1005, 2016

Laperle School Council May 9, 2016

10, May, 2016|Comments Off on Laperle School Council May 9, 2016

Tonight’s council meeting was the last for Principal Wilma Bayko and Council Chair Todd O. Many thanks and best wishes to Principal Bayko for her outstanding service in fostering excellence in thousands of students and supporting the families of Laperle.  Enjoy Hawaii and other future adventures in retirement.

Thanks to Todd for seven years leadership on the Council, and best wishes for new schools for both you and your daughter!

2604, 2016

School Board Meeting April 26, 2016

26, Apr, 2016|Comments Off on School Board Meeting April 26, 2016

Today, the Board approved the distribution of funds.  The distribution of funds sets the stage for allocation of the funds received from the Provincial Education Budget to schools and central decision units.

I supported the Distribution because it puts our funds to support District priorities and values through a number of approaches:

  • the vast majority of the funds are allocated to classrooms, supporting students first
  • the prudent investment of reserves to supplement the stand-pat dollars provided by the Province
  • the allocations to the Central units also directly support students, with allocations for initiatives in support of literacy, numeracy, intercultural / English Language Learners, early years literacy, and mental health
  • other allocations are to build staff capacity through professional development, summer institutes, and principal readiness
  • continued support for the Equity Fund to address emerging needs in individual schools that could not be foreseen at the time individual schools develop their budgets
  • additional investments are made to support staff in better performing their jobs through evidence-based decision making, including the dashboard indicators project and student assessment
  • initiatives that support the Districts broader aims in providing efficient, functional high quality classrooms in schools throughout the City, and
  • initiatives to strengthen our partnerships with the broader community.

 

2604, 2016

Lynnwood School Council, April 25, 2016

26, Apr, 2016|Comments Off on Lynnwood School Council, April 25, 2016

Thanks to Chair Phil, the rest of Council, and Principal Shen for welcoming me to the Council meeting. I was interested in learning about the school’s focus on project based learning, and the success of the Minecraft presentation on 1800s era Alberta April 19th.

I was also pleased to learn from Principal Shen how well the District Equity Fund (a pool of funds allocated to assist schools with emerging, unique needs that are unanticipated at budget time) has helped Lynnwood School.  This is important information to share with fellow Trustees as we plan next year’s District budget allocations.

2604, 2016

Bessie Nichols School Council Meeting April 25, 2016

26, Apr, 2016|Comments Off on Bessie Nichols School Council Meeting April 25, 2016

Thanks to Chair Selby, the rest of Council, and Principal Allen for welcoming me to the Council meeting.  I was impressed with the school’s plans to continue to provide great programming next year for nearly 1100 students on essentially a stand-pat budget.

I was proud to have participated in the inaugural career day on April 12th and look forward to building the partnership between the construction industry and the construction lab.

A big congratulations to Michele and the rest of the community for raising the funds to complete the playground.  Michelle is inviting the community to the school library May 17th for the playground reveal!

 

2303, 2016

Board advocates for mid-year funding to assist Syrian Refugees

23, Mar, 2016|Comments Off on Board advocates for mid-year funding to assist Syrian Refugees

As reported in the Journal, the Board has written the federal government seeking mid-year funds to assist providing the supports to a large influx of nearly 500 Syrian refugee students.  Provincial funding of school districts is largely set by student enrollment numbers as of September 30, so mid-year influx of large students do not receive funding until the following September 30.  As the Journal points out in a follow-up editorial, this issue affects districts across Alberta (and indeed Canada).   If Alberta continues to receive large numbers of refugee students in future years, we need a better plan with our federal and provincial partners.

2303, 2016

Board Advocacy on Pedestrian and Traffic Safety Starting to Achieve Results

23, Mar, 2016|Comments Off on Board Advocacy on Pedestrian and Traffic Safety Starting to Achieve Results

Spurred by community concerns, Chairman Michael Janz led the Board last year to lobby the City to direct resources earned from speeding tickets to enhanced education and enforcement in school speed zones (see Chair Janz’ letter from March 2015).  The City’s response confirm’s their commitment, starting Fall 2016 with 13 schools including Bessie Nichols.  The City will add 24 schools in each of the next 2 years.

2303, 2016

Michael A Kostek School Council Meeting March 22, 2016

23, Mar, 2016|Comments Off on Michael A Kostek School Council Meeting March 22, 2016

Thanks to Chair Amber, the rest of Council, and Principal Kroeker for the opportunity to participate.  It was interesting to learn of the use of guided numeracy, not just as a intervention strategy, but as a regular feature in classrooms.  I was also interested to learn that enrolment growth is necessitating reintroducing the use of portable classrooms. I applaud the Council’s outreach to parents to seek their views on potential topics for Parent Information Nights.

1503, 2016

Highlights of the March 15, 2016 Board meeting

15, Mar, 2016|Comments Off on Highlights of the March 15, 2016 Board meeting

The Board approved Trustee Stirling’s motion to seek federal funding to support the recently arrived Syrian refugee students.  Edmonton Public receives provincial funding based on enrollment at September 30th each year, but there is no additional funding for students who enrol mid-year after September 30th.  While the District as a matter of practice provides great supports to all students that enrol after September 30th each year, our schools have received over 300 refugee students in recent months and transitional support for the balance of this school year would provide these students an even better start.

The Board also approved the District 3 year capital plan for 2017-2020.  While the funding approval rests with the Provincial Government, proposals that may be of interest to residents of west Edmonton include:

– a new Grade 7-12 school in Glenridding Heights – Year 1

– new K-9 schools for Edgemont and Lewis Farms (Rosenthal) – Year 2

– modernization of Hillcrest Junior High and a new Southwest High School – Year 3

Each year, principals are invited to nominate first year teachers for the Edwin Parr Teacher Award which is sponsored by the Alberta School Boards Association (ASBA). One nominee is selected to represent the District at the zone level.

Six first year teachers were nominated by their principals for the 2016 ASBA Edwin Parr Teacher Award.
A committee of District leadership staff met on Friday, February 6, 2016, to review and assess the nominations relative to the selection criteria established by ASBA. Results from the committee’s assessment, as well as points awarded based on scholastic achievement and student teaching evaluations were compiled. Based on the selection criteria, four semi-finalists were selected:

Nominee
Courtney Barron              George H. Luck School
Matthew Mudry                Dickinsfield School
Erin Yaschuk                      L. Y. Cairns School
Chantal Smith                    Malmo School

Congratulations to all finalists and the District nominee for the Zone 2/3 2016 Edwin Parr Teacher Award Courtney Barron!

1503, 2016

S Bruce Smith School Council Meeting March 14 2016

15, Mar, 2016|Comments Off on S Bruce Smith School Council Meeting March 14 2016

Thanks to Chair Gaylene, the rest of Council and Principal Watson for once again graciously permitting me to attend this evening’s Council meeting.  I was particularly interested in learning from Principal Watson’s report about the career pathways initiatives including myBlueprint Education Planner, and the students assembling 2 new three dimensional printers.  Given SBS’ well deserved reputation as a school of excellence, it was not surprising to learn that yet again the school will be at full enrolment next year.

I appreciated hearing a parent perspective on the March 9 Future High School Space meeting, and the opportunity to discuss the District’s capital planning process.

103, 2016

March 1 Board Meeting and March 9 Future High School Space

1, Mar, 2016|Comments Off on March 1 Board Meeting and March 9 Future High School Space

March 1 Board Meeting Highlights: The Board received a report on progress in establishing and leveraging community partnerships.  The attached guide provides contact information if you belong to an organization that wants to get involved! (Processes for parent volunteers will continue unchanged).

Trustee Stirling served notice of motion that the board of trustees write a letter requesting federal government funding and support for Syrian newcomers in our schools.  This motion reflects the reality that schools receive provincial funding based on their enrollment at September 30th.  Syrians refugees of course started arriving in late 2015 and come with many needs.  The Board will discuss at the March 15 meeting.

March 9 MEETING ABOUT FUTURE HIGH SCHOOL SPACE:

Edmonton Public Schools is working to make sure all of our students will have the space they need when they reach high school. To learn about this work, join us at one of four information sessions.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND

These meetings will be most relevant to parents with children currently in elementary school, but anyone with an interest in the District’s long-term plan to make space for high school students is welcome.

DATES AND TIMES

AREA DATE AND TIME LOCATION
West  Wednesday, March 9, 2016
7 – 8 p.m.
Jasper Place School
8950-163 Street NW

WHAT TO EXPECT

Each meeting will include a brief presentation outlining the demographic changes in Edmonton’s neighbourhoods and some of the challenges we’ll face when today’s elementary and junior high students reach high school age. We’ll also share some proposals for making sure all of our students have the space they need when they reach high school.

Staff will be available to answer questions. All four meetings will provide the same information.

MORE INFORMATION

For more information call Edmonton Public Schools Planning Department at 780-429-8539.