Upcoming Events & News / HoS Blog / Our Powerful Community

Our Powerful Community

Our Powerful Community

A Vibrant and Inclusive Academic Community

"Carefully watching as we grow..."

When I arrived to Kelowna and Aberdeen Hall in 2006, we were located in a little, defunct public school building about a kilometer from here.  It was the beginning of the summer, and the list of 90 committed students had tapered off to about 70, so I spent my first few weeks calling families and working to convince them to give the school one more year. 

At the time, we didn't have impressive facilities, nor did we have any history behind us.  What we did have was a compelling vision, and an unwavering commitment to building a vibrant and inclusive academic community.  At the time, Lisa White (Our Director of Finance) was the Board's volunteer treasurer, a position she maintained for years until she joined us as an employee.  Susanne Raye joined us in 2006, and Grant Ozechowsky a year later in 2007.   Our 100 students became 200, 200 became 300, 300 became 500 and next September we grow from our current 660 to 700.  Yes, we are slowing our growth right down because we are about to reach our ideal size. With the addition of Phase 5, we will have excellent specialized, resource-rich rooms for all of our classes and programs.  We are not without shortcomings and are aware of the challenges regarding traffic and parking, and will continue to watch this very carefully.

The message we would like to share with all families (old and new), is that our commitment to community and personalized attention is as great as ever.  Occasionally I hear the criticism: "the school has changed, you used to know every student and every family."  Well, that's true, but now instead of me, we have excellent school Directors for each division, and it is their role to know each and every family and student. 

Our faculty and staff care as much now as they ever have, and we are fortunate to have an incredible team of dedicated professionals.  That first year, I think that we had 11 people on the payroll, and now it is over 100.

In Maslow's hierarchy of needs, a human's sense of love/belonging is listed just above the basic needs of safety (food, shelter, safety).  This desire for a sense of belonging creates an appetite for meaningful communities.  These communities can be found geographically in the form of residential neighborhoods, cities, provinces, and countries. A powerful community can also be found by a shared interest or passion, such as parachuting or a professional sports team.  The members of the Aberdeen Hall community are tightly connected by our desire to provide the very best educational experience possible for our students. Our faculty and staff are passionate about the success of our students.     

In order to constantly nurture our sense of community, the Senior Leadership Team meets regularly to review the following: 

Strategies for maintaining a powerful sense of community.

  1. Provide a welcoming environment (clean, safe, friendly).
  2. Provide timely and accurate communications.
  3. Create opportunities for inclusion (open door policies, listen and respond).
  4. Maintain clear points of contact for academic and/or social concerns relating to students.
  5. Create opportunities for students of different ages to learn together. 
  6. Create opportunities for parents and students to grow together.
  7. To respond to one another appropriately and to act with empathy and compassion.    

We are continually reviewing your feedback.  If you can think of ways in which our community can become even stronger, I would welcome an email from you at anytime. Christopher.grieve@aberdeenhall.com.

At this time, I would like to announce some of the structural changes planned for next year.

We will be forming a formal Middle School that will consist of Grades 6-8, and will be located on the top floor of the Senior Hall.  As the school begins to take its final shape, we are looking forward to sharing Divisional Operational Strategic Plans for each division this summer.  


3 and 4 year olds

Assistant Director of Preschool, Ms. Tiffany Hardie

Junior School

Grade K-5

Director, Ms. Susanne Raye

Middle School

Grade 6-8

Director, Ms. Ashley Bryden

Senior School 

Grade 9-12

Director, Mr. Grant Ozechowsky 
(also Deputy Head of School)

Director of Academics

Grade K-12

Ms. Casey Turnpenny

Director of University Guidance 

Grade 9-12

Mr. Stephen Acree, assisted by Mr. Nathan Cutler

Assistant Director 

Student Life

Grade 6-12

Ms. Jaime Hill 

With warmest regards,

Chris Grieve

Head of School 

Share this Post