UPDATE: Daycare opening after Moricetown school flood

Witsuwit’en Child and Family Centre open for children of working parents, hopefully all on Friday.

The latest news from the Kyah Wiget Education Society is that the Witsuwit’en Child and Family Centre is open for children of working parents, and will hopefully open to all daycare students on Friday.

Friday is also the target date for students of Moricetown Elementary Secondary School (MESS) to return to classes in temporary space provided by the Witset Band.

The following is the full unedited media release:

We’ve made great strides since the last update!

The Witsuwit’en Child and Family Centre is now open for children of working parents. We hope to welcome all our children back to the day care for the morning of Friday, January 12; the day care will be closed for the funeral on Friday afternoon.

The current goal continues to be to provide temporary space for our MESS students by Friday. We aim to hold classes that morning, ending at noon for the village funeral.

By next Monday, we hope to be able to offer our regular day care spaces and temporary class room space for all our students.

Thanks to the dedication of our staff, our temporary MESS class rooms are progressing rapidly, with an envisioned quality of teaching from before the flood. Each space demonstrates good outside-the-box thinking and positivity.

With assistance from our Mental Health Counsellor Joann Lameck, the staff is now has a clear strategy for dealing with this loss, and for how to help their students through it on their return. The staff have contributed countless hours on behalf of their students, to ensure that the quality of education is not compromised.

KWES has assured the Ministry of Education that we will be maintaining ministerial standards throughout the restoration process.

The clearing of the gym is also progressing remarkably quickly. We want to again acknowledge the hard work of the ICount staff and students, who continue to pitch in and whose efforts have contributed enormously to the success of this task.

Several young adults have come forward unsolicited to assist with this work; their enthusiasm to help has demonstrated a very real community connection. In addition, the Kyah Bible Fellowship has offered use of their portable space for one of our temporary class rooms. We would never have known the depth of our community’s resolve, nor how much this school means to the students, if the flood had not occurred. As Joann Lameck suggested during her staff counselling session, Witset has an advantage that many larger centres simply don’t have: we care about each other. These villagers are demonstrating their devotion to building community through their commitment to our children.

We can’t wait to welcome the children back to class next week.

One final note: the community computer lab at the Band office will be off limits to the public for a temporary period. Members are encouraged to visit the computer lab at Centennial Hall during this time.

For more information, contact Diane Mattson at (250) 847-2244, extension 602, or by email at diane.mattson@kyahwes.ca. To make limited bookings of any of the Band halls, contact the Band receptionist at (250) 847-2133 during regular office hours.

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