Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Calgary, Alberta, Canada is one of the PATHS® program's longest running sites!

Hull Services has proudly offered PATHS® to the Calgary Board of Education since 1999. Initially, PATHS® was offered through the Fast Track Program, a best practices research initiative and the collaborative work of several leading researchers.  Fast Track was a targeted, school and family-based intervention focused on helping children who were at risk of serious behavioural problems. While the Fast Track interventions have been completed, PATHS® has continued on in a handful of elementary schools since that time. Having implemented PATHS® for 16 years, these Calgary Board of Education teachers and administrators offer a unique and insightful perspective on the many and varied uses for PATHS® in their schools. Many of these professionals have seen the lasting impacts as their students graduate from high school and become contributing members of the community!

Hull Services is a large youth serving Agency founded in 1962 and located in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Serving over 3,000 children and youth daily, Hull Services helps children and families who are challenged with serious emotional, psychological, and behavioural issues across its 28 residential and community programs. 

The PATHS® program is such an asset to our school.  I have been teaching PATHS for almost 6 years, but our school has been using the PATHS® program for 10 plus years. I see a positive environment in our school.  Our students and staff are very caring and welcoming.  Many people who come to visit our school have mentioned how warm and friendly everybody is.  I feel that one of the main reasons why our school is like this, is because we use the PATHS® program.  Not only is this program a benefit for our students, but it is a benefit for our staff.  I see the teachers using  the PATHS® problem solving techniques when they encounter problems.  Not only has this allowed our staff to be more in touch with their feelings and the feelings of others, but it has allowed our students to witness the teachers using the techniques of the program.  I feel that our teachers are much more open to receive feedback from others.  The PATHS® program is definitely a must in every school.

Mr. Bevan Bartley, Penbrooke Meadows School Grade 5/6 Teacher

I have been implementing the PATHS®PATHS program for 11 years in Patrick Airlie School, although the school has had the PATHS® program for 16 years.  The program is an excellent way for children to learn what feelings are, how do we show our feelings and what do we do with those feelings.  It is a universal language within our school community, kindergarten to grade 6.

In kindergarten we have “Twiggle the Turtle” to talk to our class about feelings. I teach the lessons, but generalize  by letting Twiggle speak directly to each child.  Some kids know it’s my voice, but I just tell them that Twiggle knows everyone is special and he wants to talk to them.  It is at different times of the day when Twiggle will just ‘come alive’.  He asks one of the children to sit with him and talk about anything!  Their eyes light up and their hearts shine.  Twiggle also teaches the children how to take turns.  If they are playing a memory game, the one whose turn it is holds Twiggle. Twiggle loves playing games.

Marisa Natucci-Goldberger, Patrick Airlie School Kindergarten Teacher

I have had the opportunity to coach and train new administrators, teachers and support staff in using the PATHS® program in Calgary for several years.  I also provide booster sessions to those veteran teachers who are teaching different grades or need a refresher in using the PATHS® strategies. Being able to observe the SEL growth of students and teachers while using the PATHS® curriculum has been rewarding. It is exciting to hear the entire school speak the common language of the PATHS® program and to observe the children practicing the strategies during instructional and non instructional times of the day. I know that PATHS® is a positive program for our schools when I hear comments such as I cannot imagine my classroom or school without the PATHS® program to I wish the PATHS® program would have been in my last school placement.”  The PATHS® program not only unifies a classroom, but unifies an entire school, creating an environment that is warm, respectful and inviting.

Glenna Tarnasky, PATHS® Trainer

A book recommended by Radisson Park School when looking at problem solving

Lesson 48 – Grade 2

Bully B.E.A.N.S.
   by Julia Cook
Bobbette is being a bully. She orders everyone to obey her commands or else she threatens to turn them into human pretzels. One girl’s mother gives her something called “bully beans”. She tells her daughter they are magical beans that will help her to stand up to the bully. When chewed, these beans will remind kids that they have the power to stop bullies. B.E.A.N.S. is an acronym for Bullies Everywhere Are Now Stopped. This book can help children and adults understand why bullying behavior happens and what they can do to stop it. Not only does this book address the person doing the bullying behavior, but also speaks to the bystander as well. The book is recommended for students grades 2-4.


Bovel recommended by Penbrooke Meadows School for grade five/six students.

Themes that fit with PATHS curriculum:  Friendship, Overcoming Obstacles, Problem Solving, Peer Relationships

Lions of Little Rock – by Kristin Levine
Two girls are separated by race. They develop a strong bond during the integration of Little Rock Schools in 1958. Twelve year old Marlee has a difficult time meeting friends until she meets Liz, a new girl in the school. Liz is not bashful and has all of the right things to say at the right time, especially to children who are being mean. Liz helps Marlee to overcome her shyness by speaking out more comfortably. But then one day Liz is gone. Rumor was that she was a girl with dark skin passing as a white girl. Marlee does not care about that, because Liz is her best friend. To stay friends, Liz and Marlee are willing to take on integration and the dangers their friendship could bring to both of their families.

PATHS Principal Reflection by Tracy Drefko 

My involvement with PATHS began sixteen years ago, when I was a teacher in Patrick Airlie School. I now oversee the PATHS® Program in my role as Principal of Radisson Park School. 

So many people visiting the school – parents, colleagues, specialists, and community members alike – comment on the “wonderful feel” that they get when walking into Radisson Park School.  When asked, I attribute this positive atmosphere to the calm, respectful school culture that has been created through our commitment to the PATHS® curriculum.  Every year since the school opened in 2006, staff have embraced PATHS as an essential contributor to our school’s success, and not just the teaching of the lessons.  PATHS lives in our building in so many ways beyond the classroom lessons – it is in our incident resolution model, it is the way we walk in the hallways, it is the way we treat and speak to each other, it is our motto – Resilient, Respectful, Remarkable and Responsible.  What PATHS has provided is school-wide consistency of vocabulary, expectations and visual supports.  There are no surprises for students who work with many staff members in many spaces. There is comfort and safety in routine, in knowing what to expect and what is expected, and our students are then able to take more responsibility for their behavior, their academics, and their lives in school.