Red Arrow
Tuesday February 21st, 2012  
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Quote of the Week
"The challenge will be to maintain and replace our aging infrastructure, while still providing uninterrupted service to the public."
- Frank Besinger  


The Crowsnest Pass Chamber of Commerce held its monthly luncheon on Wednesday, February 8th, where guest speakers discussed issues pertaining to some of the eldest and youngest members of the community.
Local Barrister and Solicitor Valerie Danielson started things off by apprising Chamber members of recent changes to the provincial Wills and Succession Act.
“With these changes, everyone needs to be reviewing their Will,” said Danielson, noting that the greatest impact is likely to be on those in second marriages, as well as small business owners and their succession planning.
Changes to the Act include abolishing the law which revokes a will upon marriage, ensuring spouses and partners have a temporary place to live when their spouse or partner dies if they do not already own property, the admission of extrinsic evidence (evidence not contained within the document itself) when interpreting a will, distribution of property between spouses and children upon death, as well as other important changes.
To find out more about changes to the Wills and Succession Act or to find out about updating your current Will, contact Valerie Danielson at 403-562-2132.
Following Danielson’s presentation, representatives from local schools spoke to Chamber members regarding education in Crowsnest Pass.
Isabelle Sellon School Principal Paul Pichurski invited Chamber members to take part in a local initiative developed by the Livingstone Range School Division to revamp the local education system and the way that students learn and are assessed.
“In the past, we haven’t done a very good job of going and asking for guidance,” said Pichurski.
“We need to be reflective of our community, but we can’t do it alone – we need guidance, feedback and support.”
“What we’re looking for now is feedback from the community about issues facing education and what we might do locally to enhance our programs,” he said.

According to Horace Allen School Council Chair Scott Warris, the North American school system was created to sort kids into two categories: thinkers and workers.
“That is changing now - we now need thinkers who can work and workers who can think,” said Warris.
He said that the problem with education in the past has been that the secret to doing well in school is having a good memory, adding that report cards were not an indication of an individual child’s intelligence but rather how they compare to other students their age.
“We are moving toward assessing the kids according to their ‘stages’, not their ‘ages’,” he said.
“We need to continue to make significant changes to the basic building blocks of our education system.”
“Structural changes like these would have made a big difference for myself and other kids like me,” he said.
ISS teacher LaDawn Funk said it is important to encourage students to think creatively and critically, instead of grading them according to their adherence to the archaic principles of authority, conformity and memory.
Funk noted that ISS and Horace Allen teach kids four core subjects in a six-hour school day and that, without adding a single minute to the school day, teachers have incorporated concepts such as citizenship, anti-bullying, global exchange, water safety, puberty education, roots of empathy and drug education and awareness into the curriculum.
“School is definitely not what it used to be,” she said.
“We’re not producing test takers, we’re producing life-long learners.”
“How we measure success is when students graduate and still want to learn and contribute to their community,” she said.
Pichurski said the schools have made these changes while still adhering to provincial education guidelines.
“We’re not completely changing the focus, just adding to what our kids are learning,” he said.
Pichurski said the group will continue to meet with local groups to get the message out - including a presentation to Council this Tuesday, February 21st at the Governance and Priorities Committee meeting.
The group will also hold a town hall meeting on April 18th at 7 p.m. at the Blairmore Elks Hall, and encourages anyone interested in taking part in the conversation to attend.
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