Dear Balmoral Families,
It has been a great September at Balmoral School! We have participated in the Terry Fox Run, provided learning opportunities about Indigenous culture and history connected to the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, started our soccer, cross country and basketball seasons, held our Meet the Teacher evening, held our first School Council meeting, and learning is off to a great start! I am writing now to provide some reminders and important information for this school year. Regular communication will happen through our Balmoral Weekly Updates, typically sent out at the end of each week. If you would like to become more engaged in our school, communication has been sent out in the coming weeks about our parent-run School Council, and I encourage you to attend our meetings.
We have some exciting changes at our school this year. We welcome new teachers Mughda Khatu, Nada Shaban, Tyson Lundquist, Melissa Letourneau, Munesah Rahman, and Ashley Ho. We also welcome new Education Assistant Azra Tauseef.
Much will remain the same too. We are still home to the Traditional Learning Centre (TLC) program and our students continue to come to us from the same communities. Many of our processes and routines will stay the same as we move into the coming year. Below, I will provide some detail on these processes and routines to ensure we have a smooth school year.
We follow the CBE Traditional Calendar. School bell times can be found on our website. Grade 5 and 6 Students will be provided supplies and students in grades 7-9 are expected to bring the basic supplies to school. Teachers have been in touch with supply lists. Please, if you drive your children to or from school, do not enter the staff parking lot, do not block the bus zones on the North side of the school (safety hazard for the bus drivers) or block our neighbours driveways (makes them frustrated). Please do not make illegal u-turns in our community and watch carefully for students crossing the roads.
Common expectations and predictable routines are an important part of a Welcoming, Caring, Respectful and Safe learning environment. We appreciate your support in helping your children contribute to a positive space for all children to learn. While we follow all CBE Administrative Regulations, and the Education Act, the following rules represent some key areas that, through clear communication and consistent administration, we feel help make Balmoral an excellent place to learn. We will continue to learn and grow as a school community and communicate any changes in expectations clearly to family members.
Regular attendance in an important factor in success in school. Frequent lateness and absence results in missed learning opportunities, and disrupts the rhythms of the classroom. If your child will be late or absent, please call the school attendance line. Late students come to the office for a late slip, so we can keep accurate attendance. We know that a number of barriers can result in lateness (including bussing) and absence. If your child misses school often, we will reach out to see how we can support you and child to help them attend school more regularly.
Student Cell Phone Policy – AWAY FOR THE DAY
Students are not allowed, at any point, to have a cell phone in a classroom or learning environment. This includes in pockets or bags. Cell phones, if brought to school, are to remain in student lockers during class time. If, at any point, Balmoral staff become aware that a student has a cell phone in a classroom, the student will be directed to bring their phone to the office for the remainder of the day. The first time this occurs, the student will be allowed to pick it up at the end of the day. If it happens again, we will keep the phone in the office until a parent or guardian is able to come pick it up. Please support your children in following this rule by not contacting them during class time. If you have an urgent need to contact your child during class time, please call the office and we can page them to take your call on the student phone in the office.
Students in the Traditional Learning Centre program follow the CBE TLC Student Uniform Requirements. Monday through Thursdays, TLC students wear the TLC uniform. Fridays, TLC students are allowed to wear non-uniform casual clothes. The Balmoral School hoodie can be worn OVER the uniform when a student is feeling cold (it is not a substitute for the TLC uniform).
New Curriculum – Grades 5 and 6
This year, across the province, students in Grades 5 and 6 will be learning newly developed curriculum in English Language Arts and Mathematics. In some cases, there will be overlap with material students have learned in Kindergarten - Grade 4. In other cases, they will be learning entirely new material. We know some will find this difficult, and are ready to support your students in this transition here at school, and appreciate you helping to support them at home during this time of transition. We will all be learning it together, and together we can help our students adapt and continue to learn and grow in their education.
We are all enjoying this school year, and the opportunity to connect with and get to know all of our students, new and returning, and their families. Thank you all for being an important part of our school community, and please stay in touch regularly so that we can work together to achieve success for each student.
Principal, Balmoral School
Dear Balmoral families,
I hope that all of our students and staff have had an enjoyable and relaxing summer. We welcome Greg Brewer, Rodney Walker, Kel Spoering, Christy Lindsay, and Jay Reilly to our Balmoral Teaching Staff. Also, we welcome Linda Best as Administrative Secretary, Jocelyn Laron as Education Assistant, and Hana Kadri as ELL Assistant.
We have had a great start up together as a school community. I am very excited to be a part of Balmoral School, with energetic staff, an inclusive TLC community, and an active school community. Our first couple of weeks together we have embedded more time to get to know each other better through team building activities. I have seen many students taking part in different classroom challenges, trying out for sports teams, and learning how to use combination locks again. There is a beautiful energy in our school, and I look forward to experiencing that throughout the year as we have shared experiences. There will be many opportunities to take part in extracurricular clubs/teams as the year progresses, as this is an important part of middle school - take advantage of these opportunities as they will enhance student learning.
It has been a pleasure connecting with parents and families during school start-up. I look forward to connecting in different ways throughout the year. Thanks to everyone for your flexibility and kindness.
Please visit our website should you be uncertain as to school hours.
All buses are currently running. Students must be registered with CBE Transportation to ride a school bus. If you have not already registered, it may take 4-6 weeks for your child to be registered for CBE Transportation.
We ask all parents to be considerate of family's homes and student safety when picking up and dropping off their children at the bus stop. Please do not make illegal u-turns in the intersections near our school. Please obey all signs and park, or drop off your students, in the appropriate areas.
Balmoral does not offer cafeteria services. Students are expected to bring a lunch and snack with them. All lunch items; bag, bottle and left over food are to be taken home on a daily basis. Students eat in designated areas and are to behave appropriately during the lunch break. Students need to bring a lunch that does not require heating and the appropriate utensils with which to eat their lunch. Grades 5-7 must remain on campus for the lunch break. Grades 8-9 are allowed to leave the school campus during the lunch break. Although Grades 8-9 are not restricted to the school campus for lunch, students are responsible to their parents and the school for their behaviour in the community.
We have a NO CELL PHONE policy in classrooms. Students who choose to bring cell phones to school will be asked to leave their cell phones in their locker during class time. Cell phones are a distraction to student learning and therefore should not be in class. Students who forget to leave their cell phones in their locker will have a designated place in the classroom to store their phone during the class. Should parents/guardians need to be in contact with their child, they can call the front office and we can either get the message to your child or have them call home.
As we head towards cooler temperatures please be sure your child has appropriate clothing so that they are prepared in coming on and off the bus, and for lunch outdoors. We will be opening the school at 7:40am for students who arrive in the morning. Students will be expected to head outside for part of lunch unless they are supervised by a teacher or we have inclement weather (which will be announced).
Balmoral Student Picture Day will be held on Monday, September 19, 2022. All Students are to be in their Formal Uniform.
An information package of important documents for all students will be sent home during the first week of school. Some of these documents may be done electronically and others must be a paper copy. More information will be sent to families during the first week of school. Please be sure to read this package and return all forms by the required date.
While we may be returning to a more “normal" school year, we continue to as parents/guardians to keep your child at home should they be feeling ill.
We look forward to a great school year and are excited to welcome everyone back to school.
Principal, Balmoral School
Dear Balmoral families and community members,
We are nearing the end of another wonderful school year with our students and families. Through the ongoing challenges of the pandemic, significant absentee rates, and changes in leadership, we are emerging stronger than before. We are a dynamic middle school that strives to be an academically excellent, developmental responsive and highly inclusive community. We have a dedicated staff of teachers and support staff who work to accomplish this each day. As with our colleagues around the Calgary Board of Education, our goal is to provide the best possible environment for all students to develop academically, personally, in citizenship and their own character - key results identified by our Board of Trustees. We thank our families for their continued support of our students as we work together to offer the best educational programming possible at Balmoral School.
As a professional staff, our teachers work hard individually and collectively to remain current in educational research and practice. As middle school educators, we also understand and respond to the unique characteristics of middle school students. We meet in small and large groups regularly for professional development and learning, and to actively support one another in reaching our goal of meeting the needs of all learners.
The past few months have included great learning opportunities for our students, including:
- Math contests (ongoing)
- Calgary Youth Science Fair
- Band clinics at Mount Royal University and with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra
- Field trips to Ralph Klein Park, the Calgary Zoo, Calgary Youth Police Interpretive Centre, Escape Rooms, and more
- Walking field trips around the Balmoral community
- Cultural celebrations such as Lunar New Year and Eid
We have more events and in-person opportunities planned for May and June this year, including:
- Parent/family shopping at our book fair on Wednesday, May 18 from 4-6pm
- Celebrations of Learning on May 25 (Grades 7/8/9) and May 26 (Grades 5/6)
- Grade 9 Farewell Ceremony on June 27
We look forward to welcoming our community back into our school within the next few months!
If you have any questions, please contact us here at the school. We'd be happy to speak with you.
Acting Principal, Balmoral School
Dear Balmoral families,
September is both an exciting and busy time at Balmoral School as we focus on the start of the new school year. I just wanted to take a moment to touch base and let you know that we are looking forward to a great year of learning with our students. We are excited to welcome our new Grade 5 students and those returning students joining us in Grades 6-9. We also welcome our Hub returning students and transfers from other schools/jurisdictions.
I can ensure that the staff at Balmoral are working with the CBE protocols and the AHS protocols to the best of our ability to make Balmoral a safe place. We appreciate the patience and understanding of our families as we continue to flex with the times. At this time, we are required to keep students in their cohorts indoors, with mandatory masking and increased sanitization. Outdoors, students are free to interact with their friends from other classes with recommended physical distancing.
This year, teachers will be offering a modified version of our co-curricular and extra-curricular based activities and clubs, from athletics to a variety of other clubs. These activities will happen but may be modified slightly due to current COVID-19 restrictions. Whether students are new to Balmoral or are returning from last year, I encourage all students to get involved in their school community and become involved in as many activities as possible. Students, we challenge you this year to make new friends, help others whenever possible and enjoy learning with your fellow students in as many ways as you can.
If you have not had an opportunity to purchase uniforms, please do so at your earliest opportunity to avoid delays and ensure students have the required attire for TLC. We hope by then students will have the required attire for TLC, which includes an all black pair of runners or dress shoes. This year our TLC students may also wear a Balmoral hoodie over top their uniform if they wish to wear a hoodie during the colder months of the school year.
We will be communicating regularly with families through SchoolMessenger. Please ensure that your email and MyCBE/PowerSchool account are up-to-date and ensure that you have subscribed to SchoolMessenger.
Mr. Guenther and I are looking forward to an amazing school year watching your children grow academically and socially. As always if you have any questions please feel free to contact the main office and one of us will be happy to get back to you as soon as we are available.
We look forward to working with students and their families for the 2021-22 school year.
Rakhee Vijairaghavan, Acting Principal
Dear Balmoral families,
The 2020-21 school year was a whirlwind, and now we are excited for 2021-22.
It is amazing how adaptable we can be when faced with challenges and barriers. This year, we have been locked down, bubbled, hand sanitised, isolated, socially distanced, masked, quarantined, contact traced, and tested. We found ways to unite and work together. With technology and creativity, we were able to maintain our sense of community. Students found ways to connect, have fun, be supportive, while continuing to access education. How we respond to life’s challenges makes us stronger and builds our confidence. That experience could not occur without the endless energy, skills and devotion of the Balmoral staff. Thanks and well done to an incredible group of professionals.
Despite everything, 2020-21 has been a successful year. To those who have directly or indirectly enriched the lives of our students this year; school council members, our Balmoral community, and parents and caregivers, we extend our sincere thanks and best wishes.
To our students, we are grateful for your joy, astute insights and amazing talents. For those returning next year, we look forward to seeing you back in September, refreshed and ready to tackle another year of opportunities and challenges. Returning families will receive a welcome email in August with information about the 2021-22 school year, including any relevant health and safety measures based on government guidelines at that time.
The first day back to school for returning students is Wednesday, September 1, 2021.
We pay special tribute to those who are leaving our school and the TLC program. We hope you feel you have been guided through Balmoral School, that you have attained the potential you were capable of and that you needed, and that you developed the personal qualities and confidence to choose your best pathways in life. We hope you will remember with pride and affection the security, support, shelter, and strength of your middle years. To you all, we extend our very best wishes for the future.
“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” – Anne Frank
Rakhee Vijairaghavan, Acting Principal
Hello Balmoral Families,
Please check your email weekly for our school newsletters and grade level Balmoral Buzz.
Dear Balmoral Families,
Welcome to the New Year at Balmoral TLC! Thank you for ensuring
students arrived on time for classes after having some well-deserved
rest and rejuvenation time over the last two weeks. It was a chilly start with
some of our students arriving dressed for warmer weather. Please make note
of the colder weather in the coming weeks and make sure students
are prepared for outdoor activities in weather above -20 degrees C (the CBE
standard for outdoor activities).
A reminder to parents to confirm that they have their MyCBE
account set up and functioning as we will not be printing report cards at
the end of January. Assessments continue throughout the school year and a
summative Report Card will be generated for January 30th, which will
be visible through the parent portal of PowerSchool. Marks that are
normally visible in PowerSchool have currently been turned off as
teachers are beginning to finalize report cards, adding comments to be
available for viewing on January 30th.
If you know of anyone interested in enrolling their children in Balmoral
School’s TLC program, please have them join us for an information evening,
January 15th @ 6:00 pm at the school. We will use the
Lottery system to decide which children are able to attend should
registration numbers be over capacity for our school. The lottery
is held on the 12th in February.
As we begin to prepare for High School transitions, Grade 9 students
often find themselves under some pressure. I would encourage everyone to
continue to strive to achieve their best, keeping their goals in sight. We
will be working with our designated High Schools to ensure that students are as
prepared as possible for transitioning. I want to remind
families that the upcoming report card will guide our recommendations for
programs and placements. All of our Grade 9 students have been given the
opportunity to attend High School tours, and information about alternative
programs such as IB/AP are available directly through the high
school. Please check which high school you are designated to by
visiting CBE.AB.CA, find a school: https://www.cbe.ab.ca/schools/find-a-school/Pages/default.aspx
Thanks to all parents who generously gifted teachers/staff with treats
and offerings before the holidays. Although not necessary, your gestures are an
appreciated recognition of the rewarding work that our staff do every day, here
at Balmoral TLC.
Wishing you all a successful and healthy year in 2020!
Principal, Balmoral Traditional Learning Centre
Can you believe that it is already the end of December? Soon it will be the beginning of a
It has been a busy first few months here at Balmoral School, and the
time has flown by. Hopefully you have had a chance to read through the weekly
e-newsletter (sent via SchoolMessenger), our website news stories,
and the weekly teacher updates. I am astounded and pleased by the dedication
that our teachers and staff show towards each and every learner in this school!
Balmoral Traditional Learning Centre is truly an exceptional place to teach and
learn! It has been a pleasure getting to know this learning community and
I appreciate how so many families have communicated that they value the
balance between the experiences a middle school can offer and a strong focus on
Happy Holidays from Balmoral School TLC to our wonderful families and
A big thank you to all who were able to attend
parent teacher conferences on November 21 and 22. We hope the conversations
were informative and provided next steps in teaching and learning for our
A few highlights over the last couple of months
include strong student participation and achievement in the Beaver Computing
Contest, debate tournaments, and an excellent volleyball and soccer season.
Students learned more about the sports and working well as a team – thanks to
our coaches and supporters who came to watch the games!
We have also successfully transitioned to a new
bell schedule, which allows for better use of our learning spaces as well as
more opportunities for grades 5-9 to participate in common lunchtime
activities. A reminder to all students and families to dress appropriately for
the weather, and that students must remove all outdoor footwear when they enter
the school in order to keep our hallways clean.
Although some of our lost and
found items were claimed at parent teacher conferences, there are still some
remaining. Please check the lost and found soon for any missing items, since
all remaining items will be donated to a local charity over Winter Break.
There are some exciting events coming up before
Winter Break – a Calgary Food Bank Drive, festive spirit days, and door
decorating – all in support of our newly instated Balmoral Houses to support
character education as part of the TLC program. The six new houses have created
a buzz in the school as we continue to strengthen our community across grades
The festive spirit days will take place the week
before Winter Break with the following dress-up themes. Students will get a
house point for dressing up on each of these days. If students do not wish to
participate, they must wear their school uniform.
Monday, December 17 – Wacky
Tuesday, December 18 – Red/green
or dress like a Christmas tree/present/ornament day
Wednesday, December 19 – Tacky
festive/holiday clothes day
Thursday, December 20 – Formal
uniform (Virtues assembly for Acceptance)
Students in grades 6 and 9 will be writing
Provincial Achievement Tests this year. The schedule for the May/June 2020 PATs
is as follows:
Language Arts 6 Part A
Language Arts 9 Part A
Language Arts 6 Part B
Language Arts 9 Part B
Some upcoming dates for January include our open
house for new applicants to Balmoral on January 15, our Winter Band Concert at
the Jubilee Auditorium on January 20, and report cards coming home on January
31. A reminder that our Winter Break dates are as follows:
Thursday, December 19 – last day
for students (formal uniform required)
Friday, December 20 – professional
learning day (no students in school)
Monday, January 6 – first day
back for students
We wish everyone a wonderful holiday season and
prosperous new year!
Scott, Rakhee, Jen and Laila
August 30, 2019
Welcome to Balmoral School!
Welcome back to a new school year, 2019 - 2020 and for those who are
new, we are excited to have you join our school family. It is a new and
exciting time for us as well, since we too, are coming to Balmoral for the
first time. We are looking forward to getting to know the school, the staff,
students and community that make up this school.
As teachers and support staff we look forward to educating your
children, and appreciate that you are entrusting them in our care. This
privilege we accept with great responsibility. We believe that the Balmoral
School staff, parent school council and students work closely together to
maintain open communication, so that we continue to grow as a strong and
vibrant learning community. We know that you, as parents and guardians, are
your child’s first and most vital teacher. The interactions you have from
reading together, to enjoying a good conversations and other activities are
significant in helping your child experiencing success. We look forward to
seeing all of our families at our annual ‘Meet-the-Teacher’ evening on
Thursday, September 19, 2019 in the Gym. This event will start at 6:30 PM
and go to 8:00 PM.
Communication is essential. Without communication, small issues become
larger. Without communication, successes cannot be celebrated. Without
communication, the school becomes isolated from its community. Without
communication, the community becomes isolated from the school. Communication
allows parents to be active participants in their child’s education and ensures
that they know what is going on in their child’s school life.
Please take the time to explore our new website:
School - http://school.cbe.ab.ca/school/Balmoral/Pages/default.aspx to
learn more about the school, our students, the staff, and opportunities for
parents and community members. We will continue to use the communication tool
called School Messenger to share information. In order to get these emails,
text or voice messages you need to “opt-in”. Please visit our website on how to
do this. Please look forward to receiving a welcome email from your child’s
grade team that will provide further information about the upcoming year.
Please encourage your child to take advantage of every learning
opportunity open to them whether in school or beyond, encourage them not to be
satisfied with ‘the way things are’ but to make things better, encourage them
to be respectful of all in our diverse community and world, and encourage them
to always imagine – there are no limits!
Again, we are excited about the new school year and all of the awesome
possibilities for learning, designing, exploring and sharing together. We look
forward to meeting our students.
Tuesday, September 3rd @ 7:55 AM
Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or feedback.
Scott Jeffrey Rakhee Vijairaghavan Jen Turner
Principal Assistant Principal Learning Leader
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