26 11, 2014

Highlights of the Board Meeting November 25, 2014

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The Board:

– approved its Strategic Work Plan to focus on infrastructure, early education, and career pathways in support of achievement of the District Plan.

– had a clean financial audit, eliminated a structural deficit in which accumulated surpluses at schools exceeded available District funds, and invested $40 million surplus operating funds towards $11.9 million in capital reserves and $28.6 million in a new District Sustainability Fund to address  high priority planned expenses in addition to emergent district-wide issues.

– approved a revised Fall Budget in which accumulated operating reserves are used to supplement funds from Government to better meet the needs of students.  Additional funds from Government were realized largely because of increased enrollment at September 30 compared to the budget prepared in Spring 2014.

– reviewed last year’s results and approved a 3 year education plan emphasizing building staff capacity to strengthen literacy, numeracy, early years learning, citizenship and preparation for success beyond grade 12, in supporting the needs of our increasingly diverse learners.

– reviewed the Superintendent’s report on past year’s progress and plans for the current year.  Not surprisingly, the Superintendent’s report is very consistent with the 3 year plan.

– celebrated the election of Alberta’s first student trustee. Ms. Johannah Ko is a student at Edmonton Christian High School.

20 11, 2014

Results Review November 19, 2014

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I had the privilege today to review the past year’s results and this year’s plans for Aldergrove, Centennial, Lynnwood, Orsmby, Talmud Torah, and Thorncliffe schools, as well as for the District Outreach programs for at risk high school students.  It was a pleasure to participate in the Review with Assistant Superintendent Bolan, and also Superintendent Robertson.

I was inspired and moved by the dedication, commitment, and creative approaches District staff, parents, and partners use every day to help prepare students for success.

I heard of ongoing assessment practice and professional development to strengthen literacy and mathematics skills, along with initiatives to develop problem solving, teamwork and communication skills necessary in our modern society.  I was impressed by the focus, motivation, and collaboration to provide programming and support to serve the needs of each student.

I learned of the leadership displayed by the students themselves in helping younger students, in building community through volunteer and neighborhood activities, and in managing their own learning.

I thank the staff presenters led by Principals Patterson, Sader, Godfrey, Marshall, Yeoman, Boyle, and Fouts-Mitchell and parents Jolene, Amy, Rebecca and Frida for their comments.  I truly wish every parent and community member could be present at Results Review to hear the amazing results of student growth and development.

Students face many challenges and come from many backgrounds.  I feel tremendous appreciation for the selfless work of so many to create a better future for all.

18 11, 2014

S. Bruce Smith School Council Meeting November 17, 2014

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Thanks to Principal Watson, Chair Darlene and the rest of Council for allowing me to join their Council meeting tonight.  It was very encouraging to hear the leadership and maturity displayed by SBS students in a number of events, including the Remembrance Day ceremonies, the food bank fundraiser We Scare Hunger, and the student organized Community Halloween Party hosting 150 community children.  Well done SBS!

31 10, 2014

Bessie Nichols School Council October 30, 2014

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Thanks to Co-Chairs Rebecca and Shelley, along with the rest of Council and Principal Martyn for letting me participate in their meeting.  BN is a vibrant busy school pioneering many of the concepts that will assist Career Pathways (mentioned in my other October 30th post).  I commend the Council and Community for their leadership and persistence in successfully advocating for their students for modular classrooms, new schools, and improved crosswalk safety.  A special thanks to MLA Matt Jeneroux and Councillor Oshry for their support on these issues.

31 10, 2014

Career Pathways Symposium October 30, 2014

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I was delighted to participate with over 300 students, parents, educators, government, and community members in today’s Symposium.  The Career Pathways Concept Model is intended to support the growth and success for every student through community partnerships.  The Model helps students build awareness, understanding, and commitment to career pathways.  Throughout their kindergarten to grade 12 journey, the Model will help students discover for themselves their interests, opportunities, and plans to achieve their goals. I`m excited that the Pathways Model provides a vision for involving parents and community in and outside our classrooms to share their wisdom and experiences to help students shape their futures.  These are early days and I look forward to sharing information as the Concept develops.

21 10, 2014

Lynnwood School Parent Council Meeting October 20 2014

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Thanks to Principal Godfrey, Chair Derek and the rest of Council for letting me join the meeting. Fantastic academic results!

21 10, 2014

Callingwood School Trickster Theatre October 17 2014

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Great performances of Callingwood students with Trickster Theatre bringing character education to life.  Thoughtful messages embedded in hilarious skits.  Well done!

8 10, 2014

Highlights for the 2013 – 2014 School Year

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The Board has recently published the attached 2 page report of highlights for the 2013-2014 school year.


7 10, 2014

Ormsby School Council October 6 2014

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Thanks to Principal Marshall and the Council for switching the order of the Fundraising and Council meetings so that I could attend (sorry for mixing up the start time).   It was wonderful to hear how welcoming the school has been to students from Glastonbury and Granville neighborhoods. It was interesting to hear about the progress of the Leader in Me program, and I was excited by our discussion of the fit with the district’s Career Pathways.  Principal Marshall shared that the Results Review process and reporting is more meaningful for the staff and much better aligned with district priorities – good to hear!

7 10, 2014

Callingwood School Council October 6 2014

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Thanks to Principal McKeown and the School Council for the opportunity to attend. What a motivated Council, over 14 attendees and Chair Marianne helping with the transition even though all her children have graduated.  Nice to hear that enrollment has grown beyond expectations!