Blog Posts

February 2, 2023

RBSS Student Voice

Our secondary schools in the Abbotsford School District are in the initial stages of reimagining how high school should look and feel. Robert Bateman Secondary School has been working through a process with two student groups. Six grade twelve students started our student voice work last spring.  We have a second group of six grade eleven students working on this project this year, with teaching staff joining.

February 2, 2023

Black History Month & Resistance

“Now let us begin. Now let us re-dedicate ourselves to the long and bitter, but beautiful, struggle for a new world.” -- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

January 11, 2023

Abbotsford Senior Secondary Student Voice

Student voice is an initiative started at Abbotsford Senior Secondary in 2021. Student Voice hosts students from all different backgrounds that encompass the school’s demographics. These students meet every Thursday to delve into school and community-based topics that they identify. Previous topics have included rewriting the school dress code, organizing a better way for grade 9 orientation, and Indigenizing school announcements.  

January 3, 2023

Three Wishes for 2023

It has been my practice for the last few Januarys to make predictions about possible changes in the K-12 sector. This practice goes back as far as 2015 when I highlighted the top ten issues facing our education system and some things to watch for as we sought to transform it.

December 13, 2022

Conversation, Awareness, Transformation

Student success is a focus of the Abbotsford School District. The desire for student success permeates through all levels, from senior management to building administrators, classroom and support teachers, education assistants, and students. At Abbotsford Traditional School (ATS), we have a reputation for preparing our students for the expectations and rigours of university–academic student success. This is one kind of student success. Another kind of student success is accomplishing academic achievement in parallel to student well-being.

December 13, 2022

Pausing for Gratitude

Many of you will know that I am a big football fan, (and an especially big Raider fan). The inspiration for my post this week does not come from Raider Nation, but from the Seattle Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith. If you follow the Seahawks, you will know that their Super Bowl winning quarterback, Russel Wilson was traded away and that most pundits thought that with back-up quarterback Smith at the helm, the team would be lucky to win half of their games this year.

November 24, 2022

Rick Hansen Street Data: Supporting Staff Mental Health and Wellness Through Inquiry

The teaching and support staff at Rick Hansen are actively pursuing their commitment to student achievement and understand that getting a pulse on the mindset of the current teaching climate is an essential factor in this pursuit. As every teacher in our school community is trained in Inquiry-Based Learning, they know that IBL is the best vehicle to not only hear from as many of their colleagues as possible but also to create in-house ideas, strategies, and solutions for everyone can buy into.

November 24, 2022

Celebrating Student Leadership

I had the pleasure this week of meeting with around fifty of Yale Secondary’s Leadership 12 students. They are an amazing and diverse group of go-getters who help to make their school and community better through service. In addition to the work they do, they are also curious about leadership and routinely invite leaders from various parts of the community to talk about their roles and perspectives on leadership. This week I was the invited guest. Among the things they wanted to learn more about were my background, how I became superintendent, as well as the joys and challenges of the job.

November 8, 2022

Building School Culture Through the Lens of Equity, Anti-Bias and Anti-Racism

Two months into our new school year, we are well underway in intentionally making Yale a more equitable, culturally inclusive, and responsive school through the lens of equity, anti-bias, and anti-racism. As we listen to our students, one thing that they keep telling us is that they value positive relationships with Yale staff. Our students want to belong to a school community where staff know their students, and where every person’s individuality is acknowledged and respected.