The annual Mighty Peace Teachers’ Convention is getting underway in Grande Prairie again today and tomorrow.

Convention Board President Julie Gummesen says this year there will be a particular emphasis on helping teachers better understand mental health issues that their students may be dealing with.

“We’re really targeting a lot of mental health issues this year. We’ve always known that there were stress issues and a lot of times at these conventions we want to talk about teacher wellness but we’re focusing a lot this year on the stresses that students have. We’re bringing in some really good presenters to help us with students in the classroom.”

Teachers will also be looking at different ways to incorporate new technology into their classrooms.

“Google classrooms are really going to be a big hit this year. We’ve already seen that those are really popular, and we’ll basically be talking about building online communities so that kids can interact not only with students in their own schools, but even in other areas of the world.” says Gummesen.

This year’s keynote presenters are Alvin Law, who will be the opening speaker with his presentation “Everybody Counts… So Do You!”, and Brian Keating will be closing with his presentations “Cold Leadership” and “Hiking with Asses”.

Other presenters include teacher-comedian Susan Carter, teacher and author David Bouchard, Alberta Teachers’ Association President Mark Ramsankar and University of Alberta Assistant Professor and Director of Programs & Services for the Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services Dr. Kris Wells.

Around 1600 teachers are expected to be in attendance at this year’s convention which will be held at various venues around the city – Peace Wapiti Academy, Grande Prairie Composite High School, and Harry Balfour School in particular.