Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Extra credits for students called to help in sandbagging

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STUDENTS will be on standby at high schools along the Red, Assiniboine and Souris rivers if they're needed to help with sandbagging this year.

As in past flood years, their participation will be entirely voluntary, but school officials in several divisions said students will be able to log that time toward grades 11 and 12 phys-ed credits, and toward volunteer credits in those schools that offer a credit for volunteerism.

"We respond if requested to provide assistance by the local EMO and permission forms are sent to parents. In the past, students in senior years have used the hours worked to add to PE hours and volunteer hours for credit purposes," Southwest Horizon School Division superintendent Brad Kyle said from Souris.

"No plans yet, but we will watch the forecasts," Seven Oaks superintendent Brian O'Leary said.

"It's still early and weather conditions are a huge factor. We will be keeping an eye on the flood forecast," said Red River Valley S.D. superintendent Pauline Lafond Bouchard from Morris.

Sandbagging is nothing new for Lord Selkirk S.D.

"Our students from Lord Selkirk School Division have sandbagged in previous years. If requested from our local EMO, then we would offer student and staff volunteers again. We would co-ordinate the request through the school administration," superintendent Scott Kwasnitza said from Selkirk.

"As of today, we have not had any request to do so. Any student volunteers enrolled in grades 11 and 12 physical education would be allowed to log activity hours towards their phys-ed credit," Kwasnitza said.

Several years ago, the province introduced mandatory grades 11 and 12 phys-ed credits, with much of the 110 hours required for a credit to be logged in off-campus activities.

-- Nick Martin

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition April 6, 2013 A9

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