ABOVE & BEYOND


Head of School Message: Here we go!

 

Dear WIC families:

There is nothing as energizing – or exhausting: we have yet to get our school legs back under us! – as the first days of a new school year.

WIC’s start-up 2021 has been extra special – we welcomed all five grade levels back to the campus… and rolled into athletics try-outs in the first fortnight: more than 250 of our student-athletes across a dozen teams gave it their all!

On behalf of the entire WIC staff, I am delighted to warmly welcome you and your child/ren to our 2021-22 WIC school year.

As I start my second lap alongside you, it has been fun to see and feel the whole campus abuzz with everyone’s return, smiley eyes visible over face masks. Despite a third school year disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic, we have plenty of reason for hope given our confidence-building start. We have returned to school, but we are not going back: better together, tous ensemble.

As indicated in our back-to-school virtual town halls, WIC has spared no expense or opportunity to bring everyone back together safely. The new year brings new teachers, new books, new classes, new schedules and new friends. While many vestiges of the pandemic remain, with all of these changes comes the hope that 2021-22 will be different and better than previous years. 

 1 – Relationships create fertile soil for development (Dr. David Tranter, QAIS PD)

WIC is a special place because of the students, their families, and the staff. With growth as our school-wide theme 2021-22, we are looking forward to a year full of community and place-based learning. Yet growth is not just for students.

Daily, we aim to live our unique WIC vision: To be an inclusive community that continuously defines an innovative learning experience and cultivates multilingual, well-rounded, global-minded citizens who embrace change.

In our pursuit of personal excellence, we look for the uniqueness of every individual. Each is on their own voyage of growth. Let’s all work to create the conditions to foster development and success – academic and professional, personal and social, in and out of the classroom.

With constructive routines being put into place at this time of adjustment, I especially appreciate everyone’s efforts to bring out each other’s best self: we are what we feed, so we can decide which ‘you’ you like most… and strengthen that mode.

This year, we will continue to work on building each other up. We want you to join us – all of us can help to deepen our sense of community and connection, belonging and learning.

2 – Passion and perseverance are a powerful combination

By design, this happens in the classroom and through experiential programming (e.g. grade level team-building), athletics and ECAs. It is fantastic to see that more than 200 students have seized the opportunity to get involved in the 22 extra-curricular activities this first block. I am enjoying getting to know my 20+ sec 1-2 joggers in the running club that trains twice weekly.

As the psychologist and popular science scholar Angela Duckworth puts it, we should look to “ferret out the individual’s values, interests, capacities, skills, [and] provide collaborative experiences that cater to these attributes and provide new learning.” That is why with growth as our shared goal 2021-22, we want every WIC voyager to be known by their strength/s, their passion/s and their needs; through their journey with us, every WIC graduate will indeed be ready for the future s/he chooses.

As came through strongly in last year’s COVID-challenged rollercoaster, student-staff-family survey feedback, and the parent focus group sessions held last May and June, we know what is needed for growth and healthy development to take place: i.e.

  • high (realistic) expectations

  • high (positive) challenge; and

  • high (personalized) support.

Whether young person or adult, we are all WIC travellers on a journey of growth.

 3 – “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes” (Michel Proust)

Given what you know of your child/ren, we greatly value your perspective and input – you are part of WIC’s wrap-around care approach. So let’s keep the communication channels open and support each other for a healthy and productive school-home partnership.

The leadership team and I are happy to discuss the issues that matter most to you and your child/ren, or if any questions about expectations, decisions or events come up:

  • Mme Émilie Simard ([email protected]) – apprentissages et bien-être des élèves de 1re et 2e secondaire

  • Mme Sylvie Bastien ([email protected]) – apprentissages et bien-être des élèves de 3e et 4e secondaire

  • Mme Lori Belair ([email protected]) – apprentissages et bien-être des élèves de 5e secondaire

  • Mme Lise Lafontaine ([email protected]) – WIC operations, finance and facilities

  • Mme Melanie Richter ([email protected]) – communication and development related to the strategic direction, positioning and relationships with the community

  • M. Eric Jabal ([email protected]) – mission/vision/values-aligned programming and practices to enable the success of all students, WIC stakeholder relations for a healthy school environment

We know there is still much uncertainty about the full shape of the year ahead, but what we do know is that we will support one another and our young voyagers in the WIC way. Thank you for your continued commitment to the WIC family. I am grateful and appreciative of your care and dedication.

I wish you and your child/ren a fulfilling and purposeful 2021-22!

In solidarity,

Dr. Eric Jabal
Head of School