School District No. 83 (North Okanagan-Shuswap)

Learning & Curriculum

The Education Department is responsible for overseeing the delivery of educational programs to all our students.  We support quality instruction by providing current learning opportunities for our teachers.

We have many research and support opportunities for our teachers including Inquiry Project teams (where teachers choose a topic and research more about curriculum and learning), mentorship (where one teacher mentors another) and our Instructional Leadership Team (provides ongoing support to teachers in curriculum areas of Literacy, Writing, Numeracy, Differentiated Instruction, Education Technology and Assessment).

In addition, we provide direct programs and supports to our students with programs such as Literacy Support, Numeracy Helping Teachers, Gifted Instruction, Education Outreach, Trades Training, etc.

We also have a number of teams and committees (see below) that are constantly striving to improve our programs and the delivery of a high quality education to our students.

These include 83learns, Reporting and Assessment Team,  Numeracy Committee, Library Learning Commons Committee, French Advisory Committee, Outdoor Learning Team, Curriculum Implementation Team, Inquiry Projects and Teacher Mentorship.  We also support the Music Department and the District Resource Centre.

We work closely and in partnership with other departments such as  Indigenous Education and the Technology Department to co-plan and deliver services.


Is a joint School District and Teachers’ Association Committee that reviews all district educational committees and initiatives to make recommendations to the school district and the Board of Education.  This team also stays current on educational matters, trends, and data to ensure that our district is current, using best practices and providing needed supports to students and staff.

Reporting and Assessment Committee:

Over the past years this committee has done a tremendous amount of work to gather information and develop a new district policy around reporting and assessing. SD83 has also worked with nationally renowned Assessment for Learning educator Sandra Herbst to further develop district assessment practices.  Here is the link to Sandra Herbst’s website :

Numeracy Committee

The district Numeracy Team has created a “critical concepts” document for every grade K to 9.  These documents outline the key and ‘critical’ concepts that each student must acquire at each grade level to be successful in their math journey.  The team has also developed a numeracy assessment for K-9 to assist our teachers and students in knowing where students are and how best to guide instruction to support our students. Check out more information on numeracy here.

Library Learning Commons Committee

We have a team of educators including several of our librarians looking at the concept of moving from a traditional style library to a Library Learning Commons which has a greater emphasis on team-teaching, use of technology and becoming a student learning centre. Here is some information from the Canadian Library Association on Learning Commons and Library standards.

Canadian Library Association – School Library Learning Comm

French Advisory Committee

This committee of students, teachers and parents meets each year to review and advise on matters regarding our French Immersion Program including budget, program ideas, cultural events, registration and teacher training.

Outdoor Learning Committee

This team has done an incredible amount of work in recent years, leading to the opening of South Canoe Elementary Outdoor Learning Program in September 2018.  The committee also provides support for all of the district’s Outdoor Learning Programs and events such as Outdoor Awesome and teacher training with our Outdoor Learning Series.

Curriculum Implementation Team

This teams works to ensure that we have focused professional development for our teachers and staff in implementing the renewed curriculum.  We are currently working on parent curriculum nights and will be coming to schools soon for parent information nights.

Inquiry Projects

Every year we have teams of educators work in teams to collaborate and dig deeper into curriculum.  Inquiry projects is a method of learning and creating deeper understandings and thereby improved teaching methodology and practices in a particular area.  Many of our inquiry teams have become district presenters at professional development activities and have been invited by other districts to present on teaching and learning.   Here is a list of areas that our teams have worked on.

  • SD83 Inquiry Projects
    • Middle / Secondary Humanities
    • New Curriculum
    • Reporting and Report Cards (HPE)
    • Technology and Student Engagement
    • Secondary Student Writing
    • Secondary English Curriculum Exploration
    • IEP process
    • Social Responsibility (and Manners)
    • Inspire Ed –Inquiry based program for students
    • Renewed 10-12 Science Curriculum
    • Grade 3 Renewed Science Curriculum
    • Daily Movement benefits for students
    • Cross Curricular Projects focussing n Thinking Competency
    • Meeting diverse learning needs in multi-age setting (Montessori method)
    • Writing Curriculum and Assessment of
    • Renewed Science Curriculum (2)
    • Numeracy K-8, with team teaching and collaboration.
    • E-portfolio’s – Quio (2)
    • Older students and Numeracy Peer Coaches
    • Maker day projects
    • E-Portfolio’s –Fresh Grade
    • Project-based experiential learning, outdoor learning, multi-age learning, and the Indigenous Principles of Learning.
    • Enhancing Students understanding of numeracy – number sense
    • Outdoor Education and ADST
    • Parent Involvement/Education and Student Home Reading
    • Re-Imaging/Re-Designing delivery of 10-12 English Courses and Curriculum
    • Aligning IEP development with renewed curriculum
    • Developing Students Spatial Reasoning –Numeracy Skills
    • K-8 education multi-age groupings -peer coaching, mentorship
    • Middle and Secondary Assessment
    • Financial Literacy: A Start Up Business
    • Incorporating Aboriginal content and ways of knowing
    • Non-fiction Reading and Writing Through Inquiry”.
    • Changing results for young readers- district inquiry

Teacher Mentorship

School District No. 83 was one of the pilot districts for teacher mentorship and the practice continues.  Today, we continue to provide support for new teachers and teachers who want additional support or to renew their skills. There is value in mentorship to our teacher community for both mentors and mentees, including increased teacher retention and well-being. In addition, mentorship leads to greater student learning, improved practice and collaboration amongst teachers involved.