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1905, 2017

MAK School BBQ May 18, 2017

19, May, 2017|Comments Off on MAK School BBQ May 18, 2017

Thanks to Principal Kroeker and Council for the invitation to attend! Great weather and a turn out exceeding 900!

1005, 2017

MAK School Council May 9 2017

10, May, 2017|Comments Off on MAK School Council May 9 2017

Thanks to the Council and Principal Kroeker for allowing me to participate.  I provided a brief status report on Bill 1, essentially the report was “stay tuned” as we await the provincial regulations expected in June.

1004, 2017

Bridge to Teacher Certification Program Expanding to Help Industry Professionals

10, Apr, 2017|Comments Off on Bridge to Teacher Certification Program Expanding to Help Industry Professionals

Kudos to the Provincial Government for expanding this program to help industry professionals bring their expertise to the classroom by  becoming teachers. This smart, affordable program nicely complements the Government’s Future Ready initiative.

https://www.alberta.ca/release.cfm?xID=46649748B9808-0361-1BDD-E6D36807B45C4C27

1403, 2017

Aldergrove School Council, March 13, 2017

14, Mar, 2017|Comments Off on Aldergrove School Council, March 13, 2017

Thanks to Chair Shane, rest of Council and Principal Kun for the invite to attend.  The focus of discussion was on pre-enrolment, technology, and year end planning.

1003, 2017

Hillcrest School Open House March 9, 2017

10, Mar, 2017|Comments Off on Hillcrest School Open House March 9, 2017

Hats off to Principal Fonseca and the Hillcrest team for the excellent Open House attended by several hundred parents and students. They were treated to entertainment from the Jazz Band, a student produced video, and activities and goodies throughout the school.  Hillcrest provides great care for kids, while providing a huge number of activities and clubs and above average student achievement.

Pictured are Patrick and Jacob, two of a five member Gold Medal team in the recent Science Olympics.  Their prize winning achievement, solving the problem of moving a brick the maximum distance with only air power!

IMG_0422

903, 2017

Social Media and Your Junior High Child S Bruce Smith March 8, 2017

9, Mar, 2017|Comments Off on Social Media and Your Junior High Child S Bruce Smith March 8, 2017

Just attended an outstanding, informative session by Assistant Principal Scammell for parents on social media use by their children.

John’s presentation covered:

  • What devices do your kids use
  • What forms of social media are popular with junior high students
  • Good family practices to help your child make good decisions in using social media
  • Live demo

I learned that virtually all junior high students have access to devices that can connect to the internet, and that instagram and snapchat are key media for junior high students.  Parents can model appropriate use and help their children make good decisions to protect themselves and deal with inappropriate content before they encounter it. Parents can help adolescents think about consequences before sending information.

Thanks to Council Chair Gaylene and Principal Yule for the opportunity to attend.

1402, 2017

Rio Terrace School Council Meeting February 13, 2017

14, Feb, 2017|Comments Off on Rio Terrace School Council Meeting February 13, 2017

Thanks to Chair Ed, rest of Council, and Principal Polowy for the opportunity to participate in tonight’s meeting.  Glad to hear the District’s commitment to equity has provided some new chromebooks to the school. In the past, School Council provided these so the iinvestment saves Council funds for other initiatives.  It was interesting to learn that the Young Engineers program has a waiting list, and that the School is offering parents nights for numeracy (March 21 for Division 1, March 22 for Division 2).  First up is a junior high transition evening for Monday February 23rd.  The discussion around the educational possibilities for the outdoor classroom / playground update was also very interesting.

1402, 2017

Centennial School Council, February 13, 2017

14, Feb, 2017|Comments Off on Centennial School Council, February 13, 2017

Thanks to Colin, the rest of Council, and Principal Sauder for the opportunity to attend. I was pleased to hear that the District commitment to equity in technology was providing 30 new chromebooks that, in the past would have been funded by the parent fundraising society.  I was intrigued to hear that MyBlueprint is also being used in the school.

902, 2017

S Bruce Smith Parent Presentation: Adolescent Anxiety, February 8, 2017

9, Feb, 2017|Comments Off on S Bruce Smith Parent Presentation: Adolescent Anxiety, February 8, 2017

Excellent presentation by Assistant Principal Donna Prato sharing many resources including www.teenmentalhealth.org

Key message: Stress is part of life and at healthy levels, contributes to personal growth.  It’s not about stress reduction, it’s about stress management for building resilience.

3101, 2017

Highlights of January 31, 2017 Board Meeting

31, Jan, 2017|Comments Off on Highlights of January 31, 2017 Board Meeting

The proposed change in Ward boundaries received 3rd and final reading.  The Minister of Education has final approval, which is scheduled to be dealt with by March 1st. Aldergrove, Belmead, Laperle, Thorncliffe, Terra Losa, and Summerlea will be part of Ward C next election.

Board policy requires the Governance and Evaluation Committee to review trustee compensation once a term. Trustees approved adjusting compensation for the next Board to be elected October 2017.  Trustee remuneration had been unchanged since 2010-2011.  An outside consultant reported that remuneration for Edmonton Public was near the bottom compared to Edmonton Catholic, Calgary Catholic, and Calgary Public.  The change will see the Trustee remuneration increase to the current average of the 4 metro boards, with an annual adjustment based on an objective measure of the change (including decreases) in cost of living. Total cost of the change is approximately $50,000 in the first year.

The Policy Review Committee presented policy IJA.BP Electioneering and Politically Motivated Communications for first reading.  While the content has not substantively changed, it is important to finalize the policy so that all candidates have the policy in advance of the election October 2017. Revisions include:
o additions of three sections: Purpose, Definitions and Accountability
o adjusting language to ensure consistency with current Board policies and the School Act
o ensuring clarity and eliminating repetition

The policy will be posted to the District website to receive stakeholder feedback.

The Policy Review Committee presented a new policy, AE.BP Welcoming, Inclusive, Safe and Healthy Learning and Working Environments, for first reading. The development of AE.BP Welcoming, Inclusive, Safe and Healthy Learning and Working Environments was initiated to serve as a parent policy to a set of policies related to learning and working environments. This set of policies align to the requirements of the School Act, reflect the diversity our student and staff populations and are intended to foster a sense of belonging, safety and wellness for all students and staff. The work to complete Policy AE.BP and revise all related policies is included in the Annual Policy Review Work Plan 2016—2017.  The policy will be posted to the District website to receive stakeholder feedback.

Based on dialogue with parents at recent school council meetings, and a questionnaire circulated with residents living near Ward E schools, I made the following Requests for Information at the January 31st Board meeting (RFIs are the official way to ask the Administration to formally respond):

1. Can the administration post the list of schools that the City of Edmonton has worked with to improve traffic safety, and the list for the next set of schools to receive traffic safety improvements.

2. Does the district have a program to replace aging fixtures (eg. sinks) with modern water and energy saving fixtures, and if so, please outline the process by which schools are placed on the list to receive such improvements.
3. Rio and Quesnell students are designated to Patricia Heights for elementary, but are designated to Laurier Heights junior high rather than Hillcrest as the other Pat Heights students.  Is this something the District could look at?
Following the Board meeting, Trustees and the new Student Senate had a dinner meeting to answer student questions and exchange information.