On Jan. 29, 1953, more than 100 delegates from local Home and School associations across the province came together at Prince of Wales College in downtown Charlottetown (now the site of Holland College).
After considerable labour and discussion, a new provincial federation was formed in Prince Edward Island. In the words of the first president, Helen MacDonald, the mandate was “concern for the welfare and development of the child, high regard for the teachers’ role, emphasis on participation, study-action programs and education and education of its members and the public on school matters.”
Although much has changed over the past 65 years, we can still take guidance from our predecessors.
Teacher/Staff Appreciation Week is an excellent opportunity to demonstrate our high regard for the teachers’ role. Teachers, principals, administrative assistants, custodians, librarians, educational assistants, guidance counsellors, youth workers, resource teachers and volunteers work hard to make our school communities thrive.
Home and School associations are encouraged to celebrate the contributions they make to the lives of children during the week of Feb. 10-16. The federation will present Extra Mile Awards during the week to members of school families who go above and beyond for students.
Each year at the annual meeting and convention, Home and School volunteers are recognized for their volunteer efforts in their association and at their local school. If your association wishes to nominate a Home and School member for the 2018 awards, nomination forms can be found on the website. The deadline for nominations is March 9.
The P.E.I. Home and School Federation will hold its 65th annual meeting and convention on Saturday, April 14. All Home and School members are invited to attend. Although only five attendees can be designated as your school’s voting delegates, there is no limit on how many members can attend from your school community. This year the theme is “We’re all in this together”.
Resolution topics include communication with school and education decision makers during crises, revisions the student attendance policy to promote student wellbeing, redefining school communities, and helping students navigate transitions, whether they are large, from school to school, or small, from class to class throughout the day. Come and enjoy a full discussion of these important topics.
The federation has developed speaker’s resources for Home and School groups to use as a reference when planning parent information sessions. This list, while not exhaustive, should help direct you to a topic and speaker. If you have used other speakers and resources and would like to add to our list, please contact the office.
The PEIHSF office staff members are available to provide assistance to local associations in their deliberations about everything from public consultation meetings, to school food, to preparing for parent teacher interviews. Email email@example.com or phone 902-620-3186 or 1-800-916-0664.
Lisa MacDougall, president of the P.E.I. Home and School Federation, lives in North Rustico with her husband and two children. Her column appears in The Guardian during the school year on the first Thursday of the month. She welcomes comments from readers and information for the column. She can be reached at peihsf.ca or 902-620-3186.