A photo of the Parents' Auxiliary president Elisa Djurickovic

As a parent, I know all of the emotions that come with this first week of school. The stress of gathering uniforms, checking sizes and ensuring everything is ready to go for the first day. Handling the nervousness of meeting new classmates, perhaps even starting at a new school, and wondering if my child’s learning style will be embraced by their new teachers. And finally, the great relief of getting to that first day. Every year seeing the warm smiles of all the staff who greet them, I drive away feeling that my children are surrounded by fantastic classmates and caring teaching staff who will inspire them to stretch their thinking and challenge their abilities. 

This is my tenth year as a SMUS parent, and I say with confidence that our children are truly in good hands. Whether your child is a day student or boarding student, you can breathe easy knowing that there is a community of people that works 365 days a year to make sure each of our children has a successful school year.

That relief you’re likely feeling today – just a couple days into the year – may soon change to another feeling. Perhaps a feeling of loss or looking for a sense of purpose as our students spend their days in classes and evenings at extracurriculars and with friends, or perhaps they are living in a different time zone than you now.

This is a great time to ask yourself ‘What will my school year look like?’

When you choose SMUS, you choose a community, and there are a lot of ways for parents to get involved in this community. First, we recommend that you attend as many parent-focused events as possible. Each school will host a parent information night, and through the year the Parents’ Auxiliary will also host monthly meetings and various parent socials. Spark Nights are a great way to learn skills and insights about parenting in today’s world, and you should definitely attend Open House in October.

If you’d like to get even more out of your SMUS community, there are plenty of opportunities to volunteer. You may want to help as a grade rep, on a field trip, at a Parents’ Auxiliary event, or become a class champion for the SMUS Annual Fund. You can also get involved in governance at the school by joining the SMUS Society.

At the first Senior School event this week, students heard that there are three groups of people at SMUS: people who make things happen, people who watch things happen, and people who get to the end of the school year and ask, “What happened?”

I believe most parents, like me, want their children to be active and engaged members of the SMUS community while they are here. And I hope my children and your children can see themselves as members of that first group. So I encourage you to follow in our children’s footsteps, and make the most of your school year by getting involved and helping to make great things happen in our community. If you would like to connect with the Parent’s Auxiliary please send us an email at paraux@smus.ca, we would love to have you actively involved with us!