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Horizon School Board meeting briefs from March 25

Posted on May 2, 2024 by admin

By Heather Cemeron
Westwind Weekly News

The following are select briefs from the Horizon School Board meeting that took place on March 25, 2024.

Milk River Ridge 4-Day week

Dr. Wilco Tymensen, Superintendent of the Horizon School Division, shared with the board the results of a discussion topic that came forward at the January 2024 School Council Meeting. At that meeting, Dr. Tymensen said, The School Council Executive discussed and supported the idea that the Horizon School Division should bring the matter forward to the larger school community and seek input from parents regarding rearranging of the school week/year so that the school might operate four days per week. Policy HCBA, Tymensen said, states that 67 percent of parents voting must be in favour for the board to consider the proposal, but 67 percent does not guarantee board approval. The school, Tymensen said, held a meeting on March 4, 2024 to discuss the matter with the community and provided parents who would have children in school in the 2024-2025 school year to vote as well as all current staff and current grade 4 to 11 students. Tymensen reported that the results were as follows: there was a 66.7 percent response rate, a 100 percent staff response rate, and a 56 percent Erle Rivers student response rate. Tymensen stated that due to the fact that the 67 percent threshold was not met, policy dictates that the topic did not meet the threshold to be added to the admin agenda. Therefore, Tymensen said, it is now off the books for three more years.

Taber Mennonite School Name Change

During the meeting, the Board of Trustees of the Horizon School Division discussed D.A. Ferguson and W.R. Myers school administration’s request to change the name of Taber Mennonite School (TMS) to Horizon Christian Program. The board stated that this change was done because the transition as a standalone school in the main floor of the ACE Place Learning Center complex to the program within D.A. Ferguson Middle School and W.R. Myers High School made Taber Mennonite School cease to exist as a school under the Alberta Education definition. Instead, the Board determined, it meets the definition of a school program. Families, the Board determined, requested that the program name represent what is important to their families and is reflective of their values. The Board therefore shared that the name of the Taber Mennonite School program has officially been renamed Horizon Christian Program, and believes the name is reflective of the fact that the families who attend the program are from Taber and the broader Horizon community and that the program will continue to promote, protect, and preserve Mennonite values.

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