Screens in Schools: Maximize benefits; minimize harms, Oct. 23

Parents learn about P.E.I.s school system by volunteering in their child’s school and attending local and provincial Home and School meetings and workshops. This month, the P.E.I. Home and School Federation begins educating school communities with its Semi-Annual Meeting on Monday, Oct. 23, 6:00-8:00 p.m. at Central Queens Elementary School in Hunter River.

A “Help My Child” themed panel discussion will feature topics and speakers. What is Home and School? will be presented by David Schult, a former international school teacher and administrator having worked overseas for over 24 years, in seven countries before returning to Canada in 2021, will provide background and context to what Home and School is and does.

Cody Davenport, P.E.I. COMPASS Research Project Lead, P.E.I. Chief Public Health Office, will present results of the Student Health Survey, including sedentary behaviours, physical activity, mental health, healthy eating, substance use, bullying, academic outcomes and sleep.

Screens in schools: simple ways to maximize the benefits and minimize the harms will be presented by Dr. Travis Saunders, professional kinesiologist and UPEI associate professor, department of applied human sciences. Screens are an increasingly regular part of the school day bringing both opportunities and challenges for student learning and health. Saunders will give an overview of research on ways schools can maximize the benefits and minimize the harms of screen use in schools.

Parents, school staff and students are welcome. Register by Oct. 18 at https://peihsf/ca/semi-annual-meeting/.

Teamwork is the goal for every home and school and the agenda plays a pivotal role in creating that teamwork. Here are tips to consider when compiling local meeting agendas:

  • Meet with the principal/other school staff early in the school year to set goals for the 2023-2024 school year and to ask about collaborative ways to support the school.
  • Add goals, activities, and educational topics to your agenda.
  • Discuss how to support the school – students and staff. 
  • Add Federation news to your agenda.
  • Add government announcements, applicable to supporting student learning.
  • Fundraising? Money is raised only for a specific purpose.

Remember, everything we (parents and teachers) do is for the students’ benefit.

Volunteer training workshops are available at no cost to the P.E.I. school community. Vicki Bryanton and Stephen Gould are back to facilitate training workshops. On Monday, Nov. 6, Miscouche Consolidated School will host a session, and on Tuesday, Nov. 7, West Royalty Elementary will host a session. Both workshops will run 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. All school volunteers are welcome. Register by emailing or call 902-620-3186.

Parent Leadership Grants are available for up to $500 per Home and School Association to organize parent-focused initiatives in school communities. For more information, go to

Three Oaks family of schools hosted a Home and School Sharing Hub at the school, Sept 26th. Led by former federation director, Tammy Norden, and current director, Jannett Jones, home and school representatives from the seven feeder schools met in this first of its kind event to share ideas of what works, what could be improved and how to collaborate more as a community. This is a template for other families of schools to use in P.E.I. Contact the office for information.

Congratulations to acclaimed trustees, Jocelyne Ludgate, Zone 7, English language school board, and Andre Doucette, Zone 2, French language school board.

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Dionne Tuplin, president of the P.E.I. Home and School Federation, lives in Tyne Valley area, with her husband and four children, who attend Ellerslie Elementary School, Hernewood Intermediate and Westisle Composite High School. A Home and School column appears in The Guardian during the school year on the first Friday of the month. For questions about this column or to find out more about the work of the P.E.I. Home and School Federation, contact or 902-620-3186/1-800-916-0664.