Counting down the days

The countdown is on!
Home and School communities on P.E.I. have three more days to register for the Annual Meeting coming up on Monday, May 10th to be held virtually on Zoom.

Parents, guardians, principals, students, and school staff are invited and encouraged to register for this meeting. The more you know about P.E.I.’s education system, the more you can better help your children and youth.

Experts, both in education and food programs, will educate delegates at the AGM on topics of interest that impact students. In addition, Education and Lifelong Learning Minister Natalie Jameson will speak about her department’s work over the past year with schooling during the pandemic.

Please choose from interactive workshops: Student Well Being with Elizabeth Kennedy, Student Well Being Team Lead, and Terri MacAdam, Public Schools Branch Student Services. Communications and PowerSchool with Norbert Carpenter, PSB Director; Chef Austin Clement, Culinary Institute of Canada, will lead a discussion on PEI’s school food program with Sterling Carruthers and Katelyn MacLean.

In addition, Tammy Hubley-Little, education’s director of English programs, will answer questions about curriculum, assessments, and report cards. I hope to see many people from every school community online Monday evening. Registration details are available online at: https://peihsf.ca/agm.

People are also counting down to warmer days and the options for outdoor classrooms. As the weather improves, teachers focus more on outdoor play and instruction, where possible. Mount Stewart Consolidated School is excited about the recent upgrade to its outdoor classroom space. The work was completed by a team of students, teachers, staff, and parent volunteers.

At the annual meeting, outdoor classrooms will be discussed in one of the member association’s resolutions. Studies show a direct correlation between student success and time spent connected to nature, academic gains, and attitudes when outdoor lesson time is incorporated into weekly learning. There is also a link between reduced anxiety, hostility, stress, and depression with time spent outdoors. I encourage Home and Schools to explore outdoor classroom options with their principal.

The COVID 19 pandemic has clarified the need for virtual schooling options for K-12 students in P.E.I. Delegates will discuss e-learning at the AGM with an eye to better serving K-12 students in P.E.I.

Play is essential for children’s physical and mental well-being. Keeping school playgrounds up-to-date is an ongoing challenge for school communities. How can schools and communities maintain safe school playgrounds for students? These resolutions will be discussed at the annual meeting. Find 2021 resolutions online at: https://peihsf.ca/resolution/.

High School students are counting down the days to final exams. This can be a stressful time, but parents and schools have teamed up to help. For example, Kinkora Regional High School helps ease some of the stress on their students by providing nutritional snacks every morning on exam day, a healthy bite for them to enjoy before that day’s scheduled exams. It has been a KRHS tradition in recent years!

As much as everyone would love to be able to count down the days until the pandemic ends, we continue to be thankful for the safety within our schools, and heartfelt gratitude goes out to students, teachers, school staff, and parents in P.E.I. and right across Canada.

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