June 18, 2017
This past week was the symbolic culmination of an awful lot of hard work, determination, perseverance, dedication, laughter, and love over the past 13 years of schooling for our LSS graduates of 2017, their teachers, and their families. On Thursday, June 12, after Ms. Tomlinson came back to lead us through our Grad Rehearsal, Mr. Palichuk then led us through our Grad Walk, before Mr. Hantke took over as the Master of Ceremony of our Graduation Ceremony. On Friday, Mr. Hantke again led the way as our M/C at the Graduation Dinner and Dance.
The Grad Walk, from beginning to end, was one of the most exciting and emotional days I have ever witnessed for a group of students and for an entire community.
- Students were truly treated like rock stars at our elementary and middle family schools. The welcome at each school was warm, exciting, moving, and truly inspirational, as entire hallways of students and staff cheered, waved, and high-fived our students in a sea of welcome and recognition.
- And the connections between students and their former teachers and support staff was so touching to watch, as recognition of a familiar face was followed by hugs and excited conversation and a wave of nostalgia.
- After each stop, the busload of students grew more excited and even giddy at what they had experienced. They spoke with fellow classmates on the bus about, “Do you remember when…” and “I forgot about…” and they laughed and some even danced while in their seats.
- Then, in a change from last year, the grad class walked through the main floor hall of LSS, from library to Castle Lobby, with what felt like the entire school lining the halls, cheering and slapping hands with our grads. In the Castle lobby, music was playing and students gathered in a large mass, excitedly sharing the experiences of the Walk.
- Finally, a song from High School Musical came on (“We’re all in this together’, or something like that) and the students broke into collective song, singing the lyrics together while dancing. The fun and excitement in the lobby was the punctuating moment of the entire day to this point.
- This was an event that brought the entire K-12 experience into one culminating event, that also ended up being an excellent precursor to the Grad Ceremony experience later in the day.
Then there was the Grad Ceremony, with its million moving parts.
- The LSS staff were a well-oiled machine in helping to make the Graduation Ceremony a positive and memorable experience for the graduates.
- From the Stage Comment speakers, to the Stage Crew, to the Science-guy organizers of the procession and stage walk, to the ushers, to the musical organizers, to the supportive staff members in the audience, to the decorators and the impromptu take-down crew, everyone just did their part, making magic happen for the grads.
- And I would remiss in not mentioning the Office staff: Ms. Bhandari, Ms. Winsor, Ms. Weir, and Ms, Battistel did SO MUCH behind the scenes, meeting weekly for the past 2 months, taking care of every detail imaginable!
- The grads themselves were also at their best, maintaining the dignity of the Ceremony, but also enjoying the moment as they crossed the stage and watched their friends and classmates do the same.
- Thanks also to the CLA Staff for taking care of their part with professionalism and an ever-ready willingness to help with whatever details we asked of them.
- And finally, thank you to the parent volunteers who helped to make the reception a tremendous success. From the parents of the grads who brought an array of different “finger foods” and desserts, to the parents of our grade 9-11 students who volunteered to engineer the whole event over the past month, it was a lovely culmination to what was an excellent day for LSS!
Finally, the Grad Dinner and Dance this past Friday provided even more memorable moments for our graduates, their families, and LSS staff.
- Mr. Hantke found the right tone as our M/C for the evening, helping to get the grads to reminisce about some of the different memories, while also encouraging them to have some fun and savour the moment.
- Each speaker, representing parents, graduates, and LSS staff, elicited laughter and tears from the audience with their various stories and references.
- A special note of recognition to the immensely talented Mr. VanBergen, who recreated the lyrics to Green Day’s song “Time of your life” and brought the house down with his musical talents and stylings. I think it was the combination of his musical talents and the humour that he slipped in along the way that truly put this performance into the stratosphere! At the end of his performance, students, parents, and staff gave him a rousing standing ovation in appreciation!
- Mr. Hantke added to the excellence of the evening by showing the students a video of LSS staff interviews, where LSS staff were asked a variety of questions about the grads. He then followed up that humorous and touching video with a moving video of the Grad Walk from the previous day that had many in the audience in tears. You ned to know that Mr. Hantke was up for almost the entire night before editing these videos, getting less than 90 minutes of sleep, to make the evening even more special for grads!
- Thanks to all the LSS staff, parents, and students for their hard work behind the scenes, including the office staff for their organization of the ticket sales, with special thanks to Ms. Bhandari for organizing tables, liaising with the Coast Hotel, being willing to extend deadlines to help out our grads, and working up until 5 pm on Friday to get the grad and guest lists just right; to Ms. Neuscheler and Mr. Palichuk for decorating the Coast Hotel Banquet hall during the afternoon – the yellow mums and balloons at each table, as well as the photo shoot backdrop were all very appreciated by all; to LSS staff who attended the banquet in support of our grads; and to to LSS staff, including Ms. Weir, Ms. Winsor, and Mr. Cortese, who stayed right to the end of the night and helped admin clean up the hall!
One more special thanks goes out to Milica Salon Spa in Walnut Grove for offering to to do the hair and make-up for FREE for several of our grads who otherwise would not have been able to afford the level of care and attention they were given at the salon. And a final thanks to Ms. Majdanac and Ms. Kercher for coordinating all of these appointments behind the scenes, and getting these grads to the appointments. Our grads looked fabulous, thanks to your work!
- (THIS WEEK!) Grad Breakfast is set for June 19, at 7 am in the cafeteria! LSS parents will cook up a breakfast feast for grade 12 students. This is also when Grads traditionally exchange yearbooks for signing, etc. Parents have also kindly invited LSS staff for the breakfast. Be sure to come on out to LSS a bit earlier than usual, and hang out with your fellow grade 12s!
- (REMINDER) Scholarships:
- The BCPVPA annually awards up to 20 scholarships, in the amount of $1000 each, to students who are graduating from the BC public school system and will proceed to a post-secondary institution. Completed applications are due by Friday, September 29. http://bcpvpa.bc.ca/student-scholarships/
- The BC Retired PVPA annually awards four $1000 scholarships to students who are graduating from the BC public school system and will proceed to a BC post-secondary institution. Completed applications are due by Friday, September 29. http://bcrpvpa.ca/
- Johnson Scholarships – 50 $1000 scholarships available for graduating students. Apply by August 31. http://bit.ly/2pGP2l8
LANGLEY DISTRICT GOES TO VICTORIA!
- This past week, Langley District had a very RARE opportunity to go to Victoria and present to over 300 provincial government officials, including government Ministers, on what works for students in BC Education system – in fact, this type of presentation is unprecedented in BC history! Several students from throughout Langley (our own Taylor Swift had to decline the invitation because of her grad ceremony!) were led by former Trustee Chair Dr. Wendy Johnson, and District staff Lara Petrie and Lenny Yun, as well as LSS’ very own Ms. Turpin in both verbally and visually communicating some pretty key ideas to the decision makers in government, to help them all better understand the needs of Langley and BC students. Thanks to seconded Langley Superintendent Suzanne Hoffman (now the acting Head Educator in BC) for helping to make this happen, and for putting Langley students and staff on the map in Victoria!
(THIS WEEK!) ATHLETICS AWARDS NIGHT
- LSS Main Gym
- Tuesday, June 20
- 6:30 pm Snacks
- 7 pm Awards presentations
- BE THERE!
(REMINDER!) FOOD SAFE TRAINING OPPORTUNITY FOR LSS STUDENTS!
- We now have a date for this event: Tuesday, June 27 from 8:30 to 4 pm, at LSS (room TBA). If you are interested in getting Food Safe Training (Level 1) for the very reasonable price of $50, then please email Ms. Babecoff-Kimhi at firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible – there are a few spaces still available!!!
- (REMINDER – THERE IS STILL TIME!) Work Experience Helps NOW and in the FUTURE! We now have students on Work Experience placements that align with their career goals. These students have demonstrated their ability to keep up with their school work while working at least one shift per week as needed by the employer. Please contact Mr. Dickson at email@example.com if you are interested in finding out more!
- One example of a successful work experience placement: Jayden Pettit shows off some of his work at his recent work experience placement. This fully renovated kitchen is a great example of connecting school-based learning with authentic work. This experience should only help Jayden as he prepares for the Train in Trades Carpentry program next February. After demonstrating his work ethic and dedication, he was offered a paid position for the summer. Way to go Jayden!
(LIMITED TIME LEFT TO REGISTER!) SUMMER SESSION IS COMING SOON!
- Ever thought of attending Summer Session? Did you know that students taking advanced credit courses typically make up about 70-80% of students in Summer Session? If you are interested, Summer Session information is now available! Information sheets are available for pick up in the Main Office, or click on one of the following attachments: SS 2017 Secondary Brochure v2 – SS 2017 Middle Brochure v2 – SS 2017 Elementary Brochure
PHOTOS OF THE WEEK!
FROM THE DISTRICT
- (REMINDER!) Vote now for the Langley School District Foundation by clicking on the link below! Winning the $50,000 SimpleGenerosity grant from Envision Financial, a division of First West Credit Union would enable the Foundation to expand its Food for Thought program to more schools around the district. The program currently supports Breakfast Clubs in 16 schools, snack programs in 12 schools, backpack programs in 20 schools and lunch programs in two schools. With new innovations such as tower gardens and new learning initiatives such as outdoor classrooms, the Foundation would be able to provide more healthy food, at lower costs to more students. And that’s not all! Students would grow their own food within a learning environment that is sustainable and environmentally friendly. The programs, according to teachers, parents and students themselves, have made a huge difference in terms of health, happiness, behaviour and academic success. Thank you for helping us celebrate Canada150 and strengthening our communities with SimpleGenerosity! Visit our story on Volinspire (https://volinspire.com/post/11074) and vote by choosing any of the emojis (smile, heart, Canadian leaf). You can only vote for each post one time.
- (REMINDER!) The Langley District Orchestra had a very successful inaugural year, and is looking for interested students who would like to join the ensemble! Please see the attached poster for more details: District Orchestra Poster FALL 2017
- (REMINDER) 2017/18 Kids Plus™ Accident Insurance Summary of Insurance Benefits – Please find attached coverage information for 2017/18 for the Accidental Insurance Policy that parents can purchase. Please include this information in schools’ year end newsletters and encourage parents/guardians to purchase this to avoid having to incur possible significant costs for injuries not enrolled for. 2017 2018 Kids Plus Proposal
- Come and celebrate the Grand Re-opening of Penzer Park! See the attached poster for more details: 2017 – Events – Penzer Park Grand Opening – Poster v3
- Community Bulletin Board – SD#35 Langley: To find out more about the different community events happening in our District, consider making it a habit to go to the District’s website, and you will certainly be in the know! https://www.sd35.bc.ca/news-events/community-bulletin-board/
UPCOMING DATES ON THE CALENDAR
- Jun 19: Grad Breakfast and Grad Yearbook Distribution, Cafeteria, 7 am
- Jun 20: Athletics Banquet, Large Gym, 6:30 pm
- Jun 21: Locker clean out!
- Jun 21: Last Day of Classes
- Jun 22: I Day (By Appointment)
- Jun 23: English 12 Provincial Exam, 9 am
- Jun 26: Communications 12 Provincial Exam, 9 am
- Jun 28: LSS Awards Night at CLA
- Jun 30: Report Cards Issued, details TBA