Head of School’s Weekly Message

September 24, 2020

Hello UA Parents,

We have had another excellent week at UA, albeit shorter than usual with tomorrow’s Pro-D Day. I hope our students have an enjoyable long weekend with the extra day off. I do wish the weather was going to be better, but the rain has been a nice change from the smoke last week.

I would like to draw your attention to a very important update to our Return To School Plan that we have added this week. Appendix B on page 19 outlines what parents are to do if your child displays any symptoms of illness. This is the daily health check that parents are required to review with their children prior to coming to school. Knowing this information is helpful as we approach the cold and flu season.

With regard to school activities, I really enjoyed watching the students participate in the Terry Fox Run throughout the day today. It is too bad that the weather resulted in having the Run indoors in the gym, but our students did an excellent job regardless. Thank you to PAX for their end-of-day popsicle treats! The Terry Fox Run is always a highlight of the year for me. I am always amazed when I think of the physical feat that Terry Fox managed to accomplish during his Marathon of Hope all those years ago. I really believe that Terry Fox is one of the true Canadian heroes. As with most families, the improvements in cancer treatments, much of which are funded through the Terry Fox Foundation, have had a direct impact on my family.

While students enjoy the day off tomorrow, our dedicated UA teachers and staff will be on campus participating in two different workshops: MySchool Training and Health Education.

You may have noticed if you were at the school that one of the trees out front of the school fell victim to the wind yesterday. We have contacted the arborist and will hopefully have it back up standing very soon – this time we will make sure it is supported for a wind storm. But we are checking all the difficult things off the list pretty quickly this year… pandemic, fires, and smoke, moths, wind, and rain… let’s hope we miss the flood!

I am also happy to report that we have another new, but familiar, face back at UA. Mr. Devon Edmondson has returned to the UA staff in a dual role as Educational Assistant and Associate Teacher. I know that the staff and students were very excited to see Mr. Edmondson back in the halls this week. Welcome back!

I have had many great moments in the last 3 weeks at UA. Interacting with the students has been a real source of energy for me, they are a wonderful group. Parents, you should be proud of the young people you are raising. The highlight for me this week was having the opportunity to read a story to the K classes. The story I read was titled, “The Proudest Blue, A Story of Hijab and Family”. What a wonderful story that illustrated some deeper concepts such as empathy, inclusion, and tolerance. Also a big shout-out to teachers who read stories to students regularly, I’d forgotten how hard it was to read upside down!

I hope everyone enjoys the first weekend of fall. Stay dry and stay healthy.

Yours in education,
Mr. Slinger
Head of School

Posted on: September 25, 2020