Principal’s Message

Last year our School District engaged in a process to develop a new school goal focusing on trying to our school a great place for students to learn, where they feel engaged, feel connected and safe to take risks in their learning and follow their passions. How the learning environment feels to our students is crucial. We worked together as a school community to develop four Agreements or Norms and started the school year by putting them into practice: We are Safe, We are Observant, We are Accountable, and We are Respectful.

We use these agreements to guide our conversations when we are working with the students when they have made mistakes, made choices that fall outside of our agreements, and when students have struggled to regulate themselves; struggled to recognise signals that they are feeling heightened in a situation, and to walk away and seek help from an adult when there has been a conflict or disagreement.

Our school is a place of learning.  Students at our school are anywhere from four years old to 13 years old, have had different experiences in their short lives, and come to us with different strengths and stretches.  We expect mistakes and struggles to be a part of everyday life at school and all of the adults are here to help our students learn, grow, and develop positive ways to interact with others.

We find these four simple, yet important concepts, Safe, Observant, Accountable, and Respectful provide us with a good framework to help students think through challenges.

As well, these agreements make a good foundation for when we work with students to make things right.  Rather than simple, too-easy-to-say words like “I’m sorry”, we have been using three Restorative Practices phrases to help students own the choice they made, identify what part of S.O.A.R. their words or actions fell outside of, and then to have students make a plan for how they will do things differently next time.