Prairie Rose Public Schools News Archive

COVID-19 Vaccine Information for Parents
2021-11-25T21:26:23.980Z
COVID-19 Vaccine Information for Parents
<p>We have been asked to share the following information with our families from Alberta Health Services:</p><p>Health Canada has approved Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5-11. The Canadian Pediatric Society is recommending that all eligible children get vaccinated against COVID-19.</p><p>Parents may book vaccine appointments for children aged 5 to 11 through the <a href="https://bookvaccine.alberta.ca/vaccine/s/">Alberta Vaccine Booking system</a> or by calling Health Link at 811. <strong>Vaccines will not be available in schools and schools do not track or monitor the status of student vaccinations</strong>. Parent or guardian consent is required for children to get their vaccine, and it can be provided either in-person at the vaccine appointment or by a signed consent form.</p><p>K-12 students are not required to have a vaccination of any kind to attend Prairie Rose Public Schools, and no student will be denied access to an education based on their vaccination status. Prairie Rose will continue to recognize and respect parents as the primary decision-makers for their children regarding COVID vaccinations. We encourage our parents and guardians to seek out reliable and factual information to inform their decisions on vaccines for their children.&nbsp;</p><h4>Vaccine Resources</h4><ul><li><a href="https://open.alberta.ca/dataset/94df0467-fe7d-4008-891b-911c230bc8b9/resource/2fa7e614-a976-4cd2-82e2-4bc739687056/download/health-cmoh-letter-covid-19-vaccine-for-children-age-5-11-parents-guardians.pdf">Alberta's Chief Medical Officer of Health letter to parents (Nov 24)</a></li><li><a href="https://www.alberta.ca/covid19-vaccine-myths-and-facts.aspx">Government of Alberta – Vaccine myths and facts and information on vaccines for children</a></li><li><a href="https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/topics/page17746.aspx">AHS COVID-19 Immunization for Children Under 12</a></li><li><a href="https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/vaccination-children/covid-19.html?utm_campaign=hc-sc-covidvaccine-21-22&amp;utm_medium=sem&amp;utm_source=ggl&amp;utm_content=ad-text-en&amp;utm_term=children%20covid%2019%20vaccine&amp;adv=2122-89750&amp;id_campaign=12876015044&amp;id_source=128444816378&amp;id_content=545566020908&amp;gclid=CjwKCAiAs92MBhAXEiwAXTi25ykm3zsdnWS0BBBHnhZ9lKIDupsFaIexHgIGw5_VrYtlH691ESvTbxoCYmIQAvD_BwE&amp;gclsrc=aw.ds">Health Canada – COVID-19 vaccines for children: What you need to know</a></li></ul><p>&nbsp;</p>
November 23, 2021 Board Meeting Highlights
2021-11-24T21:08:39.755Z
November 23, 2021 Board Meeting Highlights
<p>The meeting agenda can be found here: <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/1M8ausPsSe9nUKMaAxzulKi8w0RKXMzcd/view?usp=sharing">https://drive.google.com/file/d/1M8ausPsSe9nUKMaAxzulKi8w0RKXMzcd/view?usp=sharing</a></p><p><br><strong>Student Services Report</strong></p><p>Director of Inclusion Services Camille Quinton shared her Student Services Accountability Report to the board for information. The Student Services team is responsible for providing a variety of programming support to students and staff that includes special education supports, counseling, student leadership, early childhood programming, speech and language therapy, social work, psychology and health supports. It was noted that there has been an increase in students requesting mental health support in schools as a result of the ongoing COVID pandemic. Priority around health and wellness in schools continues to be emphasized.</p><p><strong>Audited Financial Statements</strong></p><p>Assistant Secretary Treasurer Candice Hintz presented the 2020-2021 Audited Financial Statements for approval. It was noted that factors impacting the previous year’s budget included lower enrollment compared to spring projections, the implementation of a new funding model that included a weighted moving average per student calculation, and funding for COVID-19 to recover additional costs for subs, new technology and the implementation of the Home Plus Learning Program. For the 2020-2021 year, the division posted a total accumulated surplus of $10,424. This includes a surplus of $486,870 in Instruction, a deficit of $1,152,127 in Operations and Maintenance, a surplus in Transportation of $449,322, a surplus of $197,386 in System Administration and a surplus in External Services of $8,125. Auditors, MNP LLP, indicated no issues with the audit process and provided a clean audit opinion. The full financial statements and audit opinion can be found in the board meeting agenda package.</p><p>The board passed two motions related to the audited financial statements:</p><ul><li>That the Board of Trustees of Prairie Rose Public Schools approve the net transfer of $133,675 from Unrestricted Operating Reserves to Restricted Operating Reserves. Further, it approves the net transfer of $26,918 from Unrestricted Operating Reserves to Restricted Capital Reserves. <strong>CARRIED</strong></li><li>That the Board of Trustees of Prairie Rose Public Schools approves the 2020-21 Audited Financial Statements, as presented. <strong>CARRIED</strong></li></ul><p><strong>2021-2022 Revised Budget</strong></p><p>Secretary Treasurer Ryan Boser presented the revised 2021-2022 budget for approval. Assumptions of the revised budget included no interruptions in Alberta Education funding due to COVID-19, a decrease in enrollment of 69.5 FTE students from projections, a decrease in insurance premiums and no changes to the salary grids for teachers or support staff. In comparison to the spring projected budget, the division is now forecasting a deficit of $630,195, down from $733,873 for a difference of $103,678. This amount includes an instructional surplus of $128,373, a deficit of $918,747 in Operations and Maintenance, a surplus of $153,360 in Transportation and a surplus of $6,819 in External Services. It was noted that unlike previous years, System Administration (previously called Board and System Administration) is a separate grant, rather than a maximum percentage of overall expenses. The full budget can be found in the board meeting agenda package.</p><ul><li>That the Board of Trustees of Prairie Rose Public Schools approves the 2021-22 Revised Budget, as presented. <strong>CARRIED</strong></li></ul><p><strong>Annual Education Results Report</strong></p><p>Superintendent Reagan Weeks presented the Annual Education Results Report for approval. The report is now separate from the annual Education Plan and focuses on five new domains in connection with the new assurance model. The new domains include; Student Growth and Achievement, Teaching and Learning, Learning Supports, Governance and Local Context. It was noted that overall results are really strong in Prairie Rose and reflect the excellent efforts of staff, students and communities who have worked hard to provide and participate in unique learning experiences, despite the challenges related to COVID-19. The complete Results Report can be found in the board agenda package.</p><ul><li>That the Board of Trustees of Prairie Rose Public Schools approves the 2020-21 Annual Education Results Report, as presented. <strong>CARRIED</strong></li></ul>
2021 Bus Poster Contest Winners
2021-11-16T18:37:15.952Z
2021 Bus Poster Contest Winners
<p>Each year Prairie Rose Public School students participate in the annual bus poster safety contest as part of Bus Safety Week (Oct 17-23) in Alberta. This year's theme was 'Bus Rules Rock'! Winners from kindergarten to grade 6 are selected locally and then all entries are sent for judging at the provincial level. Congratulations to the following students for being selected as the Prairie Rose grade level winners.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Kindergarten</strong><br>1st place: Noah V - Bow Island Elementary<br>2nd place: Adelle K - Bow Island Elementary<br>3rd place: Kennedy R - Bow Island Elementary</p><p><strong>Grade 1</strong><br>1st place: Brogan E - Schuler<br>2nd place: Cooper C - Bow Island Elementary<br>3rd place: Jordan M - IF Cox</p><p><strong>Grade 2</strong><br>1st place: Sadie E - Seven Persons<br>2nd place: Keller T - New Brigden<br>3rd place: Lincoln V - Bow Island Elementary</p><p><strong>Grade 3</strong><br>1st place: Julia K - Foremost<br>2nd place: Jade H - Jenner<br>3rd place: Blaze H - Foremost</p><p><strong>Grade 4</strong><br>1st place: Dawn S - Senator Gershaw<br>2nd place: Briar W - Oyen Public<br>3rd place: Omnima R - Ralston</p><p><strong>Grade 5</strong><br>1st place: Hadley V - Oyen Public<br>2nd place: Mila W - Senator Gershaw<br>3rd place: Maddox M - Oyen Public</p><p><strong>Grade 6</strong><br>1st place: David H - Prairie Mennonite<br>2nd place: Sara F - Prairie Mennonite<br>3rd place: Jake R - Prairie Mennonite</p>
Board Meeting Highlights - November 9, 2021
2021-11-10T18:44:22.000Z
Board Meeting Highlights - November 9, 2021
<p><strong>1. Ralston School Presentation</strong></p><p>Ralston School principal Stacey Nunweiller provided the board with an update on what is happening at the school. Some of the highlights include community consultation to develop a new mission and vision for the school, a community building project (as many of the students who attend Ralston School come from out of the country), and the implementation of new strategies to address parent and student concerns from the assurance survey that took place in the spring of 2021. One of the strategies included focus on student voice which involved extending the student council to include a representative from each classroom from grades JK-9. Principal Nunweiller also spoke about the new Ralston School Prairie Rose Possibility project called Learning from the Land. A <a href="https://sites.google.com/d/14gBkPIeg37nccEYw0emI7KTImX-QhZen/p/1fv1AjB51VmiJd7xPTZdbaba">website</a> has been created outlining the project in detail. The full presentation can be found in the <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/1-FXOvzHq2L3LCDZci2P-Z_sS9ftfgyyl/view?usp=sharing">November 9, 2021 Agenda Package</a>.</p><p><strong>2. Prairie Rose Possibilities</strong></p><p>Superintendent Reagan Weeks presented a report to the board outlining unique learning opportunities and programs across the school division. In total, Prairie Rose has a total of 28 projects that have been started with approximately 1,527 students participating across the division. The full list of projects can be found in the <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/1-FXOvzHq2L3LCDZci2P-Z_sS9ftfgyyl/view?usp=sharing">November 9, 2021, Agenda Package</a>.</p><p><strong>3. Committee Structures</strong> - item was tabled.</p><p><strong>4. COVID-19 Tabled Policy</strong></p><p>Deputy Superintendent Mark Heinricks presented an overview of the data collected by the school division related to vaccination rates of staff by employee groups, the letters sent to school division’s by the Minister’s of Education and Health and the ATA, the CMOH Health Order, legal considerations related to the implementation or lack thereof of a proof of negative COVID test or vaccination policy, and details on what other boards in the province have done to address the Ministers’ request.&nbsp;</p><p>Trustee Lois Bedwell put forward a motion that would direct administration to develop a policy that would require staff who work directly with students to be double vaccinated or show proof of a negative COVID-19 test.&nbsp;</p><p>A second motion was put forward by trustee Shauna Vanderspruit to table the motion by trustee Bedwell. That motion was defeated 3-4.</p><p>The board discussed the implications of the motion put forward by trustee Bedwell including; the ability for staff to test, vaccine hesitancy, legal implications and board liability, potential insurance costs, clarification related to what is meant by ‘staff’ and a possible timeline for implementation. The motion passed 4-3. A recorded vote was requested.</p><ul><li>For: Hogg, Cursons, Bedwell, Rooks</li><li>Against: Haraga, Dennis, Vanderspruit</li></ul><p>Trustee Vanderspruit put forward an additional motion asking for administration to draft a letter reminding the government that the mandate for school boards is to make decisions for students regarding education, and that health decisions should remain the purview of the Ministry of Health. Further, the letter will include a request for financial assistance for boards to cover costs incurred when implementing a rapid testing program in schools. The motion was carried unanimously.</p><p>A letter has been shared with stakeholders with further clarification of the decision: <a href="https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1LPB6IlUth_r49I408jB74tItdGpDuAe8">Policy Decision Letter</a></p>
Micro-Credentials Partnership with Medicine Hat College
2021-11-01T19:31:19.647Z
Micro-Credentials Partnership with Medicine Hat College
<p>The full release can be found on the Medicine Hat College website: <a href="https://www.mhc.ab.ca/NewsandEvents/Stories/2021/October/PRSD-Partner-For-Microcredentials">https://www.mhc.ab.ca/NewsandEvents/Stories/2021/October/PRSD-Partner-For-Microcredentials</a></p><p><i>High school students in Prairie Rose Public Schools have new opportunities to engage in higher learning, thanks to a partnership with Medicine Hat College (MHC).</i></p><p>The college recently announced micro-credentials as part of its program mix, which provide fast, flexible and quality-assured learning in targeted areas of interest and industry. These short-term programs are delivered online and can stand-alone or complement traditional credentials such as certificates, diplomas and degrees.</p><p>With this new partnership, Prairie Rose high school students will have access to micro-credentials in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Advanced Pilot Training, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Permaculture Design, and Rainwater Harvesting.</p><p>“This is a chance to explore new subject areas and maybe discover a future career path,” says Dr. Reagan Weeks, new superintendent for the school division.“Micro-credentials present an exciting opportunity for our students to test the waters and learn at a different level. We believe there is tremendous value in connecting our students to the college environment and increasing their confidence with the post-secondary system. The more exposure and experiences we can offer our students now, the better prepared they will be for the future.”</p><p>She adds the UAV Advanced Pilot Training micro-credential will be the first to launch with Eagle Butte Dave Rozdeba Flight Academy students and Foremost School, in partnership with the Foremost UAS Testing Range.</p><p>Upon completion of a micro-credential, learners receive a digital badge that can be easily shared across their social media network, highlighted on their resume, or included in their email signature.</p><p>“Employers are looking to address skills gaps now and micro-credentials provide an efficient and targeted approach to meeting their needs,” says Timothy Spielman, dean for the School of Business and Continuing Studies. “Whether learning in a high school classroom or building additional career capacity as a working professional, the online and flexible delivery of micro-credentials meets learners where they are at in life.”</p><p>For more information about micro-credentials, please <a href="https://www.mhc.ab.ca/ProgramsandCourses/Micro-credentials">click here</a>.</p>
Inclement Weather Policy Changes
2021-10-14T20:08:43.539Z
Inclement Weather Policy Changes
<p>Recently, Prairie Rose Public Schools undertook a review of Inclement Weather policy T201. The review occurred following feedback from many parents and staff who expressed that the current policy was confusing, especially when it came to school closures and extreme cold weather. The policy stated that schools could be closed when the temperature (combined with wind chill) was -40 or lower at 6:00 am. This resulted in several days of school closures and late decisions which caused planning challenges for families.</p><p>As part of the review process, information regarding wind chill information and weather data was collected from the past three years from all regions of the school division. The research revealed the following:</p><p><strong>Wind Chill</strong></p><ul><li>Wind chill does not impact the actual air temperature. The wind chill index was designed to assess the risk of frostbite on unclothed parts of the body.</li><li>When students are riding in a bus, wind chill is an irrelevant factor.</li></ul><p><strong>Cold Weather Days in Prairie Rose</strong></p><ul><li>Over the past three years, there was on average 5.9 days each year that schools were closed due cold weather combined with wind chill.</li><li>On these cold weather days, the temperature frequently warmed over the course of a few hours.</li><li>The majority of the cold weather days occurred in January, February and March which greatly impacted instructional time in the second semester.</li><li>Very few cold weather days resulted in temperatures colder than -35 degrees.</li></ul><p>The findings of the data used for the report can be found here: <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/1PUA2oti-kBrAf6v16TQ0eOt-28mNZuTb/view?usp=sharing">PRPS Cold Weather Data</a></p><p><i>* Data for the report was taken from </i><a href="http://agriculture.alberta.ca/acis/weather-data-viewer.jsp"><i>Agriculture Alberta</i></a><i>&nbsp;</i></p><p>Based on the findings of the inclement weather review, policy T201 Inclement Weather has been changed to reflect the following:</p><ul><li>Wind chill is no longer going to be calculated into school closure decisions on cold weather days.</li><li>School closures due to temperature will occur when the actual temperature is -36 degrees or colder.</li><li>School bus drivers will continue to have the autonomy to cancel routes based on localized conditions and for safety reasons.</li><li>Schools may still be closed due to poor roads and weather conditions (i.e. blizzards, icy conditions, blowing snow.)</li></ul><p>Link to updated policy: <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/1y9loNCVX_fD23-FtlhFOdKaY-j-1xgrU/view?usp=sharing">T201 Inclement Weather</a></p><p>We understand that many families will continue to have concerns about sending their children to school on days of extreme cold weather. Should a cold weather day occur and a school is not closed (based on the above criteria) a parent maintains the right to keep their child home from school. If this is the case, we ask that parents connect with the school and bus driver to communicate this decision.</p><p>It is our hope that the revisions to Inclement Weather policy T201 will ensure a more consistent approach across Prairie Rose Public Schools when cold weather occurs. We will continue to communicate with parents using School Messenger to announce changes to bus routes or school closures. If you have not done so already, <a href="https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0BwxYarNhDkXYYzRzTFJ2ZGlpSkU?resourcekey=0-eavDlxC5k-yKNPLxEHQmKQ">we encourage you to opt in to receive text messages</a>, as it remains the most effective means to get information to families in a timely manner.</p>
October 13, 2021 Board Meeting Highlights
2021-10-14T19:56:26.371Z
October 13, 2021 Board Meeting Highlights
<p><strong>October 13, 2021 Agenda: </strong><a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/1TCksiO3Av08zpXC6I66yU2wbDBKgfDAG/view?usp=sharing">Agenda Package - October 13, 2021 (Online).pdf</a></p><p><strong>Coulee Collegiate</strong></p><p>Coulee Collegiate principal Tim Bloomfield provided an update to the board outlining how the school works in partnership with Medicine Hat Public Schools and the Medicine Hat College. Coulee Collegiate is unique compared to traditional public schools, as it provides both face to face instruction to college students who are upgrading or earning their high school diploma, while also providing course options for current 10-12 students. Due to the flexible nature of the program, it was noted the school generally fluctuates between 400-550 active students at any one time. In addition to high school courses and option classes, the school also offers institutes that allow high school aged students to earn workplace certifications at no cost.&nbsp; Although, in the early stages of implementation, the partnership between Prairie Rose Public Schools, Medicine Hat Public Schools and Medicine Hat college is an incredible success.</p><p><strong>Superintendent Performance Assessment Guide</strong></p><p>Deputy Superintendent Reagan Weeks presented a new assessment guide for evaluating the division’s superintendent performance measures annually. The proposed changes align with the new Superintendent Quality Standards and still allow flexibility for the board to add localized items for assessment.</p><p><strong>Board Correspondence</strong></p><p>Board Chair Stuart Angle shared that all correspondence to the board regarding stakeholder positions for the implementation of a proof of vaccination program has been compiled and placed in a folder for all trustees to review.</p><p><strong>Proof of Vaccination Program</strong></p><p>Superintendent Roger Clarke spoke to the letter sent by the Minister’s of Education and Health advocating for boards to implement local policies/administrative procedures to support vaccinations and COVID-19 rapid testing requirements for Prairie Rose staff. There was some discussion regarding whether the timing was appropriate for making a decision with a new board being elected next week. Some background was shared regarding how the division arrived at being in a position to consider an administrative procedure for vaccination/proof of negative COVID test and any potential risks for delaying a decision. It was also noted that new guidance that was promised last week for school divisions has not yet been shared from Alberta Education and it would be helpful to have the new guidance and the corresponding health order, to ensure that the new PRPS administrative procedure aligns with the provincial documents. It was emphasized that a policy or procedure regarding vaccination/proof of negative COVID test would not impact students. The board voted in favour of tabling the motion for the implementation of an administration procedure for proof of vaccination/negative COVID test for staff, volunteers or practicum students.</p><p><strong>Transportation Accountability Report</strong></p><p>Director of Transportation Derek Beck shared the Transportation Accountability Report for information. Highlights of the report include:</p><ul><li>Prairie Rose transports 1,845 students on 83 bus routes that travel 17,040 kilometres each day.</li><li>The average cost of a bus route in Prairie Rose is $60,435 per year.</li><li>In the 2020-2021 year, Prairie Rose spent $5.28 million dollars on bus transportation.</li><li>Prairie Rose buses students from Cherry Academy Christian Academy, Holy Spirit School Division and Christ the Redeemer School Division to schools in Bow Island and Oyen.</li><li>The school division participates in a provincial bus safety poster contest each year, which actively promotes bus safety initiatives.</li><li>Prairie Rose contracts bus services from Southland Transportation (71), First Student (2), Old West Transport and independent contractors (5)</li><li>In addition to daily transportation of students to and from school, bus transportation supports student programming for academy and off-site field trips.</li></ul><p><strong>Financial Update</strong></p><p>Assistant Secretary Treasurer Candice Hintz provided a year-end financial update for the year 2020-2021. HIghlights of the report include:</p><ul><li>Alberta Education revenues of $358,000 higher than budgeted. This was due to one-time funding for online learning and the critical worker benefit payment.</li><li>Revenues are expected to come in $645,100 over budget. Main factors include the increase in Alberta Education funding, a decrease in donation revenue and equity return from ASBIE (Alberta School Boards Insurance Exchange).</li><li>Certified salaries came in $181,300 under budget. Sub costs also came in lower than budgeted.</li><li>Non certified salaries increased by $121,000. This is due to the critical worker benefit and EA hours purchased by schools.</li><li>Overall, the school division is expected to have an actual deficit of $24,098 (budgeted deficit of $351,140) for the 2020-2021 year with total expenditures coming in at $52,916,686 compared to $52,892,588 in revenues.</li></ul><p><strong>Enrollment Update</strong></p><p>Secretary Treasurer Ryan Boser provided the September 29, 2021, enrollment update for information. This past spring the division had projected a decrease in enrollment of 13 students for the current year compared to the 2020-21 school year. Actual enrollment came in 66 students below spring projections, for a total of 79 less students compared to the previous year. It was noted that due to the new funding formula and the weighted moving average, the division will only be losing 50% of the 2021-2022 funding. This amount represents approx. $282,000 of overall revenues. It was noted that due to the uncertainty with the ongoing pandemic, school divisions were ‘held-harmless’ for the 2020-21 school year as significant fluctuations occurred. This will offset approximately $149,000 of the overall amount. Reserves will be used to cover the remaining funding loss.</p><p><strong>Oyen Maintenance Shop</strong></p><p>Secretary Treasurer Ryan Boser explained that the Oyen maintenance shop has required replacement for many years. It is estimated that a new shop will cost between $100,000 and $175,000. The board approved a motion to allocate funds from capital reserves for the project.</p><p><strong>EL Policy #10</strong></p><p>Following the implementation of the new Education Act in September 2019, a number of Prairie Rose policies required updating to adhere to the new act. It was noted that Prairie Rose policy EL #10 School Closure / Transfer of Students still contained parts of the previous School Act and required realignment. Proposed changes were presented for feedback. The board voted in favour of approving the changes to EL #10, as presented.</p><p><strong>Human Resources Accountability Report</strong></p><p>Assistant Superintendent Kal Koch presented the Human Resources Report for information. Highlights of the report include:</p><ul><li>Prairie Rose employs 236 certified staff and 228 support staff.</li><li>Prairie Rose provides staffing to support inclusion, nutrition and mental health and wellness.</li><li>The average class sizes in Prairie Rose include:<ul><li>K: 15.2 students</li><li>Grades 1-3: 16.0 students</li><li>Grades 4-6: 20.3 students</li><li>Grades 7-9: 21.3 students</li><li>Grades 10-12: 22.4 students</li></ul></li><li>Prairie Rose has 121 teachers with 10+ years of experience.</li><li>Certified teaching salary costs for 2021-2022 are estimated at $26,785,174.</li><li>Support Staff salary costs for 2021-2022 are estimated at $10,600,443.</li></ul><p><strong>Seven Persons Field Trip</strong></p><p>Superintendent Roger Clarke presented a field trip request from Seven Persons School to participate in a four day trip to Kananaskis from October 22-25 of this month through Outward Bound. As the trip is overnight and takes place in the fall in the mountains, there are some additional logistics that are still being worked out. The board voted in favour of providing approval for the trip, pending final approval of the Superintendent.</p>
September 24 - COVID-19 Update
2021-09-24T20:03:56.402Z
September 24 - COVID-19 Update
<p>Over the past week there have been a number of changes related to the guidelines for schools for COVID-19. We wanted to take this opportunity to highlight some of these changes and clarify information related to parent notification when a confirmed case of COVID-19 is shared with our schools by parents. We have also been made aware of social media posts that are circulating that make claims regarding mandatory student vaccinations which are based on misinformation that we would like to address and clarify with our families.</p><p><strong>Recent Changes to the Re-Entry Plan and Health Screening Guides</strong><br>On September 22, 2021, the government updated the guidance document for schools following the declaration of a public health emergency in Alberta. We have made changes to our Prairie Rose Re-Entry Plan to reflect the new guidance document. You can find it, along with government guidance and the CMOH order that supports the changes on our website under the tab <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/12HIeN3oaL24UpdR87fT-NGeKXoTXONIU/view?usp=sharing">COVID-19 Resources</a>. Of particular note, the new health screening guide added a new section related to household close contacts. Until now there was no isolation recommendation for members of a family when someone tests positive for COVID-19. The Chief Medical Officer of Health has added a new section that changes this position. It is now <strong>strongly recommended</strong> that anyone who is a household close contact of someone who tests positive for COVID-19 to stay home for 14 days if they are not fully vaccinated. We recognize that this change will have a significant impact on many families and we encourage you to discuss any questions about this update with your school principal. You can find the changes reflected in updates to our <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/12oedZgsqwxJlmL6yMMLlR86E4PeuvGMG/view?usp=sharing">Student Illness Guide</a> and our <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/1IJ8D-GrZniZOevr6tKsVJ0NGb-SRMChH/view?usp=sharing">Adult Illness Guide</a>.</p><p><strong>Reporting COVID-19 Cases in Schools</strong><br>As we committed to in our re-entry plan, we have been notifying school communities when parents and staff have self-identified cases of COVID-19 in schools. To date, 10 of Prairie Rose’s 18 public schools have received notifications. When a case is self-reported to a school, the following information is collected to determine if the positive individual was in contact with others:</p><ol><li>What was the first date of symptoms?</li><li>Did the individual attend school when symptomatic?</li><li>If they did attend school, what classes would they have been in contact with?</li></ol><p>When determining whether the individual attended school when contagious, we take the first day of symptoms and go back two days. For example, if we are notified that a student first had symptoms on a Friday and was in school each day that week, we would consider them a close contact of others in the school. However, if we are informed that the first day of symptoms was on a Monday morning and that student had not been in school since the Friday prior, we would not include them on the close contact list. This process of going back two days is the same we used last year when working with Alberta Health Services to identify close contacts. While we understand that families want to know as much information as possible, we also need to balance that desire with an individual’s right to privacy and whether the positive case has an impact on others. This is why we only add positive cases to our reporting when they are deemed to be a close contact with others in the school community. When positive cases are confirmed to have been in class, parents receive a notification via School Messenger informing them of the first positive case along with instructions for accessing daily COVID updates. All the cases are also listed on the Prairie Rose website which can be found here: <a href="https://www.myprps.com/covid-19-reporting">https://www.myprps.com/covid-19-reporting</a></p><p><strong>Social Media Misinformation</strong><br>This past week it was brought to our attention that a post was circulating on social media claiming that school divisions were being deceptive in terms of mandatory vaccines, suggesting changes would be coming after the enrollment count on September 29th. We would like to make it very clear that this is inaccurate and fear mongering information and there have been zero conversations or engagement with school boards about this direction. School boards do not have the authority to mandate vaccinations. Our role is to ensure every student in Alberta has access to a quality education in an inclusive learning environment, which we will continue to support while prioritizing the safety of our students and staff.&nbsp;</p><p>We would like to thank all of our school community for their understanding and support as we navigate another school year of uncertainty. Together we will continue to move forward with providing quality learning opportunities for students, despite the challenges that exist. If you have any questions about the information in this latest update, we encourage you to bring them forward to your school principal.</p><p>Sincerely,<br>Roger Clarke<br>Superintendent of Schools</p>
EBHS Acting Vice Principal Announcement
2021-09-21T21:37:06.636Z
EBHS Acting Vice Principal Announcement
<p>Superintendent Roger Clarke is pleased to announce that Cathy Hynes has accepted the position as acting vice-principal of Eagle Butte High School for the remainder of the 2021-2022 year, following the move of current vice-principal Jonn Baird to an acting principal position at Parkside Junior High School this fall.</p><p>Cathy Hynes has been a teacher for 22 years with the last 14 working for Prairie Rose Public Schools. During her teaching career she has taught a variety of grades and students including indigenous youth at Siksika Nation, junior high at Senator Patrick Burns Junior High in Calgary, and grades 5 and 6 at Irvine School. Additionally, she has worked in the inclusive learning teacher role at Irvine School, and for the past four years as one of two instructional leads supporting schools across Prairie Rose. In this role, Cathy has worked directly with teachers to implement instructional strategies that deepen learning and support literacy initiatives. In addition to a Bachelor of Education, she also has a Masters of Education from Queens University.</p><blockquote><p>“I am honoured and grateful for the opportunity to join the leadership team at Eagle Butte High School. High school is a time where we see a shift in students as they change their focus from coming to school to learn, to exploring possibilities and opportunities that shape their futures. This is such a pivotal part of their education journey and I look forward to being able to help support and guide this process in my new role.” ~ Cathy Hynes</p></blockquote><p>Cathy Hynes will officially assume the role of acting vice-principal at Eagle Butte High School on October 1, 2021.</p>
Board Meeting Highlights - September 14, 2021
2021-09-17T20:24:38.000Z
Board Meeting Highlights - September 14, 2021
<p><strong>Communications Report</strong></p><p>Director of Communications Angela Baron presented an overview of the main communication work that was completed across Prairie Rose during the 2020-2021 year and what was planned for 2021-2022. Some of the highlights of the report include managing COVID-19 communications (notifications, re-entry plans and inquiries), a rebranding of Prairie Rose School Division to Prairie Rose Public Schools, the launch of the new myPRPS (myprps.com) websites for all schools and the division, research and design of the new Home Plus Learning Network, an upcoming internal communications audit, a review of the cold weather section of the current inclement weather policy, and work as part of the design and implementation of the new assurance model that focuses on stakeholder feedback. The full report can be found here: <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/1tobjYVLxGbCRdpxAA5oDp7bcOntOnzKY/view">https://drive.google.com/file/d/1tobjYVLxGbCRdpxAA5oDp7bcOntOnzKY/view</a></p><p><strong>New Brigden School Future Maintenance and Space Utilization</strong></p><p>The board discussed the next steps for maintenance and space utilization at New Brigden School following the board decision on September 2, 2021, to end the school review process and keep the school open beyond the current school year. Trustees discussed and approved on a number of items they would like followed up on including removal or redeployment of portables, continued funding/in-kind support from the community, the addition of a financial update (based on the new funding formula) of New Brigden and all small Prairie Rose schools to the annual board monitoring schedule, and consideration of required maintenance projects at New Brigden School to be added to the Capital Plan.</p><p><strong>Truth and Reconciliation Day – Sept 30, 2021</strong></p><p>The board discussed what was happening across the country and at other school divisions in Alberta in regards to the announcement that September 30, 2021, would be declared a national holiday to commemorate Truth and Reconciliation. As the 30th was not given consent as a provincial holiday, there are varying ways each school organization is handling the day. While some have made it an operational day for all staff and students, other school divisions have decided to make it a non-instruction day or a holiday day. There was some discussion about the difference and impact to the division under each scenario. It was also noted that due to the short timeline, there is some concern that teachers and staff would not be adequately prepared to provide the best possible educational opportunity for students around truth and reconciliation. The board voted 5-1 in favour of making September 30th, for the 2021-2022 school year only, a non-operational day with pay for all staff, to recognize the day for Truth and Reconciliation.</p><p><strong>Advanced Vote</strong></p><p>The board passed a motion authorizing Returning Officer Ryan Boser to hold and advanced vote for the upcoming October 18th trustee election, should there be a slate of candidates in any of the six Prairie Rose wards.</p><p><strong>Welcome of the New Deputy Superintendent</strong></p><p>The board and upcoming Superintendent Reagan Weeks welcomed Mark Heinricks to the meeting and congratulated him on being selected as the new role as Deputy Superintendent. See the announcement here: <a href="https://www.myprps.com/news/chief-deputy-superintendent-announcement-1630611979151">https://www.myprps.com/news/chief-deputy-superintendent-announcement-1630611979151</a></p><p>&nbsp;</p>
Health Protocols in Schools - Update
2021-09-16T01:59:39.260Z
Health Protocols in Schools - Update
<p>On Wednesday evening, the province declared a state of public health emergency due to the rising number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and ICU admissions in Alberta. A number of additional public health measures were added as a result of the declaration, including a few for schools.&nbsp;</p><p>Starting Thursday, September 16, 2021, the following public health measures will be implemented all Prairie Rose schools:</p><ul><li>Mandatory masking for grades 4-12 in all public areas and when students cannot be spaced two metres apart. <i>Please ensure you send your child to school with a mask.</i> When students are working at their own work spaces, masks may be removed. This follows the same model as the masking requirement from the 2020-2021 school year.</li><li>Each student in grade K-12 is still required to wear a mask while riding the school bus, as per <a href="https://open.alberta.ca/dataset/4a60eb75-5986-4da2-98d0-b9462e46dfcc/resource/c566b20f-dc1e-4265-bbae-97b33ae43cc2/download/health-cmoh-record-of-decision-cmoh-order-34-2021.pdf">CMOH Health Order 34-2021</a>.</li><li>Cohorting will be implemented, where possible, across all grades. Limited seating in common areas will help support this measure at the junior and high school levels.</li><li>Limited seating for spectators who attend indoor sporting or entertainment events to ⅓ capacity. Masking is now required the entire time a visitor is at the school.</li></ul><p>The school division will continue to follow all the other guidelines as laid out in the <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/12HIeN3oaL24UpdR87fT-NGeKXoTXONIU/view">2021-2022 Re-Entry Plan</a> including enhanced cleaning and notification to families when positive COVID-19 cases are reported from parents of individuals who attended school while ill. Our online re-entry plan will be updated tomorrow to reflect the new changes stated above.</p><p>We would like to thank all our parents for working with us to promote healthy and safe learning communities, despite the challenges we face, such as reviewing the daily health check each day and keeping your child home from school when sick. We would also like to thank our parents for keeping us well informed related to testing and student illness. Your cooperation promotes a collaborative community approach for maintaining a healthy school environment.</p><p>Roger Clarke<br>Superintendent of Schools</p>
Truth and Reconciliation Day - Sept 30
2021-09-15T16:45:29.168Z
Truth and Reconciliation Day - Sept 30
<p><strong>2021-2022 School Calendar Adjustment - No School September 30th for Staff or Students</strong></p><p>Earlier this month, we shared with parents that a decision would be made by the board at the next public meeting regarding how to approach the newly announced September 30th federal holiday to recognize Truth and Reconciliation in Canada. The day commemorates and remembers residential school survivors and their families. At the public board meeting held Tuesday afternoon, the Prairie Rose Public Schools Board of Trustees voted in favour of making September 30th a non-operational day, which means that students and staff would not attend school on September 30th.&nbsp;</p><p>Key considerations for the board included:</p><ul><li>It was important for Prairie Rose to recognize September 30th in an official manner, especially considering the new information that Canadians learned this past summer in regards to residential schools.</li><li>Could the day be appropriately recognized and coordinated by staff, under short timelines, to ensure curricular activities reflective authentic and acceptable reconciliation actions?</li><li>Would the Alberta Government move to adopting the national holiday in the future?</li><li>What are other school jurisdictions and organizations in Alberta doing?</li></ul><p>The board felt that it was important to ensure that any student-led activities should be appropriately researched and led by those with knowledge and experience of truth and reconciliation. As such, it was decided that due to the short timelines for implementation, September 30, 2021, would be shifted from an instructional day to a non-operational day for the current school year. The decision does not mean that Prairie Rose has established September 30th as a statutory holiday in the future. When the 2022-2023 calendar is created later this school year, the Board of Trustees will research an appropriate path forward. In the meantime, staff will research and plan for appropriate activities that can be utilized across Prairie Rose classrooms for both future Truth and Reconciliation and the June Indigenous Peoples Day.&nbsp;</p><p>We recognize the short notice for families, but also believe that teaching our students about truth and reconciliation is important work that must be done carefully and appropriately.</p><p>Stuart Angle<br>Board Chair<br>Prairie Rose Public Schools</p>
Administrative Changes: Eagle Butte and Parkside
2021-09-14T16:41:56.493Z
Administrative Changes: Eagle Butte and Parkside
<p>Superintendent Roger Clarke is pleased to announce principal administration changes at Eagle Butte High School (10-12) and Parkside Junior High School (7-9).</p><p>This fall, following the departure of Mark Heinricks from Eagle Butte to the Deputy Superintendent position, current Parkside Junior High School principal Boyd Craven will be reassigned as the new principal of Eagle Butte High School, while current Eagle Butte vice principal Jonn Baird will be moving to an acting principal position at Parkside.</p><p>Jonn Baird has worked as an educator for 23 years with the past 17 at Eagle Butte High School as a teacher (10 years) and vice principal (7 years). Last year, he also spent four months as the interim principal at Foremost School. In addition to a Bachelor or Education, Jonn has a Master of Arts in Leadership and Administration from Gonzaga University.</p><blockquote><p>“I am excited to be working with the students, staff, and parents of Parkside in this new role. Growing up in Redcliff, I attended Parkside myself as a student and am quite familiar with the school and community. While I will greatly miss the students and staff of Eagle Butte, I look forward to this new opportunity. Having worked with many students who have attended Parkside before coming to Eagle Butte, I have heard very positive comments about the school and hope to continue the tradition of making Parkside a great place to learn.”</p></blockquote><p>Boyd Craven has been with Prairie Rose for his entire 18 year teaching career, starting out at Ralston School as a teacher, before moving in the vice principal position. Eight years ago, he transferred to Parkside Junior High School, first as the vice principal and then principal for the past five years. Boyd has a Bachelor of Arts and Education, as well as a Master of Education with a focus on Educational Leadership.</p><blockquote><p>“I am honoured and excited to be selected as the next principal of Eagle Butte High School. Eagle Butte has an amazing staff and an excellent reputation for high-quality learning and programming opportunities for students. I would like to thank the Parkside community for their commitment and support which has led to strong relationships over the years. I look forward to continuing my journey within Prairie Rose with this new opportunity.”</p></blockquote><p>Both administrators will assume their new roles later this fall.</p>
Chief Deputy Superintendent Announcement
2021-09-02T21:52:49.236Z
Chief Deputy Superintendent Announcement
<p>Superintendent Roger Clarke and Deputy Superintendent Reagan Weeks are pleased to announce that Mark Heinricks has been chosen as the successful candidate for the role of Chief Deputy Superintendent. The transition will also include the move of Reagan Weeks to the Superintendent of Schools position, effective November 1, 2021.</p><p>Currently serving as the principal of Eagle Butte High School for the past seven years, Mark Heinricks is a long-time employee of Prairie Rose with an extensive teaching and leadership background. Throughout his 32-year teaching career, with the past 25 with Prairie Rose, Mark has worked at Eagle Butte as a teacher, vice principal and principal and at Irvine School as a teacher and vice principal. In addition to a Bachelor of Education degree, he also holds a Master of Education with a focus on Educational Leadership.</p><p>“I am excited to welcome Mark to the Prairie Rose Public Schools executive team,” says Reagan Weeks. “Mark’s integrity, work ethic and commitment to Prairie Rose is second to none and I look forward to working with him in his new role as Chief Deputy Superintendent in charge of Human Resources. Mark’s connection to Prairie Rose and our students will be a huge asset as we continue with developing exceptional learning opportunities for rural students.”</p><p>“I feel very honoured to be selected for this role,” says Mark Heinricks. “I have always valued the teamwork and collaborative environment Prairie Rose has promoted with school leaders. Whether in my role as teacher, mentor or school administrator, I am a firm believer in treating students, parents and staff with dignity and respect. These are values that I know are important to Prairie Rose and I consider a strength as I move into this new position. I will miss the staff and students I have worked so closely with for many, many years… but I am very excited about growing in this new role.”</p><p>Mark Heinricks will make the transition from Eagle Butte to the Deputy Superintendent position on October 1, 2021.</p>
Revised Date: New Brigden School Closure Community Consultation
2021-08-27T07:00:00.000Z
Revised Date: New Brigden School Closure Community Consultation
<p>On August 25, 2021, administration presented the Board of Trustees with updated information for New Brigden School. As part of the package, the revised data focused on scenarios beyond the current school year, based on the decision to delay the school review until 2021-2022. While some sections of the revised information remained unchanged from the spring (i.e. maintenance costs), trustees identified notable differences related to financial implications for the current year (2021-2022) and the one following (2022-2023). Senior Administration explained that these differences represent changes introduced last year as part of the new funding formula. To ensure accuracy of the document, the Prairie Rose financial team will be meeting with Alberta Education officials to confirm the new information. <i>Once this has been completed, the revised package will be shared with parents to review</i>.</p><p>Link to previously shared data package: <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/1TRjurLltohdPASFpl81S_ta1B8qvn-kr/view">June 2021</a></p><p>In consideration of the timing of the new information and the pending community consultation meeting scheduled for next Monday, the board felt that it was in the best interest of parents and the New Brigden community <strong>to delay for two weeks to ensure all parties have appropriate time to review the new information in more detail</strong>. It is important to the board that all stakeholders, including trustees, have adequate time to examine the new data and consider how it may relate to the future of New Brigden School. The new meeting information is listed below:</p><p><strong>Meeting Date</strong>: Tuesday, September 21, 2021<br><strong>Meeting Time</strong>: 7:00 PM<br><strong>Meeting Format</strong>: In-person at New Brigden School (meeting format will be required to comply with COVID-19 pandemic health restrictions)</p><p>Following the public consultation meeting, members of the public will also have the opportunity to provide written submissions to the board for consideration and apply to make an in-person presentation.</p><p>A final decision regarding the notice of motion for closure of New Brigden School&nbsp;will come forward to the board at the October 13, 2021, public board meeting.</p>
Prairie Rose Superintendent Announcement
2021-08-10T06:00:00.000Z
Prairie Rose Superintendent Announcement
<p>The Prairie Rose Public Schools Board of Trustees is pleased to announce that Dr. Reagan Weeks has been chosen as the successful candidate for the role of Superintendent of Schools, effective November 1, 2021.</p><p>Reagan Weeks is currently the Deputy Superintendent for Prairie Rose Public Schools, having also served in the role of Assistant Superintendent from 2016 until last year. In her two senior leadership positions she has been responsible for designing and implementing education programming and services, leadership and management, human resources and promoting partnership development. This work has helped support a range of new educational opportunities for Prairie Rose students including the South Alberta Hockey Academy, the DR Flight Academy, and recently announced Prairie Rose Possibilities projects that include sport, agriculture, equine, fine arts and other unique student programs across the division. In addition to 20 years of teaching and school leadership experience, Reagan Weeks holds a Bachelor of Education degree, a Masters of Business Administration, and a Doctorate of Education from Johns Hopkins University.</p><p>The search for a new Superintendent of Schools began this past spring, following the retirement announcement of current Prairie Rose Public Schools Superintendent Roger Clarke. As part of the recruitment and hiring process, the board brought in an outside consultant whose experience ensured a quality slate of candidates were considered for the position.</p><p>“In the search for a new Superintendent of Schools, the board wanted to find a leader who was familiar with the unique challenges and benefits of operating a rural school division and with the knowledge, background and experience to continue with the successful programming Prairie Rose has built over the past few years,” said Board Chair Stuart Angle. “We are confident that Ms. Weeks shares the board’s goals and vision for success and will continue to help us move forward to build opportunities for students.”</p><p>“I am both humbled and honoured by the appointment to Superintendent of Schools,” says Reagan Weeks. “Prairie Rose Public Schools is an organization that continues to consider new and innovative ways of making learning meaningful for students. I am extremely thankful to be given the opportunity to lead the division forward as we continue to create new Prairie Rose Possibilities that take K-12 learning to the next level.”</p><p>The transition of the superintendent role will take place over the next few months, with Reagan Weeks officially assuming the position on November 1, 2021. The board would like to express their appreciation and thanks to current superintendent Roger Clarke for his leadership and commitment to the division. He will officially retire at the end of October.</p><p>The full release can also be found here: <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/1msQEqAqN1CZnOepYBYrmL-jx7FqzxXJp/view?usp=sharing">R Weeks Superintendent Announcement</a></p><p>----------------</p><p>Learn more about Prairie Rose Public Schools at <strong>www.prsd8.com</strong><br>Media inquiries can be made to <strong>communications@prrd8.ca</strong><br>&nbsp;</p><p><i>Photo credit: Jolaine Nicole Photography</i><br><i>Makeup by: Kaitie Jailbert</i></p>
2021 Redcliff Scholarship Recipients
2021-06-24T07:00:00.000Z
2021 Redcliff Scholarship Recipients
<p><strong>Eagle Butte and Hat High students awarded 2021 Redcliff Scholarships for Advanced Education</strong></p><p>The Redcliff Scholarship Committee for Advanced Education, is pleased to announce that Eagle Butte High School graduates Cheyanne Peters, Wesley Ewert and Breanna Gawel, and Medicine Hat High School graduate Hailey Schofield are the recipients of the 2021 Redcliff Scholarship Awards. All four students will be attending post-secondary in the fall, with plans to pursue careers in education, nursing and social work. Each student will receive one of four 2021 Redcliff Scholarships for $5,000 towards tuition costs for post-secondary studies. &nbsp;</p><figure class="table"><table><tbody><tr><td><figure class="image"><img src="https://prrdweb.com/images/content/93%20Cheyanne%20Peters.jpg" alt=""></figure></td><td><p><i>Cheyanne Peters (EBHS), plans to attend Lethbridge College to pursue a career in nursing</i></p><p>“My journey towards becoming a nurse is important to me as I aspire to be a positive role model by recognizing it is possible to set challenging personal goals and reach them. I am thankful for the support this scholarship offers as I move onto the next stage in my education journey."</p></td></tr><tr><td><figure class="image"><img src="https://prrdweb.com/images/content/28%20Wesley%20Ewert.jpg" alt=""></figure></td><td><p><i>Wesley Ewert (EBHS), plans to attend Medicine Hat College to pursue a career in education</i></p><p>“I plan to attend Medicine Hat College for one year then transfer to the University of Lethbridge for four years to receive a combined degree in education and mathematics. I was drawn to teaching as a career, as it allows me to share my passion for learning and knowledge with others. This scholarship allows me to focus on my studies to reach this goal.”</p></td></tr><tr><td><figure class="image"><img src="https://prrdweb.com/images/content/36%20Breanna%20Gawel.jpg" alt=""></figure></td><td><p><i>Breanna Gawel (EBHS), plans to attend Medicine Hat College to pursue a career in social work</i></p><p>“Supporting my school and community is important to me, which is why I plan to attend the Medicine Hat College this fall to pursue a career in social work. The Redcliff scholarship helps me reach this goal and I am thankful for the support.”</p></td></tr><tr><td><figure class="image"><img src="https://prrdweb.com/images/content/IMG_20210618_0001.jpg" alt=""></figure></td><td><p><i>Hailey Schofield (MHHS), plans to attend Medicine Hat College to pursue a career in nursing</i></p><p>“I have spent a very large portion of time thinking about my post-secondary goals. I am very passionate about my career choice and will do whatever it takes to get me there. The Redcliff Scholarship supports my dreams and I look forward to accomplishing many great things.”</p></td></tr></tbody></table></figure><p>&nbsp;</p><p>“This year’s scholarship recipients showed great dedication to their studies during what was a very difficult year,” says scholarship chairperson Arnold Frank. “All four students have a passion for giving back to others which is evident in their choice of post-secondary studies. The Redcliff Scholarship Committee is extremely pleased to be able to support these four exceptional individuals, who showed determination and strength through what was a very challenging grade 12 year. I’d like to wish them all the best in whatever their futures hold.”</p><p>The Redcliff Scholarships were established in 2002 and have been awarded to 43 Redcliff students. &nbsp;The awards are possible thanks to two endowed scholarship funds, that were established and are sustained by ongoing contributions of Redcliff organizations, and present and past Redcliff citizens. &nbsp;A third, Frank King Tribute Scholarship Fund, was announced in the spring of 2018 in memory of the late Frank King, while a&nbsp;fourth was added in November of 2020 to honour the legacy of former Redcliff resident David Jon Thomson.</p><p>REDCLIFF SCHOLARSHIPS FOR ADVANCED EDUCATION</p><p><strong>The Redcliff Scholarship for Advanced Education “Original Fund”</strong> was launched at the Reunion of the Redcliff 1944 Grade 1 Class held in September 2002. The aim was to create an endowed scholarship fund, whereby interest and dividends from the invested principal would earn enough money to finance the annual scholarship. &nbsp;To date, contributions to the fund total $249,410.</p><p><strong>“The Four Friends Fund”</strong> scholarship was established in 2006 in memory of the value of the lifelong Redcliff Friendships of Jack Fairhurst, Ron Hodges, John Hudak and Gerald Berkhold. The scholarship has been endowed with contributions of $232,975.</p><p><strong>“Frank King Tribute”</strong> scholarship was established in 2018 in memory of Frank King. &nbsp;As a legacy of the young Frank Walter King, his family and friends established the Frank King Tribute Scholarship that is awarded alongside the other two Redcliff scholarships for advanced education. To date, contributions totaling $31,500 have been received in support of this scholarship.</p><p><strong>“David Jon Thomson Scholarship”</strong> was established in 2020 in memory of David Jon Thomson. Thomson was a well-known business man and lifelong proponent of education with roots in the Medicine Hat and Redcliff communities. As a legacy, his family established the David Jon Thomson Scholarship that is awarded alongside the other three Redcliff scholarships for advanced education. To date, contributions totaling $25,000 have been received in support of this scholarship.</p><p><br>&nbsp;</p>
Board Meeting Highlights
2021-06-11T07:00:00.000Z
Board Meeting Highlights
<p><strong>Occupational Health and Safety Report</strong><br>Occupational Health and Safety Officer Derek Beck provided his annual report to the board for information. Highlights of the report include an update on Prairie Rose’s participation in the AHS ARTSSN student absenteeism program, school safety inspections, fire inspections at all Redcliff schools, first aid training for PRPS staff, an update on incidents and accidents over the 2020-21 school year and annual emergency response training. It was noted that the division had an increase in injuries reported among staff this year leading to an increase in WCB premium surcharges. School leaders have been asked to spend additional time at staff meetings discussing health and safety processes to increase awareness amongst staff. COVID-19 has also made it a challenging year for all schools, with additional protections required to adhere to pandemic requirements such as mask wearing, hand sanitization, and cohort groups.</p><p><strong>South Central High School Trip - Acadia Valley Municipal Reservoir</strong><br>The board approved a request from South Central High School for a trip from June 21-23 to the Acadia Valley Municipal Reservoir that involves canoeing and overnight camping. As it is a level 3/4 fieldtrip request it required board approval. As the group is in the same cohort, it adheres to COVID-19 restrictions.</p><p><strong>Financial Accountability Report</strong><br>Assistant Secretary Treasurer Candice Hintz provided a financial update to the board. The report contains information for 90% of the 2020-21 school year. It was noted there were minor revenue and expenditure changes from the last report. Overall, Prairie Rose is expected to come in $695,400 over budget, with the projected deficit decreasing by $100,000, for an overall projected deficit for the year of $251,220. Reduced PD, lower than budgeted substitute staff costs and reduced travel due to COVID are contributing factors for the decrease in spending.</p><p><strong>Literacy Status Report</strong><br>Due to the move to at-home learning, the MAP testing used for student literacy testing was delayed by two weeks this spring. Testing is now&nbsp;being completed and a full report will be brought to the board in the fall. It was also noted that growth projections are not expected to be on target, due to the varying dynamics each child and family has needed to navigate through the pandemic.</p><p><strong>Accountability Pillar Summary</strong><br>Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this report has been delayed by the province. Also, due to the move to the new assurance model, this report will likely look different coming to school divisions this fall.</p><p><strong>New PR Partnership and Field Trip Request</strong><br>Deputy Superintendent Reagan Weeks shared that Prairie Rose has secured a new partnership with Outward Bound, a globally renowned outdoor education program, who will work in collaboration with the DR Flight Academy program. The academy was seeking board approval for a field trip&nbsp;to Kananaskis through Outward Bound from June 28 – July 2. As part of the trip, students will participate in map and compass navigation, self care, risk management, leadership, communication, group work, plane crash simulation are all part of the program. Throughout the expedition and airplane incident scenario, students will become proficient in mountain travel and technical skills while developing a tolerance for uncertainty and discomfort relating to weather, physical and emotional challenge and group dynamics. The board approved the fieldtrip request. Learn more about Outward Bound here: <a href="https://www.outwardbound.ca/">https://www.outwardbound.ca/</a></p><p><strong>Trustee Election: Additional Voting Stations</strong><br>Secretary Treasurer and Returning Officer Ryan Boser asked the board to approve by-law #1/2021 which allows Prairie Rose to establish more than one voting station within each ward boundary for the upcoming fall municipal election. The board approved all three readings.</p>
Remembering the Lives of 215 Children
2021-05-31T07:00:00.000Z
Remembering the Lives of 215 Children
<p>This past weekend the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc (Kamloops Indian Band) announced that a mass grave of 215 children had been found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School. Of particular sadness, was the absence of no markers and no signs of respect for any of these young children who were left to be forgotten.&nbsp;</p><p>While we cannot change history, we can acknowledge this dark part of our Canadian past by acknowledging these young lives as part of ongoing Truth and Reconciliation efforts. Starting at noon today (May 31, 2021), Prairie Rose Public Schools will join school jurisdictions across the country in lowering the flags at all school facility locations for 215 hours to represent each of the children who were found. All flags will remain down until noon on Wednesday, June 9th.</p><p>Throughout the operation and existence of residential schools in Canada (1880-1997), it is estimated that 150,000 children were taken from their families and sent to school to “assimilate them” to Canadian society. The Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc is one of many indigenous communities who have received funding through the Missing Children Project to locate the burial places of children who died while attending these residential schools. Since the project began, more than 4,100 children who attended residential schools have been identified.</p><p><strong>References:</strong><br>Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc confirms the discovery of a mass grave containing 215 children: <a href="https://tkemlups.ca/wp-content/uploads/05-May-27-2021-TteS-MEDIA-RELEASE.pdf"><strong>https://tkemlups.ca/wp-content/uploads/05-May-27-2021-TteS-MEDIA-RELEASE.pdf</strong></a><br>Missing Children Project: <a href="https://tkemlups.ca/wp-content/uploads/05-May-27-2021-TteS-MEDIA-RELEASE.pdf"><strong>http://www.trc.ca/events-and-projects/missing-children-project.html</strong></a><br>A History of Residential Schools in Canada: <a href="https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/a-history-of-residential-schools-in-canada-1.702280"><strong>https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/a-history-of-residential-schools-in-canada-1.702280</strong></a></p>
Board Meeting Highlights
2021-05-25T07:00:00.000Z
Board Meeting Highlights
<p><strong>Trustee Resignation</strong><br>Secretary Treasurer Ryan Boser informed the board that Ward 6 (Foremost and County of Forty Mile) trustee Stacy Hammel has submitted her resignation from the board, effective immediately, due to personal reasons. Trustee Hammel was thanked for her contributions over the past four years and her dedication to students. Trustee Lucille Hertz suggested that a letter be sent to Stacy Hammel from the board thanking her for her service.</p><p><strong>Jenner School Presentation</strong><br>Jenner School principal Kirby Stensrud gave a presentation to the board highlighting a number of learning initiatives taking place at the rural K-9 school. It was noted that the school has focused on literacy for their primary school goals, emphasizing building comprehension, creating opportunities that create life connections, and developing a passion for literacy and reading across the grades. Some initiatives at each division level were also shared that focus on leadership and healthy lifestyle projects, using technology to build and create, and promoting attitudes of respect and kindness across the school community. &nbsp;It was noted that while COVID-19 has required outside the box thinking, the school has been able to successfully keep students engaged and excited about learning. It was also shared that the school was excited about their approved Prairie Rose Possibilities project that will support bringing outside experts to the school to focus on CTF options such as carpentry, electrical, mechanical, outdoor education, etc. The full presentation can be found here: <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/135NVcp5iY2qeCpi7fMtaWG1Kqjq4sP8B/view"><strong>https://drive.google.com/file/d/135NVcp5iY2qeCpi7fMtaWG1Kqjq4sP8B/view</strong></a></p><p><strong>FNMI Presentation</strong><br>FNMI Coordinator Kameko Ballantyne provided an update to the board about the work being done in Prairie Rose to support Status First Nations, Non-Status, Métis or Inuit (FNMI) students and promote indigenous learning. In the 2020-2021 year, 94 students in Prairie Rose self-identified as FNMI which is an increase from previous years. It was noted that while some planned FNMI learning activities for the current year needed to be moved online or cancelled due to COVID-19, many initiatives were still able to take place across the division. Some of these included; Digital Orange Shirt Day, the distribution of literacy books to Prairie Rose schools without indigenous library resources, online learning opportunities through Canadian Geographic and Truth and National Centre for Reconciliation, FNMI learning kits for schools that include dreamcatcher and soap sculpture projects, and the introduction of indigenous social media influencers to students. &nbsp;More details regarding FNMI learning in Prairie Rose can be found here: <a href="https://fnmiprrd8.weebly.com/"><strong>https://fnmiprrd8.weebly.com/</strong></a></p><p><strong>Education Plan</strong><br>Superintendent Roger Clarke presented the 2021-2022 Education Plan for approval. The plan outlines four goals to evaluate student and division success. These goals include PRPS students are successful (literacy and deeper learning), PRPS is well governed and managed, and First Nations Metis and Inuit students in PRPS are successful. It was noted that this past spring the division sent out assurance survey’s to parents, students and staff to gather local context and gauge satisfaction in a number of areas. The results from the surveys were used to help build the plan and are highlighted in the report. &nbsp;The full presentation can be found here: <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/135NVcp5iY2qeCpi7fMtaWG1Kqjq4sP8B/view"><strong>https://drive.google.com/file/d/135NVcp5iY2qeCpi7fMtaWG1Kqjq4sP8B/view</strong></a></p><p><strong>2021-2022 Budget</strong><br>Secretary Treasurer Ryan Boser presented the 2021-2022 Preliminary Budget for approval. The budget includes the following assumptions; back to normal operations in the 2021-2022 year, equivalent operational funding as the current year from Alberta Education, a decrease in enrolment by 9.0 FTE students, no change to support or certified staff grids, and an increase in insurance premiums of 15%. Overall, the division is forecasting a deficit budget for the 2021-2022 school year of $733,873, with revenues for the year of $51,443,598. Of the total budget, 72% is allocated to Instruction, 13.35% to Plant Operations and Maintenance, 10.40% to Transportation, 4.20% to Board and System Administration, and 0.04% to External Services.&nbsp;The complete budget document can be found here: <a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/135NVcp5iY2qeCpi7fMtaWG1Kqjq4sP8B/view"><strong>https://drive.google.com/file/d/135NVcp5iY2qeCpi7fMtaWG1Kqjq4sP8B/view</strong></a></p><p><strong>Other Items:</strong></p><ul><li>The board approved spending $867 to support their continued membership in the Alberta Rural Caucus.</li></ul>
Schuler School Principal Announcement
2021-05-12T07:00:00.000Z
Schuler School Principal Announcement
<p>Superintendent Roger Clarke is pleased to announce that Lisa Lindsay has accepted the position as principal of Schuler School, following the move of current principal Kerry Watson to the Irvine vice principal position at the end of the 2020-2021 school year.</p><p>Lisa Lindsay comes to Prairie Rose with an extensive education background having worked as a teacher, school leader, and in student services and mental health for the past 30 years. Her most recent experience has been as vice-principal at the Dr. Roy Wilson Learning Centre in Medicine Hat from 2015-2020 and as the Mental Health Services Facilitator and Palliser Adolescent Service Administrator for the past seven months. In addition to a Bachelor of Education from the University of Alberta, she also has a Master’s in Counselling Psychology from the University of Calgary.&nbsp;</p><p><i>“I am grateful for the opportunity to join the team at Prairie Rose Public Schools and look forward to getting to know the students, staff, and community of Schuler. This is not my first time working for Prairie Rose, as I spent six years teaching at Seven Persons School many years ago. I am excited to return to rural education and look forward to working alongside the Schuler community to develop innovative programs and opportunities for students.” ~ Lisa Lindsay</i></p><p>Lisa Lindsay will officially assume the role of principal at Schuler at the end of the current school year, effective August 25, 2021.</p>
Board Meeting Highlights
2021-05-11T07:00:00.000Z
Board Meeting Highlights
<h1>Board Meeting Highlights</h1><p><strong>1. Margaret Wooding School Presentation</strong><br>Principal Craig Corsie and Vice Principal Eli Merrick spoke about the assurance data survey results obtained in March 2021 and how staff reviewed&nbsp;the data and developed goals and strategies to address potential challenges. It was noted that overall the school received very positive results from staff, parent and students in terms of feeling supported and cared for by school staff. Areas identified for growth were broken into student and parent categories. While still quite positive, it was shared that students expressed some concern about safety on the bus, student behaviour, learning expectations, and that their voice matters. Parents also identified bus safety, discipline, communication and learning expectations. Recommendations staff developed stemming from the results included; increased opportunity for student voice, increase parent and community awareness of school programs and what they are learning, and create opportunities for student to engage in learning that ignites their creativity and passions. A number of strategies were also shared to accomplish and evaluate&nbsp;the newly developed goals.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>2. Curriculum Review and Decision</strong><br>Superintendent Roger Clarke shared an overview of the process Prairie Rose Public Schools took to examine the draft K-6 curriculum. A total of 18 teachers participated in an internal review process examining the four core subjects of math, science, social studies and language arts. The five lenses the committee used for review included; progression and continuity, competencies, assessment (Bloom’s Taxonomy), age appropriateness and content load. The committee recommendation was not to pilot the curriculum as it has been proposed for implementation in the fall of 2021. It was noted the volunteer teachers who participated have been teaching the current curriculum for many years and their opinion and expertise is appreciated and highly valued. The board agreed with the recommendation from the committee echoing similar concerns have been expressed in their local communities. &nbsp;The board voted unanimously to not participate the draft K-6 curriculum pilot this fall.</p><p><strong>3. Irvine Riding Arena</strong><br>A motion was put forward asking Prairie Rose to financially supporting the building of an indoor riding and agriculture arena in Irvine. The proposal asks Prairie Rose to contribute $300,000-$500,000 for the construction of the facility and be responsible for the monthly operating expenses of utilities, water and gas. In exchange, Prairie Rose would have unlimited use of the facility and be able to provide several new programming options for students. The board voted to table a decision until they have an opportunity to further review and consider the future implications for Prairie Rose.</p><p><strong>4. Other Items:</strong></p><ul><li>The board approved the revised 2021-2022 Monitoring Schedule, as presented.</li><li>The board approved numerous policy changes to reflect the new name of Prairie Rose Public Schools.</li><li>The board approved the deletion of the June 29, 2021 public board meeting, due to the New Brigden School consultation meeting being moved until August 30, 2021.</li><li>The board approved the change of date for the June 8, 2021 board meeting to June 9, 2021.</li></ul>