I had a grand adventure this morning heading off to Bell Island to speak at St. Michael’s Regional High School. I had to be up much earlier than usual to ensure I caught the ferry. The sunrise was spectacular and I was first in line to get on the boat (surprise surprise). Of course, with my busy schedule of late, I hadn’t had a chance to search Google Maps for the location of the school so I followed my intuition and found it. Appropriately so, St. Michael’s is located on the highest point of the island with a commanding view.
I was bummed driving out listening to CBC Radio that I was missing the annual CBC Pancake Breakfast. My disappointment didn’t last long as the school teachers and staff were serving pancakes to all. I had a special edition with partridge berries from Newtown. The principal is a School of HKR grad and it was great to see him again. They are hoping to get funding for a large screen to hold movie nights on the island. My presentation was projected in huge style on the gym wall and looked great…Everest was almost Everest sized 🙂
I was honoured with a standing ovation from the students and I am taking a St. Michael’s banner to decorate my office with. I signed a photo for one of the teachers of a special moment on the summit of Gros Morne! The timing was perfect and I made the 10:45 am ferry to head back to my HKR 4210 ODA class for the afternoon!
I love visiting schools and learning of their successes and challenges. Every visit, I witness the hard work and dedication of teachers and staff and try to do my part to thank them for their contributions to upcoming generations and the world the students will inherit from us. It takes extra efforts to plan and pull off special events and extra-curricular activities but it is these experiences that bring the rest of the curriculum to life and build community within a school.
I am eternally grateful to all the teachers and staff who made it possible to play sports, design yearbooks, produce plays, serve our community and eat pancakes (I remember trying to break a record for most pancakes consumed in junior high). I would not be who I am without your contributions to my education and upbringing. You planted the seeds of Everest in the soil of my soul daily for 12 years!