COSL Chairperson – Oct / Nov 2019 Message
Winter came early for many of us over the Thanksgiving Weekend. Poor weather conditions and a lack of power to many schools created an interesting day for many of our COSL members around the province. After an event as just happened, it is a good time to look at school and divisional plans around such incidents. Taking some time to self-reflect on what went well and what needs to be changed is an important part of learning, something we ask of our teachers and teachers ask of their students daily. Staying safe is always the number one priority.
It seems like the school year just started and already report card time is just around the corner. In addition, schools are a lot like many retail outlets, once Halloween is done, we change gears and the season of Winter Festivals and Christmas Concerts take over music classes, theatres, and gyms.
The first 2 months of my second term has been busy with Fall Conference planning as well as planning for CAP 2020. Planning for CAP 2020 began in November 2017 and as we draw near the conference in May, a lot more details are being sorted though on a daily basis.
I attended a safety workshop hosted by MSBA and MTS on October 9, with the focus on violence and harassment as well as school safety. Bob Keber, former City of Winnipeg police officer and Safety Consultant with Strong-Hold Consulting asked us the question just how safe is our school and then went over some common safety issues he has come across during his visits to Manitoba schools. Bob shared with us his expertise as a trained facilitator in the CPTED—Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design program.
On October 7, a liaison meeting was held with the COSL Leadership Team and James Bedford (MTS President), Nathan Martindale (MTS Vice-President), Roland Stankevicius (MTS General Secretary), and Danielle Fullan Kolton (MTS Assistant General Secretary). During the meeting, discussions were held surrounding the present educational landscape of the province.
Plans are continuing to get out to the rest of the school division across the province with Nathan Martindale, MTS Vice-President and myself. These visits are a continuation of the 100 in 100 tour that the former MTS Vice-President James Bedford and myself started last October.
I am looking forward to connecting with many COSL members at our Fall Conference on October 25 at Tec Voc in Winnipeg. In the afternoon, I am making my way to Brandon to do a presentation at a satellite MTS PD Day site.
November I am off to Ottawa for the Canadian Association of Principals (CAP) board meeting.
Until next time, keep up the great work. I hope to visit some of your schools in the near future.
Myles Blahut, COSL Chairperson