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This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: April 18th – April 21st

This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: April 18th – April 21st

Good morning Mariners!

On Tuesday morning we started the week with our staff meeting and shared the School Board’s Administrative Assignments Announcement for the 2017/18 school year. I have now shared with the staff and the PAC Executive that I will be assigned to Fleetwood Park Secondary for next year. Ms. Claudine Davies, currently principal at Semiahmoo Secondary has been assigned to Earl Marriott Secondary. I would like to take this opportunity to share with the entire Mariner community that it has been an honour and a privilege to be part of the Earl Marriott family over the past three years as principal. I would like to thank all staff, students and parents for your support and for all you do to contribute to our sense of Mariner pride. Your commitments and contributions have made Earl Marriott Secondary a very special place! The last months of the 16/17 school year will have extra special significance for me! I look forward to this next learning opportunity with new beginnings and new challenges, and will carry forward the many lessons of strength and inspiration from EMS.

Tuesday was a very full day at the school. In the afternoon we participated in the Great Peninsula Relay Race. This is a very worthy charitable event for A.C.C.E.S.S.; a local group fundraising for scholarships for Kenyan students. Great congratulations go to the Earl Marriott students who ran for the school and brought the trophy home to EMS! Also, congratulations to the Earl Marriott staff who participated – well done everyone! It was a great afternoon.

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On Tuesday evening our PAC hosted a Financial Literacy workshop for our students. This is now the 2nd year this opportunity has been made available for our students; very worthwhile. Thank you to PAC member Ms. Gosselin for your leadership in making this possible.

Throughout the week our teachers have been preparing the midterm report cards. Much time and energy and careful reflection have been devoted to this important process. Thank you to all teachers for your professionalism. We will be distributing the report cards next Tuesday in homeroom.

I had an opportunity to meet again with our school’s Core Competency Committee this week. We are pleased with our progress and have now created a draft plan for supporting Core Competency development of our Grade 8 and 9 students over the coming weeks. We have also created a draft self-assessment template that will be distributed to Grade 8-9 students in June. We will be communicating our draft implementation recommendations to staff next week. This week we have attached a Social Responsibility Core Competency instructional resource to the Friday Compass.

It is a beautiful day out there. Spring has finally arrived ! Enjoy your weekend!

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Kudos to:

Thanks again to everyone who came out on Tuesday for the Great Peninsula Relay Race.   We are proud to announce that, as a school, we met our fundraising goal of $1200, which will provide two scholarships for students in Kenya through A.C.C.E.S.

In the News:

‘Great’ relay race returns to South Surrey for second year

By Nick Greenizan – Peace Arch News

Posted April 13, 2017

The fundraising relay run – which took root last year as a collaboration between high schools and the local chapter of ACCES – is set to be held Tuesday, April 18 at the South Surrey Athletic Park track. The hour-long event will see 10-runner teams – five boys, five girls – from Semiahmoo, Earl Marriott and Elgin Park secondaries run laps to see which team can log the most kilometres.



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This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: April 10th – April 14th

This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: April 10th – April 14th

It has been a shortened week with Good Friday tomorrow and Easter Monday on Monday. We wish all Mariners a Happy Easter.

On Monday I had a chance to attend our first Student Survey Working Group meeting with the District’s Research and Evaluation Department. We began the process of developing a survey for our community that will gather important information about our strengths, challenges and future direction for the school. Thank you to all members of our working group. I enjoyed our rich discussion and am looking forward to our work together. EMS teachers are invited to see me if you are interested in joining our committee.

On Tuesday, I attended another first group meeting for another key initiative. The Core Competency Working Group gathered to review the new reporting requirements for Grade 8-9 students and to develop an implementation strategy for the school. Thanks go to Ms. Kidwell, Ms. Mcclenahan, Ms. Gaumont, Ms. Rogers and Mr. Clift for your feedback and work on this important initiative. We will soon be communicating our implementation plan to the community. Again, all EMS teachers interested in supporting this initiative are welcome to join us. Please contact me if you would like to participate.

On Wednesday afternoon the Social Studies Department hosted guest speaker Mr. Gwyn Dyer to Earl Marriott Secondary. Mr. Dyer spoke about current international politics to our theater full of Social Studies students and guests. Thank you to Mr. Figueira for organizing this learning event for our students.

Today I had the privilege of visiting several classes. I started with Ms. Bensley’s Home Economics’ Foods Lab and watched the students work on their Easter cookie decoration/icing skills. I was very impressed with their talents… the cookies looked delicious!

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I then dropped by the Band room and listened to Mr. Rutley’s Junior Band students play “Nights of Aladdin”. This was clearly a favourite! The band is currently learning new pieces for the upcoming concert in May; including a very creative and musical application of paper. You will be impressed!

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I then walked across the hall and said “hello” to Mr. Martens’ BASES students. My timing was perfect as the students were in the process of decorating Easter eggs.   I saw some very creative Easter eggs including “Super Hero” eggs and many smiles! Great work everyone.

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I concluded my tour with a visit to the Woodwork class. Students in Mr. Misiak/Mr. Eddy’s class have been making stools, spatulas and spoons and whirlybirds. They are very proud of their work and have demonstrated excellent talents. It was very gratifying to see the students appreciating the opportunities they have as Mariners and learning new skills.

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 Kudos to:

Congratulations to our Robotics Club in completing their first year of competition! The club did very well and learned a great deal over the year. They were awarded the “Judge’s Choice” Award at their first competition, and are looking forward to next year and the next robotics challenge.

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Next week we will begin term 3. I am reminded that this is such an important time of year as we enter into the heart of the second semester. Much learning is happening across the entire curriculum everyday. I encourage all students to share your learning experiences with your parents/guardians. This dialogue will benefit everyone!

All the best for the long weekend. Enjoy your time with family and friends; we will see you again on Tuesday morning.




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This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: April 3rd – April 7th

This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: April 3rd – April 7th

Last weekend was a very special time for our school and community with the annual Semiahmoo – Earl Marriott Secondary Pow Wow. This year the Pow Wow was bigger than ever, with thousands of visitors and dancers. The dancers and their regalia were spectacular and provided a unique opportunity to share and celebrate the First Nation culture. As a school, we are very privileged to be part of this tradition. Our partnership with the Semiahmoo First Nation is a great strength of our school. Congratulations to the organizing committee on another very successful Pow Wow.

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On Monday afternoon Department Heads met to review current initiatives and school programs. We spent considerable time discussing the new Core Competency curriculum and reporting requirements. Thanks to everyone for this rich conversation. Our first planning meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, April 11th at Jr./Sr. lunches in the office. All teachers are invited to join us as we formulate an implementation plan for Grade 8-9 self-assessment of Core Competencies. Thanks go to Ms. Liang and Ms. Manning for hosting the meetings and providing an overview of your department’s current initiatives.

On Wednesday evening I was privileged to attend the Canada – Japan Cultural Exchange Sayonara party. This was the concluding celebration for our visiting Japanese students and their Earl Marriott Secondary student hosts. We enjoyed entertainment from both Canadian and Japanese students, good food and friendship. Earl Marriott Secondary students visited Japan last summer, and this week we had the opportunity to host our Japanese friends. Thank you to Mr. Dawson for your leadership in coordinating this exchange. I would also like to thank all of our EMS host families for opening your homes to our guests. Thanks also to all teachers who helped with hosting a guest in your class and/or helped provide supervision for the visit. Our students and school have been given a valuable opportunity to engage with the world, act as ambassadors, learn about another culture and meet new friends. We look forward to future exchange trips to Japan, and to continue a tradition that has been fostering friendship and understanding between South Surrey students and Japanese students for close to 50 years.

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This week the Admin team has been very busy as we begin to build next year’s timetable. We were able to share process and current status at both Department Head and Staff Committee meetings. We will continue to liaise with staff as we build the timetable. Department Heads are welcome to drop by if you have particular questions. We will be sharing the draft Department ‘10 block grids’ with Dept Heads over the next week.   All teachers will then have an opportunity for review and input.

This week Ms. Manning, Ms. Van Weerden and Mr. Ferguson of our Fine Arts Department installed our Earl Marriott Secondary Art Show at the Semiahmoo Library. Thank you to our Art teachers for your excellent work in showcasing the talents of our students and congratulations to all of our student artists. I encourage everyone to visit the library and view their work.

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Kudos to:

Congratulations to Wesley Chang who received the gold medal at the Provincial Skills Canada Competition in web design yesterday. Wesley will now represent BC at the National competition in June. Way to go Wesley! Congratulations also to Ryan Watkins who competed yesterday after winning gold at the Regionals.

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I would also like to congratulate students Julia Albert, Sofie Levy and Danika Unger. At the recent Surrey District Concours d’art oratoire on April 4, 2017. Earl Marriott had a very good night. Julia Albert came first for Grade 11 French Immersion. Sofie Levy placed second and Danika Unger came first for Grade 12. Congratulations and good luck at the Provincial Concours competition!


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Enjoy your weekend.

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This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: March 27th – March 31st

This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: March 27th – March 31st

Happy Spring time everyone! Welcome back to Earl Marriott Secondary and the final terms of the 2016-17 school year. We are looking forward to the many new learning experiences, celebrations and traditions that this time of year brings. It is good to be back surrounded by our EMS Mariner community. School life will be a special and significant time for all of us over the next three months.

We returned on Monday and began to orient ourselves back into our school routines. It was wonderful to feel the excitement in the air as both students and staff greeted and welcomed each other as members of the EMS family. On Monday evening our Parent Advisory Council also met to learn about the happenings of the school, district and educational community. I should note that over the Spring Break, a new concrete picnic table was installed at the front of the school. Funding for this project was provided by the Dry Grad Committee. Great thanks to Ms. Zimmerman and all of our Dry Grad volunteers for your years of work in organizing and fundraising for EMS Dry Grad. Your work has made such a significant difference in the lives of our students, and your legacy gift will be a positive influence at the school for years to come!

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Throughout the week students and staff have shifted back into “school-mode” and the routines of classroom and extracurricular life. Our Rugby teams have been playing/practicing through rain and shine as their season ramps up.

This week we have also emphasized increased awareness of the new curriculum with specifically reference to the Core Competencies. Communication, Thinking and Personal and Social Responsibility are the three competencies now embedded across our curriculum. Teachers are exploring ways to reinforce these important life skills at all levels and subject areas. This June across BC, and as part of the reporting process, all students in grades K-9 will be required to complete a self-assessment of their development of their core competencies. We are currently building a model to provide our Grade 8’s and 9’s with a structured process for a reflective review of their progress in these areas. Please see the Principal’s Blog at for a detailed description of each competency and some sample reflective questions to help guide our students.

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This morning our annual Semiahmoo First Nation – Earl Marriott Secondary Pow Wow started! The Pow Wow runs today and throughout the weekend. Again, there was an air of excitement in the building this morning as we welcomed many guests from our Associate schools. This year we have continued to provide an opportunity for both elementary and secondary students to witness the Pow Wow with special school-based sessions running throughout the day. The morning session provided us such a unique and powerful learning experience and celebration of culture. I would like to thank all of our performers for your gift of sharing. I would also like to thank Mr. McKay-Dunn and the Aboriginal Leadership club for your leadership and work in hosting the event. This Pow Wow is a rich tradition for our school and community. It reinforces the value of partnership and the celebration of culture and is something that we are very proud to be a part of. I wish all participants of the Pow Wow a weekend of pride, joy and community.

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Kudos to:

Congratulations to student Cindy Zhang on being recognized as a 2017 Scholastic Art and Writing Award. Cindy is a “Silver Key” recipient in the Writing category. In 2017 more than 330,000 works were submitted to the Scholastic Art and Writing Competition.

In the News:

 Earl Marriott rugby coach to lead BC U18 team

By Nick Greenizan – Peace Arch News

Posted March 24, 2017

Earl Marriott Secondary’s senior boys rugby coach, Adam Roberts, is headed to Ireland this summer. The longtime high-school coach – and former player at Semiahmoo Secondary – was announced as the head coach of BC Rugby’s under-18 boys team in a news release issued earlier this month.

Enjoy your weekend.




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Core Competencies: Self-Assessment

Core Competencies are foundational to our new  British Columbia curriculum.  This ensures that students are always mindful of their growth in their communication, thinking and personal and social responsibility.

The emphasis on self-reflection promotes personalization and student ownership of their learning and it becomes a natural part of the learning process.

Teachers support students in self-assessment by intentionally noticing, naming, and connecting the Core Competencies to their learning.

Starting this year, students in Grades K-12 across British Columbia will be asked to reflect upon their growth of these competencies as part of the reporting process.  At Earl Marriott Secondary, students in Grade 8 and 9 will be asked to self-assess their development in one or more of the core competencies.

Below you will find an overview of each competency and some open-ended and probing questions to help students clarify their thinking and articulate their individual profiles.  In June, grade 8 and 9 students will be given an opportunity to respond to some of these questions.



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Describe a time when you shared ideas with others.


Describe some ways in which you have collaborated with others.


How have you improved this year in building relationships with others?


How do you use words and actions to encourage other students who might be feeling a bit sad or discouraged? (What are some words and phrases you use?)


What contribution have you made to our school that you feel good about? How did you get started doing that?



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What do you see as your personal strengths?


Describe something you really liked in the work you did. What made it special for you?


How are you progressing as a learner?


How can you use your strengths to improve?


Describe a time that you exercised good choices that contributed to your well being.


Describe one of your learning goals. What are you doing to achieve this?


Think of times when you have to wait. What strategies do you use when you are feeling impatient?



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What are your strengths as a learner and how do you learn best?


What are some aspects that you value about your culture and would like others to know?


How do you portray aspects of your culture in your work?



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Describe a problem that you solved. What choices did you make that affected the outcome?


Pick a topic or question. How has your thinking changed? What made it change?


What strategies do you use to decide whether to believe something you have read? What advise would you give a younger student about figuring out what is true?


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What strategies do you use when you want to generate ideas? How do you develop your ideas?


Describe something you have designed. If you were to do it all over again, what adjustments would you make?


Describe a time when you felt really good about a new idea you had.



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Describe ways that you contribute to discussions.


Describe a form of communication that you are especially proud of. What would you like others to notice?


How do you show that you are listening thoughtfully?


What do you do when you disagree with someone in your group or discussion?




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This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: March 6th – March 10th


This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: March 6th – March 10th

Hello Mariners!

It has been an interesting time of learning, special events and celebration in the final week before Spring Break.

On Monday we welcomed the BC Ministry of Education’s (International Department) Film crew to EMS. Several Earl Marriott Secondary students were featured in their production and they spoke about their opportunities as Mariners and of their International Education experiences. Thank you to all student and staff participants for your positive ambassadorship of our International Education program and school.

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It snowed again on Tuesday! I have been telling anyone who will listen that this was the last snowfall at EMS for the year… Spring is just around the corner.

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Interim Report cards were issued on Wednesday. All students should have received an interim report from all of their classes. This semester teachers produced interim reports through a variety of templates. Some teachers customized their reports and produced them as a separate attachment; other teachers entered their feedback directly onto the MyEdBC report card template. Parents/Guardians are asked to please inquire with your children about their interims. If you have not received an interim report for a particular class, please contact the school and let us know. This is a very appropriate time of year to recognize all of our students for your initial progress in your 2nd semester classes. We hope that you are proud of your accomplishments thus far, and encourage all students to diligently work toward success. I would also like to thank all of our staff for your professional support of your new 2nd semester students, and for your valuable feedback within the interim reports.

Wednesday was also our COR Audit (Health and Safety) for our school. Thanks to all the members of our Health and Safety committee for your important work and contribution to EMS. The audit went very well; and we will be able to focus on the observations of this objective and expert process.

Thursday was Parent-Teacher interviews at EMS. The interviews included both drop-in sessions and scheduled appointments. I know that parents/guardians and students who participated were very appreciative of the time and feedback provided by our EMS team. Thank you to all teachers who were here for parents. Your time and professionalism spent in dialogue were very important. This opportunity for face-to-face interaction between teachers and parents/guardians is a very powerful tool to support learning and to reinforce our open partnership with our community. Thank you for your work. I would also like to recognize and thank our student leader volunteers. Your efforts throughout the afternoon acting as greeters, guides, servers and ambassadors was wonderful. Great work everyone!

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On Thursday morning we hosted Elections BC at Earl Marriott Secondary. They were here to educate our students about their civic responsibility to vote and to help register students who are 18 years and older. This is an important new initiative to reach out to our newest eligible voting citizens of British Columbia.

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At the same time, District Facilities crew were here installing the new plaque for our C’en Alien Welcome Posts…   all members of the EMS community are encouraged to stop and read the history and significance of these amazing posts.

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On the final day before Spring Break, students were asked to ensure their lockers were clean and free of any food items. We are doing our best to emphasize an environmentally responsible locker cleanout with recycling expectations for all. The cleanout went very smoothly, our students were very environmentally responsible with their items, and the school is ready for the break. Thanks to all for your responsible citizenship.

Today during our Jr. and Sr. lunch breaks we hosted the “Hoops for Hospital” Fundraiser. This is a new partnership between Earl Marriott Secondary and the Peace Arch Hospital’s Auxiliary Society. The event was a fun basketball competition between the school staff and the Auxiliary. Funds raised were donated to the Peace Arch Hospital’s Emergency Department. We are looking forward to exploring other educational partnership opportunities with the hospital. Thank you to all members of the EMS staff who participated, all members of the Auxiliary who joined us today, and all members of the school who came to donate and/or cheer us on! This was another excellent example of how schools can work with community partners for the benefit of all.

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And just like that… the week is over… and it is time for Spring Break! I wish all students and staff a restful two weeks. Relax, recharge and enjoy some downtime. We will be back on Monday, March 27th for the final term of the 2016-17 school year. As always, it will be an incredibly busy and rewarding time for our school. Get some rest!


All the best,


In the News:

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Celebrating Surrey’s Women

International Women’s Day is today (March 8th, 2017), and we’re here to celebrate Surrey’s women and girls who are getting.things.done. From celebrating fellow women by giving them a platform to share their stories, to dominating sport, or even blessing the city with art, Surrey has some incredible women making Surrey a wonderful place for women to work, stay, play, and flourish. So we’re giving a little shout out to our past TruePeople who just happen to be strong, smart, and powerful women, be sure to click on their names to learn more about their projects and passions.

Candice Radcliffe has been enriching Surrey’s arts and culture for around seven years with Crescent Beach’s Beach House Theatre. Bringing wonderful productions like family friendly Tales of King Arthur, and The Heart of Robin Hood, Candice is the Creative Director and vision behind these adorned performances on Surrey’s beautiful beach, covered by many art lovers and bloggers.

Kudos to:

Junior Girls Basketball – What An Amazing Season!

The 2016/2017 Junior Girls Basketball Team racked up a number of achievements this basketball season:

1st place finish – Duchess Park Provincial Qualifying Tournament

3rd place finish – Surrey Championships

2nd place finish – Fraser Valley Championships

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These achievements earned the Junior Girls the right to compete against the top 24 Junior Girls basketball teams in all of BC at the BC Provincials held at the Langley Event Centre this past weekend.

Although the Junior Girls team didn’t achieve the result they were hoping for, they did an amazing job. Of the 24 teams who qualified to participate, the EMS Junior Girls team finished in 12th place; and finished 4th in the Showcase Bracket. Competition was fierce; and our Junior Girls team battled it out in every game showing that EMS was not going to go down easily.

Congratulations girls on making it to the Provincials; and on all your other achievements this past season!  You have done your school proud!  Building on your team’s successes, we look forward to what the Junior Girls team will accomplish next year.


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This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: February 27th – March 3rd

This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: February 27th – March 3rd  

Happy Friday morning everyone. Spring Break is now just around the corner and our days at EMS are full. Students and staff are busy learning, working and celebrating together. This is always a very important and productive time of the year.

I would like to start by again recognizing all of the work of our HEROES club and Student Government in leading the school’s Anti-bullying Week activities. Thank you to all student leaders for your important messages throughout the week.

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On Monday and Tuesday our EMS Theatre Department hosted several hundred elementary students for their matinee performances of “The Comedy of Errors”. I saw many smiles as the students left the theatre! This was an excellent opportunity for our Family of Schools students and staff to learn more about our EMS Theatre program and our school.

Our Staff Meeting was postponed due to the unexpected flurries of snow on Monday afternoon. With more snow forecast for this weekend – we are now quite ready to bid winter a fond farewell Spring is just around the corner everyone!

We did manage to gather for our Parent Advisory Council meeting on Monday evening. I would like to thank our PAC Executive and the parents/guardians who attended. The next meeting will be on March 27th. (I am certain the weather will be much fairer by the end of March.)

On Wednesday, the Theatre’s production of “The Comedy of Errors” started their run of shows. I had the chance to attend Thursday evening. I highly encourage everyone to purchase your tickets for the final performances – tonight and Saturday. Our Theatre Company has created a unique and farcical “Western” adaptation of Shakespeare. Great fun! Congratulations to Ms. Radcliffe and the entire cast and crew of the production. Your many, many hours of hard work, dedication and rehearsal, combined with your talent and love of performing arts has resulted in such success.

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Our new Trades Exploration Co-op class is in full stride this semester. Our students will experience carpentry, electrical, plumbing and welding over the semester. They will also have an opportunity for a Work Experience placement in the construction industry. The students are currently working on their framing skills… the Woodwork shop is an exciting place to be! Our students are very fortunate. Thank you to Mr. Weir and Ms. Brabenec for your leadership in initiating this valuable opportunity for our students.

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Rugby season has started… this year our players are out in force with many EMS Mariners participating across all grade levels. Thank you to Mr. Roberts and Mr. Johnson and all of our coaches and parent volunteers for your leadership in building such a successful and positive program.

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Groups of Ms. Manning’s Art students have been creating tile designs based on 4 different cuisines.  Indian, Indigenous, Asian and Canadian mix.  The pictures are of students in the Indigenous cuisine group.

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We now move into the final week before Spring Break. I encourage all students to be diligent with your studies over the next 5 school days… there is still much to be accomplished!

Kudos to:

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By Aaron Hinks – Peace Arch News

Posted Feb. 23, 2017

“The days when a vinegar-and-baking-soda volcano was worth anything more than a participation ribbon at a science fair competition have since passed. Earl Marriott Secondary student, Olivia Li recently demonstrated what it takes to be a finalist in an international science competition.”

EMS student earns bronze at international science fair

Gymnastics Team – Congratulations to EMS students Sarah Tobin, Callie Foreman and Natalie Langenhaun on their recent success at the British Columbia High School Provincial Gymnastics Championships held in Prince George. All three girls had an excellent tournament and represented Earl Marriott Secondary with pride! Sarah finished with an overall first in her category and Callie placed in three events. Congratulations team!

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Wrestling Team – Bryn Sandhu, Jasmin Sandhu and Ana Godinez are competing for EMS in the Wrestling Championships. Congratulations and good luck to the team. They will be at the Provincial Championships this weekend in Salmon Arm.

Curling Team – Congratulations to our EMS Curling team: Kiana Holland, Tanis Short, Hailey Dubois and Alyssa Lait. They are competed this week in Smithers at the High School Provincial Curling Championships. Our team did very well, winning the Fraser Valley Championship and competing at a very high level with teams from across the province. Way to go girls!


Enjoy your weekend. See you on Monday.



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This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: February 20th – 24th

This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: February 20th – 24th

Good morning everyone.

It has been #Antibullyingweek at Earl Marriott Secondary. “Make a NO!SE about bullying” has been promoting various anti-bullying messages throughout the week. I would like to thank our HEROES Club and our Student Government for all of your leadership in sponsoring this event.

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Your work in raising awareness makes a positive difference. Thanks to all students and staff who have participated throughout the week. On Monday it was a solemn day of memorial for victims of cyberbullying. We wore black to raise awareness of this issue.

On Monday we began the articulation process with our Associate schools. Our Counsellors began visiting Grade 7 classrooms to meet next year’s grade 8 students, discuss EMS and review course selection options. These visits are always a highlight for me. The chance to meet our newest students, experience their excitement and energy, and share this experience with them is always very gratifying. On Monday afternoon, we also met with the Administration and Grade 7 teachers of our Family of schools to discuss the articulation process. Thank you to all who attended. Special thanks goes to Ms. Liang, Ms. Garbe and Mr. McKay-Dunn for your presentations. I know this year’s transition of Grade 7 into Grade 8 will continue to be highly supportive with strong systems, and clear communication.

On Monday evening I had the opportunity to attend the Surrey School District’s annual Community Forum with our PAC Executive. We attended sessions on “Communicating Student Learning” and “Curriculum Transformation”. Both were very informative. Parents/Guardians are welcome to provide their feedback to the school district regarding the current assessment/evaluation converation at:

Tuesday was “Blue” day at EMS… the day was dedicated to raising awareness of discrimination.

In the evening we hosted several hundred Grade 7 parents at EMS. Thank you to our Counselling team for your help in hosting this event. Our goal for the evening was to provide a positive introduction to our school, communicate important information about Grade 8, and reassure parents/guardians that their children will be joining a safe and caring community. I have received very positive feedback from parents in the audience. The evening was well attended and parents left feeling reassured. I would also like to thank Ms. Amyotte and all of her Grade 8 students who participated in a panel discussion for the audience. It was very interesting to hear their perspective of their first semester’s experiences at EMS.

On Wednesday we wore pink to recognize the general province-wide anti-bullying day theme. Many students and staff were dressed in pink for the day!

It was a special day with our annual Dry Grad Fashion show held in the evening. This year’s show was a wonderful celebration for our community. The gymnasium was full of cheering students and parents. Our grade 12 students looked fantastic modeling the latest fashions, and funds raised though the silent auction and ticket sales will directly support this year’s Dry Grad. Thank you to Ms. Shelly Zimmerman, Dry Grad Chair, for your countless hours of work in leading this event. Thank you also to the many parents and students who volunteered your time and energies in order to make this evening possible. Excellent work everyone – a great success!

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Thursday was “yellow” day to recognize bullying amongst people close to you… Friday was “white” day to commemorate hope for the future. Again, thank you to HEROES and Student Government for your important work.

As always, it was a busy week… special events, course selection, celebration and raising awareness. Our school community is an exciting and thriving place to work and learn. It is a very special community and I am privileged to be part of it. I hope all students, parents, visitors and staff enjoyed and appreciated these opportunities as members of the Mariner community over the past week.


Enjoy your weekend.



Here is Ms. Gregerson’s Planning 10 students learning about communication, leadership, teamwork, and problem-solving as they take on the task of solving the “human knot” challenge.

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Kudos to:

We would like to share the outstanding success our students had at the Surrey Jazz Festival over the past weekend.


Best Surrey Saxophone: Mirei Matsumoto

Best overall Trombone: Jason Callaghan

Grade 11 musicianship award: Daniel Holker

Grade 12 musicianship award: Mattias Tome

Jacob Holker received a gift certificate to Matterhorn music for outstanding Junior soloist.


Both the Sr. and Grade 9 Jazz bands received top scores in the festival from adjudicators for their outstanding performances.

We are very proud of the effort put forward from our students. They were wonderful ambassadors for our school!

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Huge Congratulations go out to our EMS Junior Girls’ Basketball Team who has had an amazing basketball season…so far.

For the first time in a long time, not only did the Jr Girls’ Basketball Team accomplish making it into the Fraser Valley Championships; but they succeeded in securing a 2nd place finish.

The Jr Girls’ team is a contender at the upcoming Provincial championships which are being held next week (Mar 1st – Mar 4th) at the Langley Event Centre.

EMS is proud to have this amazing team represent our school.  Good Luck girls!


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This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: February 13th – 17th

This Week at EMS – Principal’s Message: February 13th – 17th

Good morning Mariners!

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I hope you enjoyed your time with family and friends on Monday’s Family Day. This week at Earl Marriott Secondary we were busy trying to catch up on snow-delayed tasks and events and re-establish the routines of daily school life. It has been a very busy time with the shortened week.

Upon our return on Tuesday, we moved directly into course selection for our students. Throughout the week classes were called down to the computer lab in order for students to enter their next year’s course requests into the MyEdBC system. This required some initial password management and then students were able to enter their selections. The process went smoothly, the system worked as designed, and we now have a high percentage of course requests entered. On Monday we will continue with the process and meet with any students who were absent last week and missed this opportunity. With this, we will then have the data to begin building next year’s timetable. Students are again reminded that courses should be selected with great care. Counsellors will now be reviewing any exceptional requests that students sent to them during the process. I would like to thank our counselors, Ms. Sall, Ms. Domingo, Ms. Reilly-Clark and Ms. Sidhu, for all of your help in supporting our students through course selection.

On Wednesday evening we held our rescheduled and revised Course Selection Parent Information Evening. This year, we have been able to upload all resource documents, presentations, videos and planning guides onto our website. This has been a valuable resource for our students and parents. All students, parents and staff are encouraged to visit the website at: if you are looking for any information related to course requests. Thank you to Ms. Sall for helping with the parent presentation. We are hopeful that all participants found the session to be informative and helpful.

On Thursday I had the opportunity to attend the District’s Dept Head Inservice with several of our Department Heads. Dr. Kris Magnussen, Dean of Education, SFU, was the keynote speaker. He provided an interesting and thought provoking presentation on the factors that influence education and innovation. We also heard from several teachers from across the school district on how they are implementing the Core Competencies into their instruction. There is much exciting work happening within Surrey related to new curriculum implementation.

“The core competencies along with literacy and numeracy foundations and essential content and concepts are at the centre of the redesign of curriculum and assessment. Core competencies are sets of intellectual, personal, and social and emotional proficiencies that all students need to develop in order to engage in deep learning and life-long learning.”

It was a very valuable opportunity to network with our colleagues from other schools. There are also many questions across the province related to the proposed new literacy and numeracy assessments. Much more detail is still to be developed.

Today is a Professional Development Day in Surrey. Teachers are focused on new curriculum and assessment strategies. This is an opportunity to reflect on our current instruction and consider the new pedagogy of tomorrow. Departments are meeting throughout the day as our teachers learn and plan. I wish all staff a day of rewarding new insight and rich professional dialogue.

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Next week our Counselling and Administration teams will be visiting all of our elementary Associate schools. This is a very important process as we meet next years’ new Mariners for the first time. I always enjoy the opportunity to introduce EMS to next year’s grade 8 students.

Enjoy your weekend. See you on Monday.




Principal's Blog | Ken Hignell