Georges H. Primeau seals its time capsule

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Above are some video highlights of today’s 50-year time capsule ceremony, including some of the objects and speeches that went into the capsule to be opened by students in the year 2065.

by Stephen Dafoe and Lucie Roy

Georges H. Primeau students may be wrapping up a month of recognizing 150 years of Catholic education this week, but Monday was a glimpse forward to the Division’s bicentennial. Students, staff, and guests participated in a time capsule ceremony.

Principal Allan Menduk, who will be 87 when the capsule is opened by future students and faculty in 2065, said the time capsule serves as a bridge between the present era and a new era. The capsule includes curriculum, games, popular novels, local newspapers, and pop culture items, as well as plenty of information about the school. There is also a write-up about Father Georges H. Primeau, the school’s namesake.

“Over the past 50 years we’ve seen many changes in terms of teaching practices, philosophy, and technology,” Menduk said. “Despite these changes, the concept of schooling has changed very little. The delivery of educational programing largely occurs through a model that was developed in the 1800s. It’s intended to prepare youth for jobs that have existed for generations.”

The principal went on to praise the current faculty for working hard to make education meaningful and relevant to the students. “They are progressive int heir thinking, and they embody the transformative and transformational approach to classroom practices. They broke down these barriers for all students.”

Dignitaries look to the future

Greater St. Albert Catholic School Board Chair Noreen Radford said she was hopeful traditions present for the past 150 years are present 50 years down the road. “It’s my hope that … our excellence of tradition and pioneering spirit of our founding members – the Grey Nuns – is still present in the schools.” The board chair said a copy of the 150th Anniversary Celebrations video was being included in the capsule though she questions whether the format will be relevant in 2065. “The USB stick was the state of the art technology in 2014 / 2015,” she quipped. “I questioned whether this was still going to be able to be used [in 2065].
Father Martin Jubinville also recognizes things change as time goes on. The St. Jean Baptise priest offered some inspirational words to students and staff. “With the burial of the time capsule, we are acknowledging we are creatures who live through the passage of time,” Father Jubinville said. “Time goes on every day. Things change. Our world changes. We change and we grow, and somewhere in the passage of time, we have come to know that our God who is eternal journeys with us each and every day.”

One of the students participating in the ceremony was Erica Ritter. The Grade 8 student shared her thoughts with future Primeau students in a letter about life today and in their day. “Life today consists of new technology, music, fashion and new ideas,” she said. “Flannels and jeans are beginning to be the new fashion and guitars are being heard on the radio again. I predict life in 50 years to be much more high tech. Thinner, longer, smarter electronic devices, cars that are silent as they roll down the street, and advanced toys for the young. In the future, I think they will invent a no touch smartphone.”

After the speeches, Principal Menduk placed the items int he time capsule and sealed the lid. The capsule will dry in his office for a few days before being put on display in the school showcase.

Below is a gallery of photos on Facebook.

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