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School briefs: Kelowna Secondary senior boys defend volleyball provincial title

School wins provincial championship on their home court
Members of the Ecole Kelowna Secondary School senior boys volleyball team, winners of the provincial championships hosted recently by Central Okanagan Public Schools. (Contributed)

It was time for trustees to serve up congratulations to the École Kelowna Secondary School senior boys volleyball team at the Jan. 26 board of education meeting, after winning the provincial championship.

It was familiar territory for the KSS squad, having won the championship last year, and with 11 players returning next year raising the potential for a three-peat.

At the previous board meeting, trustees paid tribute to the seniors girls volleyball teams for École Okanagan Mission Secondary and Mount Boucherie Secondary, winner and runner-up respectively in their provincial final.

Other teams were gunning for the defending KSS champs in the tournament, hosted by Central Okanagan Public Schools, but the squad persevered in the face of adversity, following the leadership tone set by the Grade 12s on the team, said coach Mike Sodaro.

Kevin Kaardal, school superintendent/CEO, watched the team play, saying he noted other teams being “chirpy” in trying to throw opponents off their games.

“I didn’t see any of that with (the KSS team). You let your play do the talking and you spoke volumes,” Kaardal said.

Kaardal also cited the support of volunteers and teachers to host three provincial championships on the same weekend, calling it a significant challenge that required all involved to pull together and make it happen.

Team members on hand for the school board meeting were Walker Sodaro, Dominic Sodaro, Owen McParland, Nash Semeniuk, Tyler Valuck, Kian Bos, Lynden Infanti, Connor Collinson Lea, Lincoln Wagner, Eddie Kallo and Matt Chayka.


The board of education acknowledged several declarations, one for Jan. 16 being Black Excellence Day, and for the month of February serving as both Human Rights Month and Inclusive Education Month for Central Okanagan public schools.


The school board unanimously ratified an application by the school district to the ministry of education and child care to have the Indigenous Art Studio - 12 course be authorized as an Indigenous course graduation credit.

The board was supporting a recommendation from the education and student services committee, and the course has the support of the Westbank First Nation.

This application is being called a “litmus test” for establishing a pathway for other Indigenous-related courses offered by the school district also gaining graduation credit status.


Discovering a fun way to engage students in learning algebra was presented to school trustees by teachers and students from H.S. Grenda Middle School.

Teachers Kevin Dent and Breanne Christian along with Grade 8 students Elena Eikenaar and Ty Palias shared their experiences in the classroom the past two years using the teaching tool of DESMOS, an illustrative form of learning mathematics developing graph equations that can result in dynamic artwork creations.

Using visual patterning to explore algebra proved an intoxicating way to learn for both students, which both got them excited about learning algebra and letting their enthusiasm spread to their classmates.


Upcoming events:

• The 2023-24 budget presentation will take place at the Central Okanagan Parent Advisory Council (COPAC) meeting Monday, Feb. 6, 7 p.m., via Zoom.

If you would like to listen to the presentation, the Zoo link can be requested via email to

• Helping parents learn how to navigate the digital world their children are growing up in is provided through the school district’s Bits & Bytes program, which provides a monthly newsletter offering short online articles with resources, information and helpful ideas for developing a positive digital experience.

The link to subscribe to the monthly newsletter is

• Online enrolment for Kindergarten and new students for the 2023-24 school year starting in September will open at 7 a.m., Monday, Jan. 30. Visit the school district website for more information.

Barry Gerding

About the Author: Barry Gerding

Senior regional reporter for Black Press Media in the Okanagan. I have been a journalist in the B.C. community newspaper field for 37 years...
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