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From the Superintendent – Year-End Message to Parents/Guardians (June 2022)

Dear Parents/Guardians,

As we near the end of a school year, I want THANK YOU for your ongoing support during yet another challenging year.  At the top of the challenges is the ongoing pandemic and its many twists since March 2020.  Together as a community, we have navigated these choppy waters of change.  We learned as we went along, and we worked together. Thank you.

There are a few year-end topics I want to share with you – some of them just an information update and others a celebration …

Year-end Events

This spring marks the reintroduction of in-person graduation and student recognition events.  I have already attended two school graduations and look forward to a few more before the end of the month.  It has been wonderful to participate in-person again where we can applaud and cheer together to recognize student achievement.

Strategic Plan 2022-2027

The Board adopted an exciting new 5-year Strategic Plan that sets our collective focus on Literacy, Indigenous Learner Success, Mental Health & Wellness, and Global Citizenship. This plan will help shape the many strategies we develop to further student success.

Two New Credit Programs in 2022

We launched a new, dual-credit, Education Assistant & Community Support Program at ILC-Saanichton this past winter.  In partnership with VIU, the program had a full cohort of students from both our secondary schools and the community. Student EA practicums were in our schools this spring.  This first cohort finishes at the end of summer. And our other new program is Take-a-Hike -- a new full-time secondary program that uses the outdoors and adventure to engage vulnerable youth in academics, community and mental health supports. In partnership with the Take a Hike Foundation, it has been a tremendous success in its first year as well.

District Websites

Our IT Department oversaw the creation of our new district website – with improved access to a wide variety of information including an updated student registration page, school and district program information, the latest District News, as well as intriguing Saanich Stories and Upcoming Events.  The site is engaging and showcases our schools with vivid pictures all within an intuitive site menu.  School websites are currently being updated and we expect that they will be launched in the near future.

Returning to ‘Normal’

As we ease out of the pandemic, it is starting to feel a bit more ‘normal’. But, to tell you the truth I’m not really sure what ‘normal’ is at this time.  Many of our educational predictors such as anticipated expenses, revenues and inflation rates have all taken on new trajectories.  So, ‘normal’ really is a relative term these days.  However, we do expect next September to be more like the school year starts prior to the pandemic. 

My Year-end Blog

At this time of year, I write a culminating year-end post – and my focus this year is on HOPE.  Please find a few minutes to read “Reflections from 2021-2022 – HOPE Paves the Path to Success” where I comment on a number of topics including our collective journey towards Truth & Reconciliation.

So, once again, thank you for your support this past year and I look forward to working with you again next September as we begin another new chapter in our story. 

Wishing everyone a successful last couple of weeks of June, as well as a wonderfully relaxing and rejuvenating summer ahead.

Dave Eberwein