Report from School District 53

A summary of events taking place in School district 53, Okanagan SImilkameen


School District 53 would like to remind everyone that our Pow Wow will be on Friday, April 13 and Saturday, April 14 at Osoyoos Secondary School.  All grade four students in the district will be bussed to Osoyoos to participate in the grand entry at 10:30 a.m. and other morning activities.  Dinner will be served at 5 p.m. each day and breakfast on Saturday will be from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Everyone is invited to attend and have fun.

The Early Development Instrument process is complete and we would like to thank all of our Kindergarten teachers for their dedication and commitment to our students and communities by completing this assessment.  The data from these surveys are critical to community groups and to the school district by allowing us to study the health and well-being of our children as they enter Kindergarten.

The Foundation Skills Assessment (FSA) has been completed by all of our Elementary Schools.  Thank you to all of our school administrators for their hard work in ensuring that every student had the opportunity to participate in this assessment. The scores will be entered by the district office and parents will receive their children’s results.  The primary purpose of the FSA’s is to help schools, school planning councils, school districts and the province to evaluate how foundation skills are being addressed and to make plans for improvement.  The secondary purpose is to provide individual student information to parents.  FSA measures students’ skills in three areas: reading, writing and numeracy.

We are very proud of our students (seventeen students in total) who participated in the Skills Canada competition in Kelowna on March 2.  Three students from SOSS medalled:  Travis Nowicki (gold), Trent Phillips (silver) both these students competed in the Mechanical CAD division.  Blake Powesland won bronze in the carpentry division.  Ishkarn Hundal from SESS won a silver medal in the Gravitiy Car Competition. Gold medalists will continue on to the provincial competition in Abbotsford on April 18 .

The board approved Dry Grad trips for both SESS and OSS.  OSS with lead teacher Peter Gajda will be going to Vancouver on June 9 after graduation and returning to Osoyoos the next day.  SESS, with Barton Tunlinson will also be going to Vancouver (June 9) and returning June 10.  We wish them a safe trip with lots of fun.

Our Enrollment Report to the ministry indicates 2 429.50 FTE which is an overall increase from September 2011 of 36.125 FTE.  Elementary Schools have decreased by 12 FTE, secondary schools decreased by 40.125 FTE and YouLearn has increased by 88.5FTE since September 2011.

We would like to invite everyone to our first Community Learning Forum on April 11.  This forum will be at the board office and will have an Aboriginal focus.


The Board of Education wishes all of our students and staff a well deserved and safe spring break.



School notes

Approval was given for Similkameen Elementary Secondary School’s grad trip, Barton Tumlinson, lead teacher. This trip will leave SESS at 3:15 a.m. Saturday, June 9 arriving at the River Rock Casino in Richmond for breakfast at 9:15 a.m. They will then travel to the PNE, to Splashdown Water Park in Tsawwassen, and then to Metrotown Mall in Burnaby, returning to Keremeos at 2:00 a.m., June 10.

Skills Canada: On Friday, March 2, students from the district travelled to Kelowna to participate in the Skills Canada competitions. Following are the students and results:

Similkameen Elementary Secondary School:

– Gravity car competition: Group 1-Charley Cottrill, Jetson Gibbs, Ranjeet Brar, and Ishkarn

Hundal (Silver); Group 2 – Gagandeep Lasser, Chance Wabnegger

Student Designed Ads: Each year for education week, the Review Newspaper (Keremeos) runs a special section. This year the Review is having grade five students at SESS design ads in this special section which runs on March 29. To support this initiative the district will be running a three column by three inch advertisement for the upcoming learning forum on April 11.