News Letter

MAY 2001

    Dear Parents,
    

    First, I would like to give everyone an update on our water situation. The School Board has installed new water lines to all the drinking fountains in our school. This precautionary move was completed prior to our receiving the detailed test results performed by, and under the direction of, Thompson Engineering. Even though this has likely cleared up any problem, I advised the Board that I wanted the "bottled" water to remain until our new lines could be tested. Therefore, we are now waiting for these results to assure us that our water is within the Canadian standards in all areas.

    I do wish to thank our School Board in their support of this very cautious and "better to be safe than sorry" approach to our water.

    As we near the end of this year, there are many serious issues and items I would like to make everyone aware of.

    First is the promotion or retention of a student. This must be decided now so that placement will be indicated on a studentís final report. This issue has very serious effects on an individual studentís performance and self-concept. No one likes to see a student take the attitude of "it doesnít matter if I work or not, Iíll pass anyway". At the same time, retention should not be seen as a punishment. There are some students who, because of personal difficulties or learning disabilities, may never meet grade level. Others, if retained, may find their self-concept suffers so that they wonít try any harder and retention was a waste of a year of their life. A few may, in fact, take retention as a "wake up call" and begin to work harder.

    Every student is unique and will respond to the threat of retention, or actual retention, in their own way. You, as parents, have the right to the "final say". However, as I have outlined, everyone involved with that student should have their input carefully considered. Your childís teachers should have discussed this issue with you by now if there is any possibility of retaining your child. Please contact the school immediately if you, as a parent, wish your child retained.

    On a lighter note, we wish to congratulate our schoolís Volleyball, Basketball and Floor Hockey teams for their excellent performance and also thank their coaches, Mrs. Seale, Mr. Beehler and Mrs. Martell, for devoting this extra time to our students. Mr. Nelson is also presently providing dance to many of our students at lunch time. Recently our choir, under the direction of Mr. Gignac, performed at the Catholic Trustees Conference. Mme Villemaire, with the support of other teachers, has been working hard to get our Web site ready. It is close to finished and we will let you know when it can be accessed. Mrs. McRae is working hard on our yearbook. Also, plans for graduation and year-end trips are well under way. All these "extras" certainly enhance the educational experience of our students here at St. John Bosco.

    There are many other events coming up that you will find on our monthly calendar. Of these, I would particularly like to point out that St. Paulís Grade 2 students will visit St. John Bosco School for the afternoon of May 10th. Also, all of our parents and students, as well as St. Paulís parents and students, are invited to our family Bar-B-Q, scheduled for May 31th. More information will follow and we hope that everyone will join us.

    Looking farther ahead, we hope to attract some new parents for next yearís School Council. We really need positive, self-confident people as School Councils are playing an increasingly prominent role in your childís education. Special training or experience is not so important. An interest in your childís education is more than enough qualification.

    Please contact myself, the school secretary or any present Council member, if you can consider helping out in this area next year. It will involve approximately six to ten, two-hour, meetings throughout the whole year. It will be "time well spent".

    Yours in Catholic Education,

    Rick Blanchard Principal