GPCSD Media Release: Laura Tapson Appointed Supervisor of Religious Education and FNMI Education

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I am pleased to announce that Laura Tapson will become the new Supervisor of Religious Education and FNMI Education for Grande Prairie and District Catholic Schools.

Laura has been a part of our family for 9 years, initially joining us following the completion of her Bachelor of Education through the TEN program offered at Grande Prairie Regional College (GPRC). From 2008 to 2015, Laura taught grades 4 to 8, and in that time she received her Certificate of Theological Studies in 2011 from Newman College and her Montessori Upper Elementary Diploma in 2015 from the North American Montessori Center. In recognition of her outstanding work, Laura was given the prestigious Alberta Excellence in Teaching Award in 2012.

In her more recent role as Faith Life and Religious Education Lead Teacher, Laura has coordinated how Religious Education has been taught to students, as well as organizing and promoting opportunities for staff and students to develop their faith across the District. She has worked closely with senior administration, principals, and staff in advancing the Catholic identity of our schools and our District, and has acted as liaison with the parishes while also serving on a variety of religious education committees.

Laura is a passionate and incredibly enthusiastic leader in our community who continuously seeks to help others unlock their full potential. Over the course of her career, she has facilitated several professional development opportunities and retreats for both staff and students, including sessions at the Mighty Peace Teachers’ Convention. Laura plays an active role in leadership committees, including the Faith Leadership, Numeracy, and Gifted Education committees, and has completed the 2-year GPCSD Leadership Academy. For St. Joseph Parish, Laura attends weekly meetings instructing adults who seek baptism in the Catholic Church, volunteers her time as a children’s Liturgy instructor, and teaches Bible School in the summer.

As Supervisor of Religious Education and FNMI Education, Laura will continue to manage her previous responsibilities as Faith Lead Teacher with the assistance of a soon-to-be-hired Youth Worker/Chaplain. The role will also have Laura lead FNMI Liaison Workers in organizing resources and planning opportunities for students, families, and staff to learn and understand Aboriginal culture and history. Being originally from the Paddle Prairie Métis Settlement, Laura holds the importance of FNMI Education close to her heart.

“I am very excited about this opportunity. I am especially excited for all the new relationships I will make through this position and the chance to learn more about my own Metis culture,” Laura said regarding her new position.

"We are pleased that Laura will take on these two important roles,” said Superintendent Germann. “The addition of a Youth Worker/Chaplain to Laura’s team will further our work in faith and family life.”

Laura will begin her role as Supervisor of Religious Education and FNMI Education at the start of the 2017-2018 School Year on September 5, 2017.