A year worth celebrating
Another successful school year is drawing to a close, and we have much to celebrate. Last month I had the honour of attending graduations, school-based celebrations, the CBE System Pow-wow, awards ceremonies and the Student Voice Symposium. I had the chance to meet students displaced from Fort McMurray and students who have come to us from all over the world. At each event, our students shone so brightly. They continue to amaze me, not only with their academic gifts, but their initiative, spirit, commitment, kindness and energy. I am very proud of all of the hard work and effort made by each CBE student this year. Congratulations to all and especially to our graduates. We wish you all the best for the future.
Our students would not be as successful without the support of all of our employees: teachers, support staff, specialists, administrators and facility operators, to name just a few. Each CBE employee works hard to ensure that each student succeeds in a meaningful and personal way. I am always impressed by our employees and their desire to do more for our students, to learn different ways of approaching their practice and helping our students succeed. The depth of their commitment to our students never fails to inspire.
Our Board of Trustees is also dedicated to student success, and they have demonstrated it time and again through their tireless advocacy and endless passion for public education. I thank them for all their efforts this year in supporting the CBE and every one of our students.
The contributions made by parents and guardians of our students cannot go without recognition either. I have had the opportunity to meet and speak with many parents this year at a variety of meetings, special events and public engagement sessions. The insights, perspectives and ideas you have shared with us are helping your child succeed, while making our system better. Your involvement and support are key to our students’ success, and I look forward to hearing from many more of you next year. Together, we can ensure that everyone has a voice at the CBE.
This past year was special for many other reasons. Over the last half of the year, we opened our schools and our hearts to almost 1,000 students we didn’t anticipate – some are refugees from Syria, and some are temporarily here as evacuees from northern Alberta. Though we didn’t know they were coming, our schools, staff, students, families and communities embraced these students and made them feel at home. It is our response to situations like these that make me so proud to lead this organization.
Looking to the Future
This year, we worked to educate more than 117,000 students. Next year, we will welcome even more students to the CBE. We will open 16 new schools in new communities. We will welcome new teachers to our system. We are excited for what the 2016-17 school year will bring.
Have an excellent summer
Like many of you, I am looking forward to spending time with my family and friends over the summer break. I hope you have an excellent summer holiday and take some well-deserved time to reconnect, refresh, relax and possibly even learn something new.
Chief Superintendent of Schools