I like to sing. Most recently, I’ve been a member of my hometown’s community choir which performs twice a year: at Christmas, and in the spring. Each performance is the culmination of four months of rehearsal and preparation. It is a little strange, practicing seasonal holiday songs in September, and of course March of 2020 ended the practice of any songs. The last time I sang aloud publicly was the Christmas season of 2019. The first time I sang aloud publicly was the Christmas season of 1975.
Somehow my teacher seemed to know I was harbouring a wish to sing in front of an audience. When he selected me to sing a solo in our class’s contribution to the Christmas concert, I put up a reasonable objection but then secretly looked forward to every practice. I learned Clint Holmes’ lyrics by heart and practiced at home in the bathroom. It seemed that I really did sound better standing in the shower than I did standing at the chalkboard. On performance night, my mom and my aunties gushed that it sounded wonderful when I sang about that idyllic playground.
I wasn’t naïve then, nor later as an adult, when I sang this same song to my daughters at bedtime: I understood the playground is a symbol of childhood innocence and laughter. As a respected colleague reminded me this past week, playground truth can be less carefree, less fun, and reflective of fractures in the wider community.
It isn’t my story to tell; but as shown by the emotion which trapped my colleague’s words as he spoke, there is clearly a story to be heard. It arises from an invitation to racialized families new to the community. He is a Principal in a BC school, and emotion caught in his throat as he stated that life on a playground “for kids of colour is different.” His insight and his feelings are rooted in lived experience, and he brings this experience to his leadership. It is this Principal’s vision that students will find security, safety, and acceptance on his watch, regardless of race, orientation, gender, or any other marker historically used to ‘other’ and oppress a population. His lived experience fuels a compassion and a commitment to equity and dignity for all students.
The playground in our colleague’s mind is one free from racist slurs and intolerance, one that will give rise to an inclusive, diverse, and ‘healthy’ society. Arguably, a primary purpose of schools is to create a ‘public’.
Among my stack of books is one published by Valeria Hannon and Amelia Peterson in 2021, entitled Thrive: The Purpose of Schools in a Changing World. Early in the text, the authors take a stance articulated in 1996 by American educator and author Neil Postman: “The question is not, Does or doesn’t public schooling create a public. The question is, What kind of public does it create?... The right answer depends on two things and two things alone: the existence of shared narratives and the capacity of such narratives to provide an inspired reason for schooling.” Shared narratives come from the inclusion of diverse experiences, so these must find voice in our schools, our communities, and our Association.
In 2020, the Minister of Education’s Community Roundtable on Anti-Racism in Education was formed, and all sector partners were invited to listen alongside the Minister as many with lived experience shared stories of racism and discrimination. Emerging from this Roundtable is a draft action plan to address racism in BC schools, which invites sector partners to engage. Recent years have also seen several BC Boards of Education formulate and establish initiatives for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI), in many cases introducing District Leads in EDI to champion the growth and permanence of policies and practices that dismantle systematic barriers, prejudice, and racism. Excellent resources in support of this work have been shared by districts, such as those available from Delta School District. The Ontario Principals’ Council has engaged a Director of EDI who believes “school administrators are integral to fostering inclusive pedagogical practices and dismantling systems of oppression and discrimination in education.” And the BCPVPA Anti-Racism Working Group has identified actions that our own Association may take to build and support our members’ capacity in this work.
Nouman Ashraf, a speaker in our professional learning series Leading for Equity, reminds us that before we can walk in the shoes of another, we first must remove our own. I believe all school leaders hold in their minds the vision of a safe and inclusive playground. The challenge for those of the dominant culture is overcoming blind spots, so that the vision can be clear, full, and accurate. The work of equity begins in the mirror; it is first personal and reflective, but needn’t be solitary. Leading for Equity continues with Carolyn Roberts: please consider joining us on February 28.
The lyrics from my childhood Christmas solo are nostalgic, expressing longing for a world that used to be, “where the children laugh and the children play”, and a nickel fills their pockets with candy. In truth, many have never experienced this world. But when Principals and Vice-Principals make the work of equity a critical and embedded priority on their watch, maybe this won’t be a world we’ve left behind.
December 8 SD 46 Sunshine CoastDecember 9 SD 47 Powell River
Darren Danyluk would be delighted to connect with your Chapter through a virtual meeting or town hall this Fall and, should health protocols allow, Darren may be able to book travel to your community for a visit. To discuss a booking, please contact Sharon North.
BCPVPA staff are
working both in the office and remotely, and continue to monitor and align with
the Province’s health and safety guidelines. We are here to support our
members: please do not hesitate to contact us, or check our App for updates.
We overcame the paper shortage, but we did not count on a shortage of biodegradable mailing bags from our mailing house, or the extensive flooding that has affected all of Canada Post’s provincial distribution of mail and parcels. We understand that our Metro Vancouver members will receive their November Principl(ed) magazine issues the week of December 13, and that the mailing will continue to every corner of the province. Our apologies for the delay: we can’t wait for you to read this issue!
gone the extra mile to support your school community? BCPVPA Chapters are
invited to nominate individuals, organizations, and businesses who contribute
their time, expertise, and passion to make a difference in the lives of BC
students. Community partners bring special opportunities and services to
schools – now is the time to celebrate all that they do.
This year, it is even easier to nominate a community partner. You can fill in the online form or follow the instructions on our Member Portal to email your nomination. If you have any questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Are you looking for a unique learning and leading opportunity? Look no further!
Two BCPVPA leadership programs in spring and early summer 2022 offer the opportunity to share your experience and hone your facilitations skills.
BCPVPA’s program for aspiring school leadersCurrent Vice-Principals (only) are invited to apply to facilitate small groups of teachers who are interested in exploring the nature of the Vice-Principal/Principal role in schools.
This program takes place over 4 Saturday mornings March to May 2022.
The time commitment for Facilitators includes:Pre-Program Facilitators Training session – Date to be determined 4 Saturdays – March 5th, April 2nd, April 23rd, and May 7th, 8:30 am to 12:00 noon DEADLINE FOR APPLICATION FEBRUARY 28, 2022
BCPVPA’s program for new school leadersCurrent Vice-Principals and Principals are invited to apply to facilitate small groups of new and nearly new Vice-Principals and Principals in the early stages of their school-based leadership careers.
This program takes place over 5 sessions in the first week of July 2022
Time commitment for Facilitators includes: Pre-Program Facilitators Training session – Date to be determined 5 Days – July 4, July 5, July 6, July 7, and July 8 8:30 am to 2:30 pm DEADLINE FOR APPLICATION APRIL 1, 2022
Episode 16 is now available! Featuring two live recorded conversations with BC Vice-Principals. In part one, Maghen Girard and Nancy Roberts talk about VP fall responsibilities, and in part two, Raelyn Larmet and Chris Martin follow this discussion by speaking about January to end of year.
about the high-level responsibilities of Vice-Principals at the Elementary and
Secondary level, and how portfolios fit into the day-to-day public school life
of a BC VP.
Listen on iTunes, Spotify, Google Podcasts and more! Link to your favourite platform here.
The Principl(ed) Podcast is a made-in-Canada monthly series that connects with BC school Principals and Vice-Principals who are working everywhere in the province, from the smallest rural schools to the bustling urban centres.
Coffee Connections, hosted by BCPVPA President Darren Danyluk and senior staff. Join us for our final date in 2021!
Our BCPVPA Retirement Seminars address questions around retirement-readiness, the specifics of the Teachers’ Pension Plan and any other questions that you may have. Each seminar will have a 40-person limit. The next virtual (Zoom) seminars will be:
Register here! Please register early as sessions have limited attendance.
Do you know someone looking for a new role with scope? We are seeking two new teammates who are eager to learn and grow alongside a friendly, committed, and engaged group of colleagues in our Vancouver office. Find out more:
Member Support Services Assistant
Professional Learning & Development Assistant
Visit the BCPVPA Member Portal
To set up your password, follow the simple instructions sent in the August 31 Member Update, and log in anytime via the Sign In option on our website. You can easily update your account details under the 'My Profile' tile if you change roles, schools, or personal contacts.
What will you find in the Member Portal? Check out the overview, and we’ll bring you highlights each week in eNews as we continue to add content to the site.
Member Portal Highlight: Update your account details under the 'My Profile' tile; if you change roles, schools, or home address, easily update that information to reflect the accurate details.
Visit the Member Portal, and let us know what you think: email@example.com
For an overview of some of the findings of the survey, look for Rochelle Morandini’s article in the November issue of Principl(ed) magazine. You can also find her presentation slides used for the November Chapter Council in our November 24, 2021 Member Update.
Chapter Council members can mark their calendars for these meeting dates:
Chapters: Place Your Order Here
Why are we interested in Principals’ work and their use of time? What can research about Principals’ time use from around the globe possibly tell us about school leaders’ practices? And how can these findings be used to inform school leaders’ practices?
Please join us for a lively discussion where Dr. Katina Pollock from The University of Western Ontario will present research from the recently published, How School Principals Use Their Time: Implications for School Improvement, Administration and Leadership, edited by Drs. Moosung Lee, Katina Pollock, and Pierre Tulowitzk.
RegisterWednesday January 5, 2022 | 3:30 pm
Dr. Katina Pollock is Associate Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy in the field of Critical Policy, Equity, and Leadership Studies at the Faculty of Education, Western University.
The overall goal of Dr. Pollock’s research agenda is to support and improve public education systems; to this effect, her research focuses on supporting school leaders. Specifically, she concentrates on school leaders’ work intensification and well-being, policy development and implementation, and knowledge mobilization.
We are delighted to announce the return of IDEAS (formerly Issues Forum):
Friday February 11, 20229:00am – 3:30pmRiver Rock Casino Resort, Richmond BC
A ‘team’ needs all of its members: our feature keynote will be Canadian Women's Olympic Hockey Team goalie Sami Jo Small, who relates her own story of facing adversity and becoming a powerful force of positivity for her team. Additional speakers and sessions will be announced soon, and registration will open in January. Save the date!
BCPVPA’s 2021 Connecting Leaders Conference: Leading for Equity marked the beginning of our Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion focus for professional learning. We are pleased to announce that we are further extending these learning opportunities in the new: 2021-2022 BCPVPA Leading for Equity Series.
In this series we will be hearing from Nouman Ashraf, Carolyn Roberts, Beth Applewhite, and Bryan Gidinski. For more information and registration details please see the link below.
Register for Webinars
Register for Session
Join the Global Network of Professional Learning Leaders for Lone Leaders, a series of three webinars designed to offer ideas, support, and inspiration. Participants will hear from experts on leadership in remote schools, and will have the opportunity to connect with colleagues from Australia and Canada. All webinars hosted on Zoom.
Save the dates:
Friday February 25, 2022 - CanadaSaturday February 26, 2022 - Australia
Thursday April 28, 2022 - CanadaFriday April 29, 2022 - Australia
Lone Leaders Promo
Registration - $50 CA | Information
Since February 2021, eNews has shared book titles, articles, videos and podcasts to encourage continuing the work of anti-racism and equity, and to help deepen our understanding of Canada’s diverse communities.
We would love to hear if you have found this column helpful, or if there are other ways that you would like to see BCPVPA share resources. Contact Erin Hughes.
Article: The Conversation Montréal Massacre anniversary: The media must play a key role in fighting femicidewritten by various contributors working for the Canadian Femicide Observatory for Justice and AccountabilityWhen we reflect on acts of sex/gender-based violence like we marked the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women on December 6, we must consider how we can prevent extreme forms of violence against women and girls (cisgender and transgender) from happening in the future. The authors of this article postulate that the media plays a key part, from the way articles covering specific acts of gender-based violence are framed and connected to broader issues to more generalized stories that educate the public and bring increased awareness.
Article: Windspeaker Researcher’s Work Celebrated with National Innovation Awardwritten by Adam LaskarisDr. Moneca Sinclaire is an Outreach Coordinator with a digital health initiative phone app called COVID-19 Indigenous. Dr. Sinclaire and other Indigenous researchers and partner organizations developed an application that helps Indigenous community leaders learn about the health and well-being of community members. This app is significant because it gives Indigenous communities and leaders sovereignty over their own data and enables them to have autonomy over their own community health decisions.
ReFresh is a BCPVPA health resource with simple exercises and information to explore in your breaks at work. ReFresh appears as a Member Update every Wednesday. All ReFresh posts are archived here.
Read the latest ReFresh: The Power of Heat
Every 2 weeks, your PLD Directors will upload
pertinent articles, blog post, or podcast on BetterEducate and in the new Member
Portal and in the BCPVPA Member Portal under Resources/ Readers’ Corner for your quick learning opportunity.
Read the latest article, and find Discussion Tips and Prompt Questions: How these 3 teachers bring anti-racist education to their elementary school classes
Ensuring Safe Access to Schools:The B.C. government has introduced new legislation that will help maintain access to critical services that British Columbians rely on and that protect those who provide those services, as the Province moves to prevent disruptive behaviour from affecting schools and health-care facilities. More information is available in this news release.
Please familiarize yourself with the FAQ: Access to Services (COVID-19) Act document, which will provide you with the details regarding how this new legislation impacts K-12 schools.
Read the Deputy Minister's Bulletins
The Premier’s Awards for Excellence in Education were created to recognize the enormous contributions of B.C.'s exceptional teachers, administrators and support staff that are vital to the cultural, economic and social well-being of the province.
Do you know: a teacher, administrator, principal, vice-principal or support worker who has made a positive impact on students and your school community? Education professionals deserve acknowledgement for their dedication to helping students succeed.
NOMINATION DEADLINE: JANUARY 7, 2022
There is only one event left until the end of the year from the series by Take Me Outside and Canadian Outdoor Learning Partners! The Annual Winter Solstice Event hosted by Classrooms to Communities Network Society will be held on December 16th at 4:30 - 6:00pm PST.
We are looking forward to sharing more of their upcoming programs in the new year!
The BCPVPA is pleased to announce that we will again be partnering with the BC Children’s Hospital Foundation for the Jean Up! campaign in May 2022. The 2021 campaign raised more than $308,000 to fund innovative research, and tailor care to the specialized needs of kids in BC. Our friends at BCCHF have told us that a large part of the success of the campaign can be attributed to the support of our members! As we look ahead to 2022, if there are any materials or assets that would help you to fundraise in your schools, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org, and we can communicate those wishes to BCCHF.
With the ongoing need for continuity of learning in our system, the BCPVPA has opened up free access to BetterEducate for all BC K-12 educators. Develop a BetterEducate Profile | Collaborate with Colleagues | Browse and Share Resources | Develop your Plans – All on one platform!
Learn more here
If you haven’t yet signed up for BetterEducate, visit the site and sign up for your free membership with the promo code BCPVPA123. View Sign-Up Instructions
The Early Intervention Program (EIP) is a province wide professional support service provided by the BCPVPA at no cost to you and is completely voluntary and confidential. The program supports BCPVPA Benefits Plan members experiencing health-related personal and/or professional challenges. Find out more
Are you or a colleague thinking of retirement soon? Please check the BC Retired Principals’ & Vice-Principals’ Association for benefits offered to retired members, such as affinity, health & travel insurance, prestige coverage, pensions & other topics of interest, and you will also find a mail-in application form on the site. The BCRPVPA looks forward to hearing from you if retirement is in your near future! Contact the BCRPVPA
Visit Make a Future for an up-to-date job board with all of the latest opportunities in the BC Education sector. Career opportunities will also be available in the Member Portal.
NEWMiddle Vice-Principal PoolSD 62 (Sooke)Find out moreClosing January 4, 2022
NEWElementary Vice-Principal PoolSD 62 (Sooke)Find out moreClosing January 4, 2022
NEWElementary Principal PoolSD 62 (Sooke)Find out moreClosing January 4, 2022
NEWPrincipalship Opportunities for the 2022-2023 School YearSD 61 (Greater Victoria)Find out moreClosing January 4, 2022
NEWVice-Principalship Opportunities for the 2022-2023 School YearSD 61 (Greater Victoria)Find out moreClosing January 4, 2022
Vice-Principalship OpportunitiesSD 40 (New Westminster)Find out moreClosing January 10, 2022
Principalship OpportunitiesSD 40 (New Westminster)Find out moreClosing January 10, 2022
District Principal of Indigenous EducationSD 28 (Quesnel)Find out moreOpen until filled
Elementary School PrincipalKispiox Community School (Gitksan/Wet’suwet’en)Find out moreOpen until filled
School PrincipalKitsumkalum ‘Na Aksa Gyilak’yoo School (Terrace)Find out moreOpen until filled