Tyee is a Montessori alternative program school, committed to providing a rich learning environment for all its students based both on Montessori principles and on fulfilling the expectations of the Ministry of Education for all schools. Teachers collaborate to ensure that the Montessori philosophy underlies all educational decisions at Tyee.
There are about 190 students registered in Kindergarten through Grade 7 in multi-age groupings. Students take responsibility from an early age; making decisions about how their time is spent on the learning tasks they choose under the teacher’s guidance. The Montessori approach supports continuous progress, as children work on personal goals and academic challenges. Students learn to work independently, in small groups, and as members of a class. Since Tyee's beginning in the mid-1980's, parents have made a conscious choice to enroll their children in this program and are highly involved in making the school's program a success.
Tyee Elementary School is located near Knight Street and Kingsway in a quiet east-side neighbourhood. Students come from various neighbourhoods in Vancouver to attend our district program. There is strong parent support for school initiatives and a high degree of involvement in the Parent Advisory Committee and in supporting the daily activities of the school.
Tyee Staff 2011/2012
School Hours of Operation
Grades K to 7 Students
In keeping with our Montessori philosophy, use of the school bell is minimal. There is an 8:55 am bell to signal that students may enter the school, and a 12:55 pm bell to end the lunch hour.
Tyee Elementary School
2011 - 2012 School Calendar
(School Not in Session)
The Montessori Program
Characteristics of a Montessori Program at Tyee:
I. Peace and global education are central to the Montessori philosophy. This is achieved through:
II. Extended work periods provide uninterrupted time for work. This gives the children time to build a momentum for work and they may often choose when to stop for their snack break.
III. Multi-grade classes encourage cooperative learning.
IV. Sequin’s three period lesson for direct teaching is used:
V. An integrated curriculum is followed, rather than a timetable approach to specific subjects.
2010 - 2011 School Plan
The school plan is written by the principal with direction from staff and in collaboration with representatives of PAC who sit on the School Planning Council. Every year three parents are elected by the PAC to sit on the School Planning Council. The main task of this Council is to review the current growth plan and prepare the School Plan for the following year in consultation with parents (usually through the PAC), and with teachers. The following goals, accompanied by specific action plans, are fully developed in our School Plan available on-line at www.vsb.bc.ca.
Goal 1: To increase the students’ quality and competency in writing skills at all levels.
Goal 2: To increase the students’ quality and competency in numeracy skills at all levels.
There is a desire to focus on Montessori principles and pedagogy through a 21st Century learning approach.
Parent Advisory Committee (PAC)
The school has a very active, inclusive and involved parent group which meets monthly. In addition to auxiliary and fundraising functions, the PAC, also referred to as TEMS (Tyee Elementary Montessori Society) takes an active interest in the classroom life of the school and affairs of the district as a whole.
TEMS would like to take this opportunity to welcome all the students and parents to our school. As parents of children attending Tyee, you are automatically members of the Parent Advisory Committee and you are invited to attend all general meetings. The school principal, teachers and members of the Student Council are also invited to attend PAC meetings.
Meetings are generally held on the third Tuesday of each month at 7:00 pm in the school library. Child minding for Grades K 6 students is provided by Grade 7 students who have taken a babysitting course. Our present PAC co-chairs are Joan Harvie and Fiona Taylor. There will be an election in October for a new PAC executive. Additional parent education evenings are occasionally held throughout the school year. Minutes are posted on the PAC board in the main hallway to keep all families informed of our activities. We look forward to seeing you.
At the start of the year, the PAC will be sending home information regarding Earthquake Comfort Kits. Comfort kits allow students and staff to have a few personal comfort items at school in the event of a major disaster. Comfort kits are stored in the earthquake bin located by the staff parking lot. They are returned to students each fall for updating.
We have periodic Fire, Code Yellow/Red/Purple, and Emergency Evacuation drills to familiarize both students and staff with safety procedures. The district-wide “Big One At Two” emergency evacuation drill is scheduled for early May. Where possible, parents will be asked to pick up their child and follow the formal release procedures. We thank you in advance for your cooperation.
Tyee has many volunteer opportunities. Attend a PAC meeting and find out how you can help. Also, a letter is sent home by school staff at the beginning of September to request input re: volunteering. Should you wish to offer an area of expertise or simply lend a helping hand, please complete the form and return it to your child’s teacher. There is also a Business Network Development area on the Parent Bulletin Board in the main hall, which showcases businesses in which our parent community is involved.
Fundraising for the school is done on a limited basis throughout the year. The PAC hosts two major events: one in the fall (generally a dance or silent auction), and one in the spring (our traditional Plant Sale).
Recess and Uninterrupted Work Cycle
Tyee Montessori does not have a scheduled recess in support of the “uninterrupted work cycle” within the Montessori philosophy. We try to ensure that students have this uninterrupted time Monday to Thursday mornings. Special events are scheduled for Fridays if possible.
Lunch is from 12:15 to 1:00 pm. All children who eat lunch at school are expected to remain on the school grounds. Students must be accompanied by a parent or authorized adult if they want to leave the school grounds, or a written notice given to their classroom teacher advising consent.
Students eat lunch in their classroom.
There are two supervision aides who supervise during lunch. Peer helpers, SSW’s, parent volunteers, and the principal also assist. During rainy lunch hours, these are the options for students:
General supervision is provided on school grounds in the mornings between 8:35 and 8:55 am when the first bell sounds. Please do not drop children off before this time, unless they are enrolled in the Out of School Care program, are attending a team practice or unless prior arrangements have been made. Students only come into school once the bell has rung, unless accompanied by a parent or guardian, who remains with them. In inclement weather, they can keep dry/warm in the undercover area or downstairs hallway. After-school supervision is from 3:01 to 3:20 pm. By 3:20 pm, children should have left school grounds, if not supervised by a parent or guardian, unless attending Out of School Care, or a school-sponsored activity. If parents of students have not yet arrived by 3:20 pm, children are expected to report to the office and wait for pick-up. Please remember to advise the Out of School Care if your child is absent or if you pick her/him up early for an appointment or due to illness. Thanks for your cooperation.
School Supplies Fee
The School Supplies Fee is usually $25/student for Grades 1 to 7, and $12.50 for Kindergarten (a separate request for the yearly school supply fees will be sent home at the beginning of each year). Fees are due by September 30th. This fee covers the cost of supplies used for students’ personal use such as paper, writing tools, rulers, scissors, glue sticks, erasers and exercise books. The Vancouver Board of Education offers this service to parents to purchase supplies in bulk at wholesale prices, at a substantial savings. Since teachers sometimes require additional items for the students, you may be asked for a few specific supplies as the year progresses. Note that the fee will be waived if there is a need due to financial hardship. If you would like the fee waived, please contact the principal either in writing or in person.
If you have more than one child at the school, please send the fee to each of their teachers. This will help us in keeping track of accounts - always a challenge at the start of the year! Your help in this is greatly appreciated. Please come prepared, as the office cannot give change.
Code of Conduct
At Tyee this has been summed up as respect: respect for self, respect for others and respect for the environment. A detailed Code of Conduct brochure is sent home at the beginning of every school year.
The use of cell phones in the school is not allowed unless under special circumstances. Students may carry them but they should be turned off. Students who wish to phone their parents should check with their teacher. Cell phones with cameras and cameras/videos should not be used unless permission has been received from school staff.
Students are not allowed to access the Internet without supervision nor should they have an expectation of privacy to their Internet use at school. Parents and students will once again be required to sign an Internet Agreement. Our policy is explained on the reverse side of the agreement, as well as on the web page. We recommend that parents supervise students’ use of the Internet at home. Please be reminded that Facebook users are expected to be 13 years of age and older.
Dressing appropriately in school is a way of showing respect for all those who work and learn at this facility. Just as adults dress in one way for the office or work, and in another for the beach or for parties, we hope that you will help students make good choices that prepare them for a day of active engagement in learning. The policy of the Vancouver Board of Education is a follows:
While it is not the function of the school system to impose or prohibit fashions or styles of appearance, the Board of School Trustees (the "Board") recognizes, as a custom of the elementary and secondary schools of the City of Vancouver, that each student shall attend school clean and tidy in person, and shall refrain from wearing hair styles, clothes, footwear, jewelry, and other articles of personal adornment that are, by reason of extreme styling, a distraction to the student himself/herself or his/her fellow students, or that are otherwise adverse to effective teaching in his/her class.
Children have physical education classes at least twice a week. It is essential for their comfort and safety that they wear runners or shoes, shorts and a T-shirt. It is also recommended that students, especially those in primary grades, have a spare change of clothes at school.
Lost and Found
Veterans of Tyee will attest to the incredible volume of items found regularly in our lost and found. Lots of clothing, packs, lunch kits, lunches, etc. are contributed on an ongoing, daily basis. These items are placed in the school lost and found area in the main hallway and are on display until notice is provided in the newsletter. Any unclaimed items are added to our periodic Clothes Drives, and are then forwarded to a local charity. We recommend that all articles be well labeled with your child’s name, so that we can help with the appropriate return. It is always amazing to note how many quality items are lost and unclaimed. Please take the time to label your child’s belongings and to pass by our Lost and Found periodically.
“Safety over Convenience”
Take special care around the school and observe the no-parking areas. Cars may not be parked in the alleyway beside the school (no matter how briefly). If you plan to come in, please park on Dumfries St. or along 20th. Allowing students to walk a block or two to the school might help to lessen the congestion.
Bicycles / Skateboards / Inline Skates / Scooters
Students who come to school on roller blades, skateboards, scooters or bicycles must dismount on school property. Please lock bikes up at the bicycle racks outside of the main school entrance. Students are requested to walk their bicycles on and off the school grounds. Please help us reinforce safety by ensuring your child uses a helmet… whether it seems cool or not! We appreciate that your personal guidelines may differ from ours, but please try to support our attempt to keep your child safe while on school grounds during school hours
To alleviate the disappointment of lost, stolen or broken toys and to avoid distraction in class our policy is that toys remain at home, where they can be safe and ready for play after school.
Reporting to Parents
We believe that open and frequent communication is an essential aspect of effective schooling. Teachers are available before and after school to chat with parents. Please respect teaching time and make appointments when a longer conversation is necessary. Also, please note our academic reporting times:
No letter grades are assigned at Tyee Montessori. However, final term letter grades are recorded on the computer system. Should a parent wish to see their child’s letter grades for the present school year, a request is made to the child’s teacher. Should a parent be making this request in subsequent years for past letter grades, a request is made at the school office.
If parents have any concerns or questions regarding practices or activities occurring in their child’s classroom, they are invited to discuss these concerns directly with the classroom teacher.
Should you have any concerns, here is the protocol to follow:
1. Phone and book an appointment with the teacher involved.
2. Talk privately with the teacher (most concerns should be solved at this point).
3. If not solved or if still dissatisfied, arrange to meet with the principal.
4. Talk privately with the principal. Is new information available to solve the concern?
5. If not, principal will meet with the teacher.
6. Meeting will be held with all parties (only in extreme situations would it be necessary to go beyond this point).
7. If resolution is not reached, contact the Area Superintendent (604-713-4491).
8. Area Associate will confer with the principal.
9. Resolution is reached.
10. If not satisfied with the resolution, parents can proceed with a Section 11 Appeal of School Decision.
The Tyee School Newsletter is sent home bi-weekly with your child and e-mailed to families on our Tyee Families e-mail list (should you not be receiving e-mails and wish to be added, please e-mail email@example.com). A concerted effort is being made to e-mail the newsletter to most families and provide a hard copy only to those who request it. The newsletter is also posted on our website, which has more details and photos of many school and class events.
Assemblies are held as needed, usually on a Friday morning. The purpose of these assemblies is to promote school unity, share information and allow children and visiting performers to make presentations. These assemblies are coordinated by staff and led by students. Parents are encouraged to attend assemblies. Assembly dates are posted in the newsletter.
Messages from Home
We encourage you, as parents, to telephone the school or write a note to your child’s teacher or principal to share information which is important for your child’s well-being. While teachers are not usually available to come to the telephone during class hours, they are pleased to return your phone call when time allows.
Use of School Telephone
Demand on the use of telephones is high. Student use of the office telephone is restricted to essential use (phoning home due to illness, unforeseen circumstances not for planning play dates). During class time, if students are required to use the phone, the teacher will give your child permission to use the school phone. We only have one outgoing line that is shared throughout the school. We appreciate your cooperation in planning for after-school activities ahead of time at home.
Tyee will also be providing student planners for all intermediate students at a cost of $7.00. These will be sent home during the first or second week with an accompanying letter. Parents can also communicate through the agenda and have a good sense of project deadlines and student workload.
Student Leadership and Community Service
At the beginning of the school year, Grades 4 to 7 students are presented with service and leadership opportunities for which they can volunteer. The list of some of the offerings is listed below. Community and neighbourhood volunteering is also encouraged. Each intermediate grade student is encouraged to complete the following amount of service hours. At the end of the year we hold an Assembly to recognize the students.
Grade 4: 10 hours Grade 5: 10 hours
Grade 6: 12 hours Grade 7: 15 hours
The following are some of the leadership opportunities provided at Tyee:
The Student Council is elected in September. This consists of a President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer and a class representative from each division. Student Council meets to discuss and plan social events for students and deal with student issues and requests that are raised in classes and brought to the council by class representatives.
Library Resource Centre
Our library houses a collection of learning resources. It includes fiction, non-fiction, print and non-print. Children use the library to develop research skills and to help nurture the love of reading. For information access, we have computers with on-line capabilities. Using the centre’s multiple resources, the classroom teacher and teacher-librarian plan together to develop learner-focused curriculum that considers individual student interests, abilities and learning styles.
The library is staffed by Chris Evans (Monday to Wednesday). It is usually open at lunch with the support of parent volunteers. (At the start of each year, a volunteer sign up sheet is posted in the hallway for those who are interested in helping.) All children are trained to sign out their own books on the computer system. Please help us by ensuring that books are returned on time. For more details on lost/damaged books, or how to donate, please speak with Mrs. Evans.
During class time, the library is accessible to individuals and small groups. In addition, class visits to the library are planned cooperatively by the teacher-librarian and the individual classroom teacher. Each class has the opportunity to visit weekly.
We encourage families to read together on a regular basis. Have your child read to you, and share in their enjoyment as they learn!
French as a Second Language (FSL)
French as a second language is currently taught to Grades 5 to 7 students. The emphasis of the program is to provide opportunities for the learners to develop an understanding and appreciation of other cultures, to learn basic French, and to gain confidence in his/her own abilities as a learner and as a user of the French language.
Intermediate classrooms at Tyee have pods of computers with internet access. Students are required to sign an “Acceptable Use Agreement” each school year.
The Grades 6 and 7 students have the choice to participate in Band at Selkirk Elementary twice a week. They are accompanied by a staff member, who walks them to and from Selkirk.
Talent / Variety Show
Tyee hosts a Talent / Variety Show yearly or bi-yearly. Students of all ages may audition and perform. Students (and sometimes even teachers!) plan songs, dances, skits, instrumental pieces, acrobatics, etc. Other children operate the lights, sound, and act as stagehands.
Field trips are a means of enhancing the program offered in the classroom. Prior to any field trip, parents are notified in writing of the details of the planned trip. Before students are permitted to take part in a field trip, they must have written consent from the parent or guardian. Volunteer drivers are also required to fill out a “Third Party Liability” form for insurance purposes, and to keep the original copy in their vehicle.
Parents are generally asked to subsidize field trip expenses. However, the VBE policy ensures that no student will miss the opportunity to take part in a field trip for financial reasons.
Every third year, all primary classes participate in a camping experience. Students are prepared before they leave and are instructed at the outdoor school by their own teachers and camp staff. A fee is charged for the programs. Those students not participating in the outdoor school experience attend school as usual (they are accommodated in another classroom), or parents may elect for their child to stay home.
Copyright ©2011 Tyee Elementary School