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The Urban Academy Times:
Head of School Newsletter
In This Issue
Facilities Update
Introducing Mrs. Churton
Introducing Mrs. Hamel
Introducing Ms. Kost
Introducing Ms. Bourgeois
Introducing Ms. Petrovska

Upcoming Events

  September 2014
25th  Picture Day
26th  Pro D Day

October 2014

1st    Can-Paign Begins

13th  Thanksgiving

17th  PAX Hot Lunch

24th  Pro D Day    


25th  Halloween Party

         for Parents

27th  PAX Fundraiser


31st  Halloween Party for



November 2014

7th    Remembrance Day

         Assembly (Formal,

          Olivet Church)

7th    PAX Friday Movie


10th   Pro D Day

11th   Remembrance Day

13th   Picture Retakes


13th   AGM

22nd   PAX Christmas

           Family Photos




2014/2015 Issue: 1
September Issue
Mrs. Cheryle Beaumont
 Head of School

The year is off to a great start and we are filled with intention!  We celebrated the theme of the year at a school-wide assembly, the first since we have had two campuses.  


The Junior Campus hosted the "Cops for Cancer" ride, and were inspired to be healthy and active.  We have also had our first movie night, home clothes day and PAX hot lunch.  Clubs are getting started at both campuses, including Mandarin classes for both beginners and experienced students.


We had a busy summer on many fronts. Summer camps were very successful. Camps were full and students enjoyed everything from dance and yoga to cooking to readiness for Kindergarten.


The school received excellent results from our students' work on provincial exams. All of our students were successful and a significant number had top marks in English, Mathematics, Science and Social Studies. We are pleased to have a graduating class going forward this year and look forward to strong results from their work. Our school is developing an assessment program to assess mathematics, reading and writing each year and our first year was most successful. Look for our results on our website later this month.


In September we were pleased to have our students honour Terry Fox with a run in his memory.  We will also have picture day and our first Pro D Day this month.  We are looking forward to an excellent year, filled with learning and purpose. Thank you for your support. It is most appreciated. 


Mrs. Cheryle Beaumont

Head of School


Facilities Update
Good progress has been made over the summer on Urban Academy's exciting new facility.  We are going through an extensive process with the City of New Westminster as part of our application for Heritage Revitalization for Robson Manor and a re-zoning amendment for the property we have acquired at 228 Manitoba Street.  We appeared before the Heritage Commission in July and received their approval on our design and plan. We also appeared before the City's Advisory Panel whose job it is to consider the siting and nature of the project in our community. We received approval there as well. 

We are at work now with Design Panel, a committee who provides direction on the design and siting of the building project. Their response has been most positive and we will be completing with them in October. UA hosted an Open House for our neighbours in July to share the project and it was well attended.  Thank you to our community partners for their thoughtful questions and feedback.

The Community Bond program is doing well  and we are on target with our financing objectives in addition to  our building design and re-zoning process.  The Board will be moving forward with the next steps on the Bond in September and October.  


Specific information on transferring commitments to the Bond program will come out over the next month. An opportunity for our community to see an updated design will be part of our plans this fall.  The new school is taking shape!

Introducing Mrs. Churton 
Mrs. Hillary Churton - Team Leader, Jr School & Grade 1 

Mrs. Churton joins Urban Academy this year as Junior School Team Leader and Grade One teacher.  Her considerable experience in teaching, administration and special educational needs extends over many years.


Mrs. Churton was born, educated and began her teaching career in Staffordshire, England where she taught in elementary schools and held leadership positions for over 20 years.


Her love for travel and new challenges brought her family to Canada in 2007.  Since then she has taught in elementary schools in the Lower Mainland and was previously Head of School at an independent elementary school in Langley.  As an advocate of life-long learning, Mrs. Churton believes in encouraging her students with creative, inquiry-based lessons, to enjoy learning and develop their own talents and interests.


Her own interests sit firmly in the arts.  She enjoys literature, fine arts, music and theatre.  She is also passionate about animals and has two dogs and a number of fish.  One of her favourite quotes is from Michel Legrand who said: "The more I live, the more I learn.  The more I learn, the more I realize, the less I know."

Introducing Mrs. Hamel

Mrs. Janessa Hamel - Grade 1 
Mrs. Hamel completed her Professional Development Program and Bachelor of Education at SFU in 2013.  She also did a Bachelor of General Studies in Education at SFU with a double minor in biological sciences and learning and developmental disabilities.  

She worked for 5 years as a behaviour interventionist for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and was closely involved with families, schools and other professionals in the role, where she also used and designed play-based and natural environment learning experiences for the children under her care.  Mrs. Hamel also has experience getting kids moving as a dance instructor working in a variety of styles for 6 years.  

Mrs. Hamel strives to create a welcoming community of learners, where everyone feels safe and worthy of being a contributing member.  She accomplishes this through thoughtful community building experiences, proactive classroom management and acceptance and respect for diversity.  Mrs. Hamel strives to provide an inclusive environment in her classroom for all students, staff, family and community members.

Mrs. Hamel has been working at Urban Academy during the 2013-2014 school year as a teacher-on-call and has been inspired by the community atmosphere, inquiry-based learning and arts-infusion established throughout the school.  These philosophies of learning overlap significantly with her beliefs about education.
Introducing Ms. Kost
Ms. Merrill Kost - Grade 3  

 Ms. Kost has a Bachelor of Education, with a focus in both Moral and Arts Education, from McGill University in Montreal.  Her teaching assignments have included opportunities to interact with both small and large groups of students, mainly in her capacity as a learning resource teacher.  She has experience teaching students with Autism Spectrum Disorder and has training in the PECS programme.  In her role as a Special Educator, she has created Individual Education Plans and strongly believes that each child should be taught according to their own personal continuum of learning and growth.


As an International Baccalaureate certified teacher, she is looking forward to sharing with her Grade 3 students her love of learning and

inquiry.  Ms. Kost is an avid traveler, having travelled for study, work and pleasure, including stints in Asia, Australia, Europe and Central America.  Ms. Kost strongly believes in integrated and collaborative learning opportunities, and is looking forward to supporting her students every step of the way!

Introducing Ms. Bourgeois
Ms. Monique Bourgeois- French Specialist

Ms. Bourgeois completed her teaching degree at Simon Fraser University after finishing a BA in French, Theatre and Dance in 1998.  She has experience teaching French as a second language to all ages, from K to adults, and enjoys 

integrating all three of her specialties while making the language accessible and fun for all levels.


Her primary goal is to get the language rooted in the body, which helps students retain it and speak it more spontaneously.  She looks forward to working with all of her students who bring inspiration, wonder and the love of learning to the classroom.

Introducing Ms. Petrovska
Ms. Jovana Petrovska - Music Specialist 

A passionate music educator who loves working and sharing her love of music with her students, Ms. Petrovska remains dedicated to the joy of inspiring young musicians.


She holds a Bachelors Degree in Music Theory and Education from the Faculty of Music Arts at St. Cyril and Methodius University in Skopje, Macedonia.  Since moving to Canada she has also earned a Diploma from the Jazz and Contemporary Instrument Program at Vancouver Community College with a Major in Jazz Piano.


In addition to her twelve years of experience teaching all types of music from choir and recorder through ukulele and mandolin orchestras to private piano lessons and concert band, Ms. Petrovska has continually upgraded her skills through studies and numerous workshops.


Ms. Petrovska is honoured to become a part of the Urban Academy community.

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