October 2 2020 Grade 10-12 newsletter
As I get out to walk my dog between the rains up here in Vanderhoof, the river fog, the vibrant colours and those distinct smells certainly point to autumn all around us. I hope you are all finding the rhythm and routine of school with EBUS working for you.
Please note currently we have a record setting number of new high school students interested in EBUS this year and are doing our best to process new applications received by Sept 21. EBUS has closed new full-time registrations as our high school courses are full or close to full at this time. Once school start up is complete and all full time students are in courses, I will email you each a credit check detailing your progress in the graduation program, starting with grade 12s, then 11s and 10s in order to ensure our students planning to graduate this year are all set with required courses.
WELCOME TO EBUS ACADEMY SCHOOL ASSEMBLY
As a start up to this new school year, and now that the vast majority of new students/families are in their courses, we wanted to hold a special Grade 10-12 assembly in a V-class, similar to a Zoom session. It is open to all fulltime high school families and students and will be recorded with the link shared out. We will host this Tuesday October 6 1:30pm Pacific at https://us.bbcollab.com/guest/b7821124d2264551a1773fe21a08eefb
See the Vclass Tutorial – Grades 7-12 for details about setting up your audio for the V-class, and no need to use your video camera during the session. The session will be recorded and the link shared out after. We hope you can join us!
REQUESTING COURSE CHANGES
For full time students wanting to change courses, please use the “drop course” button on your dashboard and email me your new request. Be sure to put the full student name and the specific course you are requesting, like English New Media 10. Courses will only be added if the student is dropping one or is substantially complete in a current course. Please note, some of our high school courses are full and it will take some time until we have a seat this early in the school year. But as a student drops a course they are not interested in taking, that frees up a seat for another, so it is in all students’ interests to not have inactive courses on your dashboard and to finish courses as soon as you can. The website where you can see what courses currently have space is found here https://ebus.ca/about/enroll-with-ebus-2/ but we expect to have seats open up in early-mid November, late January, and then by mid-March, the latest courses will be added. I appreciate your patience as I work through the new applications, phone calls and emails. At this busy time in the year it can take me up to 5 school days to respond.
For students and families looking to connect with me by phone we are using a new system this year that is well received by our families. Please visit https://tinyurl.com/yyrbnz7p to book that, and select the appropriate amount of time you need when you are available for the call.
This year it is essential students get started in all the courses on your dashboard given the volume of new students we are welcoming this year. Note that students who have not submitted any work within 4 weeks of adding a course risk being withdrawn and not getting that course for an extended period of time. If you need help with something reach out to the teacher right away, or if you need to make a course change, let me know. Our goal is not to stress students out with this information; we want to support each one of you with your goals of learning and high school graduation. At the same time we want to support as many learners as we can this year, so please make sure we know what we can do for you. As a guideline, students working in 4 or more courses should plan for 25 hours each week for learning time, scheduled flexibly when it works for you. Your teachers are available during the traditional school day by email or phone, and we work hard to respond to student questions within 1-2 school days, but note if your teacher works part time, it may take longer to respond.
To ensure our full-time high school students have all the information about EBUS Academy needed to be successful, our website contains lots of information vital to student success. In this section of our bi-weekly newsletter, we will highlight some of the elements of EBUS that we get lots of questions about.
So….what about the Learning Support Funds?
These funds are provided by the Ministry of Education for full-time Distance Learning students to offset the costs of memberships and lessons tied to the student learning plan. An example of a membership would be a gym membership for a student to help get their activity hours in a PE course at EBUS. Note that the funds can be used for a gym membership even if you are not in PE, we want to encourage all of our students to be physically active as a positive lifestyle choice. If a student is in a Piano high school course with EBUS and wanted to have a few local lessons related to this EBUS course, these funds can be used for this as well. All the details about the funds, how they can be accessed, the plan needed to be approved and how businesses can become a vendor of School District 91, visit https://ebus.ca/welcome-package/learning-support-funds/ Note students wanting to access the funds need to be 10% or more in 4 courses, the Ministry does not allow the funds to be used for tutoring costs for non-Special Education students, and students should have their plan submitted by March 1 to meet Ministry deadlines. All funds must be used no later than mid-May of each year and unspent funds cannot be carried over to future school years or transferred.
MENTAL HEALTH MINUTE
As a mental health counselor and the Academic Advisor at EBUS, I want to encourage all students and families to set aside space and time regularly to take care of your health in all its aspects. This newsletter I want to focus on the connection and value of physical health and well being with our mental health. Regular, vigorous physical activity is consistently shown to have a positive influence on our mental health. I work hard to schedule daily walks in my busy life…having a 16 month old dog is my motivator, and when I can get out for a good long walk I am the better for it. Take the time and make it consistent, I think you will find it helpful.
UPCOMING IMPORTANT DATES
- Monday Oct 12 Thanksgiving – EBUS closed, courses open
- Friday Oct 23 Professional Development Day – EBUS staff unavailable, courses open
- Monday Nov 9 Term 1 ends
- Wednesday Nov 11 Remembrance Day – EBUS closed, courses open to students
- Tuesday Nov 24 report cards available
- Friday Nov 27 Professional Development Day – EBUS staff unavailable, courses open
- WINTER BREAK Dec 21 – Jan 1 – EBUS staff unavailable, courses open
- Monday January 18 Term 2 ends
- Tuesday Feb 2 report cards available
- Note that Term end dates are guidelines for students to finish courses, if you do not finish by the November or January term end date you can continue with your studies without penalty. New courses are not automatically added at the Term change, students must request them as they finish current courses.
You can find the full year school calendar at
Parents, you can access your student’s progress and report cards on the EBUS parent portal: https://my.ebus.ca/parentportal/login.php We recommend parents log in with their student at least once a week to stay actively engaged in their learning and progress. Students, you can access your report cards from your dashboard; look for the A+ icon in the upper right hand corner. Report cards are published 5 times a year; November, January, March, June and for summer session courses only, September.
I hope you get to enjoy the coming days of autumn, it’s my favourite season. The next newsletter will be Friday Oct 16.