Sep 18
Going With the Flow in a Time of Change
​Dear Parents of Sibylla Kiddle School,

We can learn much from observing nature. We have all witnessed the meandering flow of a river, a stream or even a trickle of water. Water has innate ability to overcome and navigate obstacles. In nature, when water encounters an obstacle it finds a solution a moves on. The creek may swirl left or the river may rush over a cliff. Water finds a way to where it needs to go.

This school year has felt a little bit like a rush of flowing water. At times there has been a clear path to float down, at other times we have had some rapids in the water to navigate and at other times we have met some obstacles that require a different path to be charted. Regardless of how the water flows, we keep our focus on doing what we believe is best for our students, what is best for learning and what is best for our collective well-being.

One of the areas where we need to change the direction of the water flow, in the coming week, is in our internal classroom locations. With the restructuring of our Kindergarten classes we want to make sure that our largest classrooms are in our largest spaces. Therefore, a few of our classrooms will be switching physical locations within the school to maximize physical distancing for all of our students. 

A couple of our grade 1 classes (Mrs. Olver and Mrs. Romanow) will be swapping rooms with our Kindergarten classes (Mrs. Holmgren and Mrs. Hogue). While this internal change will only impact a few classrooms, it will require significant changes to most students’ drop-off and pick-up doors starting on Monday, Sept. 21. Please see the news story​ for more information.

We want to thank you for your trust and patience as we have flowed through the first few weeks of this school year. We know that our focus on students, learning and well-being are important to you as well. 

Sincerely,

Brad Emery
Principal 
Sep 11
New. When you Read this Word, What other Words Come to Mind?

New. When you read this word, what other words come to mind? Excitement regarding new possibilities? Apprehension about changes? Questions about how something works? The word ‘new’ conjures different feelings for everyone depending on your perspective, the context and the topic.

This past week fell into the category of ‘new’ at Sibylla Kiddle School. New school. New teachers. New classmates. New clothes. New school supplies. New bus routes. New routines. New expectations. I know some of these things caused apprehension for some students while other things raised questions. However, it is my hope that the overall feeling for your family was excitement over new beginnings and new possibilities.

We recognize that ‘new’ does raise questions. Through on-going communication, including our Weekly Update, we hope many of your questions are getting answered. If you ever come up with a ‘new’ question, we are here to help. Often your best point of contact is your child’s teacher. You can find their email address our school website. We look forward to being able to support you and the learning of your child as the year progresses.

Sincerely,
Brad Emery
Principal


Sep 08
Our School has been Years in the Planning
​Our school has been years in the planning. Long before any of you even lived in your community, the developer set aside land for a future school. From zoning, to funding, to planning, to construction the journey has been long. Hundreds of people have played small and big roles in seeing our school become a reality. As I write, construction workers are completing final touches, technology teams are programming school bells and teachers are putting the finishing touches on their first lessons for the year. We are just missing the most important stakeholder in the whole process… Our students!

Sibylla Kiddle School is merely hours away from opening and we could not be more excited. One of our teachers told me today that there is something special here, it just feels different here. I couldn’t agree more. Our staff has been so unified in their conversations and planning for when students arrive. First and foremost, they want students to feel welcomed and safe in their new school surroundings. Secondly, they strongly desire the learning within our building to be authentic, meaningful, purposeful and rich. They are ready to welcome our students with open (albeit distanced) arms.

Take time to chat with your children this weekend about what excites them about coming to Sibylla Kiddle School. Ask them what their learning goals are for this year. Ask them how you can help them with their learning. I encourage you to lean into their answers so you can discover how you can support their 2020-21 learning journey.

See you on Tuesday! We can’t wait!

Sincerely,
Brad Emery
Principal 


Aug 31
Opening a New School
Dear Parents of Sibylla Kiddle School,

Have you ever bought a piece of furniture or a something electronic that came with a setup or operating manual? Are you the type of person that ignores those manuals and you just figure it out yourself? I feel between the opening of a new school and the unique situation the world finds itself in, that the amount of ‘manuals’ we have sent home and will continue to send home feels like the packet of information you get when opening a box with something new in it. 

We know the amount of information can feel overwhelming. However, we are asking that you please read all of the information we are sending. We don’t want you to miss important details as this is an opening like no other. 

We sincerely appreciate the patience you have extended towards us as we have navigated the significant complexities of opening a new school during a pandemic. The plans we have put into place follow CBE guidelines, within the context of our school. We will be continually re-evaluating our school based plans over the coming weeks as we seek to make sure that our process and procedures prioritize student safety, well-being and of course, learning. 

It is my desire to publish weekly communication for families in a similar format to what you see here. It will have dates you need to know about for the week ahead, a few of the important upcoming dates in our calendar, often a brief message from me and key news items you need to know about.

I am looking forward to seeing our students back on September 8.

Sincerely,
Brad Emery
Principal ​

May 19
A Peek Inside

Dear Parents of Sibylla Kiddle School,

Have you driven by our new school recently? It looks like a hive of activity. With each new tarp that is removed I get excited to see the latest reveal. However, I am most anxious to see what the inside of the building looks like. Like you, I have still not been allowed inside. Even though I have not been inside, I can tell that much is happening beyond the exterior walls.

Likewise, lots is happening with respect to some of the logistics related to attending Sibylla Kiddle School. We have been waiting on a variety of factors and decisions made by multiple people before we can make school based decisions and communicate more information to families. I sincerely apologize for the delays in communication. I understand, as a parent, the challenges of planning family life when there are unknown factors to consider. Please keep watch on your email as there will be much more to share in the coming weeks.

Construction Progress

Families are encouraged to continue to monitor the Building & Modernizing Schools website for construction updates. I am working closely with the Calgary Board of Education along with Alberta Infrastructure to understand what impacts the current pandemic may have on construction. I hope to know more and communicate updates in this area by early June.

Hours

We do know the school hours will be from 8:00 AM – 2:35 PM, Monday – Thursday and 8:00 AM – 11:45 PM on Fridays. Lunch hours and Kindergarten hours will be determined by late May and will be communicated at that time.

Kindergarten

We are working on finalizing what Kindergarten will look like for the upcoming school year in terms of hours and AM/PM classes. I anticipate being able to have more communication in this area by the end of May. Please note, due to the current pandemic we will not be able to offer a traditional Kindergarten orientation, as has happened in previous years. We are awaiting direction from the CBE to determine how we can best share out the information you need to know.

Communication (Phone, Email, Website)

Our phone number is 403-817-3432 and it is in operation. We also have a school email which is monitored. It is SibyllaKiddle@cbe.ab.ca. This will be your main point of contact with the school and will eventually become our primary email for reporting student absences and lates.

Before & After School Care

We are in the final stages of determining a before and after school child care provider. Once a decision has been made we will communicate it with families. We anticipate being able to communicate this decision in late May or early June.

Once again, I want to thank you for your patience as some of these logistical but extremely important factors are being determined. I want to assure families that we know how important this information is and we will communicate answers as soon as we have them and are able.

Finally, I would love to be able to meet your family. Unfortunately, in our current reality this is not an easy venture. After much brainstorming as to how I can effectively meet you and our students, I have decided to try running some Pop Up Principal times in the community over the coming weeks. I will station myself at various locations throughout Cranston and Copperfield so you can walk or ride by on your bikes and say hello. We will all need to be aware of physical distancing protocols (I will stay back from the path or sidewalk). I will send an email to families a day or two before my Pop Up Principal times, once I know the weather for the week, with the exact day and time I will be in the location. The tentative schedule will be as follows:

               May 19 – 22 – Zipline Park in Riverstone by Cranbrook Hill and Cranston Avenue

               May 25 – 29 – End of Cul-de-Sac on Cranford Street (east side of Sibylla Kiddle)

               June 1 – 5 – Park at the intersection of Cranford Way and Cranford Park

               June 8 – 12 – Copperfield Community Association tennis courts (south side)

               June 15 – 19 – Cranston Community Association tennis courts (SW side)

               June 22 – 26 – Park between Cranbrook Drive and Cranbrook Rise (south side along path)

               June 29 – June 30 – Copperfield Pond at entrance to Copperfield Close (NW side of pond)

I look forward to meeting you soon!​

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