Christian Schools Canada Conference 2018
“Faithful Presence”: Christian Schools Canada Leadership Conference 2018
Thursday Morning Sessions:
1. Faithful Presence and the Environment: Karri Munn-Venn
In this action-oriented creation care discussion, we will explore Christian responses to the global climate crisis, and the ways in which we can engage children and youth. Questions will include: How does my faith inform my response to climate change? What are the risks of “staying the course” – or, of pursuing a dramatically different way forward? What is a ‘just transition’? How can we best contribute to the well-being of God’s Earth, and all its inhabitants?
2. Gospel Music – “Community in Motion”: Karen Burke Gospel music has and always will be about freedom—freedom to express, freedom to praise, and freedom to move! With its beginnings firmly rooted in Spirituals, Gospel music was created as a means of survival, hope and communication during the era of slavery in the Southern United States. Gospel music today remains a very effective way of building community--particularly where there is none. Learn about its fascinating history and some of the stand-out personalities that have made Gospel music a world-wide treasure.
3. Faithful Presence in an Era of Reconciliation: Jonathan Maracle and Mike Hogeterp In this time following the Truth and Reconciliation Commission a move of God the Creator’s Holy Spirit has been obvious in Indigenous People’s stories of resilience and healing and in prophetic calls to renewed and just relationships. Educators, students and communities drink downstream from a colonial history and are, therefore, part of its legacy. Faithful Christian presence in this place called Canada today means knowing the full reality of our broken history and responding by seeking reconciled, just and mutual relationships with Indigenous people and communities. Jonathan and Mike will share stories and song about faithfulness in the reconciliation journey.
4. Living a Public Faith: A Christian's Duty: Andrew Bennett (Cardus) and Ecumenical Panel of Educators This session will consider how living a public faith is essential to the fostering of a robust pluralism that embraces freedom of conscience and religion. Consideration will be given to the role of Christian education in forming public faith. Dr. Bennett will open the session and then facilitate discussion with a panel of educators of a Reformed, Evangelical, and Catholic background.
5. Faithful Presence High School Resolutions: Pete Oussoren (King’s Christian Collegiate) and Model United Nations Ontario High School Student Delegates On Wednesday, a delegation of high schools students from across Ontario spent the day in debate here at the conference using the Model United Nations structure. The students considered the role Christian schools play in supporting them in their learning and preparing them for a complex world and future. What are our schools doing well? What should we be doing differently? We’ll hear the results of the Wednesday student debate prior to our Thursday morning keynote, and this session will invite you to dialogue further with the students about their recommendations for you as a Christian school leader in the 21st Century.
6. Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI): Core Procedures and the Policy Development Journey Part 1”: Ed Noot (SCSBC) and Sylvia Keesmaat Schools across Canada, and in many international jurisdictions, are confronted with the need to respond to legislation and regulations regarding sexual orientation and gender identity. What core procedures should guide our response and how do we walk our schools on a journey towards thoughtful, proactive and biblically faithful policy development? This part 1 session will open with a focus on Biblical perspectives.
Friday Morning Sessions:1. Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI): Core Procedures and the Policy Development Journey Part 2”: Ed Noot (SCSBC) and Sylvia Keesmaat Schools across Canada, and in many international jurisdictions, are confronted with the need to respond to legislation and regulations regarding sexual orientation and gender identity. What core procedures should guide our response and how do we walk our schools on a journey towards thoughtful, proactive and biblically faithful policy development? This part 2 session will build on the previous SOGI session on biblical perspectives with particular focus on policy development. (3)
2. Belonging and Ability in the Christian School: Elizabeth Lucas Dombrowski and Sara Pot Learn how schools across North America are enrolling and serving whole families in their communities by providing high-quality support services for students with disabilities. Join us for a conversation on the biblical basis for inclusive education, and consider first steps towards a vision of the body of Christ. (2)
3. Our Graduates: Preparing the Next Generation to be a Faithful Presence in Canada: Beth Green Cardus will be releasing provincial data on graduate outcomes for the first time this Fall. Join the Program Director of Cardus Education for a hands-on workshop exploring the religious, civic and cultural profile of our Christian school sector graduates. This is not just a session for data geeks, although they are welcome too; this workshop is for anyone who would like to explore how empirical data can enhance the public conversation about the contribution of Christian education to the common good.
4. Gospel Music is Whole Body Singing: Karen Burke Gospel music moves the body - literally and figuratively! Come and learn about the building blocks of authentic Gospel music performance and how easily everyone can make a ‘joyful noise’ when they are in community! After over 30 years of teaching Gospel music in formal and informal settings, the verdict is in—singing Gospel music together is an experience not to be missed!
5. Bridging the Gap… Islam and Christianity: Amir Mahadi There are many cultural misunderstandings when it comes to Islam and the Middle East. It's these misunderstandings that limit our ability to share the gospel of Christ with those who don't believe. This session will hopefully help to bring truth and light to our approach of sharing the gospel not only to Islam but to others who may be different or foreign to us.
6. Preserving your School’s Christian Character: Albertos Polizogopoulos During this session, Albertos will discuss the legal implications of having a distinctly Christian character and identity and provide guidance on how to best preserve that Christian character, identity and integrity. There will be discussion what impact the Trinity Western University decision may have on Christian schools and how to navigate the current legal landscape. This session will include much time for questions and answers.