Head of School’s Weekly Message

October 20, 2022

Dear UA Families,

You are receiving this weekly update early because tomorrow is a Professional Development Day. Students appreciate these days ‘off’ as an opportunity to catch up on some sleep and get ahead on their assessments. Teachers also appreciate them, but they are not days off for us. Tomorrow will be a day of deep learning, and connecting with other educators from around the province as we discover new methods, hone our skills, or share our knowledge by leading workshops. We truly want to model to students that we are all lifelong learners, especially teachers! Tomorrow, our staff will be ensconced in learning. We have teachers attending and participating in: the Middle Years Conference; workshops on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; a conference focused on Inclusive Education; Math mindset workshops; a special presentation about Mental Health in Schools; Theatre workshops; the Pre-K and K conference “Connecting the Pieces”; language learning workshops; and Library Learning Commons conference. The learning teachers do tomorrow is but one component of how we are committed to evolving education.

Each week, we also have in-school professional development. Yesterday we had the good fortune to have Lindsay Foster, UBC Faculty Advisor, come in and work with our staff on exploring the BC curriculum and standards-based assessment. Lindsay is a great resource for our staff and we are very fortunate to work and learn with her.

October is often a month of reflection and gratitude, where we consider the changing seasons and the good fortune we here locally have to live and learn in this beautiful part of the world and with the community with which we are connected. I am thankful to the students who are showing their flexible thinking skills and have taken on new challenges. I am thankful for the families who are supporting our long-term action with the Bottle Drive to provide funds for clean water initiatives in Canada. I am thankful for the teaching staff who epitomize lifelong learning. I am thankful for the administrative staff who support the kids and teachers to make sure we have a comfortable, safe, and organized place to work and learn every day. And I am grateful to the entire Urban Academy community of students, families, and staff for their open-mindedness and willingness to embrace change, and for being committed to evolving education.

With gratitude,

Brenda Ball

Posted on: October 24, 2022