Our mission at Gitwinksihlkw Elementary is success for all students. We strive to give every child a sense of what makes them special and valuable to their families and community as a whole. Recently, we have shifted away from traditional classrooom management and discipline procedures in order to better embrace an approach to social and emotional well-being that fits with traditional Nisga’a values, empowers students with self-confidence, teaches them the skills they need to be accountable to others and prepare them for leading their community into the future. This change in our philosophy has lead to remarkable and quantifiable improvement in both behaviour and academics.
Gitwinksihlkw Elementary School is a grade K to 7 school, including a Nisga’a language and culture strand. The school has a two-hour literacy block, and a numeracy initiative as well as the Nisga’a On Wireless (NOW) program for our grade 5-8 students. We continue to use the laptops for writing using the Writing Performance Standards, but also regularly adapt to current web applications to match curriculum to 21st century skills.
Gitwinksihlkw Elementary School is a public school community of 34 students, their families, three teachers, including a Nisga’a language and culture teacher, and Learning Support Teacher, a principal, two teacher assistants, a secretary, and a custodian. We also share a music teacher with AAMES and NBES and a school councillor with NESS. The community is located within the Nisga’a nation, 103 kilometres northwest of Terrace, BC. 98% of the student population is of First Nations’ ancestry and the students receive a minimum of 3.5hrs of explicit Nisga’a language and culture instruction per week. They are enrolled in three classes: Division 1 (K-2), Division 3 (3-4), and Division 3 (5-7).