Special Editions Newsletter - April 2014

1.  Hello Saltwater families and community. At the end of January, we invited parents to join the Board and Faculty in a planning workshop to provide an overview of the school’s operations. We also sought input into four questions:
  1. What have we already done that has provided an excellent learning environment for children?
  2. How could we provide exceptional services for Grade 1 and Grade 2 students within the space, staffing capabilities, and financial realities for the school?
  3. How can we gather enough volunteers to support the school and renovate a second space?
  4. How do we want the larger Comox Valley to view the Saltwater School? What impact would that image have on enrolment?
In this issue of the newsletter, we have summarized your responses and the decisions taken by the Board and Faculty to shape the 2014-15 school year. Click here for the link to the summary of the January 30th Planning Workshop.

2. After consulting with parents, board and faculty - we have made some important decisions. The following is a summary of class configuration for the Grade 1-2 class, class schedules including info on the full-day kindergarten and the new space for grades programming. We would also like to refer you to http://www.saltwaterschool.com/admissions/tuition-fees/ for information on tuition fee increases for the fall.

  • Parent and Child: After 4 years, Michelle Nagle, our current leader for this program, is stepping down. Stay tuned for announcements about the new Parent and Child leadership and expanded programs.
  • Preschool  Program: Wendy Poole will continue to teach this program.
  • Kindergarten Program: We hope to have the teacher/assistant configuration for the kindergarten program finalized by mid-May. Families will be informed as soon as the hiring process is completed. Thank you for your patience!
  • Grade 1-2 combined class configuration: Amy Wells will continue to provide excellent overall leadership for a combined Grade 1-2 class. To meet the different Main Lesson needs of the Grade 1 students, Alison Hunting is excited to add this assignment to her specialty work. 
  • Grade 3-4 class: Rebecca Watkin continues as Lead Teacher 
  • Grade 5-6 class: Jen Irwin will also continue as Lead Teacher 
  • French and Movement classes will be continue to be taught by Alison Hunting and Michelle Nagle respectively. 
  • Specialty classes will include outdoor pursuits, music, choir, strings (New for Grades 5-6), woodworking, handwork, painting, crafts, gardening, special endeavors, and poetry in motion.
  • Preschool will now be offered 5 days a week. Parents can choose a two day program, a three day program - even a five day program. Afternoon preschool may be offered depending on demand. The schedule for the day will be 9:00 am to noon with an 8:30 am 'before school care' option.
  • Kindergarten will now operate full-time 5 days per week. The schedule for the day will be 8:20 am drop-off to 1:45 pm Monday to Thursday and 8:20 am drop-off to 12:30 pm on Fridays.
  • The schedule for all grades classes will be 8:20 am drop-off to 2:50 pm Monday to Thursday and 8:20 am drop-off to 12:30 pm on Fridays.
  • Please note that the 8:20 am drop-off for kindergarten and grades classes is considered the "first bell". Classes will officially begin at 8:30 am everyday as indicated by a bell.
  • The grades programming will be held at our new lease space at 2398 Rosewall Crescent. This spring and summer, seismic upgrades and renovations will be done to the main floor of this building to make it ready for the first day of school in September.
  • Preschool, Kindergarten and Parent & Child programs will remain at our current Saltwater School location, with summer renovations to combine two classrooms for an enlarged Preschool.


Funds to educate Saltwater School students come from five sources:
  • A 'per student' operating grant from the Ministry of Education. We receive 50% of what it costs the local School District to educate students - this grant will be about $4,000 for each of our full time students in grades K-6 and cover about 40% of costs. 
  • Tuition, supply and other fees from families. These currently cover about 40% of the School's costs. This winter the board approved a tuition increase of 7% for fall fees. Click here to see the new fee schedule.
  • Grants for educational assistance from the Ministry of Education & the Child Development Centre fund educational assistants.
  • Fundraisers like Winter Faire and the events put on by PAC.
  • The remainder comes from Donations - from families, community and businesses. These donations are vital for Saltwater to thrive and to fund our Tuition Adjustment Program. For more information on donating to the school click here.
  • The Saltwater School is excited to host a Before and After-School care program for preschool, kindergarten and grades children. Stay tuned for more details.

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