During the last several weeks of school, there has been much joy, laughter, singing, and school spirit at YHS. I have also experienced for the first time what Vancouver is like when it snows! Many parents and staff enjoyed attending the two Winter Concerts that showcased once again the incredible musical talents of our Senior School students. I wish to thank David Gueulette and Heather Christiansen for their work with the girls to bring these concerts to life.
At this time of the year, we realize how fortunate we are at York House School and recognize the importance of giving back to others that are in need. Over the past few weeks, our students have demonstrated their commitment to “Not for Ourselves Alone” in so many ways. On Sunday, December 11, I had the opportunity to visit Directions Youth Services, an organization dedicated to helping youth in our city, together with our Grade 6 students and parents. In the Senior School, I was able to see Each One Teach One in action at YHS. This is a community engagement opportunity where our girls and students from St. George’s School, are paired up with younger students from Admiral Seymour Elementary school. These elementary students came to visit their buddies at YHS for the day.
I am sure that many of you are aware of our two Grade 3 girls in the Junior School, Jessica and Anna-Julia, who at a young age recognize that there are too many young people in this city who go hungry every day. They set an ambitious goal and, thanks to our community and the generosity of our uniform provider Top Ten, they raised as much as $10,000.
Our traditional Candlelight Services held at the Little School, Junior School, and Senior Schools were each poignant reminders of peace, joy, love, and happiness. In the Senior School, our girls led by our Community Service Captains, collected contributions of new socks for Vancouver’s Covenant House to support vulnerable youth in the City.
Thank you to everyone who attended our Celebration of Community this year at the Chan Centre. This is the only time that we gather as a whole community to listen to the remarkable performances of our students from Grades 1 to 12. Our Strings Club, joined by Senior School Math Teacher, Whitney Black and our Coordinator of Outdoor Education and Risk Management, Robin Friesen, were a delightful prelude to this year’s production. Hearing beautiful music as we walked into the Chan Centre was much appreciated by all.
I would also like to thank and acknowledge our Music Teachers, Dawn Haylett, Heather Christensen, and David Gueulette for preparing our girls for their performances; YHS Alum Anisha Cheema ‘16 for working with our Senior Improv team; teachers Magali Forte and Colleen Marte for working with our students who read in French and Spanish; and Kathy Kealey, Deputy Head for all of her work in coordinating the entire production. Thank you Head Girl, Maggie, for being such an eloquent emcee for us.
We are pleased to share that the Celebration of Community helped to raise over $1,700 for Quest Outreach Society. I can’t think of a better way to honour our community and celebrate the talents of our students than to come together in this way to celebrate the holiday season.
I want to thank everyone at York House – students, faculty, staff, and parents – for their dedication and commitment to making York House a truly giving community; a community that cares for those beyond our doors.
Our girls have worked so very hard this term in all that they do. I hope that all of our families take the time to enjoy the holidays and take a much-deserved break. I look forward to seeing you all, rested and happy, in January 2017.
Head of School