Who we are
Who we are today stems from where we started. The history of our schools is rich in faith, hope and community and those traits are still some of our most prized attributes.
Based on the vision of Dr. David and Katherine Friesen, in 1980 a small group of respected leaders from the Mennonite community explored the viability of starting an independent Mennonite elementary school in Winnipeg.
In 1981, Winnipeg Mennonite Elementary Schools opened its doors in a rented wing of Lansdowne School with an enrolment of 48 students. Its purpose was to provide an example of how God should be included in everyday school life and how faith could be nurtured within a school setting. It invited students from all walks of life, backgrounds, denominational affiliations, academic and social abilities to join.
Over the years, interest and enrolment in the school has continued to grow due in part to the sense of community built through the school population. The St.James school moved into it’s own building, and a second campus was added in Ft. Garry to service the growing number of students coming from all over the city.
The Bedson Campus in St.James includes a Christian Early Learning Centre, Elementary School and Middle School, serving grades K-8.
The Katherine Friesen Campus in Ft.Garry houses an Elementary School that serves grades K-6.
Our mission statement
The mission of WMEMS is to provide quality, Christ-centered education integrating faith and life within a caring school community.
Faith in our schools
Our schools offer faith-based education rooted in the anabaptist tradition. We incorporate Christian education into each day, and promote Christian values through our lessons. Each child will be encouraged to develop their own belief system together with their teachers, fellow students, and at home with their families. Students at our schools represent over 80 different faith backgrounds, and come from all levels of faith.
Our Statement of Faith
- God is the creator and sustainer of all that exists. God has given us freedom and responsibility for the choices we make in our lives. Through Jesus Christ, God’s loving nature invites us to commit our lives to Him.
- Jesus Christ is God’s only Son, who lived, died and rose from the dead in order that people could live in a loving relationship with God. Jesus Christ offers forgiveness for people’s sins, the gift of a more satisfying life, and the promise of living forever with God. Jesus’ life is our example and His teachings are to be followed and obeyed in our own lives.
- The Bible is God’s message to us. Through God’s Holy Spirit, scripture leads people to faith and guides them in the life of Christian discipleship. We are to search out God’s will for us in the reading of scripture.
How this applies in our lives
The Journey of Faith is a life-long process involving the total person. Our words and actions of faith and hope, as well as our honest seeking, lead us to reconciling relationships with God and with each other through:
- Discipleship: Through a life of joyful obedience, we are called to follow Christ’s teachings and examples daily. Our faith is expressed through our words, caring for one another, by sharing with those in need, and by recognizing each person’s value and equality under God.
- Peace: Jesus Christ has shown us the way of peace. He taught us to love our enemies, build relationships, and forgive wrongdoers rather than seek revenge.
- Family: Children are a gift to be cherished and nurtured in accordance with the will of God. Singleness and marriage are equally valued by God. We believe that marriage is a committed relationship uniting a man and a woman. God intends family relationships to be characterized by love.
Christian education is a way of being with and relating to children and young people so that through opportunities for social, academic and spiritual growth, they are encouraged to accept themselves as persons of worth and purpose. We freely share the message of God’s love with students of all ages while allowing individuals to make their own decisions. The call of Christian education is toward wholesome living in the family, church and community through lives of obedience to the way of Jesus Christ.
What distinguishes our program as a Christian program?
We try to nurture the spirit in a variety of ways. We begin each day with a devotional time where the children hear Bible stories from the Old and New testaments as well as devotional stories based on Christian themes. We include a voluntary individual prayer time in order to foster a personal relationship with God. Music and literature content includes Christian pieces. Christian values and ideas are informally incorporated into daily activities and lessons as opportunities arise.
Many families find transportation to and from school a challenge for many reasons including inconvenience related to schedules, vehicle access, or geography. For this reason, WMEMS is pleased to offer bus service to and from school for both of it’s campuses. WMEMS draws students from all areas of the city.
The school owns their own buses, employs the drivers and establishes the bus procedures. Drivers are appropriately licensed and buses are given regular and thorough safety inspections by certified mechanics.
Bus routes are determined by the location of student’s homes, major roads which provide the most direct access to the schools, concentration of students within a given area, and the age of students (older students are able to safely walk further to meeting their bus).
It should be noted that door-to-door pick-up, while possible, should never be assumed, as the above aspects may not always allow for this.
Before and After Program
Before and After care is available at both campuses in the mornings before school from 7:30 am until 8:45 am and in the afternoons from 3:30 pm until 5:30 pm. Full time, part time and drop in spaces are available. For more information on the program including an application form please click here
Every child looks forward to their first day of school with excitement and perhaps some fear. The foundations that are set in the early years of school are important to the success that students experience throughout their school years.
The teachers at WMEMS are committed to providing a program that ensures students receive the literacy and numeracy skills that are needed. A Guided Reading and Writing program allows students to work at an appropriate independent working level and to build on their successes. Numeracy skills are also important and teachers provide many hands-on activities as well as practice on paper and computers.
Teachers encourage students to explore and discover new concepts through many different activities. The Early Years program provides an environment where children can develop their God-given talents and skills.
Ask any educator, parent, or psychologist, and you will find agreement that the adolescent years present one of the most significant periods of change in a person’s life. Read the educational research, and you will find the same conclusion. The National Middle Years Council states that “Young people undergo more rapid and profound personal changes during the years between 10 and 15 than at any other period of their lives”. Attempt to chart this change for just one class of 25 students, and the erratic spikes and dips of your chart will indicate the extreme variability between individuals. What can be predicted is a range from A to Z… what can’t be predicted is the vagaries of any one particular journey. The challenge for a middle school is to meet the unique social, emotional, spiritual, intellectual, and physical needs of these young adolescents… no small task.
So how does a school organize itself to educate these children, and how do the key components of an effective middle school come alive in a Christian setting? Researchers and educators agree that teachers who love to be with adolescents are the key indicator of a successful middle school. The love, commitment, and energy of these teachers is the essential beginning, with structure and programming flowing from this imperative. Typically, middle schools will be characterized by a more flexible structure that provides opportunities for students to grow in all areas of their being. This can be summed up as a student centered approach.
If you are looking for a faith based Middle School with small class sizes, high academic standards, dedicated loving teachers, outstanding band and art programs, an excellent physical education program, modern computer labs that are utilized through integrated computer studies, and numerous service and leadership opportunities for students – then look no further. WMEMS offers students all of these opportunities and more.
Download PDF’s of Academic Program
All Program Information K-8 – Click here
Our Bedson campus is also home to our Early Learning Christian Centre.
The program is geared for 2-5 year old children, and runs 12 months of the year. There is a strong Christian component to the program, reflecting the beliefs, values and current faith based programming delivered to our K-8 students. The goal is to provide each child with a solid spiritual and educational foundation that will prepare them for success once they enter school on a full-time basis. Crestview Park Day Nursery, who has 35 years of successful experience, has been brought on board to assist with the administration and operation of the program.
If you would like more information, please contact the Early Learning Christian Centre at 896-1887, or the WMEMS school office at 885-1032.
WMEMS Service model:
Student Services at Winnipeg Mennonite Elementary and Middle Schools uses a collaborative model, providing a continuum of supports for students to enable them to learn, achieve and thrive. Our in-school team consists of our classroom teachers, student services teacher, educational assistants, and administrators. In addition to this, WMEMS is also able to provide additional Clinical Support Services to meet additional needs of our student population. These are provided from the school divisions in which the school campus is located.
WMEMS has a diverse student population. Students with exceptional needs help make up our community. Our inclusive schools provide a learning environment that is accessible to all students as a place to learn, grow, be accepted and enjoy all the benefits of citizenship. We believe collaboration between home and school is imperative for setting goals that will ensure a child is successful socially, emotionally, and academically in our classrooms and school environment.
www.anxietybc.com – Anxiety
www.helpguide.org – ADHD
www.aurorafamilytherapy.com – Counselling
www.childmind.org – Mental Health and Learning Disorders
www.livesinthebalance.org – Behaviour Strategies for home and school
www.allkindsofminds.org – Mel Levine – Learning Disabilities
www.self-reg.ca – Self regulation
www.autismmanitoba.com – Autism Spectrum Disorder
www.smd.mb.ca – Society for Manitobans with Disabilities
www.matc.ca – Manitoba Adolescent Treatment Center
- Calm, Alert and Learning by Stuart Shanker
- Freeing Your Child From Negative Thinking by Tamar Chansky
- Hold onto Your Kids by Gordon Neufeld
- All Kinds of Minds by Mel Levine
- Please Explain Anxiety to Me by Laurie Zelinger
- Keys to Parenting Your Anxious Child by K. Mannasis
- The Explosive Child by Ross W. Greene, Ph.D.
- Hyperactivity: Why Won’t My Child Pay Attention? by Dr. Sam Goldstein and Dr. Michael Goldstein
- The School Survival Guide Fby R. Rapee Ph.D, S. Spence D., V. Cobham Ph.D. , A. Wignall M. Psych.
- Seven Steps to Help Your Child Worry Less by S. Goldstein, Ph.D. K. Hagar Ph.D. and R. Brooks Ph.D.
Co-Teaching Opportunities (whole class)
- Literacy centres, Guided Reading & Writing
- Literature Circles
- Math groups
Small group work
- Numeracy and literacy groups for students who require intervention and support
- Facilitate Handwriting Without Tears Program / Fine Motor Skills
- EAL student intervention and programming
- Reading Fluency Tutorials
- Literacy & Math intervention
- Facilitate Precision Reading Program
Individual Student Support Plans:
- Individual Support Plans
- Individual Education Plan for level II
- Adaptation Plans for level I
- English as Additional Language Support Plans
- Behavior Intervention Plans
Social Emotional Support:
- GEMS (small group)
- Girls & Boys club (small group)
- Roots of Empathy (whole class)
- Zones of Regulation (whole class)
- Lunch social clubs (small groups) – social & emotional support
- Lego club (small group)
- Social Skills group (small group)
- Emotional support – 1-1 – often at lunch