By: Janet Fraser, Board Chair
Visiting schools to meet students and their teachers, support staff and administrators is one of the highlights of being a trustee.
At schools I hear from teachers about how they collaborate.At one elementary school, a group of classes learned about the environment and crossed traditional subject boundaries combining math, art and science. I learned about new ways teachers interpret and bring the curriculum alive. I also met classroom support staff who are so creative; oncesomeone told me they used their past experience as a performer to enhance their role in the classroom!
I see firsthand the work of the grounds crews who look after our many different outdoor spaces so that students can learn, explore and play safely. I've learnt about how plants are saved from schools undergoing construction and how perennials are split and used at different sites. Then there are the building staff who are so proud of maintaining; the classrooms, hallways, gyms, all the different spaces in schools. I've met many custodians who speak warmly about the different personalities of the schools they've worked in and after each summer I see how important the refinished gyms, new energy efficient lighting, and painting are to students in their schools.
Principals and vice principals are eager to share successes and opportunities for students, as well as acknowledge challenges. I'm impressed that they build many connections with community organizations and local businesses as well as with the families. And parents volunteer in many roles at every school – taking on a PAC role, going on field trips, driving for sports or clubs, fundraising, helping at events - and really enhance what schools can offer students.
Last but not least the students; so many students are excited to share their learnings, especially during school visits. I've learnt about student created dinnermenus inspired by their family heritage, natural materials collected on the school grounds, how they learned to control robots, and so much more.
When I visit a school, I always see teachers, support staff and administrators work extraordinarily hard to support students in their success. I know we, astrustees acknowledge and appreciate the work of all VSB staff for every student. This is #OurVSB