After two weeks as principal of Christine Meikle School, I have to say—I am smitten. There are some truly remarkable people here, doing brilliant work for and with each young person in our school. The students are amazing—fun, interesting, clever, passionate, busy people, effortfully engaged in important learning experiences. I have started to build relationships with our partners within the CBE (e.g., our psychologist, occupational therapists, speech-language pathologists) and beyond (e.g., Society for the Treatment of Autism, Pediatric Home Care, JB Music). I am looking forward to connecting with our parent community as well. In addition to parent council meetings, which are held on the third Tuesday of every month, I am open to suggestions for how we might work together in service of student learning. For those of you who may have missed my letter of introduction in April, here is a little bit about me:
Over the course of the last 25 years, my career with the Calgary Board of Education has offered countless opportunities for new learning—I've taught in regular community classrooms and specialized classes, worked centrally as a learning specialist supporting schools across the city, and taken part in some really interesting and innovative projects. In and through these varied experiences, I've developed a passion for mathematics and the arts, flexible structures for curriculum, student voice and agency, and personalized learning for both students and staff.
Most recently, I was assistant principal and then (briefly) acting principal of Children's Village School. As an administrator of a unique setting, I came to understand many important dimensions of how to care for the wellbeing of students and staff, and how to make the most of a highly specialized approach to teaching and learning. I am a committed advocate for each and every child entrusted to our care.
What else? For the past two years, I have been away from work in order to pursue a PhD at the University of Calgary. I am the parent of three grown children, and the proud noni to six grands. I know I am biased, but I have to say—they are spectacular. I recently made the move to a small rural community outside of Calgary so that I can be nearby while they are young. I have come to love the quiet of small town living and the luxury of long, uninterrupted time with podcasts and audiobooks on my daily commute.
Although COVID-19 protocols limit the ways we can meet in person, my virtual door is always open—please feel free to call or email with any questions, concerns, insights or celebrations you'd like to share.
Alison Van Rosendaal