Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools

Learning Assistance Teacher Handbook

Related Services & Programs

6.1 Student Services

The role of Student Services is to provide support to the schools. Student Services staff provide assistance to classroom teachers and students in a variety of ways including direct service to students and assistance to classroom and learning assistance teachers in planning programs for students. Support may involve special programs and materials, classroom strategies, student assessments, consultation services, coordination of special program placements, liaison with community support agencies, and consultation with parents. Student Services staff assist in determining the need for teacher assistants and coordinate a variety of school-based programs.

6.1.1 Coordinators and Board Office Personnel

Board Office personnel have certain areas of responsibility, however, when serving students there may be an overlap involving more than one coordinator.

Board Office Personnel and Major Areas of Responsibility
Marilyn Allen
  • Learning Assistance
  • Social Skills
  • Tutors
  • Speech and Language Services
Rosemary Beckie
  • Designated Disabilities (see attached list for specific schools)
  • English as Second Language (ESL)
  • Behavior Support Services
  • Visual Impairment
  • Homebound Instruction
  • Alternate Programming (18, 28, 38) High Schools
  • Safe, Positive Schools
Mary Lynn Kemp
  • Designated Disabilities (see attached list for specific schools)
  • Safe, Positive Schools
  • Behavior Support Services
  • Coordination of elementary counsellors, behavior resource teachers
  • Consultation to Alternative Behavior Programs
Joann Simon
  • Designated Disabilities (see attached list for specific schools)
  • Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services
  • Preschool Placements for Designated Students
Elaine Stakiw
  • Gifted Education
  • Enrichment Strategies
  • Mentorships (Exceptional Students)
  • Grade 7 and 8 Units
  • Advanced Placement - High Schools

Educational Psychology Team

Darlene Grainger
  • Assessment
  • Parent / Teacher Meetings
  • Division Wide Cognitive Screening
  • Referrals
Marlene McKnight
  • Assessment
  • Parent / Teacher Meetings
Robin Mohagen
  • Assessment
  • Parent / Teacher Meetings
Carol Roberts
  • Assessment
  • Parent / Teacher Meetings

Aboriginal Education Team

Gord Martell
  • Indian & Métis Education
  • Child Hunger Education Program (CHEP)
  • Support to Community Schools
Gayle Weenie
  • Cree Language Instruction - St. Mary's and St. Michale
  • Cree Language Development
  • School Support - fulfill school requests (especially through new school-based project strategy)
  • Project Assistance (inservice, kit production, music festival, outdoor education, review)
Delvin Kennedy
  • Cultural Advisor - St. Mary's and St. Michael
  • Review Cree School Model Development
  • School Support - fulfill school requests (especially through new school-based project strategy)
  • Project Assistance (language instruction, inservice, kit production, music festival, outdoor education)


Rosemary Beckie

Bishop Mahoney
Bishop Murray
E. D. Feehan
Holy Cross
Joe Duquette
St. Joseph

Mother Theresa
St. John
St. Luke
St. Phillip
St. Volodymyr
Saskatoon French

Mary Lynn Kemp

Bishop Klein
Bishop Pocock
Father Robinson
St. Anne
St. Bernard

St. Dominic
St. Matthew
St. Michael

Joann Simon

Bishop Roborecki
Father Vachon
Cardinal Leger
Georges Vanier
Holy Family
Sister O'Brien
St. Angela
St. Augustine
St. Edward
St. Frances

St. George
St. Gerard
St. Goretti
St. James
St. Marguerite
St. Mark
St. Mary
St. Paul
St. Peter
St. Thomas

6.2 Assessment and Educational Psychologist Services

The educational psychologist provides service and support to teachers, students and parents. He/she brings the perspective of educator and psychologist to gathering and interpreting information which may contribute to enhanced student learning.

Core responsibilities of the educational psychologist include the following:

  • respond to student-specific requests initiated by school personnel, parents, or students,
  • assess cognitive, academic, and behavioral functioning to derive a better understanding of the student,
  • consult and collaborate with teachers, school administrators, and co-ordinators, integrating information from assessment, observation, and student records to contribute to better planning and programming for the student,
  • share with students, parents, and professionals from outside agencies, assessment findings and implications for learning,
  • promote practices and recommend accommodations that achieve effective teaching and learning,
  • act as an advocate for students,
  • co-ordinate the division group cognitive screening.

6.3 Counseling Services

Counseling encompasses a wide range of services and programs provided by School Social Workers, School Counselors, Home School Liaison Workers, Behavior Resource Teachers, and Elders. Counseling services are available to students and families beginning in kindergarten and continuing through grade twelve. See 6.3.1 for personnel assigned to elementary schools.

The primary focus of counseling is to determine the nature of a problem and the needs of a student who is having difficulty in social, emotional, academic, behavioral, or attendance areas. The resources of school, the student, the family, and the community are an integral part of the counseling process.


1) Assessment

In an effort to determine the nature of a problem and the needs of a student, it may be necessary to utilize a variety of assessment tools. Assessment may include the informal or the formal application of skills, instruments, or strategies.

Informal assessment would involve student observation in a variety of settings (classroom, playground, social group, etc.), consultation with school personnel, family, or other agencies representing the family.

Formal assessment would involve student interviews, family interviews, developing contracts with students’ teachers or families, and the use of instruments such as Family Inventories, Anxiety Rating Scale, Self Rating Scales, Sentence Completions, Reinforcement Schedules, Fear Inventories, and other Psycho-social assessment Inventories.

2) Direct Counseling

  • is an ongoing process of student, teacher and/or family involvement
  • may occur in a one to one, small group, or family environment
  • may involve short term, long term, or crisis intervention

3) Attendance Counseling

  • mandated to act as the School Board representative ensuring that the attendance provisions of the Education Act are observed

4) Liaison-Referral Services

  • to develop or enhance effective communication between the home and the school, the student and the school, or the student and the family
  • to provide referral services for students or family to a variety of community agencies
  • to provide referrals to other support staff or programs within the school division

5) Consultation

  • with school based staff, students or parents
  • with school board personnel or consultants
  • with other agencies representing the family (Department of Social Services, Childrens Services, etc.)

6) Staff Development

  • to provide inservice to school staffs, parents and students in a variety of areas such as child abuse, sexual abuse, classroom management, behavior disorders, suicide prevention, etc.

7) Community Development/Interagency Involvement

  • to represent the interest of student, families and the school division on various committees and boards


At the elementary school level, referrals generally come through the school principal, however, self referrals or parental requests for services are also addressed.

At the high school level, referrals are received through administrators, guidance counselors, students, parents and the chaplaincy.


Annette Kinal-Charpentier St. Mark 668-7108 - St. Mark
- St. Marguerite
- St. Peter
- St. John
Judith Hjertaas St. George 668-7249 - St. George
- St. Angela
- St. Anne
Herb Schmidt St. Paul 668-7397 - Bishop Klein
- Father Robinson
- St. Dominic
- St. Edward
- St. Paul
Gary Ulrich Board Office 668-7052 - Board Office
- Father Vachon
- Saskatoon French
School (on call)
Angela Stern St. Luke 668-7176 - Bishop Pocock
- St. Luke
- St. Philip
- St. Thomas
Carol Rolheiser Holy Family 668-7909 - Holy Family
- St. Augustine
- St. Bernard
- St. James
- St. Volodymyr
Karen McGuigan Holy Family 668-7909 - Cardinal Leger
- Georges Vanier
- St. Frances
- St. Matthew
- Peer Mediation Support
Luciene Poole Sion 668-7396 - Sion
- Bishop Roborecki
- St. Gerard
- St. Goretti
- St. Michael
- Sister O’Brien

* Please Note - There may be some changes in assignment as the year progresses.

Ruth Cameron Bishop Klein 668-7295 - Bishop Klein
- St. Mark
- St. Marguerite (on call)
Florence Chartrand Sion 668-7487 - Sion
Kim Regush E.D. Feehan 668-7950 - St. Michael
- E.D. Feehan
Terry Belanger St. John 668-7373 - St. John
- St. Goretti
- Bishop Roborecki (on call)
Marlene Brisebois St. Mary 668-7400 - St. Mary

6.3.3 First Nations Elders

First Nations Elders are a valued resource that may play a role in meeting the needs of First Nations students through traditional-cultural counseling, spiritual guidance, or issues of identity and belonging.

Elders are bestowed with gifts from the Creator and it is this giftedness that is recognized by the community. Elders are individuals and posses different gifts which may include the ability to conduct talking circles, offer spiritual guidance, and traditional-cultural counseling. If it is decided that the services of an Elder would be beneficial to a student it is advisable to contact any of the following people to discuss the appropriateness of using an Elder and the protocol associated with approaching Elders, and to identify recognized Elders in the community.

Gordon Martell, Coordinator: Indian and Mètis Education 668-7056
Gayle Weenie, Aboriginal Resource Teacher 668-7057
Delvin Kennedy, Aboriginal Cultural Advisor 668-7400
Mary Johnson - The City of Saskatoon Community Resource Directory 975-8486
The Saskatchewan Indian Cultural Centre 244-1146

The Saskatoon Indian and Mètis Friendship Centre 244-0174

6.4 Behavior Supports and Programs

The goal is to provide a broad range of school based service designed to meet the behavioral and social needs of students in the context of their neighborhood school. As well, the needs of students are considered in the context of the family. Generally students who display behavior viewed as chronically disruptive, socially inadequate, withdrawn, or aggressive are considered appropriate for referral to such a program. Collaborative planning for an alternative placement will include the school principal, the classroom teacher, the parents/guardians, the learning assistance teacher, and student services personnel.

6.5 Alternate Behavioral Programs

6.5.1 The Early Intervention Program (Grades 1-3 Holy Family) provides an alternative program for identified students at the Grade 1-3 level. Students in the program are those who are unable to benefit from programming in their neighborhood school. The program integrates early intervention students with students from the serving school for instruction in Language Arts and Mathematics. This combined instruction provides those students in the program with daily instructional experiences with age peers from the mainstream classrooms. In addition to academic programming, social skills training, family support, and transition support are vital components of this program.

The Early Intervention Program (Grades 1-2 Father Vachon) provides an alternative program for identified students at the Grade 1-2 level. Students in the program are those who are unable to benefit from programming in their neighborhood school. The program integrates early intervention students with students from the serving school for Language Arts and Mathematics. This combined instruction provides those students in the program with daily instructional experiences with age peers from the mainstream classrooms. In addition to academic programming, social skills training, family support, and transition support are vital components of this program.

6.5.2 The Social Learning Program (Grades 3-6 St. Frances) provides an alternate program option for students identified as unable to be successful in their neighborhood school. In addition to academic programming, social skills training, family support, and transition planning are vital components of this program. The level of service and degree of involvement with community based support agencies is more intense in this program.

6.5.3 The Extension Program (Grades 9-11 E.D. Feehan) provides academic and behavior support and counseling to students. The program supports a core group of students struggling with their high school program. Through linking with students’ regular classroom teachers, parents, and outside community agencies efforts are made to extend the support available to these students and to assist them to succeed in their community high school. This program also serves to link students with alternate high school placements.

6.5.4 The Farm School (Grades 9-12) provides an intensive alternate placement for students not able to be successful in a regular school setting. The Farm School provides academic programming to students in a rural setting and combines Control Theory/Restitution based counseling, with a broad range of outdoor, practical arts, and work experiences to reach students. Credit courses are available to students and transition support is provided to students who transfer back to mainstream high school programs.

6.6 Alternative Educational Programs

6.6.1 Preschool Programs for Designated Disabled Students

The Catholic Board of Education, in cooperation with the St. Augustine Preschool Parents’ Association, offers an integrated preschool program at St. Augustine School. This program serves three and four year old children and includes students with special needs as well as typical children.

The Catholic Board of Education may also purchase services for preschool students attending community preschools.

6.6.2 Sion Middle School (Grades 6-9) provides an alternative middle years program for students. The program integrates individualized academics with practical arts, guidance and behavioral support. Academic instruction is individualized and team taught to students in low enrolment classes. Eight strands of practical arts, each one month in duration, are provided to all students in across grade groupings. Guidance and behavioral support is provided to students in a variety of ways including: counseling services through the school counselor, work on group dynamics, regular contact with families and community support agencies, and corrective behavioral programming.

6.6.3 Bishop Murray High School (Grades 9-12) provides an alternate high school placement for students not successful in the regular high school setting. The program provides students with high school credit courses through low enrolment classes, individualized programming, counseling support and assists students with integration into mainstream high school programs.

6.6.4 Joe Duquette is an urban Aboriginal High School. The philosophy of the school focuses on the culture of the Plains Cree. Joe Duquette offers regular credits in an alternative manner. This holistic approach focuses on the concept of the Medicine Wheel, recognizing the four capacities of the human being: mental, physical, spiritual, and emotional. All four dimensions are interrelated and are part of the students’ growth and development at Joe Duquette.

6.6.5 Opening Doors is an alternative education program for adolescents 14-18 years of age. The purpose of the program is to provide an opportunity to students who have been out of school for at least six months. One goal of the program is to provide reentry to an educational setting, with integrated supports.

6.7 Extended Learning Opportunities (ELO)

Varied learning experiences are provided to gifted students by classroom teachers, with assistance from teacher-librarians, and/or catalyst teachers in: school-based learning situations, community resource units and mentorships. The Coordinator of Gifted Learner Education organizes the programming in these areas.

The contemporary program for gifted students in the Saskatoon Catholic School Division (the E.L.O. Program) is offered as four components:

  1. School-based Component
    The Grade 4,5,6 component is school-based. This school-based model utilizes a team approach. Each school’s teacher-librarian is instrumental in the implementation of the gifted program. Two school-based catalyst teachers and one division catalyst teacher are assigned to assist with program procedures. The classroom teacher is the key team member in delivering the program to the student. This team approach has often expanded to include other staff members such as the learning assistance teacher. Often principals initiate this team approach based on the school’s needs.
  2. Community Resource Component
    The Community Resource component is offered to Grade 7 and 8 students who have been identified as gifted. Units of interest to students are selected by the students and offered by community experts in the interest area. The duration of each unit varies from five to twelve weeks, one-half day per week. There are three groups of six units offered during each school year.
  3. Mentorship Program
    A mentorship program is established on a one-on-one or two-on-one basis for students who have exceptionally high cognitive ability and who show outstanding achievement in one or more content areas. The classroom teacher serves each student’s needs in the best possible way; however, some very capable students have special needs that demand a one-on-one service in order that the student might be academically challenged. Often, this means crossing grade level barriers to an advanced level during the mentorship. The student remains in the regular classroom with chronological peers for the rest of the regular classes.
  4. Advanced Programming in One or More Content Areas
    For students precocious in one or more content areas, a program is established whereby the student can advance at his/her own level. An example of advanced programming follows: a Grade VIII student who is very talented in Mathematics may complete the Grade VIII Mathematics program during the fall term. This student might then enrol in Mathematics 90. During the second term, the student could be enrolled in first period Mathematics at the highschool and return to the elementary school for the remainder of the day.


Bishop Klein Marie-Jeanne Will 7283
Father Robinson Sheila Gerwing 7257
St. Bernard Gloria Hnatick 2975
St. Gerard Dolores Rey 7358
St. Philip Dolores Rey 7435
St. James Gina Melnyk 3182
St. Luke Bev Pacholik 7375
St. Mark Loretta Skipper 7110
St. Mary Maxine Meschishnick 7129
St. Matthew Ron Sirois 7991
St. Volodymyr Michelle Vanhouwe 7448
Sister O’Brien Sheila Gerwing 7866
Saskatoon French Charlene Nieman 7456

St. Augustine Gina Melnyk 2978
Cardinal Leger Marie Jeanne Will 7278
St. Angela Marion Harder 7308
St. Anne Carol Engel 2977
St. Frances Anna Lorenz 7399
St. George Anne Marie Breckner 7419
St. Michael Michelle Vanhouwe 7892
St. Peter Loretta Skipper 7118
St. Paul Richard Blanchet 7852
St. Marguerite Anne Polansky 2974
Georges Vanier Anna Lorenz 7948
Bishop Pocock Maria Furgiuele 2971

St. Thomas Marlene Pulak 7998
Father Vachon Maxine Meschishnick 7122
St. Goretti Cec Kachkowski 7365
Holy Family Carol Gerspacher 7908
St. Dominic Tammy Sielski 7337
Bishop Roborecki Anne Polansky 2970

St. Edward Carla Hamel 7843
St. John Gail Ciona 7069
Coordinator - Gifted Learner Education
Division Enrichment Strategies
Advanced Placement - High School
Grade 7 & 8 Community Resource Units
Cyberschool (Elementary Students)

More information:

6.8 Speech and Language Services

Services provided by speech and language personnel may include:

  • assessing both formally and informally, a student’s speech and language skills to determine suitable program goals and activities,
  • reviewing speech & language skills as required,
  • developing and implementing programs for use at home and school,
  • demonstrating speech and language techniques to parents and/or school staff,
  • providing programs and resource materials to parents and teachers,
  • collaborating with parents and the school staff on all aspects of a student’s communication,
  • consulting with outside agencies.

Students may experience speech and language difficulties that require assessment and intervention in one or more of the following areas.


A student with an articulation or phonology problem has difficulty producing speech sounds. These sounds may be substituted, distorted, added, or omitted which may cause speech to be difficult to understand.


A student may have difficulty understanding and using language effectively to communicate. Areas that require assistance could include: vocabulary, basic concepts, grammar, sentence structure, memory, sequencing, following directions, listening, auditory discrimination, staying on topic, comprehension, problem solving, and auditory processing. A student may experience a receptive and/or expressive language difficulty.


Any voice production which is inappropriate for the age and sex of the student is considered disordered. Voice production is measured in terms of pitch (high vs. low), loudness (soft vs. loud), and quality (nasality). The most common problem is vocal abuse resulting from yelling or screaming. Students with a voice disorder may require medical consultation before programming is recommended.

Fluency (Stuttering)

A student with a fluency disorder may exhibit behaviors such as unusually long silent pauses, prolongations or repetitions of sounds, syllables, words, or phrases. Associated mannerisms might include things such as excessive eye blinks, avoidance of certain words or speaking situations.

Hearing Screening

A student may experience hearing difficulties. Hearing screenings will be provided upon request and students may be referred to an audiologist for further assessment.

6.8.1 Referral Process

If a student is experiencing difficulty in any area of speech and language and requires assistance, the classroom teacher may complete a referral for speech-language services using a Student Services Request Form. Referrals are accepted on an ongoing basis throughout the school year. After the student is assessed, reports are written and shared with the school and parents and programs are provided.

6.8.2 Speech and Language Reports

Following an individual speech and/or language assessment with a student, the speech and language pathologist will prepare a written report. This report will summarize the assessment findings and make recommendations for programming. Copies of the report will be provided as follows:

  • a copy will be mailed to the parents or guardians of the student receiving the assessment,
  • a copy will be given to the classroom teacher or placed in his/her mailbox,
  • a copy will be provided to the learning assistance teacher, and
  • a copy will be provided for the student’s cumulative record. This copy will be stamped “cumulative file” and will be made available to the principal prior to being filed in the student’s cumulative file.

6.8.3 Speech and Language Pathologist
School Assignments
Cheryl Barton


French Immersion Schools (Single Stream)
St. Gerard St. Matthew Saskatoon French

Speech Language Service
Bishop Pocock Father Robinson Georges Vanier St. Volodymyr

Nancy Fragatta-Simpson


Special Needs Students (.6)
Bishop Klein Bishop Roborecki Cardinal Leger
Father Robinson Father Vachon St. Angela
St. Anne St. Edward St. Frances
St. George St. Gerard St. Goretti
St. Michael St. Paul St. Peter
St. Volodymyr Sister O’Brien Saskatoon French
Barb Hardcastle


Special Needs Students (.5) Special Needs and St. Augustine Pre-K
Bishop Pocock St. Augustine St. Bernard
Mother Teresa St. James St. John
St. Dominic St. Marguerite St. Mark
St. Luke St. Matthew
St. Mary St. Thomas
St. Philip Holy Family
Georges Vanier

Speech and Language Services
Holy Family St. Augustine St. James
St. Luke St. Thomas

Connie Stasiuk


Pre-K Community Schools
St. Mary St. Michael

Speech and Language Services
Bishop Roborecki Father Vachon St. Dominic Mother Teresa

New Position
Speech and Language Services
Bishop Klein Cardinal Leger St. Angela St. Frances
St. Bernard St. Edward St. George St. Philip Sister O’Brien
Ken Wanner


High Schools
Bishop James Mahoney Bishop Murray E.D. Feehan
Holy Cross Joe Duquette St. Joseph

Speech and Language Services
St. Anne St. Goretti St. John St. Marguerite
St. Mark St. Paul St. Peter Sion

6.9 English as a Second Language

  • E.S.L. programs provide learning opportunities to enable students to achieve success according to individual potential, as well as to integrate students into the regular program with as much ease as possible.
  • Programs are for those students whose native language is not Standard Canadian English and who require special assistance in developing communication skills in order to follow the regular program.
  • The primary responsibility for the E.S.L. student rests with the regular classroom teacher; however, the E.S.L. teacher provides support to the student and the teacher.

Elementary Phone
Roberto Godoybaca St. Mark 7390
Carmel Toner Bishop Roborecki 7266
Diana Nordick St. James 7366
Darlene Gulas-Bomok St. Marguerite 7385
High School
Donalda Gertsmar Bishop James 7200
Norma Cortes E.D. Feehan/St. Joseph 7950
Esther Molina E. D. Feehan 7950
Rita Wolfe Holy Cross 7900
Larraine Ratzlaff

6.10 Homebound/Hospital Instruction

Instruction is available to all homebound or hospitalized school aged children. The goal is for children to continue learning while at home or in the hospital. Instruction is provided by school-based personnel as arranged through student service coordinators and unit superintendents.

6.11 Home - Based Education

The Catholic School Division is responsible for registering students in the Home-Based Education Program.

Home Based Education is an education program, started and directed by parents for their own children between the ages of six and seventeen years inclusive, in which the children are receiving instruction at and from their home. The home-based education program shall include religious education consistent with the goals and objectives provided by the Board.

6.12 Equipment and Technical Aids

A team planning process is utilized for identifying and providing special equipment and technical supports for exceptional students. This team is made up of the Student Services coordinator, learning assistance teacher, and the parent, and may involve professionals from various other disciplines and agencies such as the medical profession, Kinsmen Children’s Center, Department of Education, Saskatchewan Hearing Assistance Plan, Saskatchewan Abilities Council. This team also monitors the use of special equipment and assesses the student’s needs on a regular basis.

Students with Sensory Impairments

Following a medical assessment and diagnosis, students presenting with hearing and/or visual needs often require supportive technology to access educational programming. Itinerant teachers with specialized training in these two areas identify the student’s educational needs. Then, in consultation with the coordinator of student services and service technicians a completed Technology Implementation Plan is submitted to Saskatchewan Education to request the necessary equipment and technology for the student.

Training in the use of the equipment is arranged through school personnel and/or through professional development workshops such as those offered by Saskatchewan Education or other agencies such as Kinsmen Children’s Center, Saskatchewan Abilities, Acquired Brain Injury Outreach Teams, Saskatchewan Deaf and Hard of Hearing Society (SDHHS) and CNIB.

Students with Orthopedic Disabilities

Most students with orthopedic needs are provided with physiotherapy and/or occupational therapy through their family’s health support system. The Saskatoon Catholic School Division follows recommendations from the student’s health care provider to maintain the student’s well being. Applications to the Technology Implementation Plan provide the appropriate furniture, desks, assistive technology, and/or exercise equipment to support the student in accessing educational programming in order to meet identified goals.

Student with Communication Needs

Following assessment and identification by speech and language pathologists and in consultation with other agencies such as Kinsmen Children’s Centre and the Saskatchewan Deaf and Hard of Hearing Society, assistive communication support or devices may be put in place for students. Application is made through the Technology Implementation Plan for funding to obtain the recommended equipment. Learning assistance teachers, speech and language pathologists, Student Services coordinator and service technicians are involved in developing plans, supports, and, when necessary, workshops in the use of these devices.

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