I wish now I had taken out my camera as I had intended to the VSB's first Bridging the Gap morning for secondary academic teachers and teacher-leaders. There we were, 34 Vancouver educators from 14 of our high schools and the VLN online learning school, 4 teacher-consultants, and 4 academic librarians in Lillooet Room, a large meeting room that is one of the original spaces of what remains of the core of the old Main Library at UBC in what is now the amazing new I.K. Barber Learning Centre. We had entered through the Chapman Learning Commons on the 3rd floor into a lovely "clubby" atmosphere with vaulted ceilings, high arched windows, newly refinished beams, comfy furnishings, and the great sense of returning to a place of higher learning which has been revitalized and yet remains rooted in the past.
Thanks to Chris Ball (Head, UBC Education Library) and Hope Power (Liaison Librarian for Education and Political Science, SFU) for their work in identifying for our group the ways we can better prepare our graduates for the demands of first-year university; to Renee McCallum (the W Project, writing support, SFU's Learning Commons) who identified the writing needs of high school graduates to better meet the demands of first-year; and to Simon Neame (Assistant Director, Ike Barber Learning Centre) for creating a sense of the possibilities for K-12 of both Learning Commons and digitization initiatives. Pam Hansen, Jacob Martens and I focused on how the VSB Learning Services can support teachers in this work.
All responses we have received were positive. There was general agreement that we needed to do the same thing next year.