New school year
the second week of classes for the students of Ayer’s Cliff Elementary (ACES) and North Hatley Elementary. Steve Weary is the principal of both schools and he spoke with the Stanstead Journal yesterday about the programs and initiatives going on in those schools.
“”We’re continuing our Healthy School Approach which emphasizes healthy and nutritious eating. For example, usually on the first day back we give ice cream or Mr. Freezes to the students; this year we gave watermelon and the students enjoyed it,” said Mr. Weary. The Staff at both schools are also working with the Mouvement Memphré to develop noon hour activities to
keep the students active. This program aims to provide a variety of physical activities, not just organized team play, and helps to develop leadership skills in students at the higher levels. “We hope to have those new activities in place by the beginning of October,” added the principal. North Hatley now provides three periods of physical education per week while ACES can provide four periods per week because they are a bigger school and because of the availability of a teacher there.
“At Ayer’s Cliff we’ll continue our regular assemblies on social skills,” commented the principal. About once a week the whole school attends the fifteen minute assembly to learn about topics such as politeness, greeting people, playground interactions, prevention of bullying etc. “We’ve been doing these regularly and we’re pleased with the results and have seen a decrease in the number of behavioural incidents.”
A big initiative going on at Ayer’s Cliff is the project to overhaul and improve the stage facilities. “We want to install a projector and lighting and build a back wall. We already have a new sound system. We’re hoping to have it all done by Christmas,” mentioned Mr. Weary.
The principal was looking forward to receiving laptops from the School Board for his grades 4, 5 and 6 students at the end of the month.
Anyone wishing to volunteer at either school is more than welcome, whether a parent, a grand-parent or someone from the community with a little extra time on their hands. Volunteers are needed for various things like going on field trips or reading to small groups of students. “With our Guided Reading program four students go with one adult to read together.” People interested should call the school of their choice for more information.
“Parental support of student education is one of the keys if not the most important key for success at school. Our goal is to make our schools happier, more pleasant places for everyone to be. I’m proud to say I’m the principal of both schools; people often say how well-behaved our students are,” concluded Mr. Weary.
Student enrollment has decreased slightly at both schools, going from 155 to 140 at ACES and from 79 to 73 at North Hatley.