Winners of WCPS health and safety contest announced

On April 15 winners of the first Wolf Creek Public Schools (WCPS) Student Generated – Staff Learning Health and Safety contest

On April 15 winners of the first Wolf Creek Public Schools (WCPS) Student Generated – Staff Learning Health and Safety contest were announced. Six grade 1-6 classes and four grade 7-12 student groups were each awarded $700 for generating creative and purposeful health and safety training tools for Wolf Creek teachers and staff.

The contest was created by WCPS Health and Safety Coordinator Chris Banbury as a way to promote health and safety integration in the division. The contest was open to all WCPS students and could be submitted individually, as a group, or as a class. The entries needed to be applicable to the operation within a school district with the main objective being to use the final products as health and safety training for school division safety.

The division has been utilizing online training for five years to educate staff on health and safety issues. Banbury says that while the training has been effective, he wanted to find a way to increase the awareness of the importance of health and safety. As a school division, he thought the best way would be to educate from within, however with a bit of a twist. Instead of teachers educating students, the contest would see students creating training for staff. The contest also provided an avenue for students to display their knowledge regarding health and safety and to start to understand the importance of health and safety from a young age.

On April 15, Banbury and the WCPS Joint Health and Safety Committee selected the winning entries. Almost all grade levels were represented, with prizes being awarded by grade. Submissions varied in complexity and scope but the message of the importance of health and safety was very clear in all of them.

“I think staff will be very impressed with the winning entries which range from simple yet informative PowerPoint presentations and calendars to Green Screen productions using Movie Maker technology,” said Banbury.

He added, “This was the division’s first formal attempt at integrating students from all grades into health and safety. We feel we have accomplished something in which students, staff and the community can be proud of and get value from.”

The next step in the contest is the Viewer’s Choice Award. All winning submissions will be available to students, staff and the public for viewing on WolfTube (http://wolftube.mediacore.tv/). The video with the most “likes” as of June 7 at 4:00 p.m. will be invited to the WCPS Board of Trustees meeting in Ponoka on June 18 to be formally presented with a cheque for $600.

The contest was made possible through the generous support of the WCPS Board of Trustees as well as several community partners including Nova Chemicals, Alberta Education Health and Safety Association, Calgary Catholic School District, City of Lacombe, Hour Zero, R&M Health & Safety Services, Northern Gateway Public Schools, Wesclean, Canadian Society of Safety Engineering – Central Alberta Chapter, Alberta Education Facilities Administrators Association, Workers’ Compensation Board – Alberta, Safe Communities Coalition of Central Alberta, and Work Safe Alberta. Sponsors will receive a digital copy of the collected student work, which can be used for internal training purposes.

“Thank you to all of our sponsors for demonstrating your commitment to the health and safety of our students and staff by generously supporting this contest. Your generosity will not only demonstrate your ongoing stewardship to today’s and tomorrow’s safe workforce, but will also inspire student participation and engagement,” said Banbury.