Crescentview School will open up next week with the subtraction of French Immersion and the addition of more grades. Principal Doyle Moar says last-minute adjustments are being made.
"I guess the best way to describe it is 'controlled chaos,' a little bit," says Moar. "Our operations department, or custodians, have worked really hard to get the school where it needs to be, to be back to a K-8 school from a K-4 school. Just some things in classrooms are being done at this point, like moving whiteboards and moving smart boards -- just putting shelves in spaces and things like that.
So, they've worked really hard."
He notes the teachers appreciate that, as well. Moar says they'll be coming into a new classroom that has everything required for a Grade 8, Grade 6 or Grade 4 classroom.
"No matter If you stayed in this building or moved over from Arthur Meighen, you pretty-much moved classrooms
," says Moar. "Everybody kind of moved around and everybody worked together as a team and made it work. And now, it's just getting prepared for the new school year. A lot of teachers have been in this [past] week and starting to get stuff in order."
Moar explains their tech people have likewise done great work in preparation, readying laptops, smart boards, and projectors.
Although French Immersion is no longer at this school, Moar notes that basic French class is still part of the curriculum.
"We still offer basic French to students from Grade 4 to 8," says Moar. "We're similar to Yellowquill, La Verendrye, and Oakville Schools now."
Moar says the absence of French Immersion will be quite different for himself. He was in a dual-track school with French Immersion and English for the last seven years.
"It'll take some getting used to, but I also worked at Yellowquill for the first 13 years of my career," continues Moar. "I was in that K-8 environment. It actually started as a K-9, so I don't think it's going to take much getting used to. It's just going to be a little bit different because we won't have a lot of some of the dual signage up that we would have had at Arthur Meighen and Crescentview when they were dual-track."
He feels the biggest obstacle in the large changeover for himself as principal at Crescentview, and the school no longer hosting French Immersion programming, is probably trying to get everything in order for the school startup.
"Just little things like the timetables and the room allocations; all those things are kind of the easy part," adds Moar. "All the little things like the clubs and committees, and what are we going to offer there?
What's our staff handbook going to look like? What's our student handbook going to look like? What are we going to use as a school mascot? So, those types of questions are still kind of up in the air. Within the first month, we'll get some some student student voice with that, and we'll get some staff involvement with that."
Moar describes these things as building the school community, and not so much the integral day-to-day necessities involved in the school.
The big difference, overall, he explains will be students going directly to high school once they're done Crescentview.
"The K-8 system is nice because, when they're in Kindergarten, you get to know them, you get to know their families, and you keep them for nine years," says Moar. "Then they go to high school. The early years, middle years, and high school were in this area before. You would have the kids early. You'd have to transition them to the middle school and then you'd have to transition them again to the high school. So, we're kind of taking out one of those transitions, which I don't think is a bad thing. Transitioning is always hard. To do it a few times, to take that transition, it's just going to be better for the kids. There's a positive buzz in our school right now as teachers come back in."
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