Next Step: Connect, Engage & Build Relationships
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March 14, 2016                                                                                   Edition 63
2015-2016 Parent Survey
Elk Island Public Schools (EIPS) is committed to ensuring all parents and guardians of students within the Division have a chance to share their thoughts on the overall performance of their school and the Division. One of the ways EIPS ensures parent voices are heard is by conducting regular surveys. 
In November, the Division invited parents and guardians to participate in an online parent survey. They were asked 15 questions about the quality of teaching, school leadership, parent engagement, and more. Overall, the online parent survey received an impressive 19 per cent response rate, with more than 3,170 responses from parents and guardians across the Division. Throughout the coming months, EIPS will use the results of the parent survey to help inform school and Division planning. 
The complete results report for the Division, including summaries of participation and responses by question, is available by visiting
Graduation Photos
All our locations will be scheduling their graduation photos with Hemmingway Photography.  A non-refundable sitting fee, which includes a CD of the best images, is due at the time of booking.  Payments can be made in cash or cheque and payable to Tiffany Tattrie.  The following dates are available:
Fort Saskatchewan/Vegreville
March 21& 22, contact Janet (780) 992-0101
Sherwood Park
March 18 & 23, contact Andrea (780) 410-2931
Sherwood Park Phys. Ed Activities
March 9th &16th Sherwood Park will be heading to Goodlife Fitness to enjoy a SPIN class!  If you have never tried this, it is a great way to learn what it’s all about!  It’s fun and good practice for upcoming bicycle weather!
Another way to get you Phys.Ed hours is by doing Yoga with our awesome EA Katherine.  Katherine has trained and taught in the Sivananda Ashram in Southern India for a year!  The classes are low key and easy – beginners are welcomed! 
Sherwood Park is now offering credits for Yoga 15/25/35. Please see Susan or Katherine for details.

Upcoming classes:
Friday, March 11th – 1:30 pm
Monday March 14 – 10:30 am
Friday March 18 – 1:30 pm
Monday March 21 – 10:30 am
If you do not have PE 10 yet – please contact Susan Chalmers ASAP to find out how fun it is to get your PE credits!
Learn to Run
Sherwood Park will get running again Monday, April 11th!  Starting the first Monday after spring break and continuing each Monday, students and teachers will be going for a neighborhood run/walk.  Participants of all levels will learn about proper pacing and progression to experience success.  The club is supported by the Alberta Medical Association and Ever Active Schools so students will receive running logs, resources and maybe use technology to track their progress.  Students taking Phys. Ed. can even log this time for their course. 

Please contact Michel or Susan if you are interested or have any questions.
Next Step Continuing Education
Parents may choose from a variety of summer camps that are fun and interesting and sure to convert a summer of boredom into an engaging, active season kids won't want to end!
Registrations are now open for these youth camps!
Cooking                       Golf Lessons
Gramps Camps           Get Messy with Art
Mad Science               Minecraft
LEGO                          Drone Mania
Ultimate Videos           Make a Video Game
Summer Slammers Basketball
Summer Spikers Volleyball
Sherwood Park Volleyball
Extreme Babysitting
Register online for Summer Youth Camps by visiting
Kindness is One Size Fits ALL
Fort Saskatchewan Celebration
February 24 was Pink Shirt Day at all our locations.  We celebrate the differences of all our students and staff and encourage everyone to practice kindness and acceptance towards themselves and others.
Chinese New Year Fort Saskatchewan Style
Fort Saskatchewan celebrated Chinese New Years.  Yolanda explained the meaning of the holiday to the students and also led them in making homemade dumplings.  They also celebrated with homemade spring rolls, fried rice, and chicken stir-fry made by Yolanda's parents,
A Huge Success!

Sherwood Park Next Step’s mid-year orientation was a huge success, and a great way to connect students and staff.  Throughout the two weeks, students engaged in teambuilding activities such as Broomball, Basketball & Floor Hockey, Staff Bingo and Team Marshmallow Tower Building (Team Andrea won the competition!).  Advisors met with their students one on one to discuss course planning, Stephanie and Tiffany taught students the ins and outs of e-learning through COM 1255, and of course everyone began work on their first courses of the semester.  Off to a great start!  Let’s keep the momentum going!

Boundary Exemption Request Process is Now Open
Elk Island Public Schools (EIPS) boundary exemption request process for the 2016–2017 school year is open until April 14, 2016. 
Students from Kindergarten to Grade 12 wanting to attend a non-designated school in the upcoming school year can now apply to do so. All interested families must fill out a Boundary Exemption Request Form and submit it directly to their requested school by April 14, 2016. There is no late or secondary process. 
Additional information about the boundary exemption request process including the Boundary Exemption Request Form, schools with closed boundaries, and frequently asked questions can be found by visiting
 Final decisions will be made by April 22, 2016.

NOTE: Students already accepted into their non-designated school don’t need to reapply.

Please Note: Next Step does not have boundary requirements. Therefore, students wishing to attend any of our schools Do NOT need to apply for boundary exemption. Our programs are available to all students in the EIPS district.
March 15

Next Step Open House
Everyone welcome
Parent Advisory Meeting
Sherwood Park

March 14-18

Substitute Teachers' Appreciation Week

March 24-April 5

Spring Break - School closed
Sherwood Park Next Step will be hosting its' Open House on Tuesday March 15 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm.  Everyone is welcome to attend.  There will be refreshments served and plenty of answers to all questions.
Parent Advisory Meeting 
March 15 from 7:00 to 9:00pm.
I heard teachers discussing their work the other day and overheard a teacher comment: “Without parent support, our jobs would be so much more difficult.”  As a team, parents, staff, and community can work together to have the ultimate successful experience for our youth.  If you would like to hear about  all the ins and outs of Next Step – upcoming events and program delivery amongst many other things, please consider coming to one of our parent advisory meetings
Spring is almost upon us and our environmental group will be doing some AWESOME things!  Building a composter is first on our agenda so that we can start using the compost in our community garden.  On our meeting on Mondays at lunch we are discussing what we will be growing this season!  Please join us and get in on the planning! 
Back by popular demand, the 2016 ElkFest Student Film Festival returns on April 28, 2016. Now in its fourth year, ElkFest is unique event aimed at promoting the filmmaking spirt within EIk Island Public Schools (EIPS). Annually, the festival showcases short films created and directed by students within the Division. 
ElkFest is now accepting film submissions in the following five categories: Animation, Documentary, Music Video, Narrative: Drama/Comedy, and the 48-Hour Film Challenge. 
All submissions will be aired on the big screen during the festival and winners from each category will also be announced there. The deadline for submissions is April 11, 2016.  
Make sure to get your short film in and get it recognized! 
For more information about ElkFest 2016 visit
Thin Ice Warning
Elk Island Public Schools, along with our community partners, reminds families about the dangers of thin ice at this time of year. Depending on changing temperatures, ice can form and melt to varying degrees on outdoor bodies of water. Please remind your children about the dangers of thin ice, to obey all posted signs, and to take the proper care to remain a safe distance from the ice. 
For more information on ice safety, visit
Did you Know?
The way ice forms affects the way it melts in spring. Minerals in the water actually become concentrated in vertical veins throughout the ice as it freezes. Warm temperatures cause these veins to melt more quickly and weaken the ice, a process known as candling.
Pi Day Facts:
Albert Einstein was born March 14, 1879

Pi is an irrational number, Math teachers are not irrational.

The value of Pi has now been calculated to more than two trillion decimal places.

In 2005, Chao Lu of China correctly recited 67 890 digits of Pi.  He did it in 24 hours and four seconds at a rate of 47 digits a minute without food or toilet breaks.

In March 2015, Rajveer Meena from India beat Lu, memorizing 70 000 digits.  Rajveer wore a blind fold throughout the entire recall and took nearly 10 hours.

If you write "3.14" on a piece of paper and hold it up to a mirror, it looks like the word "PIE".

Most people say that there are no corners for a circle, but actual fact is, a circle has infinite number of corners.
Golden Moment
Mikala is a Home Education student who recently attended the Alberta Winter Games in Medicine Hat.  She won the gold for the Juvenile Ladies event in figure skating.  Congratulations Mikala!
Young Author's Conference
Today I Went to the YAC (Young Authors Conference).  At first I did not think I would like it or fit in because I don't read very often.  But then after, I went to the first class I really liked it.  Sigmund Brouwer made us laugh and we talked about what makes a good author.  We also talked about the difference between writing and storytelling.  After that, I went to my second session which was basically all about horror movies and books.  I can't draw very well (or couldn't), my best friend was the drawer.  We would always do crafts together like painting and hers was really good.  Mine well, it was not the best.  After this lesson, I learned how to draw 3D and cartoons.  I could hear my YAC presenter, and she said I did a great job.  I had a lot of fun at the YAC.  Now I read a lot more and I would absolutely love to go back next year.
Submitted by Samantha Wiltzen
Grade 7
A "Novel" Way
A "Novel" way to summarize the chapters in the book 'Ella Enchanted' by Gail Carson Devine.  By lifting each picture in the project, it provides a summary of the chapter.  Illustrations and summaries completed by Jessica a grade 6, Home Education student.
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