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Weekly Update | February 16, 2024

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Dear UA Families,

We have felt the love at UA this month! With a focus on gratitude and caring throughout this week, students at all levels shared kindness. We are keeping the momentum going until the end of the month when we will celebrate Pink Shirt Day with our theme of “Lifting Each Other Up.” Activities like this reflect our values of belonging and changemaking.

Staff will be involved in professional development activities on Friday, all centred around our mission and vision. Some staff will be at the ISABC conference called “​Inspire. Empower. Sustain” where the focal points will be: Mental Health and Wellbeing, Environmental Sustainability, and Indigenous Education. We hope to see some UA parents & guardians in these sessions, and we are thankful that the ISABC recognizes families as our partners in education. Other staff will be working on our mission and vision, centring the day on future-focused education. We hope that UA families enjoy this bonus day attached to the family day long weekend together in the spirit of love, kindness and inclusion, which is imbued in the month of February.

As partners in education, we always want to share with you resources or research which you may find beneficial on the journey of parenting, and so we wanted to share these two excellent opportunities with you: 

  • Free virtual sessions on youth substance use for parents/guardians, caregivers, and caring adults hosted by the Ministry of Education and Child Care, in partnership with adolescent Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Hayley Watson – Open Parachute. Dr. Watson will provide valuable insights, practical tips, and resources to equip participants with the tools needed to guide their children and youth toward making positive choices when it comes to substance use. Please see the Parent Sessions on Youth Substance Use bulletin for further details and registration information.
  • Evidence-informed prevention and early intervention tools and resources for mental health, including online learning opportunities. Provided by HealthyMindsBC, this resource is for parents, caregivers and families, to help you support your children with their everyday mental health

In a world that can feel divided, it’s essential that we help nurture a culture of empathy and understanding. Children of all ages are at a stage where they are discovering their identities, forming friendships, and navigating the complexities of social dynamics. This is why it’s especially important for us to emphasize the significance of kindness and inclusion in their lives. February is not just about celebrating Valentine’s Day; it serves as a reminder for us to extend compassion to one another. Let’s work together to make February not only a month of love but also a month of compassion, empathy and inclusion.

With gratitude,
Brenda Ball, Principal

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