Parent Weekly Update, February 24-28, 2020



Staff Retreat Summary

Connect teachers and support staff spent the 3 days leading up to the Family Day weekend engaged in professional learning to refine our approach to assessment in order that our new report card, to be launched in the 2010-21 school year, will reflect the most authentic and meaningful report on student performance. We also explored the immensely important topic of how to build upon the existing positive relationships between staff and students that are mutually respectful, to ensure that every student feels a strong and positive connection to adults in the school. 


First Aid Training 

We will be hosting a Red Cross Standard First Aid class with Level C CPR to interested parents and parent volunteers.  This course will be offered by one of our teachers who is a certified First Aid Instructor at a discounted rate ($90.00/participant) to members of our Connect Community. 

Please find the information below:

  • There are two parts to this class:
    • Online course (needs to be completed before the in-class session)
    • In-class session has been scheduled for April 18, 9:00 – 4:30 here at Connect Charter School (Room TBA)
  • There is a maximum of 16 students for this session, and we may run more depending on demand.
  • The total cost is $90 (no GST) via e-transfer or cash.  Receipts will be provided for tax or reimbursement purposes.

For more information or to sign up, please email Mr. Cheng at [email protected] on or before February 28th, 2020 so he can set up registration and prepare materials.  If the dates do not work out for you, or if the class is full, we will keep your email addresses and reach out if running another class is possible.  


Connect Spirit Wear

Connect has partnered with a local company, Kodiak Sports, to offer a custom spirit wear store for our school community. We will be making this available for purchases a few times throughout the year.

Our first run is open until February 24, 2020, with delivery to the school scheduled for March 18, 2020. 

All of the items will have a sizing chart on the website. There will also be sample sizes available to try on, in the Mountainview room, starting next week (Feb. 10, 2020) We do have the option to access extended sizes that may not show up on the website, so if there are any size requests please contact us.

We currently have a variety of items available, some with customization options. If there are any suggestions or special requests for additional items please forward those along and we will see what we can arrange for future purchases.

When you click on the link you will be taken to the Connect store. There you will be able to create an account, select and pay for any of the items you may wish. The orders will then be delivered to the school around March 18, 2020, just before student led conferences and spring break.

If you have any further questions please contact Catherine Newton ([email protected]) or Dawn Elliott ([email protected])


 Update from Chris Gilmour, Superintendent                                    

 As we approach spring break I hope you and your child are able to reflect on the past 6 months of learning at Connect and that you continue to communicate with your child’s teacher.

 Connect continues to be a leader in education across our province. Our steadfast commitment to supporting students as extraordinary citizens is evident at every grade level, in every class. Thank you to all of our parents, volunteers and partner organizations that support our students in their learning journey. 

 Recently, Minister of Education Adriana LaGrange provided the Draft Ministerial Order on Student Learning, that “defines the values, foundations and outcomes for kindergarten to grade 12 education in Alberta.” The draft order was created by an independent Curriculum Advisory Panel. The full draft order is available at:

A link to the survey seeking feedback from the public is available at the same link (above).

One area of the report I’d like to highlight is the government’s intent to “ensure the curriculum remains free from the prescription of pedagogical approaches, like discovery math.” The department of education is responsible for the ‘what’ of curriculum. That is, what outcomes should be met by students throughout their K-12 experiences. ‘How’ the outcomes are taught does not lie in the curriculum. In Connect’s case, the ‘how’ lies in our charter (teaching through a disposition of inquiry). From time to time discovery (math) and inquiry are presented as synonymous terms. We feel strongly that this is misleading. As our teachers and students continue to prove, inquiry is thriving at Connect and a highly effective approach to teaching. 

 Secondly, The Alberta 2019-2023 Business Plan for Education ( is the origin of the Ministry’s 4 outcomes that all school boards report on annually through their Annual Education Results Report. Outcome 3 “What We Want To Achieve” has been modified from last year: the words ‘diversity’ and ‘inclusion’ are no longer included. However, the commitment to a system that respects diversity and promotes inclusion remains in the Teaching Quality Standards. In short, although language in the Business Plan has changed in relation to diversity and inclusion, all teachers in Alberta remain committed to supporting a diverse, inclusive learning environment for students. Diversity and inclusion continue to be important elements of our learning environment, strengthening and enriching Connect Charter School.

Finally, on April 27 2020, in partnership with Mount Royal University (MRU) and Tsuut’ina Education, I invite you to attend our powwow, beginning at 1pm in the MRU gymnasium. Our planning team has done an exceptional job preparing for this celebration and I hope you are able to attend.

 Yours in education,

 Chris Gilmour
Superintendent, Connect Charter School

Janes Walks

Please check out the Janes Walks link below for information about the upcoming global initiative of walks to explore our communities. 

Have a wonderful week,

Phil Butterfield