Breadth and Depth – A School for Everyone

Wednesday, April 05, 2017 - By: Mr. Bud Patel

Like a beautiful piece of music, a school year has a tempo and rhythm. Sometimes. Spring Break’s slow and melodic pace provides some respite from the quicker tempo of school in session. During this time of reflection, I pondered the sixty-three days of Term 2. Punctuating through the snow, rain, and cold were the incredible accomplishments of our students and staff. However, this was not across a narrow bridge but rather a much wider bridge built upon a foundation of breadth and depth. The final four weeks of the winter term provides a glimpse into what’s possible – a few highlights.

Feb 12-18

Kindness Week

  • An SAC/SPARC/BEAT joint venture to celebrate acts of kindness.

Ivan Coyote Presentation

  • Using humour and storytelling, Ivan spoke to the school about gender identity and inclusiveness.

Java Hut

  • This annual fixture is a yearly highlight of musical talent. The coffee house style event featured over 25 acts.

Feb 19-25

18th Annual Ross Cup

  • Mr. Flynn’s final Ross Cup was well run and entertaining. He will be missed!

40 KM Dinner

  • Our Food Services team always says “Yes”. This local dinner featured fresh everything from the Cowichan Valley.

Birdhouse Building by the BEAT

  • As part of our commitment to the environment, our BEAT team used our Makerspace to build bird habitats.

Grade 8 Destination Imagination

  • Travelling to Courtenay, the Grade 8s participated in an integrated learning experience involving science, math, drama, and, yes, imagination.

Mackenzie House #1 Inspection

  • I had the privilege of inspecting Mackenzie House. What rooms and what views!

Feb 26-March 4

CAIS Accreditation Visit

  • As a member of the Canadian Accredited Independent School Association (96 schools across Canada), we were visited by a team of experts from across the country. It was the culmination of a year’s worth of work focused on continuous improvement. Mr Dave McCarthy and Mrs Carey Desloges deserve special kudos.

Melhuish Recitations

  • Our English department develops public speaking skills through original recitations. Winners from each grade have the honour of presenting to the whole school.

Careers Day

  • Organised through our student-led Academic Council, we invite Old Brentonians, parents, and local business leaders to share their passions with our students. These small group presentations provide insight to a variety of careers.

Board Meeting

  • The 2nd Board of Governors meeting took place with a focus on campus master planning. These volunteers provide wonderful stewardship of the Brentwood experience.

Musical Theatre – Mary Poppins

  • An annual term two highlight is our musical theatre production. Well over 100 students and staff participate in this magical experience that, this year, ended with Mary Poppins flying into the night.

BC Rugby Teams to Las Vegas

  • Four Brentwood rugby players earned places on BC Rugby Sevens teams that represented our province in an international tournament in Las Vegas.

Debating Teams at Provincials

  • A record six Brentwood teams qualified for the Provincial Championships in Burnaby with two teams making their way to the Nationals.

We broke ground on the New Athletic Centre

  • Though not yet finalized, we are fortunate to gain the support of some key benefactors to help the Board make the decision to break ground on the New Athletic Centre. We still require your support and, in advance, thank you for your belief in Brentwood.

Staff Pro-D – Professional Learning Communities (PLC)

  • As part of our commitment to improvement, our teachers are taking part in PLC sessions that include discussions on design thinking, critical thinking, inquiry-based learning, experiential learning, creative thinking, and problem-based learning. We are fortunate to have a faculty that is constantly in search of improving their craft.

Mar 5-11

American Dinner

  • Again, our Food Services team supported our American students’ wish to host a burger and fries event.

Staff Band Performance

  • During our final assembly of the year, our staff band made up of Mr Armitage (Theatre Production), Mrs Olszewski (Physics & Outdoor Pursuits), Mr Griffiths (Innovations, IT & Rugby), Mr Johnston (Admission), and Mr Rodrigues (Physics & University Counselling) serenaded the students with rock-and-roll tunes from the 80s and 90s. A new definition of “cool” was created.

Basketball Provincials

  • Finally, over the first weekend of Spring Break, our Senior Boys Basketball team made history by capturing our first ever senior basketball provincial championship in an epic final that saw us claw back from a thirteen point third quarter deficit. The boys played with skill, teamwork, and poise.

If four weeks provides a lens into the Brentwood experience, then we are crossing the right bridge. This migrating community requires passionate instructors, engaged students, extensive resources, and a flexible/can-do mindset. Though we are most proud of our accomplishments, this is not intended to be a boastful assertion. Instead, it speaks more to commitment. A commitment to excellence. A commitment to experiences. A commitment to our students. A commitment to commitment.

Wider and wider bridges…that’s the Brentwood way.

Mr. Bud Patel

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