Good, quality early childhood education experience lays the foundation for a life-long love of learning in children. Parents often contemplate their options carefully to ensure they make the best educational choices for their child’s over all learning experience. Parents research the right school environment, curriculum and programs for their kids. This month, we speak to Ms. Twylla West, Communications and Media Coordinator with Regina Catholic School Division (RCSD), for insight and guidance about the educational programs and curriculum that RCSD offers students and familes here in Regina.
KB: How long has the Regina Catholic School Division (RCSD) served communities and families in Regina?
TW: The Regina Catholic School Division was established in 1899.
KB: What is RCSD's mission and goal?
TW: The vision of the RCSD is to provide a quality Catholic education that is faith based, student-centered, and results-oriented. Our mission is to work with the community and the local church to provide a quality Catholic education that fosters academic excellence and the development of informed, responsible citizens.
Our goals are for students to demonstrate commitment to the Catholic faith, that students have the foundation for success, and the community understands and supports the value of a Catholic education.
KB: What grades/ages do the elementary schools serve?
TW: Our elementary schools all offer education from Kindergarten to Grade 8. Some of our elementary schools also offer a Pre-Kindergarten program.
KB:Can any students attend RCSD's preschool program?
TW: Children must have reached their third birthday prior to admission. Three and four-year old children are eligible to attend the Prekindergarten Program. It is recommended that an equal balance of three-and-four-year old children be maintained and that children with the greatest need be provided with the opportunity to attend for two years. The date of birth for eligibility will follow school division guidelines.
Student Selection, Class Size & Child/Staff Ratio - The objective is to ensure that children with the greatest needs are served. The child/staff ratio is eight children to one staff member, bringing the total half-day enrollment to 16 children with a teacher and educational assistant. Students must also live within the designated school boundary. Students must meet toilet training expectations and parent involvement is essential to the success of the program.
KB: What age can parents enroll their children in kindergarten?
TW: Any child reaching the age of 5 during this calendar year (by December 31, 2016) is eligible to enroll for Kindergarten.
KB: When should parents begin to think about registering their kids for the school year with RCSD?
TW: For the 2016-2017 school year, registration is open during the following times:
- Elementary Schools – Monday August 29, 1:00-3:30pm and Wednesday August 31, 9:30am-12:00noon
- High Schools – Friday August 26, 1:00-3:30pm and Monday August 29, 1:00-3:30pm
KB: How many elementary schools does RCSD have in Regina?
TW: We serve our students in 30 schools. We have 24 elementary schools, which include four French Immersion schools and one Special Education school for medically fragile students. We have four high schools, which include two French Immersion high schools, and one trades-focused school. We also have one Kindergarten to Grade 12 alternative school, the only one of its kind in Regina, one associate school, and an Online Learning program. Additionally, we are in the process of building three new schools, which will be joint use facilities combining a Catholic school, public school, and daycare.
KB: Does RCSD offer a French Immersion option for students?
TW: We are incredibly proud of our French Immersion Program. Children may learn in French at both the elementary and high school level, and we also have a program called Accelerated French which allows students to immerse themselves in French at the grade 6 level in select schools.
KB: What are the curriculum guidelines and standards that RCSD adheres to?
TW: We follow curriculum created by the Saskatchewan Ministry of Education.
KB: Can you explain the main difference between RCSD and Regina Public?
TW: What really sets our schools apart is our faith. Schools at Regina Catholic are faith-filled communities where the values and teachings of Jesus Christ guide every aspect of teaching and learning. Our schools are places where we can freely teach and practice the Catholic faith and where the school, home, and church work together to help students become informed, compassionate, and responsible citizens.
Our schools emphasize faith development, student learning, leadership skills, community service projects, as well as academic success. And we are a very successful school division. According to our Ministry of Education learning achievement data, our Division’s average marks, graduation rates, and transition rates consistently exceed the provincial averages. After completing their education with us, our students are well prepared to directly enter the work force or the post-secondary learning institutions of their choosing.
KB: What types of non-athletic, extra-curricular programs does RCSD offer students?
TW: While every school varies and this is a small selection of activities offered, we do offer many extracurricular activities, including, but certainly not limited to: band, choir, vocal jazz, small music groups, robotics, coding, musicals, drama productions, improve, SRC, astronomy club, True Colours, book club, assembly committees, technology club, yearbook, SADD, dance, Best Buddies, Jean Vanier swim, canteen, peer tutoring, Aboriginal leadership, athletic training, Car Club, drumming, liturgy team, multicultural club, and the list goes on.
KB: What types of extra-curricular athletic programs does RCSD offer students?
TW: Football, Volleyball, Soccer, Basketball, Curling, Wrestling, Hockey, Badminton, Cross Country, Track and Field, Golf, Flag Football, Handball, Dance Team, etc.
KB: What events are popular with RCSD community of schools?
TW: One of the biggest events of the year is Moving in Faith, which grew to about 1,200 participants for its 7th year in 2016. It’s a fun family day, with bouncy houses, face painting, balloon animals, liturgy and worship bands, prizes, a liturgy, and of course the main event of a 2K or 5k walk/run/wheelchair/stroller. Our next Moving in Faith event is Sunday, May 28, mark your calendars now!
2016-2017 REGISTRATION DATES:
- Elementary Schools: Monday, August 29 1:00-3:30 & Wednesday, August 31 9:30am-12:00pm
- High Schools: Monday, August 29 1:00-3:30 & Wednesday, August 31 1:00-3:30pm
To learn more about the Regina Catholic School Division or to register your child for the 2016-2017 school year, visit their website at www.rcsd.ca.
REGINA CATHOLIC SCHOOL DIVISION
2160 Cameron Street
Regina, SK S4T 2V6
Email: rcs at rcsd dot ca
HOURS: Monday - Friday, 8:15 AM to 4:30 PM