Summer 2019 Newsletter
Another school year has come and gone and it is time to revisit the work we have done this year and begin planning for the next.

Over the course of the 2018-2019 school year, we added two more courses to our library, doubled the number of schools using our program in Saskatchewan, conducted another successful school speaking tour and made some big changes to our platform.

Keep reading for more on this year's successes and challenges and what changes you can expect as you head back to school in September.

Sara Rooseboom   Program Coordinator  
P: 403.984.6375 
End of Year Report
By the Numbers
From June 2018 to June 2019, we experienced a 15% increase in the number of schools registered with us and a 24% increase in the number of certificates earned by our students.
Much of this growth can be attributed to the expansion of our Saskatchewan program. In Saskatchewan since June 2018, we have almost doubled the number of schools registered with us!
Course Development
This year we put out two new courses:

  • Propane and Natural Gas Safety at Home was built in partnership with the Alberta Construction Safety Association and launched in September 2018.
  • Tragedy at the Quarry was build in partnership with the Alberta Construction Safety Association, Alberta Sand and Gravel Association and Alberta Roadbuilders and Heavy Construction Association and was made available to all Safety in Schools users in March 2019.

Both of these courses were built using SWIFT Learning software and available to our users through their SWIFT Library.
Another Successful School Tour
Our 7th School Speaking Tour since 2014 took place from April 29 through May 3, 2019 across a 36,571 km² geographical area ranging from Chetwynd and Tumbler Ridge BC to Cadotte Lake and Kinuso AB.

Over the course of 5 days, we spoke to more than 640 students at 10 different schools in the region.

The Spring 2019 School Speaking Tour was split between two keynote speakers:
  • Kelly Pack completed his first 6 school speaking engagements with Safety in Schools from April 29 through May 1, 2019. Kelly was severely injured in a crushing incident on an Alberta jobsite in 2015 and spoke to students about how the experience affected his life going forward as well as the things that went wrong leading up to the incident.
  • Daniel Shoemaker had completed 26 school speaking engagements with Safety in Schools prior to this tour and spoke at 4 more schools on May 2 and 3, 2019. Daniel suffered a traumatic amputation as a young worker on a drilling rig in 2006 and began speaking with Safety in Schools in 2015, impacting the lives of thousands of young workers with his story.

Our team was joined on this tour by Joanne Tally, representing the Alberta Construction Safety Association. Joanne began each school engagement with an overview of the legislation that is in place to protect young workers and what it means for them and answered questions from students about how legislation and best practices might apply to their own workplaces.
Upon completion of this tour, since 2014 we have:

  • Visited more than 65 schools across 31 communities in Alberta and now BC;
  • Reached more than 9,200 students directly with in-person presentations from survivors of workplace injuries; and,
  • Given three different survivors of workplace injuries a platform to share their stories and make a difference in the lives of young people just beginning their working lives.

Supporting Healing and Incident Prevention Through Creative Sentencing
What is Creative Sentencing?
Creative Sentencing has existed for decades but was largely confined to the environmental field. It was applied in a few OHS cases in Alberta in 2000 but gained momentum around 2014 as solutions were examined to prevent incidents and deaths.

Creative Sentencing is rooted in Restorative Justice, which emphasizes repairing the harm caused by criminal or quasi-criminal offenses rather than simply punishing them. It typically involves addressing causal factors through prevention and awareness activities funded by the offender. Ideally, these projects address a gap in the industry and link the nature of the offence and geographic region.
The Creative Sentencing Process
Creative Sentencing may be considered by a judge when a party is found guilty or pleads guilty to an OHS infraction. The process begins when the Crown Prosecutor and Defence Council bring forward ideas and recommendations for consideration during a hearing. The judge then decides if a Creative Sentence is appropriate and if the proposed ideas are suitable.
How We're Involved
Out of 87 OHS convictions in Alberta from 2014-2018, 24 included a Creative Sentencing component. Safety in Schools was directly involved in 6 of those projects and is regularly engaged with Alberta OHS Investigators and Industry Associations to elevate and continuously improve the Creative Sentencing process.

Our team has worked directly with several survivors of workplace injuries, family members of deceased workers, and employers convicted of OHS infractions involving injuries and fatalities. We have seen firsthand the positive impact that Creative Sentencing principals can have on the healing journeys of everyone involved.
Survivors and families affected by severe workplace injuries and fatalities often take solace in knowing that positive action has been taken to prevent other families from experiencing similar loss. Direct involvement in projects, whether by telling their stories on camera or in person or by participating in the content development and review process, also gives families a sense of control over their experiences and can be an important part of their healing process.

Employers involved in serious workplace injuries and fatalities are often deeply affected by these incidents and value the opportunity to create positive change not only on their own worksites but across industry. Involvement with Creative Sentencing projects means that convicted employers are able to reach a wider audience with important messages drawn from their experience, including breakdowns of how the event unfolded, how it impacted their business and their workers, and what steps they have taken to prevent similar incidents from occurring on their sites in the future.

No one wants to be involved in a workplace injury or fatality, but when one occurs, Creative Sentencing gives both the person(s) harmed and the parties found responsible a positive way to move forward, and the projects resulting from these sentences mean incidents are not simply processed and forgotten.
Creative Sentencing Projects to Date
Safety in Schools was awarded our first Creative Sentencing project in 2014 and completed our sixth in 2019.

Six online courses, one video and essay contest, and seven school speaking tours, all funded through Creative Sentencing, have directly impacted more than 9,400 students across Alberta with lessons drawn from real life incidents and shared by the real people involved in them.
Improvements Coming to User Support
New User Troubleshooting Guide and Support Processes Coming
Over the summer we will be making improvements to our User Support processes to serve you better. This includes the development of a comprehensive User's Troubleshooting Guide and a more efficient issue reporting and resolution process that are accessible at any time. These changes will streamline our Support Team's ability to diagnose errors, allowing us to resolve them more quickly and effectively.

The Troubleshooting Guide will give users the ability to resolve many commonly encountered issues without the need to pause what they are doing and reach out for help, significantly reducing disruptions to course progress caused by common errors.

You will find updates about these changes as they are implemented on our blog. Information about these changes will also be provided in our September 2019 Newsletter.
Let's Keep in Touch!
Safety in Schools Foundation of Canada
Suite 600 - 4838 Richard Road SW | Calgary AB | T3E 6L1

403.981.6375 |