-written by Mr. Kowalzik
On Thursday, Nov. 23, a group of grade 10 to 12 Sir John Franklin students participated in a workshop and video conference on how to protect one of the world’s most precious resources, our water. The video conference, hosted by the Centre for Global Education, brought students from seven different schools, representing British Columbia, Ontario, New Brunswick, and the Northwest Territories, together to share their thoughts, ideas, and experiences related to water usage and conservation and to help them to understand the importance of and the threat to our water. Students were asked to discuss questions like who water stakeholders are in their schools and communities and how to bring them together? In what ways are we all responsible for the well being of Canadian waterways, oceans, etc.? And what are your greatest concerns about water security or insecurity? Over the course of the day, students had the opportunity to listen to three separate student keynote addresses, each answering one of the questions above, in order to educate and inspire students in their work. One of the day’s keynote speakers was Sir John’s own, Branda Le.
The video conference was the second stage, in a four stage process that will culminate with the presentation of a document on water security and protection, written completely by students, to the Canadian Senate early in 2018. In the first stage, Sir John students Branda Le, Melissa Clark, and Issie Thomas participated in four shorter video conferences in which they heard from different experts related oceans and water protection as well as other schools across the country. The three young ladies had to spend several hours each week researching water issues, participating in different conservation activities, and preparing to share their work on the video conferences. During the day long workshop on Nov. 23, Branda, Melissa, and Issie each lead a group in answering the questions about water mentioned in the previous paragraph. The third stage of the process took place from Dec. 1 to Dec. 3 at the Vancouver Aquarium in Vancouver, BC. In this stage students from across the country took part in a writing workshop where they wrote the document that will ultimately be presented to the Canadian Senate in 2018. Representing Sir John at the workshop were Melissa Clark and Issie Thomas.