École Vickers students win local Legion contest

The Prince Albert Legion's Mel Osolinsky presents grade eight students at École Vickers School awards for their Remembrance Day Poster and Literacy Contest on May 8, 2019. (Jayda Noyes/Daily Herald)

““We like to see the students participate because the vets are disappearing.”

– Mel Osolinsky, Prince Albert Legion

The Prince Albert Legion presented three École Vickers grade eight students with awards on Wednesday for a Remembrance Day art competition.

The Canada-wide Poster and Literacy Contest is meant to facilitate creative learning with the theme of remembering war veterans.

Those who enter are judged by their local branch. If they win, their pieces proceed to the provincial level and then the national level.

Mel Osolinsky with the legion presented an award to both Rylee McKay and Mark Acorn and two awards to Camryn Cooling.

As a teacher of arts and literacy for over 30 years, he said it’s promising to see youth taking initiative.

“We like to see the students participate because the vets are disappearing. There are some new ones, but the second World War and the Korean (War veterans) are basically gone,” he explained.

But he said the contest is getting more difficult to keep up with because of the need for involvement.

“There are some really decent works that are done in the schools, but that requires a participation of the staff, the principal, the committees and the legion branch. So anyway, we’re quite fortunate that this is continuing,” said Osolinsky.

Perry Acorn, the school’s art and music teacher, said the students are always engaged in the project.

“It’s a way for them to create their own message given the theme of Remembrance Day. We can link it to outcomes and to report cards,” he said.

Acorn added it’s not very often that this many students proceed in the contest.

However, they did have one student in the past who made it to the national level.

The legion also supports wider groups of services, including firefighters, EMS, police and RCMP.

After the award presentations, the school watched performances from the choir and handbell band, as well as from the James L. Alexander School in Saskatoon.

The École Vickers choir performs after the handbells band on May 8, 2019. (Jayda Noyes/Daily Herald)

For more information about the Royal Canadian Legion’s Poster and Literacy Contest, visit https://www.legion.ca/communities-youth/youth-education/remembrance-contests.