News: January 26, 2015
GYPSD approves purchase of levelled literacy kits
by Adrienne Tait
Family Literacy Day is January 27. While there has been an increased focus on promoting literacy for younger children with the hopes of instilling those skills and habits there are a number of resources available for older youth and young adults who struggle.
The Grande Yellowhead Public School Division (GYPSD) approved the purchase of the latest levelled literacy kits targeted for grade four students at their December 17 board meeting.
Leslee Jodry assistant superintendent of learning services with the GYPSD said, “As Leveled Literacy Intervention Programs become available to adolescent grades, we will continue to investigate the use of these resources and support schools as possible.”
The school division is planning a learning event for teachers grades four and up in the spring to explore strategies and resources for students that struggle with reading or writing.
Jodry said, “This is an extension of the training provided to middle and high school teachers (a program called Stepping Out) which supports literacy in the content areas. The focus is that all teachers see themselves as supporting literacy development and as literacy teachers.”
What can parents do at home to help a struggling child? Jodry said parents need to work with their child’s teacher and school to build timely and responsive plans that address students’ ongoing needs.
Parents may also consider additional sources to promote literacy such as recipes, comic books, and even the driver’s manual. Magazines about their favourite activity, puzzles, song lyrics, biographies about their heroes, and listening to audio books may appeal to the youth who doesn’t want to sit down and read a book.
For parents who wish to encourage literacy in older children Melissa Gagne, program coordinator and library technician at the Edson and District Public Library said, “Nobody likes to be told what to read, if they are genuinely interested on the topic of the book, it will come more natural. I always say that life is too short for boring or bad books. Read what you love! Graphic Novels are another great way to get kids reading.”
For more information about family literacy visit www.famlit.ca or http://abclifeliteracy.ca/.
News: January 19, 2015
Free busing for Glenwood’s elementary students
GYPSD board unanimously passes new student transportation policy
by Adrienne Tait
A revision to the GYPSD student transportation policy will allow students in Glenwood to be bussed to their designated school free of charge.
The previous policy stated that transportation eligibility was based on the student residing 2.4 kilometers, or more, from their designated school. Funding was based on the walking path distance to the student’s designated school.
The new policy states, “The division will transport students where the driving distance is 2.4 kilometers or more from their residence to their designated school.”
While the change to driving distance from walking distance may not seem like much of a change it takes into consideration one way streets, potential safety issues, and any potential lack of walking paths.
Across the division the policy change will affect between 20 and 25 students.
The new policy was passed unanimously at the January 13 regular board meeting and takes effect immediately.
Families who qualify under the new policy will have their transportation fees prorated from the date the new policy was passed and therefore will receive a refund for the balance of the current school year.
Concerns had been raised by Glenwood residents that elementary aged school children were walking along Highway 16, through a bulk station, and along an area with no sidewalks in order to reach the school making the walk a safety concern.
News: January 12, 2015
Apparent murder-suicide of elderly Entwistle couple
On January 7, 2015, at approximately 1:30 p.m., Evansburg RCMP
officers responded to a call for service to a residence following
a request to check on the complainant's elderly parents at their
home in the Hamlet of Entwistle. Officers gained entry to the
residence and found the couple already deceased within the
residence. Both the man and woman were 73 years old.
RCMP Major Crimes from Edmonton and Edson Forensic Identification Services assisted Evansburg RCMP with the investigation, and it was observed that the couple died of apparent gunshot wounds.
Upon police arrival the residence was secured from the inside with no sign of forced entry. Police investigation shows that these deaths are an apparent murder-suicide, and no suspects are sought in this matter.
As of press time, the names of the deceased were still being withheld as per the family's wishes. The cause of death has not yet been determined by the Office of the Medical Examiners, and autopsies are tentatively scheduled later Thursday, January 8.
News: January 5, 2015
Emergency crews respond to 13 motor vehicle 911 calls Sunday
by Adrienne Tait
Emergency responders were kept busy on Sunday December 28 as they responded to 13 highway incident 911 calls.
“We want to make sure people are ok,” said county fire chief Cory Chegwyn, “People were driving by and calling 911. It can become problematic in terms of volume.”
Crews were out between 11 and 13 hours for vehicles that had hit the ditch.
When calls come in through 911 police, ambulance, and fire crews are all dispatched in case it is a serious incident.
Chegwyn recommends, “If you think it’s important enough to call 911 then it should be important enough to stop. If someone is in distress the intervention that will do the most good is what you can provide.”
Despite best efforts emergency crews can often be a minimum of 20-30 minutes away.
Chegwyn said he understand if people do not want to stop out of concern for their own safety but recommends that even if you stay in your vehicle to “have a good look.”
In one incident crews were called to assist a vehicle that had already been checked and taped. “If there is tape there it has been checked.”
Edson Sgt. Jack Poitras concurred with chief Chegwyn and said Emergency crews responded to 13 motor vehicle 911 calls Sunday it would be helpful to RCMP members and emergency response personnel if people would get a better description or location for any motor vehicle accidents.
Helpful information would include licence plate numbers, an exact location, and including a point of reference. Sgt. Poitras also noted that the presence of yellow tape is an indicator that the scene had been attended and the vehicle would be towed once it was safe to do so.
In one incident over the weekend RCMP had six calls to five different locations which all turned out to be for one accident. I n each situation the callers gave slightly varying location details (such as 10 minutes, 20 minutes, or varying kilometres out if town.) The result was a number of emergency services personnel being needlessly dispatched. "People don't want to stop because they fear it is a safety issue," said Sgt. Poitras, "We can understand that. You need to be comfortable. But we would love people to get an actual bearing." Should you choose to stop, Sgt. Poitras recommends making sure you are able to pull far enough off the road to do so safely.
News: December 22, 2014
RCMP reminder about drinking responsibly
“With Christmas just around the corner, we want to remind everyone about drinking responsibly. So if you want to go out and party it up, arrange for a sober driver or take a cab. Together we can make this a safer community,” Sgt. Jack Poitras.