Parkland Village
School (K–4)

Assurance

2016-2017 Assurance Report

Principal: Garette Tebay
2016-2017 Principal: Christine Ross
2016-2017 Acting Principal: Linda Simmonds
School Council Chair: Chantelle de Boer

Vision: Parkland School Division is a place where exploration, creativity and imagination make learning exciting and where all learners aspire to reach their dreams.

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Background
Inclusive Education
Quality Learning
Culture of Wellness
Universal Leadership
Engagement/Communication
Resource Stewardship

Background

As a member of the Parkland School Division family of schools, Parkland Village School utilizes a robust Assurance Model to understand stakeholder feedback better. Working with an Assurance Model means that Parkland Village, Parkland School Division and the Board of Trustees actively seek to reveal all avenues for stakeholders to tell us how we are attending to our goals and priorities. One important part of our Assurance Model is deriving stakeholder feedback through insightful comments made by parents, staff, community members and students.

Parkland Village continuously gathers feedback from a variety of sources, including students, parents, staff, the school division and the greater community. In addition to surveys, conferences and day-to-day conversations, our school also uses an online assurance process called ThoughtExchange that enables participants to read and rank responses based on three questions:

  • What are some concerns you have about our school this year?
  • What are some things you appreciate about our school this year?
  • What are some other things you would like to say about our school this year?

Parkland Village’s Assurance Report captures the strengths, opportunities, aspirations and expected results that we gathered throughout last year. In keeping with an Assurance Model, this report provides the narrative for our achievements and challenges, and is presented on our school website.

Strengths are highlighted as areas that are working well in Parkland Village. In our commitment to quality learning, we recognize that there will always be room for growth. We are proud of the strengths and accomplishments you have recognized in the work we do.

Opportunities are areas for growth or attention. As a school, we recognize these as areas in which we need to focus more attention, and we see that these areas are also important to you.

Aspirations are presented as priorities for a preferred future. Our stakeholders have shared a vision for where we need to go and what our world will look like when we’ve mastered our strengths and eliminated areas in need of growth.

Results capture expectations for measuring success. In other words, how will we know that we know we are successful?

In 2015-2016, Parkland School Division’s Board of Trustees approved an ambitious Education Plan that was generated through the Assurance Model. The Plan established enduring strategic processes (enduring priorities) that will always be considered in the generation of strategies (forward-thinking actionable plans). These strategies enable us to achieve our outcomes (goals).

Parkland School Division’s Ultimate Goal is Student Success and Well-Being. Students will be encouraged to explore, create, imagine and engage in lifelong learning as they develop competencies that prepare them to enter the world of post-secondary studies or work. The Division believes that student success is closely linked to student well-being and the development of social-emotional assets that build resiliency, and is therefore committed to the development of the whole child at all levels of their education. The goals, outcomes, priorities and strategies identified in the Education Plan are focused on the achievement of the Ultimate Goal: Student Success and Well-Being.

Two enduring priorities continue to guide the work of the Division. These priorities are considered to be enduring since they are necessary priorities to consider in establishing any goal:

The Enduring Priority of Engagement: Engaging all stakeholders: students, staff, and the local and global communities. Goals and strategies must include a consideration of how they will be shared and supported by all stakeholder groups.

The Enduring Priority of Resource Stewardship: Ensuring equitable and sustainable use of our resources and ensuring financial responsibility. Goals and strategies must include a consideration of how they will utilize limited resources with maximum results.

In addition to the enduring priorities listed above, the 2015-2018 Three Year Education Plan includes the goals necessary to achieve student success and well-being:

Inclusive Education: Parkland School Division is an inclusive education system. An inclusive education system is one that demonstrates behaviours and decisions that reflect valuing all students. The Division is committed to achieving this goal and to fulfilling the provincial mandate for inclusion.

In Parkland School Division, everyone is accepted and experiences a sense of belonging. Every student - no matter their ability, disability, language, cultural background, religion, sexual orientation and gender identity - has meaningful contributions to make.

Using the programs of study as the framework for learning, every student is engaged in meaningful and authentic ways. All students are treated equitably: they get the support needed when they need it, and for the intensity and duration of time for which they need it.

Quality Learning: Student success and well-being depends on quality instruction in an atmosphere that respects each learner’s independent spirit. Quality teaching practices promote the development of innovation and creativity while attending to meaningful assessment and reporting practices.

Quality Learning builds on the Division’s Inclusive Education goal in that all students are connected to the Programs of Study and all students have the supports and educational quality necessary to achieve success.

Culture of Wellness: Parkland School Division is committed to Student Success and Well-Being. The Division recognizes that, as a system, well-being must be present for all stakeholders, and therefore it is committed to fostering physical literacy, lifelong health and well-being at all levels. The Division believes that student success is closely linked to student well-being and the development of social-emotional assets that build resiliency.

The development of citizenship and social responsibility contribute to wellness and are integral to the delivery of a broad and comprehensive program of studies. We are dedicated to the development of the whole child.

Universal Leadership: Student success and well-being requires collaborative, universal leadership that employs calculated risk-taking and a determination to consider and implement new and innovative ideas. The Division’s Board of Trustees continues to embrace the direction set by Alberta Education to adopt a Generative Governance Model that demands public confidence in all facets of the system. The Division’s clear strategic direction will be maintained, administered and reviewed on an ongoing basis to ensure true stewardship of resources.

As a learning organization, the Division recognizes continued improvement through a commitment to leadership at all levels.

Process

At Parkland Village School, we strive to engage stakeholders and seek information and feedback in a variety of ways.

  • Information was gathered from the annual Accountability Pillar Survey (administered to Grade 4 students, parents and teachers), Tell Them From Me Survey (administered to Grade 4 students) and ThoughtExchange Survey (distributed to parents and staff).
     
  • We seek to provide opportunities for input and feedback through discussions held at our monthly School Council meetings.
     
  • We gather input from our staff through meetings, discussions, surveys, emails, committees, conversations and ongoing open communication.


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Inclusive Education

Strengths

We are impressed with the Zones of Regulation for students to self-monitor. Our child has had the opportunity to use some of the tools from the Zones of Regulation to help him calm down when feeling frustrated. It is an excellent visual way for students to identify which zone they are experiencing, then find the correct tool to help regulate their emotions. Very useful! 

- Parkland Village Parent Quote via ThoughtExchange
 

Administration, Staff, Support Staff are all dedicated educators! We appreciate the level of effort and expertise of all of the staff members at PVS. We are so happy with all of the educators at PVS and their positive attitudes towards learning and educating our children. They make learning fun, real-world applicable, and engaging. Thank you so much!!

- Parkland Village Parent Quote via ThoughtExchange
 

At Parkland Village School, we value the contributions of all and believe there is a place for everyone. Creating a sense of belonging is a priority, and we believe we are better together. Parkland Village School offers a variety of high-quality learning environments for all, using universal, targeted and individualized strategies. The Alberta Program of Studies is our foundational document.

Both MicroSociety and Tinkerlab are designed to engage students and offer personalized and authentic learning opportunities in which Universal Design for Learning and Differentiated Instruction are foundational. In addition, a variety of targeted supports, such as the Levelled Literacy Intervention program and home reading, are available to support literacy development. Staff were trained in the Zones of Regulation, and shared these self-regulation techniques with their students, giving them a universal and more targeted support for their learning.

Opportunities

At Parkland Village School, we seek ongoing opportunities to both elevate and leverage student strengths and interests, and address individual learning needs according to each child’s learning profile. Continued early identification of the needs of children is imperative as we move forward.

Aspirations

We aspire to send students on to middle school prepared to succeed and able to meet both the curricular and social/emotional demands of their new environment. We aspire to develop our learners’ ability to self-advocate, so they are able to navigate the new surroundings and demands of their learning with success.

Results

As a safe and caring community, Parkland Village School will continue to provide supports to meet the needs of our learners. We know we are succeeding in this when our students, staff, and community express that they feel they are part of our school family and have a place to belong at Parkland Village School.


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Quality Learning

Strengths

Kids enjoy the environment and are flourishing in their learning.

- Parkland Village Parent Quote via ThoughtExchange
 

MicroSociety: I love that the kids are learning about jobs and government. I love that they learn about resumes and interviews. My child always gets excited when that day comes that they get to do micro day and the best part is they get to spend their micro bucks.

- Parkland Village Parent Quote via ThoughtExchange
 

Teachers, parents and students have a high level of satisfaction with the quality of teaching at Parkland Village School. Innovation and creativity are visible in classrooms, the Tinkerlab and MicroSociety as students engage in quality learning opportunities. These opportunities are centered around the cross-curricular competencies and focus on developing the skills of 21st century learners. 

Opportunities

  • Student-driven, authentic learning opportunities should have increased presence in the core subject areas.
     
  • MicroSociety and Tinkerlab are designed to be student-driven authentic learning opportunities, embedded in the Program of Studies and the cross-curricular competencies.
     
  • Our Accountability Pillar results indicate an opportunity to deepen our delivery of the program of studies by providing a more robust music program taught by a teacher with a music background. 

Aspirations

We hope to create authentic learning experiences that allow our students to wonder, dream and problem-solve in meaningful ways. We aspire to do this in a rich learning environment which is safe, caring, and where individual differences are celebrated.

Results

We will know we have met our aspirations when students demonstrate learning that is authentic and relevant, and that allows for student voice and choice. When students can confidently self-assess their own learning, and positively advocate for their own learning needs, we will have achieved our goal. We also want to ensure our staff are able to demonstrate an understanding of innovative educational practices. 


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Culture of Wellness

Strengths

Amazing! My child loves to go to school. I can only thank the school for that. It's not every day that a child gets upset that they can't go to school because they are sick or something. Or they get upset that it's summer vacation and they can't go to school for two months.

- Parkland Village Parent Quote via ThoughtExchange
 

Great hot lunch! Love that hot lunch is homemade and healthy.

- Parkland Village Parent Quote via ThoughtExchange
 

Parkland Village School invokes a culture of wellness through many of our school practices. From our homemade healthy hot lunches, to our tower gardens, physical literacy initiative and social-emotional well-being programming, we integrate all four components of comprehensive school health at PVS.

Opportunities

We are looking to embed physical literacy skills and mindsets throughout the school experience and throughout the school day. We seek to harness the enthusiasm and engagement of the community for wellness activities like Physical Literacy and You (PLAY) Parkland.

As a school, we are continuing to learn about emotional literacy, and how to implement self-regulation strategies in a deep and meaningful way through programming such as the Zones of Regulation. The goal is that these self-regulation strategies improve the emotional literacy of our students.

Aspirations

We aspire to have a healthy staff and student population who demonstrate resilience and compassion in their everyday lives. All members of our school community should feel valued, and feel compelled to help others feel valued as well. 

Results

We consider ourselves successful in meeting the wellness needs of our school community when our staff and students are physically and emotionally healthy, and when our students have timely access to programming to meet their wellness needs. 


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Universal Leadership

Strengths

At Parkland Village School, we value leadership opportunities, and seek them out for our staff, students, and school community. Students are able to take on leadership roles in our Micro Village (as government officials and owners of ventures), as well as by launching innovative ideas in our Tinkerlab. Students have opportunities to showcase their leadership through our Kinder Buddies lunch program, and by taking on leadership roles within our school day. In addition to these school-based opportunities, leadership skills are taught in every classroom using “The 7 Habits of Highly Successful Kids.”

Our staff have opportunities to lead outside their own classroom through the Learning Leaders initiative, by taking on acting administration duties and by leading professional development in our school and beyond.

Parents and community members are able to find their leadership niche within our school environment by participating in our school council and other volunteer opportunities. We have a parent-run healthy homemade hot lunch program, and several devoted seniors who lead student centres in our early learning classes and read with our Grade 1 & 2 students.

Opportunities

We want to ensure our students and staff are aware of their own strengths and the gifts they have to offer our school, and we want to give individuals the opportunity to articulate those gifts. Through this practice, we strive to establish strength-based leadership at our school, thereby empowering others to act on their own passions and interests to improve their relationships and deepen their learning. 

Aspirations

We aspire to create opportunities and provide the space to allow members of our school community to find their voice, and help others find their own. Through leadership, our staff, students and other stakeholders (such as parents and volunteers) are able to share their talents and passions within our school, our community and beyond to help make our world a better place to be. 

Results

Satisfaction with leadership opportunities will be reflected in data from the Accountability Pillar, ThoughtExchange, and other staff and student surveys, as well as in conversations and leadership proposals from students and staff.


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Engagement/Communication

Strengths

We recognize and value the strength in community connections in our school. We have high community turnout at school events and assemblies, and whenever volunteer opportunities arise in our building. We communicate directly with our stakeholders through social media (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter), a monthly newsletter and our school website. Teachers communicate with their classroom families through the Remind mobile App, email, and their class blogs.

Opportunities

Lack of communication. Important to know what is coming up, important dates, etc. Newsletters have not been emailed regularly like they were last year. Hard to keep on top of things without clear communication.

- Parkland Village Parent Quote via ThoughtExchange
 

An opportunity has been seized to pursue a stronger connection with our families by the means they find most accessible. We plan to distribute information through more than one means of communication to increase the opportunities for engagement. For example, our calendar of events is shared through our newsletter (which is emailed to parent subscriber lists, posted to our website and sent home as a paper copy upon request). We are also working to increase our social media presence on various platforms to inform our community about our day-to-day learning and successes. 

Aspirations

As a school, we want to ensure all of our families are aware of important information regarding our school and classrooms. We aim to share our learning with the community through blogging, social media and school events. We aspire to connect meaningfully with our community. 

Results

We will know we are successful in our communication and engagement measures when our community reports feeling connected to the school and well-informed about school events. We will know we have improved when community conversations revolve around a strengths-based model of growth in our students and school.


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Resource Stewardship

Strengths

At Parkland Village School, we envision high standards of learning for all of our students and staff. We focus on continuous school improvement, and ensure that the mission and vision of our school division shape the educational programs, plans and activities in our school. Through this focus, we promote the success of all students by ensuring management of resources for a safe, efficient, and effective learning environment. We have developed effective partnerships to help maximize resources within our small school.

These partnerships include:
  • Before and After School Care in our building
  • School Council Hot Lunch program
  • JumpStart programming

Our school council runs a very reasonably priced and nutritious hot lunch program as a service to the school community. They have also supported our school by donating a variety of materials to enrich classroom programming and funding a yoga program, a portion of the Christmas Family Fun Night and a school-wide dance program.

Opportunities

We noted a drop in parent satisfaction regarding their children’s level of access to the program of studies, particularly to quality drama, health, physical education and music classes. In addressing this concern, we have added a dedicated music teacher to our staff to enhance art and movement learning for our students. 

Aspirations

At Parkland Village School, we aspire to communicate openly and honestly with all stakeholders when making decisions, maximizing our finite resources as we work in the best interest of quality learning and student well-being.

Results

We want to see increased parent satisfaction with their level of involvement in decisions about their child’s education and with our resource stewardship, as indicated in ThoughtExchange, the Accountability Pillar Survey results and parent conversations and feedback. 


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