SheepMetchosin Muse

We have included here the final letters from the teacher, students and graduates of the Metchosin Technical Centre.

Due to space constraints, we were not able to run this piece in the print version of the June 2015 Muse.

Thank you to Dayna and the MTC students for your letters over the years.

– The Muse Team


Metchosin Technical School Letters

“Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened.” ~ Dr Seuss

Now that summer is almost here Metchosin Technical Centre (MTC) is in its final transition; we are officially closing the program. This is my last letter as teacher/ VP of MTC. We have had an awesome run these last seven years and we will always remember this unique educational experience. Metchosin is my home and I am thankful that I got to share some of the beautiful trails, beaches and parks with my students.

Many have asked what will happen to the school. Frankly, I do not know. There is lots of speculation, but at this point it is unclear what School District #62 (Sooke) has planned for the building and the other small program, Elements, that calls MTC home. The students that currently attend MTC will be attending the other high schools in the district in September.

I would like to say a special thanks to all the past and present editors/volunteer staff of the Muse. I know that these letters have been a time consuming edit and I appreciate your efforts. I wish you could have been in my classroom and seen the effect The Muse had in our classroom when I awarded the “Rock Stars” for the student who were published. You certainly have made many student happy by printing their letters.

The following letters are written by individuals who were affiliated with the school over the last seven years.

– In Graditude,
Dayna Christ-Rowling, Acting VP
Metchosin Technical Centre

The MTC is a place very close to my heart! Not just because I am the WestShore PAC President and not just because I had two kids go through the program at MTC, but because of the philosophy of the learning and sense of community that the teachers and administrators gave to my kids and all those who moved through MTC.

My daughter was part of the first Grade 9 pilot to attend the school and MTC showed her that although she struggled with learning, that she has valuable strengths to draw from and she can succeed. Before MTC she always thought furthering her education was not in her future, but with a boost in confidence, she went to the Academy of Excellence is now an Esthetician. She loves what she does and it is a career suited for her personality. Not only did the school leave its impression on her, but she left her mark there too because she built the sign that announces the building at its entrance.

My son also attended Grades 9 and 10 at MTC. He wanted to go there because he thought that he wanted to be a carpenter one day. He learned that he didn’t want to go into the trades – it’s good to know what you don’t want. He wanted to stay at MTC anyway because the learning style suited him. He had the freedom to discover that there is more than one way to do the math problem or more ways to look at the same thing. They encouraged him to dig deeper. He was encouraged to mentor his classmates who needed a little more support which unknown to him, helped grow his people and leadership skills. He has since coached kids in box lacrosse and continues to help others understand what they are learning when it’s just not making sense – that’s a gift. He has decided to attend the new Royal Bay High School and is currently considering a path toward Psychology.

MTC is going to close as a school but there will be continued use of the gymnasium on Wednesdays which was turned into a workshop full of tools and supplies. The two new schools will have facilities to continue with trades programs, but the smaller classrooms and more one-on-one opportunities by teachers for students is why I believe my kids really thrived. Applause to the administrators, teachers, parents, students and others who made MTC a great learning choice and my hope that the best parts of MTC carry on in each of those touched by it.

– Haleen Roberts, President,
WestShore Centre Advisory Committee

It was Mr. Royal who told me about a school called Metchsoin Technical Centre (MTC); it wasn't a school for “behaviour kids or dropouts” but it was a smaller setting school where the instruction was less conventional. The school's philosophy was focusing on students interested in trades and most of whom did better in a hands on project based learning environment.

At first, I was hesitant because I didn't want to go to an alternative school but I soon found out it was different. MTC made me want to attend school each day, the teachers were willing to spend extra time with me, something that would have been impossible in a larger school setting. The hands on approach to Math, Science and Social Studies allowed me to focus and absorb a lot more knowledge than a textbook offered. Plus at what other school do you get to hike around Metchosin almost every day for PE. I was reflecting on all the different projects we built from, bridges to buildings, learning about angles by measuring a foundation in the field, hatching chicks and doing creative art projects. When I was told MTC was closing I was disappointed knowing that others would miss out on the experience and setting that I enjoyed. I honestly think if it wasn't for the hands on method offered at Metchosin, I might not have graduated. I still feel a part of the school even after grad and want to thank the teachers, Dayna, Laura and Mr. Boggs for teaching me and Mr. Royal for giving me the idea. I am currently working full time in a landscaping job and look forward to pursuing a trade. I might even get my Red Seal and spend two years getting my teaching certificate and inspire youth like I was.

– Charlie Baron, MTC grad 2014

Although it has been a couple years since I have last walked the hallways of Metchosin Technical Centre (MTC), so much has changed in my life just because I did walk those halls. Sometimes I think to myself; what would happen without MTC in my life? I shudder to think. My life would be vastly different, worse. Which is why I'm happy I attended MTC, but extremely saddened to hear that this is the last year it will be open. We were taught the importance of teamwork, courage, to be brave and bold, to be ourselves regardless of what people thought of us. The three years I went to MTC, I'm very glad to say, have been the best years of my life (so far), and MTC has contributed to the person I am today. MTC is very special to me; I want to thank everybody who helped me go to this special place and to everybody who made it a reality. Without it, myself and others would not be where we are today. I've made many friends, together we have created amazing experiences, and have formed lifelong friendships. I will always hold MTC with the highest respect, and the best memories I have ever had. We were more than a school, we were a family. A family with too many brothers. I will miss it dearly. Thank you for everything. I will remember this forever.

– Chris Lumley, MTC Student for 3 years.
Graduated with Distinction in 2013. Future Filmmaker. 

Hey there, I started my MTC education five years ago. I enjoyed it from the first day. My experience at MTC lead me to Camosun this past year where I completed my Carpentry foundations. I passed with honours thanks to training with Mr. Boggs and Mr. Ryan at Metchosin. I was asked to write about my future by Dayna and it is my plan to get a job that will bring me the same satisfaction that building the house for Habitat for Humanity did with my College Crew. I am planning on moving where I can get a four year apprenticeship. I am not completely sure but I may do camp work to gain experience. All in all, I couldn’t imagine graduating from anywhere else and being as prepared for the workforce and my future. Goodbye, MTC!

– Zac Hammond, MTC Grad 2014

I went to MTC for last year and I learned something about the most important person in my educational experience. That is me. I am the only person who can guarantee my success! I plan on graduating in 2017 with an A average. It will not be easy but nothing worthwhile ever is!

– Tayor Kibsy, Past MTC student currently in Grade 10a

I am Metchosin Technical Centre (MTC) alumni and I attended MTC in grade 9-11 and graduated from Pacific Westshore as Valedictorian. I have been doing many different occupations already. I have been commercial fishing, logging, millwright apprenticeship and am currently working in a gravel pit running heavy duty machinery. All of these occupations have taught me about my personal flexibility and that I love to learn new things. I picked this habit up at MTC where I was forced/persuaded to try many different things on a daily basis. Who knew I was so good with kids, able to act if I had to and was more than handy with tools. Now I am twenty!  I have been asked to reflect back on my time at MTC as it closes. Well, it was a perfect school for someone like me and I am sad for the guys that are kinesthetic, chatty, questioning and hate to sit around coming up in the grades. It was a great school!

– Jacob Addlington, MTC alumni, Graduated in 2013

This year at Metchosin Technical Centre has been an awesome year, it’s been like a little family. Everyone at this school gets treated with the same level of respect, from the youngest kid to the oldest teacher, we all feel equal. The teachers think of you as a person instead of “just another student” out of their 150 other students, they’ll notice if you’re having a bad day to if you’re having trouble with a math question. They are there to help put it in terms anyone could understand. This is because our teacher student ratio was smaller than a traditional school. This year I’ve learned a large variety of skills, anywhere from stock markets, to first aid and wilderness survival, to skills in different trades such as electrical and carpentry. I know that these skills will be with me for life and I’ll be applying them in loads of situations throughout my life. In the end, I feel very grateful to be a part of a smaller school setting where you can feel comfortable around everyone and get the extra support and skills to improve.

– Jake Cygun, MTC grade 10 student