I just wanted to take a moment to tell you how impressed I am with the assessment practices at Panda. I have worked as a teacher and now work as an assessment specialist, supporting other teachers, with the Calgary Board of Education. Assessment has been a part of my teaching specialty for years.

When my son Emerson left Panda to start kindergarten, his teachers gave me his file that included all of his anecdotal assessments (observations and reflections). How wonderful it was to read through them and notice that not only were my child’s teachers observing him frequently, they were reflecting on these observations and relating them to social, gross-motor, intellectual and other developmental milestones! As I read through them, I could see that teachers were consistent in their assessments (i.e., many of them were saying the same things about Emerson, and they were similar to what teachers had been telling me on an ongoing basis, and to what I was seeing at home) and teachers were also very growth-minded. As I read through all of the anecdotal assessments I could see clear examples that he was growing and developing. I spoke with Linda and she told me that she had trained the staff in that assessment practice. Kudos to her! I know that she has trained and coached staff well when I see many reports from many teachers that are consistent and meaningful.

What wonderful assessment practice! Thank you for hiring such great teachers and leaders to be with children.

Emerson has had exceptional learning experiences in particular with Sandy, Tanya, and Anar and Delia thrived with Sadia, Kaneez and Karen. All of your staff seem to be wonderful educators.

Just before Emerson was leaving Panda, Anar asked Emerson to bring in a few specific things for show and tell. She told me that she uses show and tell time to observe what’s interesting to the children and see what kind of questions they are asking, what they like to read about etc. She uses show and tell time to come to know her learners and plan her lessons. I find this not only beautiful but pedagogically sound. How wonderful that she knows that she needs to find out her learners’ interests before she can plan for instruction. How wonderful that she cares to do her job so well. I am so glad that Emerson had so many years of quality, loving instruction, and I’m delighted that my Delia has two more years of it ahead of her.

I know you already know your staff are wonderful, but I had to tell you–as someone who has an education and assessment background–I see it too.

Thanks again for all your hard work and for caring so much for children. I am so proud my kids go to Panda!