Former MLA Leroy Johnson presents the Alberta Government plaque commemorating the school opening to students Brianna Miner, Mya Congi, and Emily Trent (not necessarily pictured in that order) and Principal Frank Heinrichs.
The official opening of the new Griffiths-Scott Middle School in Millet was held the evening of December 13th, 2012, with all due pomp and ceremony. Leroy Johnson, who had been the MLA for the constituency during the early planning for the new school, was present to represent the Alberta Government on behalf of the Honourable Verlyn Olson, Minister of Agriculture and MLA. The County of Wetaskiwin Council, the Town of Millet Council, and the Wetaskiwin Regional Public School Board and Administration were all well represented. Jean Scott was present to tell about the teachers for whom the school is named, Mr. Griffiths and herself. The Griffiths-Scott Middle School Band played the national anthem, student representatives spoke, and students were involved with the dignitaries in receiving the various plaques and presentations and in the ribbon cutting.
It was noted that this new Griffiths-Scott Middle School has actually been completed and opened five years later than first planned. During the planning and building of the school, there have been involved five ministers of infrastructure, four ministers of education, and two school board chairs. The building committee included and sought input from all concerned parties: trustees, teachers, administration, students, parents and the town. The result is a beautiful building designed around circles with the centre in the middle of the gym, but with one straight hall connecting all the classrooms, which makes supervision very easy. It meets green building standards which are good for the environment and are good for kids and learning. The staff and principal are very pleased with the way the building works, and the students are proud of it. It also continues to be a UNESCO school, which allows it to fly the UNESCO flag and involves the students in the exploration of other peoples and cultures in a variety of places and ways, including a special relationship with Hobbema.
The whole program was very well planned with special touches to add interest and meaning such as letting the students involved in the ribbon cutting keep the pieces of ribbon. Trustee Glenn Norby was a Master of Ceremonies with aplomb and humour, especially with his adjournment remarks which provided “politically correct” phrasing for problem behaviours such as having a “rescheduled arrival time” for being late.
After the program, there was an opportunity to tour the school and to partake of delicious refreshments provided by the parent council. The classrooms are equipped with “smart boards” and special areas include resource rooms, library, home ec. room, and construction room. A lot of good common sense went into the design and details of the school. It is a school which the school district, the town, and the students and staff can be proud of and enjoy for many years.