and those involved say that this may have been their first event, but it certainly won't be their last!
In observance of World Mental Health Day on October 11, the principal of Christ the King School in Rushoon undertook a special initiative in an effort to ensure students understood the important link between physical and mental health. Mr. Lee Masters walked 50 kilometers from his home to the school to help draw the connection for the young members of his community. Walking has been a great motivator for Masters in recent months, as he has been on his own journey to physical health and he was pleased to have students join him on the last kilometer of the treck!
Congratulations Mr. Masters - the District and your students are very proud of your efforts!
A wonderful community celebration was held at St. Marks School in King's Cove this September, as students harvested the vegetables planted in Spring as part of outdoor classroom activities. The creation of the outdoor classroom was the result of heard work and dedication of the Community Connections Committee and a number of committed volunteers. Grade 4/5/6s prepared lettuce and toppings, and set up a salad bar in the lunchroom for all to enjoy. Organizers say it was a huge, healthy hit among young learners, as everyone realized that students were involved in every step; from planting to eating!
There are lots of people who work behind the scenes to make sure our administrators and teachers have access to the tools and services they need to provide a happy, healthy educational experience for our young learners.
In partnership with the regional health authorities, the District has a number of school health promotion liaison consultants throughout the province to promote health within the regions.
Recently, Eastern Health profiled Krista Manning and Peggy Orbasali, two of the consultants in the Avalon region to highlight how health and education go hand in hand and are being supported by staff members throughout the education system.
Click here to read more from the Storyline article.
To find the school health promotion liaison in your area, click here.
A program whose mission is to empower exceptional youth to make the world a better place has taken over space at Memorial University for the next short while. SHAD provides a number of Canadian youth with a unique experiential learning experience, rooted in the STEAM (science, technology, engineering, the arts and mathematics) disciplines. Some 56 students from across the country are trying their hand at some interesting projects while on campus in Newfoundland, while another 50 students directly from this province are away, sharing similar experiences at SHAD programs housed at other universities.
Recently, CBC's Jeremy Eaton had an opportunity to visit the campus to see what the program is all about and hear from some past participants from this province to understand the impact of such an immersive program.
CBC News NL (July 25, 2017) - view news story HERE.
For more information on the SHAD experience or to find out details on next year's program, visit the SHAD website here.
Earlier this year, Sharing Our Cultures undertook a legacy project for Canada 150 that gave young people throughout the province an opportunity to highlight, through video, what Canada means in their eyes. Sharing Our Cultures Founder Lloydetta Quaicoe says the project, which saw dozens of entries from across the province, showed the students' inspiration, ingenuity and creativity.
Among the winners at this year's Youth Video Festival Celebration, held at the Bruneau Center at Memorial University, the following projects were profiled:
- Samuel Mok of Waterford Valley High School (2nd place)
- Gill Memorial Academy (Honourable mention)
- Jarod Burden and Cameron Warren of Gonzaga High School
- Basma Alfaory and Tasneem Aless of Holy Heart High School
- And many more...
Participant videos and information on the festival can be found HERE.
CBC also profiled the awards ceremony - you can read more about the event HERE.
Level II students of Gill Memorial Academy were proud to receive a honourable mention for their submission to Sharing Our Cultures’ Canada 150 Youth Video contest. The group of 16 students wrote and performed a song titled Canada Bound, inspired by Paul Brandt’s version of Alberta Bound.
To complete the project, the students created a video consisting of photos displaying what they love about Canada. In addition to the honourable mention, the students received a cash prize and a trip to St. John’s to attend the Festival Celebration. This was a great accomplishment for the school, who worked hard on their entry, and a truly memorable experience for the students involved.
Sixteen youth from among five coastal Labrador communities will come together in song this week as part of Canada’s 150 anniversary celebration in Ottawa. The students range in age from Grade 7 to 12 and hail from within Nunatsiavut, calling Nain, Hopedale, Makkovik, Postville or Rigolet home. A relatively new choir, under the direction of Janet Wiseman (with help from Shallaway’s Kellie Walsh) and through a partnership between the Newfoundland and Labrador English School District and the Nunatsiavut government, Ullugiagatsuk will join hundreds of other choirs and musicians from throughout the country to celebrate this momentous occasion on Parliament Hill… and they have only ever sang together in person a handful of times!
Recently, the publication Labrador Life profiled the new choir, their challenges and their excitement about being part of such an historic event. The article, written by Holly Lake, can be viewed at the link below.
The students head to Ottawa June 28, in advance of the weekend’s big show.
The District wishes all participants a wonderful trip – we are certain you will have a wonderful experience and will be an amazingly appropriate representatives of our province and our country on this national stage!
UPDATED STORY ADDED
St. Michael's Regional High and Bell Island star as part of this week's episode of Still Standing on CBC TV airing 9:00 p.m. NST on June 27, 2017.
Details of a special showing at the school can be found in the poster below.
The students and staff of Woodland Primary in Grand Falls-Windsor made a video to show how we can be an Everyday Hero.
To view, please follow this LINK or through the link at the bottom of the page.
St. Michael's Regional High (Grades 7 to 12) and the residents of Bell Island will be front and centrer as part of this week's episode of Still Standing on CBC TV, airing 9:00 p.m. NST on Tuesday, June 27, 2017.
A number of students, as well as school and community related initatives will be featured.
Details of a special showing at the school can be found in the poster above and more information on the television series, starring Newfoundland's own Johnny Harris, can be found HERE.
Grade 6 students received and participated in an ArtsSmarts project with artist Winnie Glavine where students learned the traditions and evolution of rug hooking in Newfoundland and Labrador. Together, they designed their own project, focusing on a symbol of our province and learned the process involved in the art of rug hooking. In addition to learning the how, students developed skills in concentration, patience, and perseverance. Additionally, they experienced the calming effect of rug hooking. Their finished piece was a certainly a personal reward; an expression of their creativity and a tangible expression of pride in their completed project. It was evident that the students learned a lot about rug hooking and the role it played in our culture. It highlighted that some students have a natural flair for this particular art, discovering a new activity to engage in in their spare time. Many students were hooked before the end of the project!
For more information on the ArtsSmarts program from ArtsNL, please feel free to visit their website HERE.
Gander Academy is the 2016-17 Pythagorus School Provincial Champion for Newfoundland and Labrador! The school's Grade 6 mathematics students also scored above the Canadian average with over 60,000 students competing in this year's contest. These results are indicative of much hard work and support by Gander Academy students, staff members and families over their first 7 years of schooling.
The school's administration is very proud of their student's great work, congratulate all students for their efforts and also thank their amazing Grade 6 teachers for administering the test and encouraging our Grade 6 students.
A special mention to Gander Academy's top 5 students: Jessica Ugwoke and Serena Woolridge (both tied for 1st), Charlotte Bown, Adam Pinsent, and Luke Taj.
Way to go Gander Academy!
Students in Cathy Baker's Kindergarten class at Holy Cross School in Eastport waited... and waited... and today (June 20th), just days before summer vacation, their patience and care were finally rewarded. A baby duckling finally hatched from their incubator, much to the awe and excitement of students.
Last month, an incubator was set up and eggs were introduced so the children could work on project-based, play-based learning. Ms. Baker says the results among students have been extremely positive and responsive.
To see the big event and learn more about the project, visit the Compass' website story link HERE.
A Rennie's River Elementary long-time volunteer has received recognition as one of Canada’s Favorite Crossing Guards. Dave Innes was recognized in an Assembly on mid-June, in which dignitaries, honored guests, parents, staff and students of Rennie’s River Elementary were present. Mr. Dave, as he so affectionately referred to by students, ensure the safe crossing of young learners on one of the busiest streets in the capital city, Elizabeth Avenue. Dave is out in all kinds of weather and often, as we all know, he can experience 4 seasons in one day!
Mr. Innes has been spotted shoveling the sidewalk to ensue students are visible to passing traffic and that they have a safe passage way out into the street. His sense of duty as Crossing Guard extends beyond the school and out to include the community. He has assisted the elderly from the neighbouring St. Pat’s Mercy Home, runners using Rennie’s River Trail, and even ducks from the river, in crossing the street safely.
Parents of and the staff at Rennie’s River can start their day with the confidence and knowledge that the students who walk to school are safely guided across the high traffic Elizabeth Avenue. A heartfelt thank-you to Mr. Innes, the reliable, dedicated and pleasant Crossing Guard who has not missed a single day of service to his school community.
Two educators within District schools in Newfoundland and Labrador have each received one of the country's highest honours for the 2016-17 school year - the Prime Minister's Award for Teaching Excellence. Waterford Valley High School (St. John's) educator John Walsh and Belanger Memorial School (Doyles) teacher Kristy Boland have each been named to this year's list of recipients based on their dedication to education and approach to engaeding their students to encourage a deep understanding of core subjects like Math, Chemistry, Physics, and technology.
Information on John Walsh's nomination and Certificate of Achievement can be VIEWED HERE.
Information on Kristy Boland's nomination and Certificate of Achievement can be VIEWED HERE.
Congratulations from your colleagues and co-workers throughout the District.
French immersion students across Canada were invited to create a video demonstrating their French immersion learning experience based on the theme Mon inspiration francophone. This contest was organized by the Association canadienne des professionels de l’immersion (a Canadian association of French immersion professionals). The ninety second video clips were evaluated based on the students’ oral communication skills in French, originality, and creative use of technology.
Jakiera Rideout, a Level III early French immersion student at Holy Spirit High School, successfully placed third in this national competition. Third place winners receive a $4000.00 scholarship to attend the University of Ottawa.
Jakiera’s winning video can be viewed HERE.
Students, staff and families came together Tuesday morning, as Larkhall Academy hosted its annual Community Breakfast at the school. Participants noted that the morning event was a huge success, thanks in large part to the many volunteers. Parents, guardians, teachers, school board members, politicians, Rotary Club members and friends participated and helped to make sure the delicious food was prepared and that there was an accepting, fun, and inviting atmosphere for all in attendance. Always aware of their responsibility to help those who may be less fortunate, the school ensured that all the leftover food headed to The Gathering Place in the spirit of caring and sharing.
Mount Pearl Senior High’s Community Outreach Program operates out of the school and includes such initiatives as coats for kids, visiting with seniors, Christmas hampers, Causes for Concerns, Christmas Boxes and a Soup Kitchen.
The Soup Kitchen is a 12 week program that runs from Feb to May with students meeting each Thursday after school met to prepare chili or goulash, as well as muffins or cookies. With the generous support from the corporate sponsors, Sobeys, Dominion and TRA, the students were able to prepare meals for the Salvation Army's Wiseman Center which provides temporary and supportive housing to socially-displaced homeless individuals. Monies were also provided by the Elim Pentecostal Church and the Causes for Concern group.
The last day for MPSH’s South Kitchen program was May 25 and concluded with the students and teachers bringing their food to the Wiseman Centre on Friday to served, eat with patrons and cleaned up, before returning to school.
Students saw firsthand the value of their hard work and putting the needs of others ahead of their own. We often hear of teenagers are selfish and self-absorbed but that is not the experience at Mt. Pearl Senior High, where students have at times volunteered for this program even though they already have their career hours. The program is in good hands moving forward as many of the current assistants have said they will be returning to the program next year. So much for being self-absorbed.
Cameron Rice is a Grade 12 student at New World Island Academy who was selected as a recipient of the TD Canada Trust scholarship, valued at $70,000. In providing him this scholarship opportunity, TD has noted the following on their website; ‘... hoping to re-invigorate community togetherness in an isolated fishing port, Cameron joined the Coming Home Year festival committee and organized a dory race that attracted more than 400 people. He decided to make the Herring Neck Dory Festival an annual event and gained the support of provincial politicians and the Atlantic Lottery Corporation. Cameron served as co-president of the Student Council, hosted an annual community Christmas supper to share the holiday spirit and organized a benefit concert for the Canadian Cancer Society. He plans to study commerce at Memorial University (2017).’
Everyone at the District and at New World Island Academy is very proud of Cameron and wish him all the best in September.
Amalgamated Academy in Bay Roberts hosted a 'Pride Week' during May to help highlight and celebrate diversity. This was an initiative of the schools Safe and Caring Committee that was facilitated by a Safe and Caring Special Project Grant. Many activities were planned during the week which included the rising of the Pride flag, the rainbow coloring of the school crosswalk, a Loom Band Project for the elementary students, 'Different Kinds of Families' presentations (presented by the Foster Families Association), and a rainbow day where every member of the school community was given a rainbow cupcake and asked to dress in rainbow colors for the day. Various information was provided to both staff and students and it was awesome to see the students embrace this as they took it upon themselves to display their pride by doing things such as placing rainbow posters around the school and painting rainbows on their faces. We hope that this week will have a lasting impact and that the school community will continue to welcome and embrace diversity.
At their recent graduation celebrations, the six senior classmates at Lakewood Academy in Glenwood marked the absence of an old friend. In 2008, then 8 year old Rorry Calder died in a terrible car accident at an intersection in Gander on the Trans Canada Highway. Every year at their final awards ceremony, Rorry is remembered by the school he would have attended, but this year as his friends graduated, the students wanted to make sure he was included in their special day.
Recently, CBC reporters spoke with Rorry's mother, Brandi, Principal Cathy Rowe and the members of the 2017 graduating class at Lakewood Academy about Rorry's memory and why it was important for them to include him in their special day.
CBC News (May 22, 2017) - View news story HERE.
CBC News Central - Morning Show Interview Audio, available HERE.
An innovative high school student from St. John's has taken home a gold medal at the Canada-Wide Science Fair held in Regina, Saskatchewan. One of a six-person NL team that made the cross-country journey, Holy Heart High School Grade 12 student Nora Boone won a gold medal, as well as an Innovation Challenge award, and a Youth Can Innovate award for the development of a tool to help doctors in rural areas of perform emergency neurosurgical care when needed. She worked with a number of local doctors and Memorial University of Newfoundland's medical students in their 3D laboratory to create her project and was thrilled to bring the honour home.
Additionally impressive, Team NL members Aaron Sarkar of Macdonald Drive Junior High also won a silver medal, while Kurtis Collins of Waterford Valley High, Nisarg Dave of Gonzaga and Noha Shehata, also of Holy Heart, each won a bronze medal. More information on the projects can be found here.
CBC News recently spoke with Boone about her award-winning project and the impact it could have on rural medicine accross the country and throughout the world.
CBC News NL (May 22, 2017) - View news story HERE.
It is grad season and many of our most senior students are celebrating the culmination of their secondary school educational experience. The students of Waterford Valley High in St. John's held their prom festivities at the Convention Center, featuring in-house WVH entertainment. School Board Trustee Keith Culleton attended the celebration and says he was impressed with the number of graduating students who displayed their talents for the more than 800 individuals in attendance. Culleton also took the time to thank teacher-sponsor Mr. Robert Smith for his tireless efforts to coordinate or organize the grad with the student committee - a testiment to the dedication of Mr. Smith and the District's many staff members throughout the province who give of themselves to ensure our students have a good send-off from what we hope is a postive educational experience.
Students and community members came together recently to showcase how taking care of your mental health can be both fun and engaging!
The Mind Your Mind gathering, which kicked off May 5 at Menihek High School, featured session and presentations on such activities as yoga, martial arts, journaling, sumba, art, laughter and more.
The local newspaper, The Labradorian, sent reporter Mike Power to the conference to speak with participants to understand how talking about mental health does not always have to be in the negative.
The Labradorian (May 11, 2017) - View news story HERE.
Young environmentalists at C.C. Loughlin Elementary in Corner Brook are doing all they can to ensure that thousands of plastic bags are kept out of our local landfills. Students have come on board this year with the Plastic Bag Grab Challenge, which saw upwards of 15,000 bags collected last year through the efforts of school staff. This year, the students have already more than doubled that total... and they still have more than two weeks to go until the end of their efforts.
West coast newspaper, The Wester Star, sent reporter Gary Kean to speak with the students about the reasons why they care and what everyone should be doing to keep our communities clean.
The Western Star (May 14, 2017) - View full story HERE.
After a 6 hour delay at Pearson Airport and an early morning arrival in Quebec, Grade 6 students, teachers, and chaperones were 'up and at 'em' earlier this month at the Cosmodome in Laval, all part of a weeklong Space Camp excursion.
Students from J. J. Curling Elementary in Corner Brook have been experiencing this amazing opportunity since 2011. Following four days of engaged learning in science and other STEM disciplines, as well as a simulated immersive astronaut training program, students graduated to return home with stories of an amazing experience that will last a lifetime.
In late April, the Centre for Distance Learning and Innovation (CDLI) French students took part in a unique opportunity to experience a French immersion setting in our own backyard. Some 13 distance education French students from six different schools travelled to St-Pierre to participate in the Francoforum program with CDLI e-teachers Glenn Cake and Michelle Pittman. Students represented high school French students from across the island, ranging from L’Anse-au-Loup to Plum Point to Carmenville and points in between.
Not only did they get a chance to finally meet their CDLI French teachers for the first time face to face, students were also able to meet their peers and get an opportunity to work, play and explore together 'en francais.' Students stayed in pensions (Bed & Breakfast), enjoyed French cuisine daily, and spent each day experiencing a host of authentic cultural activities which provided the opportunity to put their second language skills to work in real life situations.
Grade 7 and 8 students at Catalina Elementary on the province's Bonavista Peninsula used their talents, creativity and community members to tell the story of the impact of the cod moratorium recently, as part of the Nickle Film Festival's Reel Youth filmmakers series. The theme of the series this year is 'water' and the students involved undertook an amazing endeavour, as many of the student were not even born when the cod fishery collapsed in the 1990s.
CBC NL were on-hand recently to see the documentary set-up in action and provided the students with the media spotlight to tell the public about their project.
CBC News (May 3, 2017) - View full story HERE.
For audio from CBC's On the Go, CLICK HERE.