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Welcome Back from the Superintendent

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Welcome to the 2015-2016 school year!

From all of us at NGPS I would like to welcome everyone back. We hope summer has treated you well and you had opportunity to relax and recharge with family and friends.

The new school year beckons with new opportunities and we hope the last few weeks or days have included a moment or two of anticipation for the year ahead. What will this school year hold for you? What skills might you master? What talents might you discover? What steps will you take in your journey this year?

Success for every student is at the heart of what we do in Northern Gateway. Last week I had the opportunity to meet with new teachers and also with school and division leadership at our first leadership meeting of the 2015-2016 year. The energy in these rooms was one of enthusiasm and excitement as we shared goals, expectations, resources and opportunities for the coming year.

A few highlights: 


Significant enhancements have been made to division technology over the summer with over 71,000 feet of cable laid and over 200 new Access Points installed in schools throughout NGPS. This means quicker, more efficient connectivity for students in and outside the classroom and the structure to support innovative and collaborative technology for all learners.

Innovative learning opportunities

MakerSpaces - A MakerSpace is a hands-on learning environment where students gather to share resources and knowledge, work on projects, network and build. Outfitted with a variety of tools (construction, electronic, artistic, etc.), supplies and student imagination, these spaces provide students with the space and means for project-driven, self-directed learning. You will be hearing more about MakerSpaces in NGPS in the coming months.

Learning Commons/School Libraries - As learning environments change, so too are the traditional models for school libraries. A learning commons is an inclusive, flexible, learner-centred, physical and/or virtual space for collaboration, inquiry, imagination and play to expand and deepen learning. It is more a perspective than a “place.” A learning commons perspective supports a student-centred approach that emphasizes active and collaborative engagement, and is a model all NGPS schools are working toward.

Offering Choice to Students

Dual Credit - Dual Credit programming allows students in Grade 11 and 12 to earn credits in high school and college or university at the same time. NGPS currently has 50 students embarking on their Dual Credit journey. You will be hearing a lot more about this program in the coming months!


From School Councils and parent volunteers to work experience programs and dual credit learning, connection with others (parents, the community) enhances learning inside and outside the classroom.

NGPS strives to create an environment where teachers, students and the greater community can do their best work, together. Our efforts in this regard thus far have yielded some unique and wonderful learning opportunities for students including a new welding apprenticeship program (Fox Creek), in-school Mental Health Supports (Whitecourt), a range of option programming (Elmer Elson), and a new, state-of-the-art junior/senior high school (Onoway). Relationships with our school and greater communities are providing benefits for students in all schools in NGPS.

As we head into another school year I would like to wish each and every NGPS student a successful year of learning. An exciting year awaits!

Kevin Andrea, Superintendent of Schools


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