Jan 14
January 14th, 2020

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! 

 Scott Jeffrey,

Principal, Balmoral Traditional Learning Centre

 ​

Dec 18
December 18, 2020

Can you believe that it is already the end of December?  Soon it will be the beginning of a new year.

 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 academics.   

 

Happy Holidays from Balmoral School TLC to our wonderful families and friends!!

 

Scott Jeffrey​

Dec 05
Winter Update

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 students.

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 5-9.

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 hair/hat day

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:

Date

Provincial Achievement Test

Wednesday, May 6

English Language Arts 6 Part A

Thursday, May 7

English Language Arts 9 Part A

Tuesday, June 16

English Language Arts 6 Part B

Wednesday, June 17

Science 6

Thursday, June 18

Social Studies 6

Science 9

Friday, June 19

Mathematics 6 Part A

Mathematics 9 Part A

Monday, June 22

Mathematics 6 Part B

English Language Arts 9 Part B

Tuesday, June 23

Mathematics 9 Part B

Wednesday, June 24

Social Studies 9

 

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​

Aug 30
Welcome Message

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:

Balmoral 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


                                       

 ​

Jun 24
I Wish all of our Families a Wonderful Summer Break

Dear Parents/ Guardians;

On behalf of Balmoral staff, I wish all of our families a wonderful summer break. By the end of June, students are excited to take a break from their learning; however, by September they will be happy to be back with friends and familiar teachers.

This June, we are saying farewell to Mrs. Musto, Mrs. Styles, Mr. Hutchinson, Mrs. Hutchinson, Mr. Rhodes, Mr. Whitfield, Mr. Allen, Mr. Perrone and Mr. Krogstad. We will be welcoming a new administration team lead by Principal Jeffrey. I am confident that this new team will work with students, teachers and parents to create a vibrant learning environment.

In September, we anticipate registration numbers of 550 which is in keeping with the school’s physical capacity of 547. There will be four home rooms per grade with specialists for French and Band. French and Band are full year courses, taught on alternating days. The school is moving forward with a middle school model that has grade team teachers teaching either math/science or ELA/social studies. This will mean that your child will have two, rather than four core teachers which will support stronger relationships through learning. The grade team will also be teaching their own daily Physical Education which is combined with Health and Character Circle. This is the model currently used successfully in grades 5 and 6 and a common middle school model. All students will have two full year options, which will be taught once/week in hour long blocks.

During June there were many highlights; but my overarching memory is how dedicated to learning the students were. Classes finished off curriculum and then embarked on summative reviews prior to their final exams. When rain prevented a junior high sports day, students were happy to simply have time to laugh, play cards and board games and watch a movie. They seemed to need the break from focused studies. I look forward to the final awards celebration on Wednesday and will miss the Balmoral students.

Although I have only been at Balmoral since mid-May, I have appreciated the opportunity to work with students, staff and parents. Balmoral is a dedicated learning community and the students here are exceptional.

Plans for September

We are looking forward to welcoming students back for a full day of learning on September 3rd.

Students will be met at the buses and dependent on weather, we will meet in the north field or the gym. Teachers will have class lists and a full schedule of activities for students. Students should bring a lunch; however the cafeteria will also be open.

Reminders…no locks are needed for lockers; Grades 5 and 6 have basic supplies provided however junior high students must bring their own supplies.

It is essential that you have bussing in place as delays in registering will mean a delay in ridership. Parents are welcome to greet students at the door; however, going into classroom areas requires a visitor pass from the front office. This is a point of security so that we recognize all adults in the building.

Parent Council will be meeting during the first month and I encourage all parents to join. You never have to commit to attending every meeting, but your attendance is welcome when you can make it.

Enjoy your summer holiday and all the best in 2019-20.

Regards,
Rita Dickson

May 08
May 2019

MAY 2019 PRINCIPALS MESSAGE 

During the final two months of school, our students are very busy, both on and off campus. Please remember to check our Balmoral School website event calendar as it is updated frequently and provides important information including upcoming PAT exam dates in May and June for grades 6 & 9.

 

Our grade 6 students will be heading to outdoor school at Camp Chief Hector from May 7th until May 10th.  While at camp, these students will be writing their ELA 6 PAT – part A.  Many are very excited to have the chance to write in such a tranquil space and Mr. Allen will drive out to the Camp first thing on May 8th to bring the exam and all student materials required to write. Grade 9 students will be writing their ELA 9 PAT – part A, in their homerooms on the morning of May 9th.  Plans are in lace to ensure that they have a nice quiet building to write in.

 

On May 15th 2019, from 2:45-4:30pm our grade 7-8 students will have the opportunity to participate in the Gauss Math Contest, which gives them a chance to compete with students from across Canada. Ms. Ernst is organizing this after school event and

 

In April, we asked our Balmoral parent community to complete an on line survey to support us in the decision-making process moving forward.  Thank you to all those that participated and the aggregated results were shared out in the April 24th weekly parent email. The feedback provided by parents, along with teacher responses from a similar survey, were taken into consideration for upcoming changes to our student cell phone policy as well as off-campus privileges for grade 7 & 8’s beginning after the May long weekend.

 

The first change is to our lunchtime policy for students in grade 7-8.  Starting on Thursday, May 9 students in grade 7 and 8 will be allowed off campus for lunch every Thursday.  Information detailing this change will be sent home as part of Mail Day and parents who wish their grade 7 or 8 child to stay on school grounds on Thursdays are asked to return the form.

 

The second change is to our Balmoral student cell phone policy.  Beginning on Thursday, May 9th 2019, students will be permitted to use their cell phones outside of the building before school, during their 40-minute lunch and after school. During instructional time, student cell phones are to be kept in their lockers unless using a personal electronic device is detailed as a support as part of a current IPP. Teachers will give at least two days advanced notice to parents and students if there is an upcoming lesson or activity where cell phones will be required as a learning tool.

 

Both of these changes have been made with the support of our parent community who expressed their thoughts on the recent survey as well as in consultation with other CBE middle-school/junior high Principals’. Balmoral was the only school in Area 2 that did not have guidelines in place for student cell phone use during the instructional day. Principals who have experience implementing any new guidelines pertaining to personal devices counseled that any change should take place now, as opposed to waiting until next September. Their relational was that this way students returning to Balmoral in the fall would already be accustomed to the change.

 

Parents who need to urgently get ahold of their children during the instructional day are asked to call the main office so that Mrs. Rempel or Mrs. McDonald can immediately relay the message or return the call. If there are any questions or concerns regarding this change, please email me at lcappelt@cbe.ab.ca so that we can set up a time to discuss on the phone or in person.

 

We thank Balmoral parents in advance for their support in this change as it is recognized that many students may have difficulty adjusting to not carrying their cell phones with them at all times.

 

Liana Appelt,

Principal

 ​

Apr 02
Principal's Message

​April 2019

April Principal’s Message

As we enter into the final three months of this school year, our team of educators will continue to improve their teaching practice by ensuring that they are tracking student progress towards meeting the goals outlines in our School Development Plan (SDP). Our two overarching achievement targets are:

1.     Improve student achievement in representing and communicating mathematical ideas.

2.     Improve students’ abilities to produce language in writing and speaking in all disciplinary areas.

A mid-term analysis of our January report card data provided evidence that achieving these targets for June. Teachers are intentionally focusing on ensuring that they are utilizing the instructional strategies identified on our SDP. Professional Learning Communities (PLC) are essentially short, structured meetings, where groups of teachers who meet to support each other by analyzing of student work together. The intention of PLC work is to improve teaching proactive in the company of peers and this professional work is critical to the success of our SDP. In order to increase the likelihood of meeting our SDP targets by June, students will have increased opportunities to participate in structured lesson and activities, in all classes, focused on developing and/or refining their speech and writing skills. 

Throughout the school year, teachers are engaging in priority learning cycles with the objective of ensuring students have measurable ways to verbally demonstrate their understanding of curriculum outcomes.  Our teachers have now started learning cycle three and, due to their efforts in the first and second cycles, there has been noted improvement in our students’ ability to communicate their content knowledge through speech. This is an important goal for a school with 250 out of 608 student identified as second language learners of English (ELL) as research in this area of linguistics stresses the foundational role that strong verbal skills play towards ensuring these students are set up for success later in life. 

​Liana Appelt, PhD

Feb 08
February, 2019

February 8 to March 8 2019 Principals Message

Monday, February 4th, marked the first day of the second semester.  Students in grades 7-9 have started their new option classes, allowing opportunities to develop additional interest, hobbies and skills.  We have also had an instructional time change for semester two with our bell times changing slightly.  For our updated accurate bell times, please see the “Our School” area of our web page. A hard copy letter sent home with all students on mail day, Thursday, February 7. This communication, from me to Balmoral Parents, explained the reason behind a few schedule changes required for this second half of the school year because of both expected and unexpected school organization and program delivery needs. Please email our Administrative Secretary, Mrs. Rempel at amrempel@cbe.ab.ca if you did not receive my letter and would like an electronic copy emailed to you.

From February – June 2018, Grade 5/6’s are receiving 60 minutes of additional minutes of instruction in Mathematics per week, aligned with the Program of Studies, as per one of the CBE Math Strategies approved by our Board of Trustees. Teachers assigned to these enrichment blocks, primarily taught on Fridays, will be working together during our professional learning time to design engaging Mathematical Problem Solving Activities. Parents can expect to see this new class appear in their child’s Power School schedule as ‘Enhancement’ and the teacher assigned to this Math course will be giving them a separate report card indicator mark in June, as based on their achievement on the hand-on learning tasks they will be engaging in each week.

The start of semester II also means the beginning of a transition time for our grade 9 students as they start to plan for their grade 10 year in a new learning community.  It is important for students to make a choice that works best for them as learners and if more information is required, they should see Mr. Perrone for support.

On Friday January 25th, we hosted Constable Tad Milmine as a guest speaker to Balmoral School.  He was at our school to share his unforgettable experience growing up as well as his powerful message that “Bullying Ends Here.”  Tad’s message has had a lasting effect on our students as we try to grow and come together as a community.  For more information, please visit https://www.bullyingendshere.ca/

Our four Balmoral Basketball teams are practicing hard and ready to engage in full, healthy and positive competition with the schools in our area.  Please see our calendar for a complete list of game dates and come out to cheer on our athletic students at various games at several different site.

Later in March, just prior to Spring Break, Parents will have an opportunity to meet with their child’s term II teachers in formal face-to-face interviews. In getting to know our Balmoral TLC families, I have become increasingly aware that many of our parents are both working full time, often long hours and may have other children attending other CBE sites around the city. This created a challenge during our November 2018 parent/teacher conferences, offered for one evening from 4:00-8:00pm where attendees were to pre-booking a meeting with two core subject teachers. In order to create additional spaces for term II interviews, I have adjusted our March interviews so that they are on two nights: Wednesday, March 20th and Thursday March 21st from 4:00-8:00pm. On line, booking, through the parent version of Power School, will open up in mid-March and an exact date will be shared in the Wednesday Weekly Email to parents. Then on Friday, March 22nd from 8:00-12:30pm, parents whose children who have adapted educational programming as detailed in their Individual Program Plan (IPP) will meet with the various teachers in 30-minute time slots. These meetings will be booked directly with the IPP teacher-coordinator at a time that works for all those required to attend.

Sincerely,

Liana Appelt, PhD​ 

Dec 12
December 10 – January 15

Important Dates:

  • December 20th – Last day of classes for student
  • December 21st – Last day of school for teachers
  • January 7th – Classes resume

Past Events

Our students have been engaging in learning experiences both in school and out in field studies.  Mr. Hutchinson and Ms. Dennis took a group of grade 7’s to Camp Caroline to work with professional clinicians and guest conductors.  The students returned from the experience with big smiles and shared that they felt much more confident in playing their instruments as a result. Teachers and parent volunteers who accompanied the students on this off-site trip remarked that this was an opportunity to grow as independent young adults and become closer as a learning community.
Our grade 5/6 students had the opportunity to spend 3 days at Calgary Olympic Park learning to ski and snowboard.  We were lucky to have fresh snow in the days leading into our trip!
Staff also celebrated the upcoming holiday season at the Christmas Concert at the Jubilee Auditorium.  It was a delightful evening that highlighted the progress our instrumental bands have made thus far as well as those who are learning guitar for the first time this year.
Balmoral students have competed in multiple sports this past fall and winter.  Cross Country was a huge success with an increased number of participants from the last school year.  Many of our students braved the cold weather to compete for our school!  In soccer, both our boys and girls teams finished second in their divisions, with the girls finishing undefeated!  Our volleyball season wrapped up at the end of November.  All four teams made the playoffs with our Junior Girls and Boys losing in the semifinal game.  Both our Senior teams both made it to the finals; the Boys lost a close 3rd set and finished second while our Girls won a close third set to win our division. 

Upcoming Events:

Last Day of Class
The last day of class for before winter break is Thursday, Dec. 20 and students to come on the last day in their regular TLC uniforms or their Balmoral Hoodies with blue pants. Please make sure that your child has taken home their gym clothes to wash over the break as well as lunch-kits, food or containers.

Classes Resume
Class resumes on Monday, January 7, Day A and is formal uniform day.  

Nov 21
November 2018

It has been a busy month at Balmoral School! Many of the rich events and activities that make Balmoral a lively place are well under way! Many of the grade 7 students are currently at Camp Caroline for band workshops. The speech at debate teams are practicing weekly for upcoming competitions. All four Balmoral volleyball teams made the playoffs and are competing this week. Our grade 9 students took a tour of Crescent Heights and have started to explore their options for high school next year. The grade 5 & 6 students will be attending a play at Storybook Theatre. Finally, Ms. Ontko and her drama students did a wonderful job of putting together a beautiful Remembrance Day Assembly.

Teachers have also been working over the last month on our School Development Plan. This is a plan that each school creates with the goal of advancing student achievement based on evidence from achievement results. As Balmoral students continue to perform well on Provincial Achievement Tests, teachers have decided to focus on achievement outcomes related to communicating learning through speaking and writing. This focus will be based on report card results and in Professional Learning Communities, teachers will be looking at opportunities for students to communicate their learning through speaking and writing, across all subjects.

Looking ahead to the next few weeks, parent teacher conferences will be on November 22 from 4-8 PM and November 23 from 8 AM- 12 PM. Please sign up for a meeting with up to two teachers on conference manager, which can be accessed through the Balmoral School website. At our upcoming Professional Development day on December 7, teachers will be looking at teaching and learning strategies for our English Language Learners.

The virtue of the month for November is compassion.

Dr. Liana Appelt 
Principal​
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RT @ArbourLake_CBE: Check this out!! This is one heck of a way to spend a summer!!! Nathan is one of our grade 7 HUB students.🦕🦖 We are so proud of you Nathan! Can’t wait to see what’s next in this great adventure. #CoyotePride @UsihChristopher @CbeArea1 https://t.co/mINpoFgmcx

Reminder | Don't forget your mask! Please make sure your child brings at least one mask to school each day. #WeAreCBE https://t.co/odoHLKaVjT

It is important for your school to have your most up-to-date email address on file. We also recommend you subscribe to receive all SchoolMessenger email notices from your school and the system. Visit https://t.co/2TEnRV9cy9 for more information. #yycbe https://t.co/Zqg6VxLNNr

Snow & cooler temperatures are in the forecast for #yyc. This can make getting to and from school more challenging. Mare sure your children are prepared for all weather conditions. Check out our winter weather reminders: https://t.co/iiXpDvZenM #yycbe #WeAreCBE https://t.co/eFO5LS1K5E