Winter Break Update – Connect Charter School

Connect Charter Family Weekly Update

Date Range Goes Here

This Week's Highlights

  • 🎉 End-of-Year Assembly: Connect Charter Students enjoyed an end-of-year assembly and sang "O Siem" by Susan Aglukark together for Peace Festival. We thank the grade 9 teachers and students for organizing a successful, meaningful, and engaged Peace Festival week to help bring our community together before the holidays.
  • 📅 Back to School: A reminder that our first day back to school after the break is January 8th. There is no school on Friday, December 22nd.
  • 📜 End-of-Year Letter: In the dropdown menu below, please see the end-of-year letter from Superintendent, Chris Gilmour.
  • 📜 Letter from Education Minister: In the dropdown menu below, please also see the letter from Demetrios Nicolaides, Minister of Education.
  • 🙏 Lakeview Community Centre Thanks: We'd like to give a shout-out to Lakeview Community Centre once again for making it possible for our students to skate on the community outdoor rink.
  • Grade 7 Winter Camp: Grade 7 Families: Save the date for a Winter Camp Online Information session on January 22nd, at 6:00 p.m. Grade 7 Camp Dates are as follows: 7.1 February 12-14; 7.3 February 21-23; 7.2 February 26-28; and 7.4 March 4-6.
  • 🙌 Thanks to School Council and Parent Society: Our staff and bus drivers would like to send the School Council and Parent Society a big thank you for the lovely cards and gifts of appreciation.
  • 🎉 25th Year Anniversary Celebration: Students will have an opportunity to celebrate Connect Charter School's 25th Year Anniversary at the end of January. Details about the celebration will be shared in the New Year.
  • 🏫 Office Closure: Our front office will be closed for the holidays.
  • 🌱 Thrive Day: The second Thrive Day will happen in February for students. The previous Thrive Day focused on the theme of self-awareness. Our second day focuses on self-management. A framework that students will work with related to self-management has been featured as the image for this weekly update. Maybe it will inspire some conversations at home over the holidays.
  • 💖 Thank You to Connect Charter Families: Finally, a thank you to all of our Connect Charter families. We appreciate your support of our program and we are thrilled to work in partnership with you for the best experience for your children. We look forward to adventures and memory-making in the 2024 school year.
This image, from the Meili (Finland Mental Health) will inspire wellness for students at our next Thrive Days.

Dear Parents and Guardians,

As the holiday season approaches, I want to take a moment to extend my warmest wishes to our Connect Charter School families. This time of year is a wonderful opportunity for reflection, gratitude, and celebration.

Our 25th year anniversary has been filled with activity, trips, learning, sharing and so much more. Your dedication to your children’s education, whether it be through volunteering, attending school events, or supporting your child at home is greatly appreciated. People are what makes Connect Charter School such a special place and parents-as-partners are a big part of that. Thank you.

Given we are almost halfway through the school year, I thought this would be a good time to update our families on the 3 goals our Board of Directors set for this school year and the progress we’ve made in achieving them. 

The first goal is to ‘optimize the use of our Field Experience Center (FEC)’. To date, all students have participated in fall camps and their first THIRVE day. We are also part-way through our capital projects at the FEC with include: new roofs on three buildings, providing power to all yurts and around the facility, providing data throughout the property, designing and installing a new power system, designing and building a new water treatment plant and insulating our shower house (making it accessible year-round). These projects will be completed by mid-February. Our septic system is also being upgraded in the spring once the ground thaws. The FEC is almost fully booked until October, 2024 with Connect classes and other user groups. Anyone interested in booking the site can see the availability on our website.

The second board goal is to ‘establish a second campus’. Although this is a long process, we continue to seek and pursue opportunities for expansion- whether that be establishing a new grade 1-3 campus, adding a second grade 4-9 campus or establishing a new high school. This involves working with the Ministry and finding appropriate land or buildings. 

Our third board goal is to ‘promote wellness’. Given the global health challenges everyone has faced over the past few years, added attention and resources continue to be in place to ensure we have a safe and healthy school environment. We are very hopeful that the planned 3 THRIVE days impacts student mental health in a positive manner and that the work all students are doing in the Open Parachute platform provide them with tools they need to support their wellness.  We are also investing in our classrooms, by updating the countertops and sink areas. We are hopeful this work will be completed by the new year.

As we break for the holidays, I encourage you to spend this festive season creating lasting memories with your loved ones. This is the time of the year to enjoy the outdoors and moderate temperatures, to relax and reflect and I hope you enjoy every moment of it.

On behalf of the Connect Charter School Board and staff, I wish you a healthy holiday season and a happy New Year. May this holiday season bring you peace, joy, and happiness.

Chris Gilmour

BEST WISHES TO EVERYONE THIS HOLIDAY!  On behalf of all parents, School Council distributed cards and small gifts as a gesture of thanks to all teachers, staff and bus drivers. Thanks to parents who helped with the handwritten cards, they give that extra special touch!
COMING UP IN 2024 – Connect turns 25!
We’re working with teachers and staff to celebrate Connect Charter’s 25th anniversary. There will be an event at the school for students on January 25 – look for opportunities to get involved. Details to come right after the break, but save the dates of January 24 & 25 if you’d like to volunteer. We are also planning an adult off-campus cocktail party in March and a BBQ/family day at the FEC in April. Last but not least, our fundraising raffle this year will be for TWO WestJet flight passes anywhere they fly! So get ready to buy some raffle tickets, and dream of dream destinations! 
FUN LUNCHES – Order for January, February & March!
Once again, we are offering LUNCHES on Tuesdays and SNACKS on Fridays, starting January 9th. 
We’ve moved to Healthy Hunger ( and have some exciting new vendors. Set up a new account, find Connect Charter School in the list and register your student. 
NOTE: We have yet to upload the Subway dates, which will go in those weeks without a lunch listed, ie. Tuesday, Jan. 23. Stay tuned, and we’ll let you know when it’s open for ordering. 
Questions? Email Fun Lunches team at
Expecting lots of bottles to be used over the holidays? Your returns are a great fundraiser for Connect. Try SKIP THE DEPOT and have your return $$ go directly to the school!

Have a wonderful week, Connect!

Shannon Bennett 

Shashi Shergill
Assistant Principal

Andrea Friesen
Assistant Principal