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Education

Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools appoints Kathleen Finnigan Interim Superintendent

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From Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools

The Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools Board of Trustees passed a motion on Tuesday, February 18, 2020, concluding the employment of Superintendent Dr. Paul Mason, effective immediately.

Associate Superintendent Kathleen Finnigan has been appointed as Interim Superintendent. Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools thanks Dr. Mason for his years of service.

As this is an internal employment matter, the Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools Board has no further comment.

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COVID-19

RDC to close Donald School of Business and main campus to public until further notice due to COVID-19

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From Red Deer College Communications

Campuses & Facilities Update

The following changes are being implemented in the coming days and weeks:

Donald School of Business

  • RDC’s downtown campus, home of the Donald School of Business will be open tomorrow and Thursday to allow faculty and staff to remove any personal items and materials they need to work from home.
  • Effective Monday April 13, RDC’s Donald School of Business will temporarily close, until further notice. No public access will be accommodated, and all instructors and staff will be working from home and responding virtually to student or other inquiries.

    Main Campus

    Effective Monday, April 13, there will be no public access permitted on RDC’s main campus. Any students, employees, visitors or guests must attend RDC’s main campus for business purposes and need to have pre-approved appointments to pick-up or receive goods or services to be on main campus.

Students

Effective Monday, April 20, all student access to RDC’s main campus will stop, with the exception of students who are coming to clean out their lockers and/or access the Students’ Association (SA) Food Bank as noted below:

o Students will be required to clean out their lockers by Thursday, April 30 and return locks to the SA. If students are unable to physically come to campus to complete this task, please email the Students’ Association to establish alternative arrangements. Please note the SA is currently open Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm.

o Students who require access to the SA Food Bank can fill out and submit this Food Bank Application.

o Students who do not have access to a computer or laptop to complete course work can email their name, program, and contact information to rdclibrary@rdc.ab.ca. The Library has some laptops that can be signed out on a first-come, first-served basis. Library staff will contact students to determine how best to meet their needs, whether they need a laptop for an hour, a day, or a week. We will be flexible with loan times, while striving to ensure equitable access to technology for all students. Learners may also contact RDC’s Library through online chat or phone for other inquiries.

Employee Parking

• Effective April 1, 2020, RDC has decided to suspend employee parking fees for all parking on RDC’s main or downtown campuses, until further notice.
o For employees whose fees for reserved stalls are paid by payroll deductions, they will first notice that no parking fees will be deducted from their payroll/direct deposit on the April 24, 2020 pay date (for the April 1–15, 2020 pay period).
o For employees who pay fees online for scramble parking lots, they will not be required to pay for parking on RDC’s campuses in April, and until further notice.

  • Parking enforcement and fees have been suspended temporarily on RDC’s main campus, until further notice, for all students and employees.
  • The College continues to urge employees to work remotely if their work does not require them to be present at the College. For those who must work at RDC’s main campus, please continue to park in Lots C or Public West and check-in and check-out at the Welcome Centre upon arrival and departure.News about RDC’s response to COVID-19 is available at: rdc.ab.ca/coronavirus.

We all want this crisis to end. Read this. Then find a mask and put it on when you go out in public

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Alberta

For all those parents concerned their children will “fall behind” in school due to COVID-19

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If you’re a parent with children in school, there’s a good chance you’re concerned about their educational prospects for the remainder of this year.  Suddenly the entire province is home schooling and online learning has completely taken over the curriculum.  How will they adapt and finish the year as strong as they started?  How will they finish all the units and cover all the material they were supposed to?  How will they make up for all those hands on learning experiences they would have ‘enjoyed’ in the presence of their teachers and classmates?  How can they possibly avoid falling behind?  

Here are some comforting thoughts from the long time Superintendent of Christ The Redeemer Catholic Schools in Southern Alberta.  They were written specifically for the families of CTR in Southern Alberta, but they really do apply to everyone concerned about education right now.

From Dr. Scott Morrison, Superintendent, Christ The Redeemer Catholic Schools

Falling Behind

I’d like to address what I expect will be a very natural educational concern for Alberta’s parents and students, especially parents of very young children and Grade 12 students thinking about post-secondary.

I think a lot of parents and students are worrying about “falling behind”.

Everything’s changed!  The students have to learn in a new way, and the need for parents to assist their kids in the current circumstances many parents find themselves in, well, it’s a burden no educator would ever place on parents given any other option. Our parents rely on our teachers to teach and they make their incredible contributions to the world in other ways. It’s not fair to ask them of this at all.

This is why I’m so pleased Alberta educators have been given such reasonable guidelines with respect to learning expectations, given our present circumstances. The marching orders regarding the time students need to devote to learning represents a reasonable balance between the need to “cover” the curriculum and the ability of students to actually “learn” that curriculum given our present circumstances. Alberta school divisions need to design a new system that is practical for most students and their parents. We need the Goldilocks approach, not too hot and not too cold…it needs to be just right.

I can tell you for a fact that every teacher in this province will be hardwired to try and accomplish too much, at first. Parents will be hardwired to do the same, at first. Many will be overwhelmed, at first.

It may be a rough start, because traditional school teachers, are trained to expertly teach, but they do that in classrooms with kids in front of them. Teachers can’t word process, hyperlink, podcast, webcast, or Zoom every element of the art and craft of teaching like they would in their classrooms.  Teachers will begin using these technologies almost immediately, but the obvious challenge is students without access to a device and/or a reliable internet connection.

I can also tell you that our teachers are brilliant and will listen, adapt, and improve as they learn from both their students and their parents. The quality of education will improve month after month as our teachers use their expertise, passion, and compassion to adjust distance learning to parallel whatever circumstances they encounter. An increasing use of technology will assist as long as the person on the sending end, the teacher, is actively involved in planning, grading, and making day-to-day decisions about slowing down or speeding up.

Let me get back to my opening point. Everyone knows we can’t expect Alberta students to accomplish as much as they would have in their regular classrooms. The fear will be “falling behind”.

However, “behind” is a relative term. To be behind means someone needs to be in front of you. Who will be in front of the overwhelming majority of the students in the province of Alberta? Will it be other Canadian students? No. “Normal” education is shutting down nationally right now. Will it be American students? No. “Normal” education is shutting down in North America right now. Will it be students in other nations? No. “Normal” education is shutting down internationally right now.

So, for some perspective, I offer this. The entire world will lose four months or more of “normal” education due to this crisis. Teaching approaches, curriculums, and expectations will be naturally adjusted on a local, provincial, national, and international level, and we won’t even know it’s happening. Everyone involved with K-12 and post-secondary education will adjust to the new normal, and normal is not behind.

Peace, Dr. Scott Morrison

Superintendent, Christ The Redeemer Catholic Schools

COVID-19 projections suggest Alberta peak coming in several weeks: Kenney

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april, 2020

fri17apr10:00 am9:00 pmFeaturedOur Best to You Spring Handmade Market10:00 am - 9:00 pm Westerner Park, Parkland & Prairie Pavilions, 4847A-19 Street Event Organized By: Signatures Shows Ltd

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