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Jun 25
Student-designed anti-vaping posters to be displayed in schools

three winners.jpg

"Vaping isn't 'just' water vapour."

The bright yellow words across Safa Sajid's poster proved to be the winning message in a recent districtwide anti-vape poster contest.

winner Safa Sajid.jpgSajid, a Grade 11 student at Tamanawis Secondary (pictured right with Clayton Heights Secondary principal Bal Ranu), put the statement front and centre on her simple, yet effective, winning poster. Her creation, which featured mostly yellow lettering on a vapour-filled black background, included the introduction "We used to think cigarettes were 'harmless' too…" and noted the long-term effects of vaping are still being researched. "Don't become another statistic," the poster urged. Sajid's efforts earned her $500.

Elementary winners in the poster contest were Shwen Nao, a Grade 7 student at Surrey Academy of Innovative Learning and Mary Jane Shannon Elementary Grade 7 student Nhi Vo, who tied for first place.

While Vo's poster encouraged people to "escape the vape" and featured a dramatic red silhouette of someone vaping, Nao's reminded students to "think of the consequences" vaping has both on the user and on the health of others.

The posters will be reproduced and displayed in schools. 

Check here for resources and information about vaping for parents, families and students.

Jun 24
New camps for kids with cancer among district's Summer Learning programs

City camp poster.pngA new program Surrey Schools is offering in collaboration with West Coast Kids Cancer Foundation invites children living with or beyond cancer and blood disorders to attend two five-day camps.

The free City Camp is for kids six to 12 who have had cancer or are in treatment, and their siblings. Children will have the opportunity to play, learn and make new friends in a medically supervised setting, balancing high-energy activities such as water games and slime making with more tranquil activities like reading and Lego making.

Sessions will be held at A.H.P. Matthew Elementary on July 15-19 and July 22-29. Both will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Transportation support is available if needed. Register online at, or for more information, contact camp coordinator Kelsey Merritt at

The program is among dozens offered by Surrey Schools during the summer months. We anticipate approximately 12,500 students of all ages to enroll in an array of summer programs this year.

Also new this summer are expanded Enhancement Programs for Grade 8-12 students. The programs allow an opportunity for students and teachers to pursue areas of personal interest and engagement in learning, and a new partnership with SFU will allow us to offer an audio/visual-based program this summer.

Invergarry Adult Learning Centre will also being offering full courses for adults this summer, with a spectrum of courses including literacy, math and physical education.

These new offerings add to the district's diverse selection of programs, which includes numerous academic courses for secondary and elementary students, an early primary program for children transitioning from kindergarten to Grade 1, French immersion, trades exploration and more.

For more information about Summer Learning, email, phone 604-595-6077 or check HERE.

Jun 19
District well on its way to reaching energy and emission reduction targets

Carbon Neutral report Surrey 2019.JPG

Despite continual growth in student enrolment and facility space, the Surrey School district has managed to reduce emissions by 17.5% in the past decade.

The Surrey Board of Education received the 2018 Carbon Neutral Action Report at its most recent board meeting.

The report covers the period from Jan. 1-Dec. 31, 2018. It provides a record of the district's 2018 greenhouse gas emissions, offset purchases, reduction actions and plans for continued reduction of emissions in the future, as well as highlighting other sustainability actions in the district.

You can view the full report HERE.

In 2015 the district established five-year targets for reductions in energy intensity and greenhouse gas emissions. Establishing 2010 as our baseline year, the district aims to achieve reductions of 25% in both energy intensity and greenhouse gas emissions by the end of next year (2020). We are pleased to say we are well on our way to reaching our target.

Jun 17
Harriet Tuey the first Surrey teacher to win Loran Teachers Building Leaders Award

Harriet Tuey Anthony Hope and leadership students.JPG

Leadership students celebrate with Johnston Heights Secondary teacher Harriet Tuey as former student Anthony Hope presents her with the Loran Teachers Building Leaders Award.

The moment she stepped onto the stage at Johnston Heights Secondary, it was clear Harriet Tuey is a valued and respected teacher at the school.

Once she began speaking to the dozens of students present, it became obvious why.

"I don't consider you my students, I've always considered you my children, and that's how I actually treat you," she said, prompting tears from many of those listening.

Tuey was honoured June 14th with the Loran Teachers Building Leaders Award ­– one of 30 awarded across Canada and the first ever to be given to a Surrey teacher.

The award is administered by the Loran Scholars Foundation. To receive it, a teacher must be nominated by a former student who has become a Loran Scholar. Anthony Hope, a 2015 Loran Scholar and former Johnston Heights Secondary student, nominated Tuey for her impact.

Hope gladly made the trip from Ottawa, where he now lives and works, to present Tuey with the award, crediting her mentorship and "many pearls of wisdom" for his continued successful journey since high school.

"She believed in me, even in moments when I doubted myself. Ms. Tuey taught me and many of my former friends and classmates… how to lead and serve with integrity," said Hope. "What sets her apart is her steadfast determination to see her students grow into responsible, civic-minded members of their community. She did this through leading by example."

Principal Cory McLaughlin also spoke about the unparalleled inspiration, guidance and growth opportunities Tuey offers students

"In my two years at Johnston Heights, I never cease to be amazed at how much passion Ms. Tuey shows for all of you," she told the crowd.

Tuey was humbled by the award, sharing she never planned to become an educator.

"In actuality, I fell into becoming a teacher and it was the best thing that ever happened to me," she said. "The most important thing was being able to make a difference in the children and students that I came into contact with."

Tuey is one of the longest-serving employees in the Surrey School District, having started here as a PE teacher more than 50 years ago. She now works as a career facilitator and leadership teacher and continues to be highly involved in organizing school events, fundraisers and arranging work experience for students.

She told Johnston Heights leadership students the only reason she has no plans to retire, is because "I really, really, truly love every one of you – even though sometimes I do have to scold you and even though sometimes I am maybe a little bit demanding.

"But I want you to be the very best you can be."

Jun 14
Roots of Empathy: Celebrating 15 years of our tiniest teachers in Surrey classrooms

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ROE smiley guy vert.JPGThe Roots of Empathy (ROE) program celebrated its 15th year in Surrey Schools this year, with a reception for the babies, parents, coordinators and special guests.

This school year, 23 infants participated in visits to 19 schools (23 classrooms) and interacted with about 500 students across the district.

ROE is an elementary classroom program where parents are invited to bring their babies into classrooms every few weeks for schoolchildren to observe and interact with.

The program has been shown to raise social and emotional competence and increase empathy – while reducing levels of aggression and bullying – among students.

We are looking for volunteers to participate in the program in the upcoming school year. If your child will be two to four months old this fall, contact ROE coordinator and instructor Koryna Kirkpatrick at or 778-772-0673 for further information.

ROE group in air.JPGROE group.JPG

Jun 13
Menstrual product dispensers installed in all Surrey & White Rock schools by December 2019

In accordance with a provincial order issued earlier this year, Surrey Schools has developed a plan that will see menstrual product dispensers installed in all schools by December 2019.

Currently, these products are available to students on a request basis only from counsellors, youth care workers or office staff.

The new plan would have menstrual products made available in six washrooms in each secondary school, three washrooms in each elementary school, and two washrooms in learning centres, SAIL (Surrey Academy of Innovative Learning), the District Education Centre and the Resource & Education Centre. There will also be products in one or more gender neutral and/or handicapped access washrooms at each site.

The ministerial order, issued April 6, requires all B.C. public schools to provide free menstrual products for students in school washrooms by the end of 2019.

In the Surrey School District, the plan is estimated to cost approximately $356,000, according to a staff report. To date, the Ministry of Education has not committed to providing funding to school districts for start-up costs.

In the event funding or budget capacity is not available, the district may consider an alternative implementation plan that would include providing products in baskets placed in washrooms; however, dispensers are preferred to ensure hygiene and tidiness.

The district is also required to develop policies and procedures regarding the provision of menstrual products, incorporating student feedback. Students are being surveyed this month and draft policy and regulation will be prepared to present at the first Policy Committee meeting of the 2019-20 school year.

Jun 11
Pilot program offers trades skills course for students with learning challenges

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A pilot program in the Surrey School District is giving students with learning challenges a chance to explore a career in culinary and construction trades, a first for Industry Training Authority (ITA).

Twelve students are participating in the pilot and have already completed 30 hours of culinary training with a European chef in a kitchen at Surrey Traditional School. In early spring, students demonstrated their newly acquired skills by preparing a luncheon for teachers, administrators, and school district trustees. They’re now completing 30 hours of basic construction and metal fabrication training at Fraser Heights Secondary, where they framed a wall and are building planters.

Read the full ITA article here.

Jun 06
Surrey students win bronze at national skills competition

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Surrey students Isaac Carswell, Reilly Ouwerling, Junniel Abeto and Vince Pascual all competed at the 2019 Canada National Skills Competition after winning gold at the provincial level. Below are Ouwerling (left) and Abeto and Pascual (right) during competition.

Three Surrey secondary students won bronze medals at the 2019 Skills Canada National Competition in Halifax.

Elgin Park Secondary student Reilly Ouwerling won bronze in car painting, while Fraser Heights Secondary duo Junniel Abeto and Vince Pascual took bronze in 2D character computer animation.

The students, along with Sullivan Heights Secondary baker Isaac Carswell who placed fourth in his category, earned a spot to compete at nationals after winning gold at the provincial level.

The Skills Canada National Competition in Nova Scotia welcomed more than 550 students and apprentices from across the country who competed in 44 skill areas, representing six skilled trades and technologies, including transportation, construction, information technology, service, manufacturing and engineering, and employment. The goal and objective of the competition is to engage Canadian youth and promote the diverse careers that are available in the skilled trades and technologies. It is the only national multi-trade and technology event of its kind for young students and apprentices in the country.

The complete list of medalists from the 2019 national competition is available HERE. Next year's competition will be held in Vancouver.

Reilly car painting.JPGJunniel and Vince 2D animation.JPG

Jun 05
Students shine at district’s first Panjabi Speech & Film Festival

Panjabi speech and film fest.jpg

More than 100 students from eight of Surrey's secondary schools participated in the First-Annual Surrey School District Panjabi Speech and Film Festival.

The event was organized by Panjabi language teachers from Princess Margaret, Queen Elizabeth, Frank Hurt, Sullivan Heights, L.A. Matheson, Panorama Ridge, Enver Creek and Tamanawis, as well as the district's International Languages Department. Students spoke on topics relevant to their lives and community and advanced to the district festival following school-based competitions.

Winning students were:


1. Jassimar Kaur - Princess Margaret Secondary

2. Mantoj Grewal - Princesses Margaret Secondary

3. Pratham Walia - Frank Hurt Secondary


1. Japjee Singh Kochar – L.A. Matheson Secondary

2. Rajveer Kaler - Princess Margaret Secondary

3. Jasjot Kang - Princess Margaret Secondary

The overall tropy winner was Princess Margaret Secondary's Jassimar Kaur.

The student-created films were not judged, but showcased for attendees at the festival, which took place mid-May at the Bell Performing Arts Centre.

Jun 04
Surrey Board of Education honours employees for 25 years of service

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Surrey school trustees thanked dozens of district employees for their 25 years of service at a special reception on May 30.

Surrey Board of Education trustees have honoured 177 school district employees who this year reached the 25-year milestone of supporting Surrey students.

The board held a Long Service Recognition event May 30, for employees hired between Sept. 2, 1993 and Sept. 1, 1994. The 74 honourees in attendance were treated to a reception, and were personally thanked by trustees and presented with a silver pen set.

Guests also enjoyed a performance by Grade 5 and 6 students from M.J. Norris Elementary, who comprise the school's "Orffestra." Led by teacher and director Susan Penner, the Orffestra was recently selected as a Top 10 finalist nationwide in the CBC Music Class competition. They performed the piece that got them to the finals – Mummer's Dance by Canada's Loreena McKennitt – at the Surrey Schools recognition event, as well as a piece from Jurassic Park, a movie that premiered 25 years ago.

MJ Norris Orffestra (1).jpg 

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Time: 6/26/2019 1:14:01 AM
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