OUR SCHOOL STORY
Constable Neil Bruce, a native of New Brunswick, joined the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in 1959. Constable Neil Bruce was fatally wounded on the morning of April 10th, 1965, while attempting to rescue a young woman who was being unlawfully confined in a cabin in Powers Creek in Westbank, B.C. He died in the Kelowna General Hospital on April 14th, 1965. Constable Neil Bruce was 26 years old. He left behind his wife Sandra, his son Donald and his daughter Barbara.
CNB officially opened as a Grade 7 – 9 school in January 2000. In September 2018, CNB was reconfigured to include Grade 6 students with Grade 9 students enrolled at MBSS. Our school community has continued to grow steadily and concluded the 2019 school year with a population of approximately 830 students. For the 2019-2020 school year we have 894 students registered.
We have an amazing group of TROOPs who emulate the qualities and attributes that Constable Neil Bruce demonstrated. As an RCMP member, he was a role model and hero. Constable Neil Bruce displayed kindness, compassion, care and respect. These leadership students were named the TROOPS to honour a team/group of graduating RCMP officers.
Our CNB Vision Statement
The Mission of CNB Middle School is to provide a safe supportive environment where students, staff, parents and community members are committed to meeting the unique developmental needs of adolescents.
The purpose of a Middle School is to provide a school setting that takes into consideration the transition period between childhood and adolescence. To experience a strong sense of belonging in school, students must feel capable of completing tasks in a manner that meets the standards of the school, believe they can connect successfully with teachers and classmates, and know they can contribute in a significant way to their learning community and school.
Summary of the 2020-2021 School Year
As we enter our third year as a grade 6-8 middle school, we continue to grow in size. This year we have over 900 students registered with 33 divisions. We started this year off very differently than any other we have ever experienced. Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic we have continued to create a learning environment with the goal of helping every student thrive. First and foremost, the emphasis has been on ensuring the health and safety of all members of our community. We implemented several protocols and procedures to continue in-class learning for our students. Staggered grade level lunches, designated play areas for assigned learning cohorts, masks, hand washing and sanitizing, and minimizing student contact were all part of our safety plan. Even with our Covid protocols we have continued to timetable our students keeping the elements of a middle school education: tight teaming, exploratories, common collaboration time for staff, competency based curriculum and flexible schedules.
This year, we continue to develop several key areas that have guided our work over the last several years.
Social Emotional Learning: Character Strong continues to be our primary tool in developing the social emotional skills and language for our students and creating a culture of care, belonging and character in our building. The “8 Essentials” which include patience, kindness, humility, respect, selflessness, forgiveness, honesty, and commitment are the foundation of character development in our students. Each month we focus on a specific essential with student daily announcements and school wide activities to support this learning.
Communicating Student Learning: More than ever, our students are having conversations about where they are in their learning journey. They are seeking answers to questions such as “What am I doing well?” and “Where do I have room for growth?” All teachers are using common strength based language and students are self-assessing to focus on the learning process. Curricular and core competencies are interwoven with the content, as well as student self-assessment, to guide students with their learning. We have continued our commitment to develop a reporting template that better matches the way students are learning in a more efficient manner. The 'Option A' report card is being used by more staff, and the learning around the use portfolios to communicate learning is one of the priorities for staff development this year.
Increasing Levels of Literacy: During the 2019-2020 year, we targeted our grade 6 students to improve and strengthen their reading abilities and understandings. A collaborative model of support was created through our flexible schedule that enabled additional teaching supports for students who were highlighted in tier 2 or tier 3 through the response to intervention model. This year we have continued to grow our collaborative model of support and reading intervention program. We started the year with our identified grade 7 students receiving reading support while we took the time to assess our new grade 6 students. One of our goals is to have all identified tier 2 and tier 3 readers in grade 6 and grade 7 receive some level of targeted intervention throughout the school year.
Summary of the 2019 - 2020 School Year
We have successfully completed our second year as a grade 6-8 middle school, with many exciting challenges and growth opportunities for both students and staff. We have continued to stay grounded and focused on providing a middle level education for our learners by ensuring each of the four pillars to middle level education were present: flexible schedule, mentorship, exploratory programs, and tight teaming. This year we have focused on learning and understanding around: character development, communicating student learning, and reading intervention for our grade 6 students.
· Character Development - We have continued to live and breathe our Character Strong curriculum which supports our students' social emotional growth and character development. The "8 essentials" (patience, kindness, humility, respect, selflessness, forgiveness, honesty, and commitment) are words we use, practice, and model as adults and students.
· Communicating Student Learning - We have continued to engage in conversation and professional learning around shifting our assessment practices for our students. Students have become active participants in their learning by posting and sharing evidence of their understanding on the e-Portfolios. Staff have moved to a strength based performance scale for both formative and summative assessment opportunities.
· Reading Intervention and Support - This year we have expanded our quest to determine who our grade 6 students are as readers. We completed a grade level reading benchmark to determine which students needed additional time, practice, and skill development to become more proficient readers.
UNPRECEDENTED TIMES - COVID 2020
What a crazy four months we have had! We are so grateful for the work, flexibility, and commitment of our staff, students, and families with respect to their commitment to their learning as well as keeping others safe through the practice of hand washing and safe distancing. What an amazing group of staff, students, and guardians to work with. We are so proud of our staff for engaging in a growth mindset and being innovative in terms of teaching and learning, we are so proud of our students for continuing to show their commitment to education, and we are so proud of our parent community for the support and encouragement they have shown to both our staff and their children. We have all come together to support one another in these challenging times and for this we are grateful.
Summary of the 2018 - 2019 School Year
As a result of the reconfiguration, we were provided the opportunity to re-evaluate the structure and strategies that were in place at Constable Neil Bruce. Through numerous conversations and visits to other grade 6-8 middle schools within and outside our district, along with the research presented through the work of the Association for Middle Level Education (AMLE) a focus on the following four pillars was implemented.
· Flexible Schedule - teachers have the flexibility to responsively adjust planning and integrate subjects to support individualized and differentiated student learning, while not being limited by a rotating block structure (like in high school).
· Mentorship Program - students connect with a supportive teacher advocate that works with them for their years at CNB. Students develop metacognitive skills through engaging work with the Attributes of the SD23 Learner and strengthen character traits through Character Strong.
· Exploratory Program - adolescent students in grades 6-8 need to explore new course areas which will lead them to making informed choices at the grade 9 level when they transition to Mount Boucherie Senior Secondary. Throughout the three years at CNB, students will rotate through Art, Drama, Music, Guitar, Foods, Technology Education, and Shop as exploratory courses.
· Teaming - groups of students will work with two or three core teachers for the vast majority of their coursework. Teachers get to know their students very well, more responsive teaching happens, more parent communication can occur, and students will be more successful.
Summary of the 2017 - 2018 School Year
As a result of our 2016-2017 scan, we determined the need and importance in working and strengthening our students' personal and social competency skills and tied this learning in with our school theme on 'kindness.' On Implementation Day, we focused as a staff on the characteristics and attributes we hope to see reflected within our students and used the work and research of Houston Kraft and Character Strong to support our learning. During the afternoon on this day, we connected the learning within Character Strong to the Ministry core competencies: social responsibility, personal awareness and responsibility and positive personal and cultural identity. Staff sorted the competencies within some of the learning lessons planned for students. We then kicked off our 'Kindness' theme with a visit from Houston Kraft, in early October, who shared his message on kindness with our student body and then with our staff around the value of building relationships and how to S.E.R.V.E. (S - Start Intentionally, E - Engage Relationally, R - Respond with Empathy, V - Value practice daily, E - Exit intentionally) our students. The conversations and learning with staff around these principles were incorporated into staff meetings throughout the year.
In January, administration scanned the staff to determine three areas: strengths, challenges, and hopes for moving forward. In February, we discovered the move towards a grade 6 - 8 middle school model for September 2018. Both of these events led to further planning on how to support a redefined middle school here at Constable Neil Bruce. In the Spring of 2018, staff engaged in beginning conversations around communicating student learning, Innovative Learning environments (including visiting Norma Rose Point as well as schools within our area) and also were introduced to the OECD 7 Principles of Learning.