If you are intent on preserving and growing your home’s asset value (and who isn’t!) it’s a good idea to buy a home that is well-located to crucial amenities, like shops, transit and green space. Perhaps the most important amenity is good schools within the neighbourhood. Having access to good schools is a premium feature that prospective homebuyers will covet. And when those good schools offer next-level programs and events that enrich student and community life- it’s nearly priceless.
The Humewood Community School located at 15 Cherrywood Ave, north of St. Clair Ave. and west of Christie St. has an envious educational reputation. It houses over 600 students from JK through to Grade 8. Its school theme is “Building our Community” and this is evidenced in how active this school is in the community.
In short, the Humewood Community Parent Council proves that parent council is not just about bake sales anymore. They have a roster of activities and community events that rival a cruise ship activity board. Their tagline is “Doing Good at Humewood” and this thematic thread connects all of their activities together. They get the fact that education is holistic. It’s not just about what you are taught in the classroom, but about growing an awareness of how you contribute to the community that you are a part of for fun, for enrichment and for prosperity. It’s a good example of strength and power of the community.
For example, the Parent Council offers a variety of hot lunches to the students throughout the year. They organize events at Marlies games. They host regular pub nights and a hugely successful Fall Fair. They do the Terry Fox Run and organize environmentally conscious events. They even have a Pumpkin Drive, which is a great fundraiser. Recognizing the growing importance of regular physical fitness with children, they promote the “OPAL Pop up Adventure”, which focuses on outdoor play.
The goal of council has been to find a balance between fundraising and community engagement. Year over year, Parent Council helps raise about $50,000, which is significant. The big funding priorities are Technology, Music and Arts Enrichment. Parent Council initiatives also play a critical role in filling the budget gap from school budgets which is bound to grow wider with recent Provincial funding cuts.
Humewood Community School has a culturally diverse population, with many students speaking languages other than English or French. Recognizing this diversity, the Parent Council focuses on community building across all cultural groups.
What is particularly noteworthy about this parent council are the people involved. The council is made up educated parents whose personal goals include public service within their community and bettering their children’s education and school experience. This group of parents work very closely with teachers and administrators to really understand the goals and objectives and what makes for a successful school year.
Administrators have been transparent with the annual budget and shortfalls. This level of transparency gives the parent council insight into what the budgetary needs are and fosters collaboration on ways to bridge these budgetary gaps meet the goals for successful year.
How wonderful to have the opportunity to be part of such a vibrant school community – and to have this school right there in your neighbourhood!