Message from Myles (COSL chair) – Sept 2019

COSL Chairperson – Sept Message

Welcome back to another school year,

Whether this is your first year as a principal/vice-principal or one of many, the energy of students and staff in your building quickly brings you back from your well-earned summer break. From timetable changes to new registrations (always to the largest class) to Back-To-School nights and/or Open Houses, it does not take long to get back up to game speed. Once the sight of the first school bus rolling in or the line of parents dropping off their children begins, it just seems like the end of June only happened yesterday.

2019 signals the start of my second year as your COSL Chairperson. I have had a busy year and look forward to another one as COSL gets set to host the 2020 CAP Conference in Winnipeg, May 5-8 at the RBC Convention Centre. One of the highlights of my first year was embarking on the 100 in 100 tour. Contrary to many, we did not set out to visit 100 schools in 100 days; we set out to visit 100 schools to celebrate the 100 anniversary of the Manitoba Teachers’ Society. As of the end of June, James Bedford (then MTS VP and our COSL liaison) travelled to 117 schools covering close to 7000 kms. With the support of local MTS Presidents and COSL representatives, the tour allowed us to reinforce the message that good things happen when MTS and COSL members work together. The tour is not done. It is the hope of myself, and Nathan Martindale, the newly elected MTS VP and our new COSL liaison, to continue the tour until we can visit schools in all divisions throughout the province.

Over the summer, I represented COSL at our Summer Institute held at McMaster House. 25 participants and 12 COSL Learning Leaders spent 6 days exploring the concept of educational leadership through the lenses of leader, manager, change agent, and learning community. We will continue collaborating with the Professional Services team at MTS to provide another learning opportunity in July of 2020.

In August, I again attended the MASS Summer Institute and The MTS Presidents’ Training. The last 2 weeks of August saw work on our Fall Conference and CAP 2020 as well as Discovery Insights training and participating in a Workshop on Workshops sponsored by MTS.

Our first Directors’ meeting of the year is schedule for October 18 and 19 in Winnipeg. If you are returning as your Region’s Director welcome back. If you are interested in seeing what the role of a Director is or how to become a Director contact me at the office. For 2019, we are encouraging Directors to bring a friend to a Directors’ meeting so people can see what COSL is all about.

Fall Conference information is located on the MTS and COSL Website and registration is open. We are pleased to have Ivan Coyote as our keynote speaker. The Conference will be hosted by Tec Voc High School, 1555 Wall Street in Winnipeg. A BIG thanks to Michelle Sacco and her team for their help in making our conference run smoothly over the past couple of years.

We will not be holding our annual winter conference this year, as we will be hosting the 2020 CAP Conference Clear Vision for School Leadership—Inspire and Transform Vision into Action. The conference program will be available for viewing by the end of September with registration opening November 12. It has been 10 years since we last hosted a CAP Conference so we hope to see many COSL members in attendance.

2019-2020 will an interesting year in education in Manitoba. With the Provincial Election and the release of the Provincial Education Review in spring, many changes may be coming our way. Another change this year will be that COSL will have voting status at the 2020 MTS Provincial Council. Thanks you to the Seven Oaks Teachers’ Association for bringing forward the resolution and the General Assembly for voting in favour of it.

As I carry-on my duties during my second term, I look forward to continuing to represent school leaders from across the province. I will work hard to bring the principal voice to the tables that I represent COSL at.

Keep up the great work! Great schools are the result of great leaders! Have a fantastic 2019-2020 school year. I hope to see many of you in your schools, at one of our meetings, or at one of our PD opportunities.

Myles Blahut

COSL Chairperson

Rob Fisher

COSL leadership team member. Principal, R.D. Parker Collegiate, Thompson, Mb -- Webmaster - send suggestions for this website's development to ATT'N: Rob Fisher email: