Superintendent’s Update: Holiday Wishes

Posted On Friday December 16, 2022

Dear Parents and Caregivers:

As we wrap up winter concerts and slow down the pace of usual school and district activities, I hope that everyone finds time to enjoy what they like to do and to spend time with family and friends over this holiday season.

Over the last two weeks, I appreciate the parents and extended family members and friends who supported winter concerts and events. 

Holiday Concerts

On December 14, 2022, Norkam Senior Secondary School hosted their traditional turkey luncheon for over 850 students, staff, and guests. Trustees Karpuk and Kang, and Assistant Superintendent Hamblett and I served the meals and then enjoyed one ourselves. Thank you to everyone who came out!

On December 13, 2022, South Sa-Hali Elementary School held their winter concert for their Gr. 6 and 7 band and their Kindergarten and Grade 1 students. Trustee O’Fee and Assistant Superintendent Reilly attended the afternoon concert, and Secretary Treasurer Cassidy and I attended the evening concert. It was snowing as we arrived, which made it feel like the holidays were “on their way”. The children and staff worked together to share a beautiful compilation of voices, instruments, and movement in both French and English. At the end of the concert, parents joined in a round of the Twelve Days of Christmas in French, and they each tried to outdo one another with their incredible voices. Read more.

Twin Rivers Education Centre

Principal Mattes and Vice Principal Gunnlaugson shared the wonderful work of Ms. Bucher’s students who were making gnomes and creations such as crocheted animals to represent ecological systems. Ms. Fletcher’s students were taking part in a specialized Foods course in which they use food bank items to create simple to more complex meals. Mr. Whitmore’s class engaged in various experiments from building bridges to rockets, and he applied Universal Design for Learning principles to meet everyone’s needs. Mr. Noble’s class was writing essays and narratives. Ms. Smith and Ms. Bruin showcased interconnections to the Secwepemc calendar.

Continuing Education and First Steps

Principal Mattes and I visited Street School, located in the Northills Mall, and we met with Erika, Pete, Jessica, Tonia, and Leanne who shared information about the various Adult Continuing Education programs that we offer. We discussed the importance of multiple pathways to support adult students. Two such pathways include the Kamloops Regional Corrections Centre (KRCC) program in which a range of levels of literacy learning are accommodated and VisionQuest, a centre for addictions education and recovery. Staff shared how working with adult students is rewarding as they are dedicated to specific goals and developing connections to start or continue their career passions.

South Kamloops Secondary

Principal Walt Kirschner and I visited Ms. Richter’s English class as she paired grades 8 with grades 11 and 12 mentors to write short stories and longer pieces including a novel. Ms. Hergott shared how she works one-on-one with a student to support this composition process.

Mr. Spanis facilitated class exploration of Physics simulations through video games that required students to build rockets that could fly to space. Mr. Ilic’s students were rebuilding cars and trucks and carrying on with welding projects in Automotives class.


VPEA (Vancouver Public Education Alliance) from China has been working with the SD73 Business Company Global Education Director Kristin Engleson on the 2+1 program since 2012.  On December 8th, Jo Cheng (Director of Operations), Krissy Yang (Regional Director) and Jessie Yang (Student Service Coordinator) met with Superintendent Dr. Rhonda Nixon, Secretary-Treasurer Trina Cassidy, Assistant Superintendent Bill Hamblett and International Student Program staff. VPEA staff also visited each of their current thirty-seven students attending Norkam (14), Westsyde (9) and South Kamloops Secondary (14). Read more.

Preparing for Schools of Choice Registration and Kindergarten Open House

For parents who have children entering Kindergarten, join us in January and February to learn more about schools of choice and registration in Kindergarten. Read more here. Thank you to the District Early Learning Team for supporting learners to transition into Kindergarten, an important part of the Intellectual Development Priority in the 2022-2027 District Strategic Plan.

Interior Health

To learn more about what to do to stay well and to address concerns about the respiratory illness season, Interior Health has prepared resources and reminders to support families. Read more.

Enjoy the holiday season with family and friends!

Rhonda Nixon, PhD


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