Brosseau Book of Memories

It was the fall of 1987, The beginning of a new school year, the Winter Olympics would be held in Calgary, the Simpsons debuted for the first time on national TV, the Ed. Oilers would again win the Stanley cup with a 4-0 sweep over the Boston Bruins, and my youngest son would be born, as Bobbie McFerrin sang to the world, “Don’t Worry Be Happy.”   And in Bonnyville, Alberta the new Catholic Middle school would open it’s doors, known to the community as the, “West Edmonton Mall School” or as it was named after Dr. Bernard Brosseau, “Ecole Dr. Bernard Brosseau Middle school”.

None the less the year would prove to be a very controversial and exciting time for it’s staff and students as a new concept in education was introduced to the community, “Middle School”. How would we fit in? Faced with questions and challenges the school would go through “growing pains” as it paved new territory in the world of education in Alberta. As part of the new staff at Dr. Brosseau we were all excited and apprehensive at the same time. Most of us were young beginning teachers and we were venturing into uknown territory. Middle School? The years of raging hormones, high energy, the transition between childhood and adulthood, dealing with peer pressure, this would be a challenge.

When the superintendent came to my door in June to tell me that I would be teaching at the new school in the fall I was overwhelmed. Expecting my third child in December, life had just gotten a whole lot busier. September came all too soon and my classes now ranged from teaching grade 5 English to grade 8 English. We would begin under the guidance of the new principal, Denis LaPierre and vice-principal, Kim Kissel. Thankfully we did have our “veteran” teachers to help mentor us and I was fortunate to be teaching with Betty Kissel, Betty passed away last year but I will always remember the kindness and wisdom she always displayed.

Christmas soon arrived and we would get a well deserved break. Just when 1987 ended my family would be blessed with Bryan Jonathan Krawchuk on Jan. 1, 1988. It was definitely a year not to forget! I coached volleyball for the first time and our school prepared for the Calgary Olympics by engaging our students in the many activities that were offered. One of my students, Alena Yarmuch (Thompson), who is now a parent at our school, was chosen to carry the torch and be part of the run. An event to remember!

Now 25 years later, I am back in grade 8 at Dr. Brosseau. Although students and staff have come and gone, the walls may have changed, our school spirit remains, a safe and caring community, engaging learners to strive to be the best they can be!“Teaching middle school is an adventure not a job.”

Angela K. Bennett

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