Meet the Teacher Evening

There was a lot of activity in the school during “Meet the Teacher Evening”


Immaculate Heart of Mary School held its annual “Meet the Teacher Evening” (formerly known as the “Orientation Evening”) on Thursday, September 24th at 7:00 p.m. This event, which is held every year during the third week of September, is not intended to be a parent/teacher night where specific concerns about a child are discussed. Rather, it’s meant as an opportunity for parents to learn more about school policies and to give them a chance to meet informally with the teachers.


Members of the student council  greeted parents as they entered the school


The evening began in the school gym where Mr. Picklyk, the school’s principal, welcomed everyone and then invited Sister Anne Pidskalny, the school’s director to say the opening prayer.


Mr. Picklyk (top photo) and Sr. Anne (bottom photo)


ihmslogo Mr. Picklyk again welcomed everyone, especially all the new parents, and indicated that IHMS is the only Ukrainian Catholic school in the province. It’s also the longest continuous running mission of the Sister Servants of Mary Immaculate in the world (the Sisters Servants of Mary Immaculate are the religious order that own and operate the school).
IHMS enjoys a very long, vibrant history as one of the oldest and most established schools in the province, currently starting its 110th year of continuous operation.It’s a member of the Manitoba Federation of Independent Schools, and is one of 17 Catholic schools in the province. It’s also one of only 3 Catholic schools in Manitoba run by a religious order (the other two schools are St. Paul’s High School and St. Mary’s Academy). For the 2015-16 school year, there are currently two Sister Servants of Mary Immaculate working at IHMS – Sister Anne Pidskalny, SSMI (the Kindergarten and Sadochok teacher) and Sr. Oresta Svorak, SSMI (the Sadochok teacher’s aide).


Mr. Picklyk then introduced the school’s current staff for 2015-2016.


A few of the IHMS teachers sitting in the audience


Mr. Picklyk went on to list the members of the appointed Board of Trustees. Members of the school board (the “Board of Trustees”) are not elected – they are individually selected by the school administration. Most school board members were not in attendance, and the few that were present appeared to be attending in the role as parents to meet with their child’s teacher.




Mr. Picklyk also introduced the elected members of the Parent’s Guild, with Mr. Arnold Dumlao as the president. (Note that all parents with children enrolled at IHMS are automatically members of the Parent’s Guild, and that the main role of the Parent’s Guild is fund-raising). Mr. Dumlao spoke briefly about the quality of education at IHMS. He indicated that the academic standards at our school were the deciding factor in his decision to enrol his daughter at IHMS. He believes the education she receives at IHMS will serve her well when she eventually gains acceptance into St. Mary’s Academy for high school. Mr. Dumlao also asked parents to invest in their children’s future by spending one hour every month attending the monthly Parent’s Guild meetings.


Mr. Dumlao, president of the IHMS Parent’s Guild


bosv6 Next, Mr. Picklyk introduced the IHMS student council, including Nina H., the newly elected president. Nina spoke briefly about the student council’s fundraising efforts throughout the year, including the “Show and Save” coupon books currently on sale in the front foyer. The cost is $20 per book, and the money raised from their sale will help cover the cost of the Grad Dinner and Dance. Nina ended her speech by promising to make the year a “blast” for the students!


Student council president Nina H. (top photo) and members of the student council selling “Show and Save” coupon books (bottom photo)


Mr. Picklyk then made a quick reference to some of the more important points in the student handbook, including school uniform rules, family vacation rules, volunteering, and healthy eating practices (Halloween and Valentine’s day will be “candy free days”). Since many students at IHMS have food allergies, students are asked not to share food or bring birthday cakes to school.


nostopsign_edited-1 The  protocol for dropping off and picking up students in the back lane was addressed with a Power Point presentation. It gave a visual representation of where parents can and cannot park.  Parents are strictly forbidden from parking almost everywhere in the back lane.
It’s school policy and a city bylaw. No matter how tempting it may be, parents cannot park along a neighbour’s garage, and they cannot park in front of the “No parking” signs along the fence.


Also, if a parent stops in the back lane along the side of the school, and if that parent leaves their vehicle, that vehicle is considered to be illegally parked according to city bylaws and may possibly be ticked.


The top photo shows the prominently displayed signs in the “No Stopping  Zone” along the back fence. This is the zone where students enter into the back lane to be picked up or dropped off. Parents are strictly forbidden from stopping their vehicles along this fence at all times. The bottom photo is an image projected on the gym wall during the presentation showing parents where NOT to park!


Mr. Picklyk then dismissed everyone from the gym, and parents were free to visit the classrooms. There were 2 classroom sessions, and each one was 20 minutes in length.


Parents and teachers moving from the gym to the classrooms for the first session


During these sessions, teachers gave a short presentation to the parents on the type of work they were planning to do. There was also plenty of time for the teachers to answer any questions that the parents might have about the curriculum or classroom rules. During these sessions, the school provided free babysitting for any parents who brought their children to the school with them.


Grade 8 girls babysitting students during “Meet the Teacher Evening”


At the end of the evening, refreshments were served in the gym. Coffee, tea, and juice were available, as well as an assortment of baked items supplied by the grade 3 and 4 classes.


Parents, students, and teachers  enjoying refreshments at the end of the evening