Online Opening of Term Documents

Tuesday, July 24, 2007 - By: Carey Desloges

Dear parents,

Opening of Terms packages have been mailed to all new and returning students.  This on-line version is available to assist you with your preparations for the coming school year.

Orientation begins for all new students on Tuesday, September 4.

Our re-enrolling boarding and day students will return on Thursday September 6: the Grade 12 class (boarding and day) to arrive by 1.00pm; Grade 9-11 boarding students to arrive between 1.00 and 5.00pm, and day students by 6.00pm.

The balance of the Opening of Year documents are linked below in pdf format.  Please review all these documents carefully with your son/daughter and return the forms to the school as soon as possible to assist us with our Opening arrangements.  Many thanks for your prompt response.

New Students

Full Package: ZIP or tar.gz

Re-enrolling Students

Full Package: ZIP or tar.gz

As you would expect, students at boarding school share responsibility with faculty and staff for the well-being of the entire community.  Our Statement of Personal Responsibility highlights this reality.  Thus, before your son/daughter signs this important document, I would ask you to read it together and discuss the paramount importance of respect for our ethos as a school, as expressed in the Brentonian Code, Principles of Community, and our major rules, outlined in the Handbook.  Your help in supporting the school's position on central issues of student discipline and welfare plays a vital role in the partnership between your home and our school, and in helping us to create a strong, healthy community at Brentwood.  We greatly appreciate your support.

If you are already familiar with the School, you will notice that the School Handbook has been extensively revised, not only with respect to lay-out, but also to content, in an effort to make this important publication more reader friendly.  There have also been some changes in school routine, expectations and rules.  Although I am sure the Handbook is not high on your summer reading list, I would ask you and your son/daughter to read it from cover to cover before the start of the new school year.  Many thanks.  Please keep the enclosed copy at home, as we will publish a full copy in the Houses and the School.  In addition, the Handbook is available on-line.

The change to our weekday evening schedule may cause some initial concern among returning students.  Our rationale for making the change is to reflect an evening routine which most families follow at home – dinner, free time to relax (outside or inside), homework (prep), and a bedtime snack before winding down and getting ready for bed.  Students (and house staff!) often complain of being tired after a busy Brentwood day.  We hope that this change will provide more rest and better health.  Other benefits include access to extra help from teachers on duty before prep, and the chance to go to bed earlier after homework is finished.  We will have snacks and drinks available in each House – not as good as access to the fridge at home, granted, but enough to hit the spot!

Managing money on a budget is a challenge for teenagers.  At boarding school, when some students have much more money than others, regrettably, social and disciplinary issues can be an unanticipated result.  Consequently, access to large sums of money such as summer work savings and cash gifts is strongly discouraged.  Given the use of local banking facilities and debit cards by over 90% of our students, as of September 2007, the School will no longer issue pocket money or money chits, to give parents a better overall picture of their child’s spending.

Please establish and monitor a conservative weekly budget for your son/daughter ($15-$25).  Through on-line banking, you can credit your son/daughter’s account weekly.  When special situations such as leave require larger sums, specific transfers can be made.  We recommend, especially in the junior school, a joint parent/student account so that you may more easily access, monitor and discuss your child’s personal spending.  In an emergency, the School will advance limited funds in cash to students.  If you think your son/daughter is too young or inexperienced to manage an account independently, you may deposit a sum with the School to be accessed for weekly pocket money.  To make arrangements, please contact Joan May (joan.may@brentwood.bc.ca).

As you are probably aware, issues of potential risk and liability have become important matters for all schools.   While I lament our increasingly litigious society, I would ask you to take the opportunity to discuss the importance of managing risk with your son/daughter.  Some teenagers tend to believe they are invincible and immortal.  If our Informed Consent forms prompt thoughtful discussion among our Brentwood families of the importance of risk management in all activities, then all the paperwork will be worthwhile!

On September 4, Head Nurse, Donna Decker, Travel Coordinator, Diane Southern, Student Services, Joan May, and Financial and Business Manager, Clyde Ogilvie, will be available for consultation in the Ross Centre throughout the day.  If you have particular health concerns, travel questions, health insurance, study permits, and passport concerns, or wish to deliver your payment of fees personally, please connect with them.  While I have a welcome meeting with all new families (parents and students) scheduled in the Bunch Centre at 2.00pm, please feel free to drop by my study in the Ross Centre to say hello.  I look forward to meeting you and your son/daughter.

A skeleton staff will hold the fort at Brentwood after July 20.  Please call if you have any questions or concerns, and our receptionist will be pleased to assist.  I look forward to seeing you in September for the Opening of the 2007/2008 School Year.  Have a wonderful summer!

Warm regards,

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