Weekly Update » November 17, 2023

November 17, 2023



We can be Heroes! 

We come from good people. At ST’a7mes school we use our strengths to support one another; we are all connected. We show kindness, treat others with dignity and respect. We care for people in needWe are connected to and we represent our family, ancestors, and community. We work with exertion and diligence 


Ha7lh Skwayel Families 

It has been a couple of weeks! And despite cold and flu illnesses that many of us are facing (including myself - I’m sorry to have missed you if you’ve dropped by. I’ve been unavailable due to this silly cold. I hope to be back in full form next week) learning and activity continues to be robust around the school.  


Last week we honored veterans and looked specifically at the experience of Indigenous Veteran Tommy PrinceSpakwus students made a poppy wreath. LEX students created mosaic interpretations of the Legion’s Commemorative Pin for Indigenous Veterans. We all stopped together at 11:11 for a moment of silence, and then met together at 2:30 where Roxy led us in singing and drumming to honor Veterans.  


We had a beautiful day for our school and class photosThe sun came out just for us (so it seemed) and we were able to get our traditional school photo on the playground web under the protective and watchful gaze of the St’a7mes Chief.  


Today Peter Ilieve, the head coach for Luge at the Whistler Sliding Center came to do a presentation at our school for students in Ms. Kye’s , Ms. Kathleen’s and LEX classes. Students in these classes will receive a ticket to the World Cup being held in Whistler. Allie Spence, one of our Grade 10 students is a Luge athlete and competes and trains at the Whistler Sliding Center.


PBIS: Positive Behavior Intervention Supports 

You may have heard talk about PBIS as a system being implemented around many of the schools in our district. This week we started our implementation of the PBIS system for our school. As a school, under the guidance of the work of Charlene Williams, and Virginia  - we identified three values that guide actions of the way we want to act and be at our school. They are:  


           ( Wan -ow - hw -s) 

I carry myself in a good way. 

Treat (someone) with respect: believe (someone); honour (someone).verb (t) 


(Chin -chin - st - why) 

Together we hold each other upWe stand and work together. 

Uphold one another; support one another. Verb (i) 



Perform (something) with all one’s might 


Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) is an approach schools use to promote school safety and good behavior. With PBIS, schools teach kids directly, on location about behavior expectations and strategies. The focus of PBIS is prevention, and internalizing good ways of being, not punishment. PBIS recognizes that students can only meet behavior expectations if they know what the expectations are. Everyone learns what’s considered appropriate behavior. And we use a common language to talk about it. Throughout the school day — in class, at lunch, and on the bus — students understand what’s expected. Expected behavior is celebrated and spotlightedThis follows the research that supports where energy is directed, there you will see growth PBIS does not stand alone – it is supported by restorative practices and interventions when expectations for behavior are not met.  


This week Auntie Char and Virginia started the teaching of the values with some of our classes on location in the bus, and in the classroomWe will continue the teaching portion of the system into the following weeks. All this learning will culminate together at an assembly where we will be kicking off our start to acknowledging the values we see being implemented by students around the school. Students will be recognized with cedar tickets or “Tahla” that they can trade in for prizesAll the ‘Tahla’ accumulated will fill up our cedar tree at the front entrance of the school, and when it has been filled, we will celebrate with a school wide reward such as an extra recess, or popcorn party.   


Chen Kwen Mantumi to the collaborative work and efforts from our PBIS committee: Laura, Sarah, and myself, and the contributions and guidance of Charlene Williams and Virginia, to the contributions of our staff in creating a system that is well suited to the culture and needs of our school.  Also I want to acknowledge the reverence and intention of the staff to be make sure that we are respectfully honoring the language and the wishes of the Nation when it comes to the values represented and taught at our school.   


Learning Services at St’a7mes:  

You may not know about our learning services team, and I'd like to reintroduce you. Many thanks to Laura Pender and Sarah Fleming who have taken on the roles of Teacher–in-Charge on occasions when I have been out of the building Sarah is our full time Learning Services teacher. She is the case manager for many of our students with IEPs. You may have already interacted with her in your IEP meetings this fall. Laura is also a .5 Learning Services teacher who is case manager for some students with IEPs. The other half of Laura’s roll is as Collaborative Support Teacher. Tegan Davies also has a Collaborative Support Teaching role at our school as does Matthew Van OostdamThe collaborative support teacher’s role is to collaborate with teachers on co-planning, co-assessing, and co-teaching to support classrooms with diverse needsThese interventions are meant to be Tier One” which means support for the whole class in making the learning accessible and adaptations inclusive and invisibleMatthew’s role as Land Based Collaborative Coordinator makes learning on the land accessible to our learners while also creating safety in boosting personal, familiar, and cultural identityOur learning services team also includes support from District supports: Michelle Roberts joins us weekly as part of the district inclusions support team, Diana Kilby and Mel Ironside also work with our team weeklyMarley Morton is our school psychologist and she is onsite weekly, as well as Diana Lockett and Kayla Rosie – our speech language team.   


Other supports around the school include Nicole Baker who is our Indigenous Support Worker and Maureen Baker who offers Indigenous support and Squamish Nation Language support, Roxy Lewis our Language and Culture teacher, John Hamill and Loraine Gus (soon to go on mat leave – congratulations - and replaced by Sarah) who are our Indigenous Youth workers.  


Partners in the Learning; Family Homework and Reminders from the Principal 

Engaging in Learning Conversations with our Kids: 

  • Ask your kids about the values of PBIS: Wanáxws, Chén̓chenstway, and  Tímit 
  • Do these values coincide with the values of your family? 
  • What values does your family embody as you go about interacting with each other and the world?  
  • If you haven’t already – create a set of 3-4 values with your kids that are important to the way you want to be in this world.   
  • Revisit and celebrate those values together.  


Pro D Day - Monday, November 20th - School is not in session

Outside Attire – Much of our learning happens out on the landPlease make sure your child is prepared with weather appropriate clothing, footwear 

PAC Meeting – The next PAC date will be confirmed soon. We will send out an email with the new date. We would like to hear your voice and have your support. It’d be lovely to have you there.  

Backpack Buddies – Please let us know if your family is in need of support with groceries and we can add you to our back pack buddies program. 

Act Alive – Our Tuesday Act Alive program continues provide activity at lunch for our students. Students are learning the madrigal song from Encanto. They will be preforming their song to the school community in early December. Stay tuned for more details.  


As you go into this weekend, I hope you have rich and playful conversations with your child about their learning, and that you are able to connect with your kids around your family’s values.    

Most Sincerely,  

Alysa Patching, Principal. 




Exciting news! Your online gallery from your school photo session is now live!

Please visit this link to access the gallery:      https://weborders.mountainwest.ca        

Your webcode to access your images was provided on photo day. Any active email address can be used to login.

Your order deadline is: TUESDAY NOVEMBER 28TH 2023 

(after the date a late fee is applicable )


Missing your login code? No problem!

Visit  https://weborders.mountainwest.ca 

Click on "No code? Click here"

Enter your student's last name, grade and student number

Order your photos! 


About Retakes:

Did you miss the first photo day or are needing a retake? If you would like retakes they will be held at Mountain West Studios on:




Please visit this linkhttps://app.acuityscheduling.com/schedule.php?owner=26596311&appointmentType=38049955


To find out more about ordering, Click Here for support.

Phone: 1.888.644.4494
Email: [email protected]




DONATIONS - We will be accepting donations of new toys, non perishable food or cash at the school office from December 1 - 8th. 

Community Christmas Care's 2023 Hamper Program Application is now available! Please find a link below to the application form. The deadline to submit applications is Friday November 17th. Late Applications will not be processed. 


Applications can be picked up in several places, including the St'a7mes School Office, at most Squamish churches, Under One Roof, Sea to Sky Community Services and the Women's Center. The application is also attached below, and can be printed, filled out, and dropped off. 


Applications can be dropped off at the St'a7mes School office, Squamish Churches, Under One Roof, Sea to Sky Community Services or the Women's Center.