A Warm and Safe Welcome

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First impressions are often lasting impressions, especially at a time when schools, in order to keep students safe, are required to lock their doors, often leaving families feeling like they are out in the cold. But that was never the intent as indicated by Dalton McGuinty, former premier of Ontario: When parents send their kids off to school they are putting their trust in us, and we have to get it right. That’s why our government is committed to providing safe, welcoming places to learn for all our kids. It’s up to us to take all reasonable steps available to us to protect our kids. Locking school doors is a reasonable step.  Continue reading

A New Year’s Resolutions: Tips for Attaining Family-School Engagement Goals

week 1The start of a new year (regardless of whether it is a calendar year or an academic year) is a fresh opportunity, a clean palette, and a time to go exploring. It is a perfect time to establish new routines and try new strategies that will bring family and school closer together. It is a time to take a close look at what we do well, what we need to work on, and perhaps what we need to start or even stop doing. Families and schools need to engage in collaborative goal-setting in order to move forward in mutually respectful ways. Continue reading

Engaging Families, Engaging Schools: The Year in Review

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As we near the end of 2014, it is a good time to look backward and forward. Looking backward allows us to celebrate the many successes we’ve experienced over the year, particularly as they are reflected in the connections between families and schools. Looking forward, I know that 2015 will be even better. Join me as we take a quick meander through the highlights of 2014. Continue reading

Habits of Flourishing School Community Councils

School community council members demonstrate a steadfast commitment to support schools. They work hard on behalf of families to plan events, enhance communication between families and school, support home-school-community-faith partnerships, contribute to fundraising efforts, and promote student well-being and achievement. Councils are not without their struggles though, most commonly how to increase membership and involvement. Continue reading