PRSD Learning Supports

Inclusive Education

Inclusion is not just about learners with special needs. It is an attitude and approach that embraces diversity and learner differences and promotes equal opportunities for all learners.

Every student has unique needs which must be met with flexible and responsive learning goals and environments. Peace River School Division strives to support students’ academic, behavior, and social/emotional needs through a continuum of supports in a variety of school settings. 

Flexible and responsive supports include:

  • Universal supports – strategies and supports incorporated into the environment for all learners, such as flexible learning resources and technologies, differentiated instruction, and positive behaviour supports.
  • Targeted strategies or interventions – for learners who need more specialized learning opportunities or access to more targeted support, such as writing accommodations, explicit instruction, or reading intervention.
  • Specialized or Individualized supports – supports that directly relate to individual learning needs and may involve external expertise such as the use of alternate and augmentative communication systems (ACC), or mental health support.

All Peace River School Division schools have dedicated Inclusive Education time.  If your child needs further support, please contact your local school.

Inclusive Education Coordinators & I-Coaches

School-Based I-Coaches are teachers who work with students with exceptional needs.  In this role, they work with teachers to develop programming for students, collaborate with external service providers, provide support to EAs, and work with teachers to provide tier supports and organized interventions.

PRSD schools are supported by Divisional Inclusive Education Coordinators who are responsible for providing comprehensive supports to K-12 school-based staff to improve overall student achievement in an Inclusive Education setting.  They work collaboratively with division-level personnel to ensure seamless supports to school-based personnel including teachers, support staff, vice-principals, and principals.

Early Learning Program (Formerly known as PUF)

What does PRSD offer:

The Early Learning Team, led by the Early Learning Coordinator, supports children in their emotional, social, intellectual and physical development through play-based environments. We support equitable opportunities for children to participate in early learning experiences that include early intervention. 

The Early Learning Team is responsible for providing educational programming and support services for children 2 years, 8 months to 6 years of age. Specialized and targeted programming for children is inclusive within our kindergarten programs. 

Services Available:

  • Early Learning Intervention
  • Early Literacy and Numeracy
  • Early Learning Coordinator
  • Psychologist
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Physical Therapists
  • Speech And Language Pathologists
  • Professional Learning
  • Transition Planning

Click HERE for more details regarding Kindergarten and Early Learning

Project Peace Success Coaches

Project Peace is an Alberta Health Services Mental Health Capacity Building Project.  It is a 12-month program focused on universal supports for the promotion of positive mental health. This program is funded in Peace River and Grimshaw and is managed by a Program Manager who works out of Central Operations.

The program deploys Success Coaches Success Coaches who work with children, youth, and staff in schools. Success Coaches provide universal programming in the areas of mental health, addictions, and social/emotional learning to students in the following schools: 

  • Springfield Elementary School
  • TA Norris Middle School
  • Peace River High School
  • Grimshaw Public School 

To learn more about Project Peace Success Coaches and their available programming click HERE or visit their Facebook page HERE.

Student Support Workers

Student Support Workers work with children, youth, and staff in schools, and they focus on universal supports for the promotion  of positive mental health. This program is funded through Alberta Education through the Mental Health in Schools Pilot Program. 

To Learn more about the Student Support Workers click HERE or visit their Facebook page HERE.

Student Support Workers provide universal programming in the areas of mental health, addictions, and social/emotional learning to students at the following schools:

  • Menno Simons Community School
  • Worsley Central School
  • Hines Creek Composite School
  • Fairview Jr./Sr. High School
  • Manning Elementary School
  • Paul Rowe Jr./Sr. High School
  • Dixonville School
  • Nampa Public School
  • Lloyd Garrison School
  • Red Earth Creek School

Community Helper's Program

The Community Helpers Program is a free training initiative available in area Jr./Sr. high schools and the broader community to promote mental wellness for youth, and persons who connect with youth who are between the ages of 12 to 30 years. Through outreach and training, the program:

  • promotes awareness of mental health, suicide prevention and helping resources.
  • provides skill development that can improve how youth are supported.
  • increases help-seeking behaviours.
  • encourages self-care in those who help others.
  • enables a stronger community of support for our youth.

CHP is supported by funding from Alberta Health Services and is coordinated through PRSD Learning Services. 

To learn more about the Community Helpers Program and see a list of current events, click HERE or visit their Facebook page HERE.

School Social Workers

The School Social Worker and School Social-Emotional Behaviour Program provides short-term supportive assistance to students and their families who are experiencing difficulties and require support at school.  These services are available free of charge to students between 5 and 19 who are attending Peace River School Division schools.  

Referrals to the School Social Worker or School Social/Emotional Behaviour Consultant can be made by:

  • Parents or guardians
  • School staff
  • The student

The School Social Worker will determine the need of the student and will contact the parent or guardian. A meeting with the student will be arranged at the school that the student attends.

If the School Social Worker determines that the student’s needs are beyond their scope of practice, or beyond the mandate of the program, they will recommend alternate community supports.

To learn more about the school Social Workers, click HERE.

Family School Liaison

The Family School Liaison Program provides services and programming to school-age youth (K-6) at EE Oliver Elementary School with a focus on mental health and overall wellbeing. This is managed by delivering classroom presentations and workshops, early intervention service with individuals and small groups, crisis response, community awareness activities, and collaborating with community agencies.

The Family School Liaison Program is made possible by a funding partnership with Alberta Health Services. 

Peace Collaborative Services

Peace Collaborative Services (PCS) is a regional collaborative service delivery system coordinating support for six Northwest Alberta school jurisdictions, including:

  • Grande Prairie Public School Division
  • Holy Family School Division
  • Northern Gateway Public Schools
  • some Northland Schools
  • Peace River School Division
  • Peace Wapiti Public School Division

Each year, Alberta Education provides funding to school jurisdictions to access multi-disciplinary services. The six participating school jurisdictions have pooled their funds in order to support access to the PCS multi-disciplinary team. The PCS team endeavors to help build capacity and support specialized assessment, consultation and programming, while supporting teachers, educational assistants, and other professionals better understand and adapt to the unique needs of their students.   

The PCS team consists of teachers, therapists and allied rehabilitation personnel who will provide support such as assessment, consultation, counselling and therapy for students who require those services to promote their educational success.

Assistance is available in:

  • Occupational Therapy
    • School environment (e.g., desks/chairs, classroom design) and routines
    • Organizational skills
    • Self-regulation and sensory programming
    • Play with toys and peers
    • Printing and assistive technology for literacy (i.e., reading and writing)
    • Functional life skill programming and transition planning
    • Self-help skills (e.g., dressing for recess, eating)
  • Psychology
    • Helping others understand child development and how it impacts learning and behaviour
    • Developing strategies/interventions for classroom management, behavioural support, and academic programming
    • Comprehensive assessments that identify a student’s strengths and challenges in such areas as learning, behaviour, and social-emotional development
    • Providing training and resources on a number of topics such as child trauma, various developmental challenges, social skills, emotional control and mental health issues
    • Assisting school communities in responding to crisis situations
    • Providing professional development opportunities tailored to meet the needs of staff and/or students
  • Physical Therapy
  • Mental Health
  • Speech-Language Pathology
    • Phonemic awareness and Language in the Classroom
    • Assistive technology
    • Augmentative communication.
  • Programming for students who are deaf, hard of hearing, and/or visually impaired 

**Referrals for PCS supports are made through educational staff such as teachers, learning coaches, administrators or PCS professionals.

Services are provided in the school setting. For more information, please contact the I-Coach at your local school.

Learning Supports

Amanda Bliska

Director of Learning Services

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Tammy Carlyle

Executive Assistant

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Tanna Bailey

Divisional Early Learning Coordinator & Inclusive Education Coordinator

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Hayley White

Divisional Inclusive Education Coordinator

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Loro Koski

Mental Health in Schools Program Manager

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Lilli Lundgard

Community Helpers Program Facilitator

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Sandra MacKenzie

Mental Health Capacity Building Program Manager

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Lorena Coombes

Social Worker

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Chris Kaip

Divisional School Social Worker

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Max Kaip

Certified Therapy Dog

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Chico Kaip

Therapy Dog in Training

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Connie Kramer

School Family Liaison Worker

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Lilo Kramer

Certified Pet Partners Therapy Dog

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Travis Mitten

School Social/Emotional Behaviour Consultant

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Murphy Mitten

Emotional Support Animal

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