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Horizon School Division
Creating a better world, one student at a time.
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September 19, 2022 - A message from Kevin C. Garinger, Director of Education

September 19, 2022

 

I hope you were able to spend time doing the things you enjoy over the weekend. I spent some of my time refereeing college volleyball, something I really enjoy doing. Just recently, I conducted a virtual volleyball officials’ clinic. I know many of our prospective referees, coaches, and players attended the evening. However, if you were unable to attend and wanted to, the event was recorded. Please talk to Tessa Jordan if you need any additional support.

Horizon’s schools and facilities flew their flags at half-mast to honour the victims of the James Smith Cree Nation and Weldon tragedy - one day for each life lost. Although flags will be raised again, the aftermath of this unthinkable trauma will certainly take its toll. Aristotle Onassis said, “It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.” It is heartwarming to see people searching for the light all around us as they conduct vigils and engage in other acts of care and kindness. 

With the Queen’s passing, flags across Horizon will remain at half-mast until the morning of September 20th, which follows her funeral on Monday the 19th. There is a great deal to respect regarding her long reign and we certainly recognize the impact of the change in the monarchy in Canada.


Strategic and project planning

Our Senior Leadership Team met on Monday morning to review and update our strategic and project plans for Horizon’s three goals of Safe & Caring, Literacy & Numeracy, and Graduation Rates. We will forward to sharing a new template that will make goal setting at the school level easier to work through. 

 

League of Educational Administrators, Directors, and Superintendents (LEADS) and Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation (STF) meeting

LEADS executive director Ben Grebinski and I met with STF executive director Bobbi Taillefer and president Samantha Becotte on Tuesday to discuss our shared interests and with a view to build a strong partnership. It was certainly great to connect with the leadership of the STF and to engage in the dialogue that builds understanding and supports future collegial discussion. 

 

Board Agenda Meeting

On Wednesday we held an agenda meeting to prepare for our upcoming regular Board meeting. Table officers Jim Hack and Linda Mattock joined Superintendent of Finance Services/CFO Sarah Reding, Superintendent of Operational Services Justin Arendt, Executive Assistant Marni Sogge, Communications Officer Jesse Green, and I for the meeting. It was extremely productive, and we look forward to the board meeting next week. 

 

BHP engagement process

The senior leadership team and I took part in BHP’s engagement process on Wednesday as BHP is seeking input on regional infrastructure and baseline services to inform their planning of the Jansen Mine. It was a tremendous opportunity to share what we are doing in Horizon School Division and to learn more about the expansion planned over the next three to 10 years. The impact of the Jansen mine will be felt across our school division for generations and we appreciate contributing to their data collection efforts.

 

Governance committee

Committee chair Jennifer Lemky joined fellow trustees Paul Crow-Buffalo, Jenna Hale, and Douglas Armbruster and Board Chair Jim Hack and Vice Chair Linda Mattock to discuss the upcoming Board appraisals, review the committee’s terms of reference, and review policy items. CFO Sarah Reding and Executive Assistant Marni Sogge joined me to support the committee in their important work. 

 

George Gordon First Nation

Trustee Douglas Armbruster, along with Sarah Reding, Superintendent of Indigenous Education Bryan McNabb, and I met with our partners at George Gordon First Nation, including Chief Byron Bitternose, Councillor Danny Cyr, and Education Coordinator Henry Brass. Our goal was to discuss our shared educational goals and our future education agreements. I will share more information as this important work is finalized, but we made extremely positive steps toward an even brighter future in support of our students from George Gordon.  

 

Welcome back from Métis Nation of Saskatchewan 

Bryan McNabb and I joined the Métis Nation of Saskatchewan in a welcome back to the school year. Horizon has been fortunate to receive funding from the Métis Nation in support of improving opportunities for Métis youth to learn the Michif language. In the near future, we will be advertising for a Métis instructional coach to support our students and teachers.  

 

Golf, volleyball, tackle football, flag football, soccer, and cross country are in full swing and it’s so wonderful to see our student athletes competing, learning, and having fun. Good luck to junior golfers at districts and senior golfers at provincials this week! It is equally as great to see our performing and non-performing arts programs operating in schools across Horizon. I look forward to seeing and listening to the significant variety of amazing efforts of our students! 

 

Have a great week, everyone!   

 

-Kevin

 

Kevin C. Garinger, B.Ed, M.A.Ed

Director of Education/CEO

Horizon School Division No. 205

kevin.garinger@horizonsd.ca