Friday, 26 January 2018

Head's Up - Your Monthly Update From The Headmaster
Imagine this scene.

It’s lunch at the Collett school and the Great Hall is filled with 200 elementary students eating their lunches.  

In the crowd of students sits one boy, he has a very unique story and circumstance. In just a couple days he will be embarking on a medical journey that will take him several months to recover from. We know he may be nervous about the coming days and, more than anything, we are going to miss him when he’s not at our school.

About 15 minutes into the students’ lunch, some music starts to play. Soon, it is apparent what the song is, “Three Little Birds,” by Bob Marley. You can see the confusion in the student body as they have never had music come on at lunch.

Within moments of the song staring, a flash mob of teachers, support staff and administration descends on the Great Hall. The flash mob is clapping, dancing and singing. They slowly making their way towards the boy who will be away from school in the coming days. Seconds later, the student body is clapping and singing along with the chorus of the song, emphatically impersonating Bob Marley, 
 
“Don’t worry about a thing, 
‘Cause every little thing is gonna be alright.”

 
In these moments of togetherness, we find the soul of our Rundle community. It is a place of warmth, support and kindness. We know that because we have each other, “Every little thing is gonna be alright.”

And then, to cap it all off, from the balcony of the Great Hall, Mr. Clark chimes in, “Three Cheers… Hip Hip Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray!”  The student body follows his lead and erupts in a cheer filled with love and support.

The best part of this story is that it is not unexpected - it’s just who we are.

Thank you for continuing to believe in a place where we can share these moments.

Together,

Jason B. Rogers
In this edition of the Head’s Up, you will find: 
  • Minister Eggen to Visit the Academy
  • Summer Camps at Rundle
  • On the Shelf
  • Head’s Up: The Podcast (new episodes)
Minister Eggen to Visit Rundle Academy
 
At Rundle College Society, we believe it is important to create a strong network of connections with our provincial, charter, public and separate school partners in education.  

As a part of this ongoing process, next week, for the first time in recent memory, a standing Minister of Education, David Eggen will be coming to visit Rundle College Society.  Rundle Academy has the honour of hosting Alberta’s Minister Eggen. We are grateful that he has decided to visit the Academy and we are excited to share with him some of the wonderful things that are happening at Rundle. During Minister Eggen’s visit, he will have the opportunity to hear more about our programs and he will meet faculty and students.  

The minister’s visit comes at an exciting time for all Albertans.  The province is currently in the process of reviewing the K-12 curriculum, reviewing leadership standards and making changes to School Act.  Rundle has a long history of providing excellence in education to its students and our community and through visits like these, we hope to find synergies where this excellence can serve to strengthen all aspects of Alberta’s educational system.  

As members of our community, I also encourage you to be active participants in understanding and influencing our educational landscape.  In your ongoing pursuit of knowledge in this area, there are a few resources that may prove helpful:  

“In the Loop” - here you will find the most recent updates from Minister Eggen.  In particular, theDecember 7th update touches on Bill 24, Bill 28 and the 2018 Accountability Pillar Survey.  

Curriculum Development - on this series of pages, you will find the most up to date resources on the ‘what’s’ and ‘why’s’ of Curriculum Development.

“Head’s Up Podcast” - on our school’s local podcast, you will be able to explore topics relating to local and provincial educational matters.  In particular, this past month we recorded episodes on design thinking, mathematics, and trends in education.      

AISCA video - this video was produced to articulate some issues pertaining to the economics of education in our province.

As always, thank you for investing in this journey of educational excellence and for taking up the opportunity to shape tomorrow’s leaders of Alberta.
 
Summer Camps at Rundle

We are excited to have recently launched the registration for our Rundle Summer Camps Program.

Our initial offering of the camps will be for students entering Grade 1-6 in 2018. These camps will offer activities for both the brain and the body.

For the first two weeks of registration, we are opening spots exclusively for Rundle College Society members. Starting in early February, we will be releasing the camps to the greater community.

If you have any questions about the camps or the offerings, please do not hesitate to reach out and contact Laurel Adolphe at adolphe@rundle.ab.ca.

Space is limited - so be sure to sign up soon.  
Head’s Up - The Podcast
heads-up-final-cover(2).jpg
New episodes include:
  • Kellie Adams - Design Thinking & Discovering Math
  • Charity Helman - Google Apps for Education
  • Joelle Kopp - Moving Mountains at the College and the Academy
  • Top 5 Educational Trends - 2018 Edition
  • Rundle’s Top Ten - 2017 Edition
  • Robby Graham - Alumni - Transition to University
If you are interested in giving it a listen, go to the Apple Podcast Store and search, “Head’s Up” (include the apostrophe) and you will see this image pop up.  Feel free to give it a listen and provide me with any feedback you might have. 

Sunday, 17 December 2017

The Best of "On The Shelf"


Top 10 Reads for school, work and home

If you are looking to catch up on some reading over the Christmas Holidays, here are a few selections that may peak your curiosity.

"Together: Be Kind, Be Curious, Be Well"

Together:

"When Breath Becomes Air" by Abraham Verghese



This is a heartbreaking work of pure genius.  It allows us all to sit back and consider what is really important in our lives; being together with our families.  

Be Kind:

"Permission to Screw Up: How I learned to lead by doing (almost) everything wrong." by Kristen Hadeed


In a day and age where we are compelled to overachieve and shoot for perfection, it was empowering to hear Kristen Hadeed's adventures in imperfection.  It is also an insightful look into the brain of an accomplished and driven millennial.

Be Curious:

"Barking Up The Wrong Tree: The surprising science behind why everything you know about success is (mostly) wrong." By Eric Barker



I absolutely loved this book and it's approach to exploring all the current research in the area of social psychology.  Eric Barker neatly compartmentalizes some of the big questions we grapple with in our work and family lives.

Be Well

"Braving the Wilderness: The quest for belonging and the courage to stand alone." By Brene Brown


Like all of Brene Brown's work, this book is a triumph of story telling, of venerability, of empathy and of empowerment.  More than any other book I listened to this year, I enjoyed the quality of Brene Brown's voice and the personal energy she shares with her listeners.


Other Highlights from  "On The Shelf":

1. "The Originals: How non-conformists move the world forward," by Adam Grant


Adam Grant is quickly becoming one of my favourite authors.  He is a steadfast author who continually looks past the obvious to illuminate thoughts and ideas that can easily overlook.

2. "The Power of Moments: Why certain experiences have extraordinary impact," by Chip and Dan Heath

If you ever want to understand more about the human experience, turn to the Heath Brothers.  Each of their books is a slam dunk and will eave you with a better understanding of why we do and feel what we do and feel.

3. "Designing Your Life: How to build a well lived and joyful life," by Bill Burnett & Dave Evans

As we look further into the power of design thinking, this book really brings home the thought that we are empowered to design our best lives.  This book is filled with great tools for assisting us in our pursuit of a life well lived.

4. "Bored and Brilliant: Rediscovering the lost art of spacing out," by Manoush Zomorodi


In an era of distraction and overcommitment, this book is the perfect antidote.  Manoush will challenge you to take a hard look at your digital habits.

5. "Born a Crime: Stories from a South African childhood," by Trevor Noah



Another book that is really worth listening to.  Trevor Noah reads his own memoir and it is both hilarious and heartbreaking.  A journey worth taking!

6. "The Innovator's Mindset: Empower learning, unleash talent and lead a culture of creativity," by George Couros.

I first met George Couros in during my undergraduate education degree in Saskatoon.  From that moment forward, he continues to inspire me and anybody who reads his book or hears him speak.


Thursday, 30 November 2017

Inspired Minds, Unparalleled Character - 2016-2017 AGM

2016-2017 ANNUAL REPORT:



HEADMASTER’S MESSAGE

Dear Rundle College Community:

In 2016-2017, Rundle Academy and College achieved, and in many cases surpassed, its academic goals. It is without question that our schools continue to demonstrate a commitment to improvement in the area of academics. Furthermore, our schools again have been recognized by third-party organizations as leaders, ranking among the top programs in Alberta. It would be easy for an organization like Rundle College Society to start and stop here, with academic excellence; but as we all know, Rundle College Society is about so much more than just academic performance. It is my hope that these words will assist in bringing life to Rundle College Society and all of its wondrous achievements in 2016-2017. 

In this brief report to our community and board, I would like to highlight three standout achievements from this year which occurred as result of our pursuit of the vision of “Shaping inspired minds and unparalleled character.”

Shaping the future of education through design

In the 2016-2017 school year Commencement, we had the honour of opening the W.J. Collett School, which houses our College Primary and Elementary students.  The school is designed as a place to learn, play and come together. The physical spaces are as dynamic and engaging as the young minds that bring them to life on a daily basis. 

The inspired design process was driven by an adherence to the Rundle value statement: “Together: Be Kind, Be Curious, Be Well.” Among the dozens of highlights in the school, you will find places like the Learning Commons, where we can come together, classrooms, where kindness comes first, art and music rooms, where we are compelled to be curious, and an amazing gymnasium, where we are encouraged to be well.

Rundle College Society Office was also relocated onto the Rundle College campus. The design of the this space is where the tradition of Rundle College meets innovation. When you see portraits of 25-year members hung on the walls with pride and artifacts such as Dr. Conklin’s original principal’s desk, you sense the rich history of Rundle’s programs. At the same time, you experience innovation as you enjoy new-age break-out spaces and state-of-the-art technology that serves to enrich and enhance collaborative work experiences.

Finally, we were proud to name the Jr. Sr. School, the R.C. Conklin School and the playing field, Hauk Field. Each time we hear the names which adorn these facilities, we undoubtedly will be reminded of the contributions these leaders have made to shape the programs at Rundle College Society. 

Inspired minds at work and play
During the course of this past school year, Rundle College Society has also seen the addition of some dynamic programming. For the first time in Rundle’s history, we added a before- and after-school program. The program looks to help parents find care for their children if they are not able to pick them up and drop them off during regular school hours. Secondly, Rundle embraced 21st century learning competencies by introducing programs such as robotics and the c.Lab (curiosity lab). Programs like these offer students the opportunity to acquire valuable skills such as coding, engineering, design thinking and programming. Finally, Rundle College saw  the launch of a new and exciting athletics program: Jr.Cobras. This program pairs our senior athletes with some of the youngest students in Rundle’s program. The aim is to provide coaching and leadership opportunities for older students, while we develop the athletic competencies of primary and elementary students.

Unparalleled character and a community that truly cares
Lastly, it goes without saying that this was one of the most challenging years many of us have ever faced.  Throughout the year, we were repeatedly saddened to tragically lose a number of community members. From a faculty standpoint, we mourned the loss of both Mr. Russell Paxton and Mr. Bruce Buchanan. Memories of them and their enduring impact on our programs and our students will never be forgotten. 

With each loss, our community’s resolve was tested. With each test, our community responded with love, compassion and support. Although each instance challenged us, each time we found the strength to support each other, and I believe that as we enter the 2017-2018 school year, we are stronger and more cohesive than ever before. 

Needless to say, I am proud of our community. As we close the 2016-2017 school year, I can say with confidence, we lived our Mission, Vision and Values in each and every moment.

Sincerely,

Jason B. Rogers
Headmaster
Rundle College Society







Sunday, 26 November 2017

Head's Up - November Edition

Head's Up - Your Monthly Update From The Headmaster
Dear Rundle Community:

As November has come and gone, we have shared an experience of remembering the past and looking to the future. This month, we’ll use the theme of, “Looking Back, Moving Forward,” to frame the Head’s Up communication.

Together,
Jason B. Rogers
 
In this edition of the Head’s Up, you will find:

Looking Back:
  • Remembrance Day Ceremonies
  • CAIS Accreditation
  • School Newsletters
  • “The Cottage That Became a Campus”  Second Edition
Moving Forward:
  • Strategic Plan
  • Giving Tuesday - In support of the Rundle Bursary Program
  • Holiday Celebrations
  • On The Shelf
Looking Back:

Remembrance Day Ceremonies:
I would like to congratulate everybody in our community for the spectacular Remembrance Day Ceremonies that were hosted at each of our schools. There is no question that our entire community takes pause and deep consideration on this important day of remembrance. A special thank you to the many school groups who took part and to our special guest speakers.
CAIS Accreditation:
At the onset of November, Rundle College Society underwent the most comprehensive accreditation in the history of our organization. Over the course of four days, there were 14 leaders from CAIS in our schools. During these days, they had the chance to speak to every staff member and members of our parent, student, board and alumni community. The time can probably be characterized as an opportunity to celebrate the outstanding programming Rundle is able to provide.

One of the highlights of the process for me was seeing our Alumni return. Several Rundle College & Academy alumni were back and shared their thoughts about their experience while at Rundle now that they have moved on. The moments were filled with tears of joy and much laughter. It was inspiring to hear about their stories of success beyond our walls!

In the coming months, we look forward to hearing back from the committee on their findings.
School Newsletters:
This past month, each of our campuses has created their regular school newsletter. As a community, we continue to look for insight on how to best communicate and celebrate, and to this end, we are interested in your feedback on these documents. Please take time to give them a read, enjoy the contents and reflect on their impact and utility. In the coming months we will be circulating a survey to derive some insight on how effective our communication strategies are. We appreciate your insight and continue to aim to keep you well informed of the goings on of Rundle College Society.

The Cottage that became a Campus, 2nd Edition:
Today is the launch of the second edition of Dr. Conklin’s book, “The Cottage That Became a Campus.”  This is a insightful andinspiring look at the history of Rundle College Society through the eyes of one of our founders. If you are interested in purchasing a copy
, feel free to connect with us at contactus@rundle.ab.ca.

Hint, hint… I’m pretty sure there’s not a child in Rundle College that would not value one of these under the Christmas tree this year! Get your copy before they’re all gone!
Moving Forward:

Strategic Plan
Keep your eye on your home mailbox in the coming weeks. This year, inside your copy of your Annual Report, you’ll find the hard copy of our strategic plan. We look forward to continuing to engage our community in the pursuit of our aspirations. I look forward to hearing any feedback or thoughts you may have.
Giving Tuesday:
In Support of the Rundle College Bursary Fund


This coming Tuesday, we hope to inspire our community to support one another through a gift to our Bursary Fund. Each year, dozens of families in our community receive support through this fund and as result, their kids are able to continue to enjoy the Rundle Experience. I thank you in advance for supporting this important cause.
Holiday Celebrations
I can hardly wait for the opportunity to connect with our community over the holiday season. This is a wonderful time to come together and share the gifts of gratitude with one another. From a Rundle College Society standpoint, let me be the first to thank you for your ongoing support of our program and your children. As a community, we feel blessed to have the privilege of  working alongside you to develop young men and women of fine moral character.  

I wish you all the best in this holiday season. I hope your days are filled with friends, family, love and laughter.
Important Upcoming Dates:

Please be sure to refer back to your school’s weekly update for all upcoming school events.
On The Shelf:

“The Cottage that became a Campus,” 2nd Edition by Dr. Conklin

“The Innovator’s Mindset: Empower learning, unleash talent and lead a culture of creativity” by George Couros

Video that nicely articulates the “Be Curious” Value: Jane Goodall Video- Curiosity

“How We’re Smart” - Harvard Graduate School of Education

“Head’s Up” The Podcast - Feature Interview is with Ms. Shannon Harte