Monday, 30 May 2016

Message from the Principal for June

Dear Parents/Guardians:
The end of the year is in sight and students and staff are beginning to feel the excitement that comes with the impending summer. The remaining four weeks of school will be devoted to ensuring curriculums have been covered and significant material reviewed prior to exam week at the end of the June. Students have had a plethora of opportunities throughout the year to get involved in a variety of activities at the school. The final athletic club – Track and Field – wrapped up with MidSun students demonstrating excellent sportsmanship, work ethic and athletic prowess.  The Grade 8 and 9 school bands have recently attended band camp and all bands are eagerly preparing for their concert on June 1st.  School clubs are winding up and final field trips for the year are taking place. As well, the Spring Carnival is set for June 1st. 

It has been a fantastic year, and as principal I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to lead such an amazing community of students and school staff. I very much appreciate all the support provided by the parent community, in particular the devoted group who volunteer their time with our school council. 

I have endeavoured to find succinct and effective ways to communicate with you over the course of my first five months as principal.  The Calgary Board of Education is introducing new communication tools in the coming months, so please expect to see a new look to our website by September. As well, some changes will be made by the Calgary Board of Education to ensure we are compliant with Canada’s new anti-spam legislation. More specifics regarding changes to communication will be provided as we have them. My intent is to continue to provide one page weekly updates, with longer pieces of communication e-mailed to you when required. The best way to stay informed with your child’s school is to join the School Council.  The last meeting of the year is on June 9, 2016 at 7pm. Everyone is welcome, so we hope to see you there.

June can be a stressful time for students as they endeavour to complete their assigned work and prepare for final exams.  You were all sent a detailed itinerary of dates and times for the end of June. Knowing what to expect well in advance can help reduce the stress and anxiety of exams. Also included in the “Year-end Freedom Guide” were strategies and tips to help students prepare for exams.  We expect all students to prepare for exams by completing review material provided by teachers and by studying at home. By putting in the necessary effort, students will be successful and can feel good about their final assessment of the year.  We will report their final exam mark to you, so you are aware of their achievement. When it comes to a mark for Term 2, final exams are used as a final check.  In most cases, the exam mark will be consistent with a student’s Term 2 mark.  Please remember that there is no final mark or average mark between Terms 1 and 2.  The new assessment protocols at the Calgary Board of Education assess work based on consistency with more emphasis on recently completed work. Therefore, a child’s Term 2 mark can be taken as their “final mark”, as it is an assessment of a child’s achievement at the end of June.

Planning for next year is well underway. Instructional groups are being made, students are being enrolled in options, teachers are learning their assignments for next year and communication documents are being prepared. We endeavour to ensure students are placed into instructional groups that take their individual learning needs into consideration. Also, we will do a best to ensure students get the option classes they want for next year as a lot of proactive work has gone in to ensuring this happens. Please do not expect to know your child’s instructional group or options classes until the first day of school. Important dates for next year were included in the Year-end Freedom Guide, will be included in your child’s report card envelope in June and will be posted on our school website.
As always, if you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact me by phone at 777-6430 or e-mail at 

Best Regards,

Chris Giffen
Principal, MidSun School