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Sullivan Heights Secondary receives Inspirational School Award from BC School Sports

Sullivan%20Heights%20BCSS%20Award.jpgThe Sullivan Heights Secondary team at the BCSS Awards. (Image: Andrew Holland)
Sullivan Heights Secondary has been named Inspirational School of 2024 by BC School Sports (BCSS) as part of the annual BCSS Awards, held last week in Kelowna.

The Inspirational School Award recognizes schools for their outstanding commitment to a positive school culture, improving the lives of students and creating new athletic opportunities for students to excel. The recognition marks the first time in the award’s 20-year history that a district school in Surrey has won.

“This is one of the best honours we could have ever received,” said Sullivan Heights athletic director Gary Atwal. “We’re so proud to have won this because it recognizes years of hard work for some of the teachers that have been here.”

By developing more opportunities for students to get involved in sports, Sullivan Heights now runs more than 40 teams per year and has more than 400 student athletes.

“The overall engagement of our students has grown,” said Atwal. “We used to just have athletes supporting athletes, but now we’ve created such a strong school community that our gyms are often packed with fans for each game.”

In addition to fostering a supportive school community, Atwal noted a key part of the staff’s approach is to ensure that the effort students exert on the field and court is extended into the classroom and their academic careers.

“They need to take responsibility of their own academic progress in order to make sure they’re in good standing for athletics,” he said.

The result, said Atwal, is that students develop the confidence to apply themselves in all aspects of life. That confidence is further exhibited when students realize they are ambassadors for their school community – they don’t simply compete for themselves.

“There’s been a big shift in how students take pride in representing their school,” he said. “They know they’re representing our school at all times and there’s a standard that goes with that.”

Congratulations to everyone at Sullivan Heights Secondary!

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