Spring break is upon us and it couldn't have come at a better time. Everyone at DMC is ready for a little break to re-charge and get ready for the final three month push to summer. We continue to work with students around their mental health in a variety of ways. Our Student Services team of Mrs. Twa and Mrs. Thompson are available daily to chat with students. They also are here to speak with parents and help them with resources as needed. Our Chimera Time or CT time is designed to be a regular part of our day for classes to talk about healthy living, to build relationships and to work out problems. Recently we have begun a new way for students to connect with the staff through our "How Can We Help?" box. The box is a place students can place questions/comments/concerns for the office to read and respond to. We are trying to be proactive in supporting our students.
We hope that families can spend some time outside over the break, helping children relax and get ready for the final few months. Remember we are always here to help in whatever way we can.
Have a great spring break.
Today is International Women's Day, a day we recognize the contributions women have made and continue to make in our society and around the world. The people that have had the most profound impact on me and my life are my wife and daughter.
My wife is the reason I am who I am today, she helped me get through university, all three degrees. When I see her, I am in awe of all she has done and continues to do. She is a working mother of two and a very successful business person. She inspires me every day with her perseverance and resilience, she is my rock and my best friend.
We have been fortunate enough to have two amazing children, a son and a daughter. My daughter is our youngest and she also never ceases to amaze me. She is an incredible student in her grade 10 year and a high performing athlete that has been lucky and strong enough to have competed on the international stage. She has always done this with grace and confidence, she is her mother's daughter, full of life and energy.
These two women in my life are amazing people who I am thankful for every single day.
Who are the women in your life you are thankful for?
Hard to believe that we are at another Family Day long weekend. The past week has been a cold one, please remind your children to dress for the weather and to not come to school too early in these conditions.
Staff is online learning over the next couple of days, taking in workshops to gather ideas of new things they can do in class. This is an exciting time for us as we get to slow down a bit and become the student.
We held our lottery yesterday and will be sending out letters to notify families of the outcome next week. If you were successful in the lottery, remember you will have 10 days to reply to the email from the day you receive it. There is no one in the office until Tuesday to answer any questions you may have. Feel free to email or leave messages, and we will do our best to respond next week.
Today we received an amazing email from one of our amazing parents who asked us to help their child deal with an ongoing challenge with other children. This student was being teased and it needed to be addressed. At the school we always address situations when they are brought to our attention. Our goal is to work with both the offender and the victim in all cases so everyone feels supported and learns from the situation. We recognize that there are times when families do not believe the school "does much to stop bullying". This simply is not true, when we know about situations we always deal with them. We have a process that we work through each and every time, one that involves investigating the situation by talking with those involved and witnesses, if there were any. "Bullying" is actually a very rare occurrence at the school, but conflict and rude behavior can be common.
We deal with all situations when they are brought to us, sometimes it takes several conversations or mediations or consequences to resolve the problem, but we will work until we get to a resolution. If your child is experiencing any of the things on the chart on this page, please let their teacher know or contact the office.
Happy New Year
We are excited to be back in the building learning. We understand this is still a difficult time for families, so please reach out to the school if you have any questions or may require support for your child academically or emotionally. We have an incredible Student Services department that is here to help families with a variety of things when it comes to their child. If we are unable to help, we can certainly direct you to services that might be able to support you and your family. Feel free to connect with your child's teacher or to call/email the office directly.
Every year the Government of Alberta sends out a survey for our grade 7 parents and students. The student version of the survey is done at school, online. The parent version is mailed to the home and can be completed and mailed in or it can be completed online as well. I thought it might be appropriate to talk about the areas over the course of the year that the you are asked to comment on. This week I will talk about Safe and Caring schools.
At DMC we take the safety of your children very seriously, not just their physical safety but their social and emotional wellbeing. Middle school is a challenging place, a time in life when children are becoming adolescents, they are figuring out who they are, who their friends are and when parents often stop becoming the most influential people in their lives. That role is replaced by their peer group. At DMC we try to address these areas through our health curriculum, having open and honest discussion in class about growing up, choices and decision making. This is done through our Physical Education time and our Chimera Time. Students are given opportunities to voice their concerns, their ideas and to learn from one another and the teacher about life skills. We focus on how to deal with anxiety and how to make and keep friends. In a normal year we try to bring in special guests to talk about big life decisions and events such as drugs and alcohol. We want your children to be ready for the world.
Other services we offer are one on one opportunities for students that need a bit more TLC with our student services team. This team can listen to students and help them find solutions to problems. Parents are also welcome to connect with our student services team if they feel their child needs a bit more support.
We work hard with all students to create an inclusive environment, one free from bullying. We always deal with these situations, sometimes we cannot speak about what has happened to the "other" child in a situation because we work within privacy legalities, but we always deal with emerging situations and the students involved.
A school is a community, we will sometimes all get along, and sometimes we will have conflict. It is our job to help students learn in both scenarios,
We believe DMC is a safe and caring school, our teachers are among the best in the city and all of them care about your children.
In the next blog we will talk a bit how we work with the Alberta Program of Studies to plan.
Coming up in the next couple of weeks are a lot of important dates. One of the most important is Orange Shirt Day. This is an opportunity for us as a community to recognize and understand why we honour this day. Please take a moment to talk about it at home, to do some research and understand the significance of the day.
We continue to move along with our school year, very impressed with our students willingness to work within the safety guidelines in place. One question that has been asked is around how will we support the mental well-being of students?
We have created a homeroom block period that every student will have 4 days a week. During this time students will have the opportunity to voice their concerns, talk about their fears, learn how to deal with anxiety as well as a variety of other important topics to support their mental health. We will try to provide strategies for them to cope with our new world. They will be given opportunites to refine their peer to peer relationships and help one another. The block of time will allow them to build positive relationships with one another and their teacher.
We recognize that many of our students are experiencing anxiety and fear around the unknown, and we are here to support them in anyway we can. If you as a parent feel your child may need more support please contact Mrs. Twa and/or Mr. Weeks. They would be happy to discuss other possibilities with you. Please remember, we are not health care professionals, but we are good listeners and can provide resources.
Week one is in the books, and we are pleased to say it went fairly smoothly. Thanks to all the families for your support this week. Next week it is business as usual, everyone will be here on Tuesday. Please remind your child which door they will come in and to stay with their cohort when they arrive. Doors will open at 8:15 for students to enter the building and go directly to their class.
Grade 5 - South Bus Doors
Grade 6 - North Parking Lot Doors
Grade 7 - North West Parking Lot Doors
Grade 8 - South East Doors Near Basketball Court
Grade 9 - Front/Main Doors
The year has finally begun, we are very excited to have children back in the building. I am sure many of you are equally excited to send your child to school. We know it is a very different year, with different expectations that are the outcome of the global pandemic. As a staff we have planned meticulously to ensure the safety of everyone in our building and will continue to follow the expectataion of the Provincial Government and our Board of Education. There are lots of changes in our building to accommodate the safety protocols in place, not all that different from what you see in malls, restaurants and public spaces around the city. The early days of this new school year will be ensure our students are well trained in these protocols to keep everyone safe. Thanks for trusting us and for your ongoing support.
(Hidden) About this blog
Welcome to SharePoint Blogs. Use this space to provide a brief message about this blog or blog authors. To edit this content, select "Edit Page" from the "Site Actions" menu.