Sherwood Park, AB. — Knowing when and how to support children at school is never easy. The dangers presented by a pandemic only add to the challenge of balancing the need to protect children on the one hand while continuing to support their emotional growth on the other. Strathcona Christian Academy (SCA) Secondary invites interested parents throughout Elk Island Public Schools and the community to a free, virtual presentation providing support and resources to help tackle these challenges.

Keeping Them Safe While Helping Them Grow: Supporting children’s emotional growth in challenging times, presented by Alex Russell, offers clear and helpful guidelines to help parents navigate challenges while maintaining close, supportive relationships with their children. The workshop asks whether parents and caregivers are doing kids a disservice by removing obstacles and trying to eradicate all stress and anxiety from their lives.

“Alex Russell is a gifted psychologist and communicator who is able to both encourage and equip parents to navigate these difficult times,” says Matt Matheson, an Assistant Principal at SCA Secondary. “The COVID-19 pandemic has ramped up the anxiety levels of many students, and Russell offers timely insights, advice and techniques to help parents support their children during these unprecedented times and beyond—all while emphasizing the importance of close parent-child relationships.”

Keeping Them Safe While Helping Them Grow: Supporting children’s emotional growth in challenging times
Date: April 21, 2021
Time: 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Location: Online, hosted on Microsoft Teams

During the evening, Russell will offer a fresh perspective on raising self-reliant, motivated children, ready to take on the world. The session will give parents the tools to:

  • understand parent-child dynamics;
  • resist the pressure to over-parent;
  • build trusting relationships with teachers and school administration so they can play an effective role in your child’s life;
  • understand problems, such as ADHD, anxiety and substance abuse;
  • embrace failure as learning, not parental incompetence; and
  • enact common-sense strategies for parents worn out from worrying about their kids and future.

About Alex Russell
Alex Russell is a clinical psychologist who lives and works in Toronto. He provides assessments and psychotherapy to children and adults, in addition to consulting with schools, teachers and psychologists. The heart of his message is children learn through the experience of non-catastrophic, painful failure. Through the process of these failures, they mature into resilient, resourceful and emotionally balanced individuals. Parents need to see failing—whether it’s a test, a course or a tryout for a team—as a normal part of growing up and not a sign of parental incompetence. As a speaker, Russell has addressed many parent, teacher and counsellor groups over the years. He’s intimately familiar with the culture of the school system and the relationship parents, teachers and counsellors share with regard to the children we’re raising.

Strathcona Christian Academy Secondary serves approximately 600 students in grades 7 to 12, offering instruction with a Christian perspective. The school is one of 43 schools within Elk Island Public Schools. More information about the school is available at 


For more information contact:
Laura McNabb, Director, Communication Services, EIPS 780-417-8204 cell 780-405-4902