The summer cries of “I’m bored!” are nearly at an end as staff and students prepare for the return of school in Saskatoon.
Teachers with the public school division packed TCU Place on Tuesday for their annual “School Opening Celebration.”
Many mirrored the reactions of students returning from summer vacation, excitedly greeting each other with hugs and stories of their breaks.
The quasi-pep rally aimed to get staff back in the mindset for the start of classes, as well as present district goals for the year.
“We see this as the one opportunity we have all year to get all of our staff into one place,” said Ray Morrison, board chair.
“We can provide our expectations… and what we see in our crystal ball as we look forward.”
Morrison commended teachers on last year’s achievements, including the integration of 200 Syrian students into the SPSD system.
He also laid out the division’s plans to “answer the calls to action” by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, saying staff need to foster a positive learning environment that infuse indigenous teachings.
“You see students learning from each other because of their backgrounds,” he said. “Rather than learn from a textbook, they can actually build on those experiences that they’ve had.”
Besides the pep rally, teachers have been hard at work preparing their classrooms for the return of students. Marilyn Black, vice principal at John Lake School, said getting organized is crucial to a successful school year.
“That’s the exciting part,” she said. “Just getting things in place, so that the school runs as smoothly as possible and it’s as easy for the teachers as it can be.”
She added that she’s looking forward to welcoming students back and seeing how much they’ve grown over the summer, and to hearing their stories.
With classes getting started on a Thursday, Black said students would have a few days to get to know each other and have expectations set for them.
“It actually works out perfectly,” she said. “Because the kids have a chance to think about it over the weekend and move forward.”