Friday, 21 February 2014

Rumours about Next Year and Registration Information

Registration is an interesting time of year, and I often hear rumours that are not based in an ounce of truth.  Here are a few things you might need to know about band followed by a letter from our Arts Department Head about all arts courses for next year.

Band Rumours I have heard over the past month.

1.  If you did not take band last year, you cannot take it next year.  NOT TRUE.  I can teach... I just need the willing.

2. If you did not take Jazz Band in middle school you cannot take jazz band in high school... NOT TRUE. I can teach... I just need the willing.

3. If you did not take Jazz Band in grade 9 or 10  you cannot take jazz band in high school... NOT TRUE.  I can teach... I just need the willing.

4.  there is a huge audition to get into band or jazz.  NOT TRUE. Register and you are in.  Period.  It is that easy.

5.  The band program is being cut or scaled down.  NOT TRUE.  We have the largest band program in our division and we are continuing to grow.... so much so that an expansion of our band facilities has been added to the division's priority list.

If you hear anything that sounds ridiculous... it probably is.

The Arts registration information at Westwood Collegiate


Westwood Collegiate is known for its quality performing and visual arts programming. We are proud to introduce the line up of excellent arts courses available to your child that include: Band, Choral, Dance, Drama, Graphic Technology, Musical Theatre, and Visual Arts.

Changes to the Arts Major program

In the past years students had receive and Arts Major Diploma for successfully completing general Arts courses and advanced Arts courses called Arts Major. Starting this year, this is no longer the case. The province of Manitoba has limited the number of diplomas handed out at graduation. That effectively eliminated the Arts Major Diploma, however, the courses offered as Arts Major are still in place. The difference is that those courses are now called Fine Arts courses for Grades 9 and 10, and IB courses for Grades 11 and 12. In addition to having the advanced Arts courses students can earn an IB diploma in a given arts discipline.

All Arts courses are offered for credit

All General Arts courses offered at Westwood are one-credit courses. Most of those courses are one semester in length offered every day, or full year course offered every second day, and are open to all interested students.
All Fine Arts courses are an additional one credit advanced courses offered to skilled students and require either an audition or an interview to be accepted. Fine Arts courses are offered in the areas of Music, Dance, Drama, and Visual Arts. Those courses are taken
in addition to a general course, giving your child two credits at the end of the school year in the arts area of their choice. Students taking Fine Arts courses in grade 9 and 10 may continue enriching their arts education with IB Arts courses in grade 11 and 12. Some of those courses may entitle students to university credits depending on their field of study.

Courses offered outside of regular timetable

Not all arts courses fall within the regular school day of 8:30 am – 3:30 pm. The Musical Theatre, some Jazz Band, Choral, and Dance courses, are offered outside the regular school day, but they are also valued at one-credit each. Those courses can be taken instead of, or in addition to, the required two General Art courses scheduled in the regular school day.

Why registering early is important

The number of courses offered and class sizes depend on the number of registrations received in early March. Some courses have a limited number of spots available and late registrations may not be accepted. Also, there is a minimum number of participants required for any given course. An insufficient number of participants at the time of registration may result in course cancellation.

Registering for Fine Arts courses

If you wish to take a Fine Arts course you must register for it in February. By registering in advance for a Fine Arts course, you tell your Westwood arts teacher that you wish to have an audition or an interview to be considered for this program. The teacher will then contact you to make arrangements for an audition or interview time. After the audition the teacher will contact you again as to whether you have gained entrance into the course.

Musical Theatre

Musical Theatre is a very complex course, which on the surface may seem to be designed for students interested in drama, dance, or choral. However, there are many jobs open to students who are interested in Graphic Technology, Visual Arts, and even Home Economics for jobs such as set design, prop construction, program creation, photography, makeup, and costume design. Students who work behind the scenes of the musical are given one credit for their involvement, the same as students who are on the stage.

Contact us

We look forward to assisting you and your child in making informed decisions about arts education at Westwood. If you have any questions about registration for the Arts courses offered at Westwood Collegiate please feel free to contact respective teachers directly at 204-888-7650 or at the email provided below:

Band........................... Greg Edwards................ gedwards@sjsd.net
Choral........................ Alice Russell....................... arussell@sjsd.net
Dance......................... Jennifer Metelski.............. jmetelski@sjsd.net
                                    Brian Toms........................... btoms@sjsd.net
Drama........................ Sandy White ....................... swhite@sjsd.net
Graphic Technology.... Zbigniew Cichosz ............. zcichosz@sjsd.net
Musical Theatre.......... Brian Toms .......................... btoms@sjsd.net
                                    Alice Russell ...................... arussell@sjsd.net
Photography.............. Zbigniew Cichosz ............. zcichosz@sjsd.net

Visual Arts.................. Catharine Teichroew..... cteichroew@sjsd.net