Welcome to Skwo:wech Elementary School!

Skwo:wech Elementary School is a beautifully diverse school located in New Westminster.  We offer two programs at Skwo:wech: Montessori and Regular program. Skwo:wech Elementary School is a K-5 public school located in the historic Sapperton neighbourhood of New Westminster, British Columbia. We serve about 435 students with a staff of over 50 educators and support personnel. Approximately 25% of our community are English Language Learners, approximately 8% of our learners have Indigenous ancestry.  

In March of 2022 we moved into our much-awaited beautiful new school building. Our school was renamed Skwo:wech which means sturgeon in Halkomelem; as part of our school and District’s deep commitment to reconciliation. We are all very appreciative to be learning together in this exceptionally beautiful, inspirational, and dynamic space. 

Our school is filled with the joy of learning together while enjoying the natural beauty and sunlight which our location provides. From our classrooms we appreciate the views of the amazing Fraser River and Valley beyond. Our spaces are designed to offer ease of collaboration for students and adults. We have five learning communities which are named Salmon, Bear, Wolf, Raven, and Eagle. Our learning community names are place based and are drawn from where our school is situated and the views that we all appreciate, connecting to the river, land, and sky above.  

Our school community; students, parents and staff work together to promote a caring and respectful community of learners where our children grow academically, emotionally, and socially. Our students are encouraged to respect themselves, respect others and respect the environment. We work collaboratively as a school community to develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes that will foster a positive school community of socially and emotionally connected learners. We strive to support our students’ growth and self-awareness in relation to their emotions and support them in the development of skills to manage their emotions constructively.  

Our incredibly supportive PAC (Parent Advisory Council) and the larger parent community are active in supporting learning activities, special events and providing additional resources which benefit every child at our school. Additionally, our school offers a Strong Start Program to support the families of our youngest community members, infants to age 5. Also, we are most fortunate to have an onsite daycare program which provides before and after school care. 

We welcome all families in our learning community and invite any new families to our area to visit our school. 

We look forward to learning and growing together! 

Our School Goal

We appreciate that Literacy is one of the foundational elements of all learning. Teachers have identified writing as our initial area of focus within the wider umbrella of literacy. We are interested in exploring assessment practices in relation to student writing to see what impact this might have on student outcomes. We are interested in working collegially in grade groups to anchor our assessments of student writing and develop support plans to ensure that all students are thriving in their literacy skills to the best of their ability. 

Further, we believe that the exploration of identity (Positive Personal and Cultural Identity) will be ideally woven throughout our framework for improving literacy outcomes for our learners. We will engage in schoolwide writes to provide an opportunity to think about the identity of our new school community as well as personal identity. To achieve this, we will intentionally select content which allows us to explore these important themes through writing and other forms of expression. Our work will be further guided by the First Peoples Principles “Learning requires exploration of one’s identity.” 

School Information

Address: 331 Richmond Street, New Westminster BC V3L 4B7

Phone: 604-517-6090

Email:  skwowech@sd40.bc.ca

Grades Served: K – 5 and Montessori K – 5

Principal: Mrs. Kathleen Chad

Vice Principal: Mr. Darren Elves

Secretary: Mrs. Stephanie Noda

Secretary: Mrs. Keiko Hargrave

Trustee: Ms. Cheryl Sluis

Click to view the Street Map to Skwo:wech School

Click to view the Best Walking Route to Skwo:wech

Click to view the Movement from Elementary to Middle to High School (Flowchart)