This past week, my Director’s Leadership Team (DLT) of principals, vice principals, and senior leadership met in Humboldt on Tuesday for a day of professional development. We had a number of important discussions centered around the “why” of our work as educators in Horizon School Division. I am proud of the passion and dedication this team shows every day, and we had an excellent conversation. Members of my Senior Leadership Team (SLT) also had an opportunity to share information from each of our service areas and lead discussions around the various supports we provide.
On Wednesday, I travelled to Cudworth and Wakaw. Cudworth has had significant renovations over the summer and under the leadership of the Principal, Amber Kraus, the school is really starting to take on an improved look. In Wakaw, Principal Darryl Dickson took me around the school for a different reason. Although the school looks great, it had some vandalism Tuesday night as a plastic garbage can was burned in front of the south doors. Due to the quick reaction of staff, the fire and any resulting damage was contained and facility services was already making it look like new by the time I arrived.
I then had meetings Wednesday evening and much of the day on Thursday. Some of the Directors from across the province and a few Superintendents who stood in for Directors met for what turned into a PD session on small school sustainability in Saskatchewan. The discussion was a great opportunity for Directors to work with university expert in the area and former Horizon graduate, Dr. Dawn Wallin, who shared research and, along with Associate Director of the Saskatchewan Educational Leadership Unit (SELU), Patricia Prowse facilitated the discussion and idea sharing. In Horizon, many of our schools would be considered small schools and a discussion around how our sector can continue to support smaller communities and schools in the years ahead is a necessary one.
On Friday morning, I travelled to Englefeld School to join Trustee, Mark Fedak, in an opportunity to introduce Mr. Fedak to students and staff at the school. Subdivision 4 includes Lanigan Central High School, Lanigan Elementary, Muenster School, Watson School and now Englefeld School. As the new Trustee representing the school and community of Englefeld around the Board table, we were grateful that Mr. Fedak took time to meet with the school and staff ahead of an upcoming School Community Council meeting.
On Friday afternoon, I returned to central office where, among other items and meetings, I took part in a meeting with representatives from LinkedIn to discuss opportunities for Horizon to further develop our presence on the social media platform and take advantage of various recruiting tools. While this was an informational meeting only, it was interesting to hear about the opportunities that exist if we decide the need is there for our system.
This Sunday, September 30, was Orange Shirt Day
. Across Canada, organizations and individuals commemorated victims and survivors of the residential school system, in the spirit of reconciliation on and around this day. I know that many schools have marked this day through events and learning activities already, and some will be doing so on Monday. At central office, we wore orange and commemorated the victims and survivors of residential schools on Friday. It is inspiring to see so many people wearing orange, knowing that it means we are acknowledging our past in an effort to move forward in the spirit of reconciliation and for the sake of our future.
Have a great week, everyone. Stay #HorizonStrong.
Kevin C. Garinger, B.Ed, M.A.Ed
Director of Education/CEO
Horizon School Division No. firstname.lastname@example.org