Victory Lap: Celebrating Early Learning Equal Start $20 Million - Saskatoon Public Schools Foundation
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Victory Lap: Celebrating Early Learning Equal Start $20 Million

Saskatoon Public Schools Foundation (SPSF) achieved a key milestone of raising $20 million for Early Learning Equal Start (ELES); to celebrate this momentous occasion, we invited 18 of our Full Day Every Day Kindergarten classrooms and our esteemed donors to celebrate and participate in “The Victory Lap” on June 4th, 2024.

The day started off with the first group of kindergarten classrooms hopping off the bus, and eagerly following their teachers into the space, all wearing “Class of 2036” t-shirts. We had three different types of stations, each one based on one of SPSF’s pillars: literacy, wellness, and innovation.


Before the big day, each kindergarten class got busy decorating letter blocks for the event. They had fun practicing their ABCs, finding the first letters of their names, and spelling out words, even their school names! Some kids were super happy to pick out the blocks they’d painted.

a kid looking at a colourful letter block at the Victory Lap

At the event, a few of our Page Turners literacy tutors helped out, reading stories to the kids after they played with the blocks. Some of the kids were super excited to pick out a block that they helped to decorate.

a teacher reading a book to kids while they are surrounded with colourful letter blocks at the Victory Lap


a kid jumping in an inflatable obstacle course at the Victory Lap

Over at the Wellness station, the kids had a blast running through inflatable obstacle courses. They were all smiles as they raced their friends, having a ton of fun together. It was great to see them laughing and enjoying themselves.

a kid sliding down an inflatable


Lastly, there was the Innovation station, which involved one of SPSF’s Power Up Projects. The Circus Arts/Hope Project is working towards creating more equitable and inclusive physical education learning environments. Some of teachers participating in the project taught the kids some circus skills and led them through activities that everyone could join in on. The kids loved it, and it was cool to see them trying something new.

a teacher showing kids circus arts at the Victory Lap

The kids really enjoyed getting to learn about circus arts and participate in the inclusive physical education activity!

two kids participating in circus arts
a kindergarten student running the Victory Lap

After the wellness centre, each group of kids would complete the race and run down the Victory Lap racetrack. First, they stood with their classmates at the starting line in their “ready” positions. Then they would take off down the lane marked with black and white checkered balloons. At the end of the track, the kids ran through a blue and white balloon arch, where one of the volunteers would meet them while waving a black and white checkered flag.

Our ELES Donors: Those who helped us reach our goal

Thanks to all of our donors and supporters who helped us reach our goal of raising $20 million for Early Learning Equal Start. Whether or not you could attend the event, we are incredibly grateful for your support!

Victory Lap donor wall 1
victory lap donor wall 2
victory lap donor wall 3
victory lap community contributors

During our donor-appreciation luncheon at The Victory Lap, we presented the ELES Co-Chairs with a gift. A beautiful hand-made star blanket featuring SPSF’s colours: red, yellow, green, and blue. We wanted to offer an additional thank you to Wayne Brownlee, Alice Kuipers, Michael Linklater for their time and investment in Early Learning Equal Start. We also wanted to thank our long-time supporters Pat and Catherine, as they were crucial in the development of the Page Turners program.

Zeba and Tidley wrapping Wayne and Alice in star blankets
Alice Kuipers and Wayne Brownlee receiving their star blankets.

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