Through the Years: ‘I Care’ at Schurter wins school award and other stories

Snippets from April 7 Leaders

April 11 was both Easter and the seventh anniversary of the strike at Zeidler Forest Industries in Slave Lake. The seven-year strike was the longest in Alberta history.

C.J. Schurter Elementary School won the 1992-93 School Community Public Relations Award from the Alberta Teachers Association. Fall 1991, the curriculum changed. Staff and teachers were having trouble adjusting. In March 1992, people at the school decided to start the ‘I Care’ program to help make the school environment better. The first project was a list of monthly school social and emotional themes designed to improve self esteem and positive behaviour.

French immersion was alive and well at C.J. Schurter Elementary School and St. Mary of the Lake School. The Schurter program started in 1988.

Slave Lake’s Japanese Friendship Committee was raising funds to help its sister town – Kamishihoro, Hokkaido, Japan. Kamishihoro’s junior high was damaged in an earthquake. Back in 1988, people in Kamishihoro donated $1,000 to flood relief in Slave Lake.

The archive project was well underway. It was the brainchild of the Slave Lake Historical Society and the Slave Lake Library.


A yearling moose knocked a Fish and Wildlife Officer onto a woodpile with its front hooves. The wildlife officer wasn’t harmed. He was trying to shoo the moose out of Slave Lake.

Someone tampered with a railway switch by Wagner, causing a train to derail, but only four cars were damaged.

Long term care beds were promised in both Slave Lake and Wabasca. There was a new children’s authority in the area, but not likely enough money for Northern Haven Support Society to open a shelter.

Some social work students had studied homelessness in Slave Lake. Their research affirmed their suspicion that it was a problem in the area.

Regional Environmental Action Committee (REAC) asked local musicians to send cassette tapes of their music to be included in an educational video.

It was National Wildlife Week. In 1991, pelicans were listed as a species at risk. By 1999, they were reclassified as a low but stable population. To protect pelican breeding sites, a new law made it illegal to be within 800 metres of one between April 15 and September 15.
The three caribou herds in the area were endangered. Grizzly bears were animals of concern. Moose were sparse in parts of Alberta and over-abundant in others. Cougars and bald eagles had a low but stable population.


The 2010 wildfire season was expected to be a bad one. Alberta Forestry said that it was drier than 1998 when the Mitsue fire threatened Slave Lake. In March, a fire near Snipe Lake reached 56 hectares.

Northern Haven Support Society was applying for ongoing funding. The shelter opened in 2008 and survived grant by grant. In 2009, it housed 172 women and children.

A Slave Lake homeless man was convinced that Slave Lake needed a homeless shelter. The Leader interviewed him, but he didn’t want his first name published.

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