Annual Fund

Every independent school owes its success to the generosity of its school community and we are no exception.  Over the years, generous donors have helped us buy school buses, build a library, acquire the latest learning technologies, enhance our program resources and grow our bursary fund.

Annual Fund insertThis year the PSG has chosen the resurfacing of some outdoor play areas as its goal.  This is a big project – one that will dramatically improve the playground and fitness opportunities for all our students.  Therefore, in this, our first annual fund drive, we are focusing on that same ambitious goal.  Please have a close look at the brochure coming home with your children today.

We realize donation dollars are scarce but we are hoping for 100% participation from our staff, students’ families, Board members, and hopefully all friends of CCCS.  Any amount, no matter how big or small, will be gratefully received.

Every donation helps us provide for the children and keeps our school accessible to all who seek an Anglican education.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!

Spring News from the Head of School

April is going to be a very busy month at Christ Church Cathedral School. We are kicking off a brand new sailing club, restarting our squash club, creating wonderful art for the Annual CCCS Art Show, practicing for the Choral and Speech Festivals, all while preparing for Easter.

Our student council, the outreach club, the We Day class (the grade eights are part of the ‘Free the Children’ organization) and other student leadership teams are also very busy with preparations for the Middle School Spring Dance, food drives, and the A-1 Garage Sale.

Student-Led-Conferences also take place this month. This is your opportunity to learn first-hand what your children are up to during the school day. Our kindergarten to grade five students will take the lead to show you examples of their learning, while the Middle School students will be hosting a new format for students and parents we call a Celebration of Learning.

You are encouraged to attend a self-guided session to view various learning artifacts displayed in the Middle School classrooms.

As well, there will be a presentation on Digital Citizenship for Parents by David Shortreed of SD61. Lux Mundi will be available during the afternoon for everyone’s convenience.

Oh, and I almost forgot to bring this to your attention: Do you know the type of people that get upearly in the morning, before everyone else, to hit the gym or run outside for miles? What drives them? Health? Competition? Insomnia? The need to be the best they can be? Well those people are among us right now! Did you know that more than 20 CCCS students, along with parents and CCCS staff, are meeting twice a week at the Oak Bay High School running track at 7am in preparation for our upcoming track and field season? If you missed the memo and want to join an energetic group of fitness enthusiasts, grab a coffee or a juice, slip on your runners and track suit, and meet them at the Oak Bay High track on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7:00 am.

If Garage “Sale-ing” is more your speed, don’t miss the CCCS Garage Sale on Saturday, April 5! ~ Stuart Hall

Thoughts on the Olympic Games

olympicsWell, the opening ceremonies for the Olympics are set to begin tomorrow, and for most of us it is a challenge to keep our excitement and anxiety in check. As a country, we hold almost impossibly high expectations for our athletes; expectations to bring home even more gold medals than they did at the last winter games, when they broke the record for most gold medals one by one country at the Winter Olympics. One has to wonder how anyone could perform at the top of their game under such pressure.

But perform they will. Win or lose, the athletes will give their best. They have trained under the best coaches available. They will use the best equipment, crafted by the best technologies. They will ‘psyche’ themselves and stay focused. They will push their bodies beyond what most of us could possibly endure. And they will do all this under the banner of fair competition. The Olympic Oath, recited at the opening of the Olympic Games since 1920 in Antwerp, is all about playing fair. However, many athletes fall short of honouring this oath; giving in to the temptation to cheat or unfairly use medical technology in order to gain personal or national fame.

Rather than an oath, the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) offers seven values to help guide Canadian athletes. These values are Excellence, Fun, Fairness, Human Development, Leadership and Peace. These values “have been established to remind athletes and their supporters that the life skills and experience obtained through athletic preparation, competition and teamwork are far more valuable than any medal ever awarded.” They are more fully described on the COC website and are worth reading (http://olympic.ca/canadian-olympic-committee/values/).

The Olympic oath is a promise. A promise too often broken. It is a pass/fail measure, with little room for redemption after a fail. The COC’s values, on the other hand, are a target we can all strive toward. Even if we falter, we and our athletes can get up, brush ourselves off, and try again. It is a recipe for continual improvement. Yesterday, for example, I heard about how one of our athletes tweeted a message about a competitor, claiming the competitor was afraid to lose. In a pass/fail situation, this tweet was clearly a fail – a put down, and definitely not what most of us would call “sportsmanship”. However, our athlete quickly saw the error of his ways and withdrew the comment, apologizing for his lack of judgment. Progress? Leadership? It was certainly a step in the right direction for that athlete and all his admirers. Leadership is not always about winning or strategizing, it is about seeing the bigger picture and refocusing on that vision, even in tough situations. It is about admitting our errors, learning from them, and moving on to make better choices.

I think the difference between the Olympic Oath and the Canadian Olympic Committee’s seven values mirrors the changes we have seen in education over the past several decades. We focus now less on those pass/fail evaluations (although they still have a place in our education system) and more on ensuring our students can evaluate their own choices and achievements and therefore make the necessary adjustments in effort and focus in order to meet their goals.

At CCCS we will hold our own Olympic Games opening ceremony on Friday at 2:30pm. The students will recite a version of the Olympic Oath. We will cheer them on in their efforts to do their best. And we will continue to help them get up when they fall, to refocus and to start over again. May the games begin!

~ Stuart Hall