FREDERICTON, NB – The New Brunswick Association for Community Living (NBACL), along with Inclusion Canada, named eight recipients of National Inclusive Education Awards today. The awards recognize individuals, groups, or schools that have shown leadership in including all learners in and out of the classroom.
“This was a challenging year for our educators, and this year’s recipients are shining examples of inclusion at its best,” said Roxanne Tarjan, President of NBACL.
This year’s award ceremony will be held virtually, with Brenda Murphy, Lieutenant-Governor of New Brunswick, in attendance.
“Each year we look forward to recognizing the leaders in our education system who demonstrate strong examples of inclusion,” said Sarah Wagner, Executive Director of NBACL. “These awards show how we continue to advance inclusive education in our province every year.”
New Brunswick’s recipients of the 2021 National Inclusive Education Awards are:
Carol-Ann Haggarty, Resource Teacher at Simonds High School in Saint John – By looking at students for their abilities, Carol-Ann has seamlessly built a strong inclusive atmosphere within her school that welcomes all with dignity and respect. In supporting students to develop their independence, she has helped them to become participating, successful members of their school and community.
Heidi MacDonald, Director of Somerset Preschool in Saint John – Heidi welcomes the children at her childcare centre into a supportive learning environment that caters to each individual. In caring for children, Heidi considers whether the supports and resources in place suit the child, rather than if the child is suited for the environment. She also considers which educators best fit the child, whether the child’s environment effectively supports them, and whether the curriculum focuses on the child’s strengths and respects the varying levels of learning within her centre.
Lorie Holland, Resource Teacher at Leo Hayes High School in Fredericton – Lorie has proven herself to be instrumental in supporting her students to reach their full potential. Families of her students have noticed her dedication and purposeful support and have commented positively on it over the years. In a school year marked by uncertainty, Lorie has supported her students to navigate the disruptions as smoothly as possible.
Pauline Cormier, Resource Teacher at École Anna-Malenfant in Dieppe – For one student, Pauline left no stone unturned to provide what is needed for the student to be included with his fellow classmates. With the help of the school district, Pauline obtained financial aid to hire a multi-disciplinary group of specialists to support the student, including a speech therapist, occupational therapist, and a physiotherapist. Pauline has also supported the student to find a group of friends so he is included among his peers.
Sarah Dobbelsteyn and Kimberlee Dixon, Lead Educator and Administrator of Seawood Early Childcare Centre in Saint John – Under the oversight of Sarah and Kimberlee, the educators at Seawood Early Childcare Centre work as a support system for the children, focusing on how they can accommodate them. Sarah and Kimberlee rework old ideas into new ways to provide success to the children, going as far as rebuilding classrooms and shuffling educators to accommodate their needs. Thinking outside of the box, the pair try all ideas and strategies until a solution is found.
Melissa Garrett, Elise Deering, and Tom Patterson, Teacher, Resource Teacher, and Guidance at New Maryland Elementary School – Melissa, Elise and Tom have made a significant, positive impact on one student, and his mother has seen a remarkable improvement in her son’s behaviour, whose mental health had been negatively affected in his previous situation. With their care and understanding, her son is now happy, and participates in class and engages in group activities. He is offered every opportunity without bias, has friends, and feels he is part of the class.
Tara McNeill, Industrial Arts Teacher at Fredericton High School – When Cassandra, a grade 12 student with Down syndrome, expressed an interest in car detailing, Tara did what she does best – she made it happen. Cassandra’s resource teacher and mother have both witnessed her grow as she’s pursued her interest – one that provides her with career opportunities after high school. Tara is now consulting with the school’s resources department to learn how the shop area could be configured into a space that’s accessible for everyone.
Education Team at Oromocto High School – The education team at Oromocto High School goes above and beyond for their students, establishing resources to enhance students’ success. This has included mindfulness activities to assist with behavioural issues, and exploring opportunities for students to become more independent within a safe environment. Their effort in creating an accessible learning environment has impacted the students and their families, who speak highly of the team.
About the New Brunswick Association for Community Living (NBACL)
NBACL is a provincial, non-profit organization that works on behalf of children and adults with an intellectual or developmental disability and their families. NBACL leads in the creation of opportunities for individuals with an intellectual or developmental disability to live full and valued lives in all aspects of society.
Manager of Marketing and Communications
New Brunswick Association for Community Living