BIG-hearted Edmontonians help realize two more full-day Kindergartens

Due to the amazing generosity of the community, our Board of Governors is delighted to announce the opening of two more full-day Kindergarten programs at Calder and Princeton schools during the 2013-14 school year. That means, since the launch of the Foundation in 2010, we have been able to fund and sustain five full-day Kindergarten classrooms – the other three are at Lauderdale, Mee-Yah-Noh and Tipaskan schools. Considering it costs approximately $100,000 per school per year to subsidize the additional half-day of learning for little beansprouts, Edmontonians deserve an A+ in our books!

Calder School Launch
To celebrate the launch of the full-day Kindergarten program at Calder, we hosted a We Know We Can! Celebration on November 20. The theme was based on the fact the school is associated with being close to the railway tracks. This was the inspiration for all the decorations that adorned the walls of the entire school and the huge train collage created by Dr. Donald Massey students that served as the backdrop for the stage.

Over 80 friends and donors who helped fund the program were gifted with a conductor scarf and a wooden train designed by Harry Ainlay students and decorated by Calder students. MC'd by two Grade 6 students, the program included two songs sung by excited children and brief remarks from program participants – all of whom wore conductor hats provided by CN Walker Yard. Guests then went on a tour of Teacher Ms. Letendre's Kindergarten classroom and centre room, and returned to the gymnasium to feast on a lunch prepared by the Food Studies students from Queen Elizabeth. In keeping with the theme, the cutest little train inspired centrepieces made by the Kindergarteners were on each of the tables.

Click here to read about Bill Comrie's pay-it-forward contribution announced at the event.
Click here for pictures.

Princeton School Launch
On December 3, we celebrated another milestone! The full-day Kindergarten at Princeton became a reality entirely because of the generosity of the Edmonton Oiler's Community Foundation (EOCF). This is the second contribution made by the ECOF, whose Board of Directors previously made a five-year graduated funding commitment to the Lauderdale Kindergarten classroom until the end of the 2015-16 school year.

Princeton staff, students and parents embraced the Ready, Set, Grow...Celebration theme and Oiler inspired displays, artwork, decorations and wearable creations were everywhere. The program was MC'd by two Grade 4 students, Kindergarteners sang a "Thank You" song written specifically for the ECOF by one of the Kindergarten Teachers Ms. Rygh, and Grades 3 and 4 students belted out the traditional "Hockey Game" song.

"Education is a fundamental part of a child's life," explained program speaker Ms. Natalie Minckler, Executive Director of the ECOF. "We've seen the success of the young learners at Lauderdale and are thrilled to be involved in this extremely important program."

Guests then headed to the classroom and centre room where they were greeted by eager little kinders and their Teachers Mrs. Doll and Ms. Rygh. Back in the gymnasium, everyone enjoyed a lunch compliments of Queen Elizabeth's Food Studies students and left with gifts of small hockey sticks cut-out by Harry Ainlay students and lovingly decorated in Oiler's colours by the students at Princeton.

Click here and click on Oilers Kindergarten for program details and video.
Click here to read the Edmonton Sun article.

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