Brockville – Trustees with the Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) met on Wednesday, February 12, 2020 for their regular Board meeting. They discussed several agenda items:
North Stormont Public School Video Presentation
Trustees viewed a video from North Stormont Public School highlighting how their School Improvement Plans for Student Achievement and Wellness (SIPSAW) are implemented day-to-day. Included were parent and student testimonials on the friendly nature of the school, and how it accommodates the differing learning needs of students. Watch the video: North Stormont Video.
Kemptville Campus Education and Community Centre Presentation
A delegation led by North Grenville Mayor Nancy Peckford discussed a developing partnership between the Kemptville Campus Education and Community Centre (KCECC), the Upper Canada District School Board and two the French school boards serving our area. If a provincial funding application is successful, the partnership could provide educational services to the area such as Specialist High Skills Major programs, micro-credentials, Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Programs, and adult education services using the resources of the centre and the UCDSB TR Leger School of Adult, Alternative and Continuing Education. Director Stephen Sliwa noted the precise form the partnership will take has yet to be established. Trustees passed a motion referring the matter to staff for a follow-up report by September 2020.
2018-19 Occupational Health and Safety Report
Staff presented the 2018-19 Occupational Health and Safety Report, informing trustees of the proactive health and safety measures that have been implemented for its 4,000 employees, following an increase in workplace injuries last school year. Some examples are as follows: behaviour management training, safety plans, anti-slip foot gear, and annual health and safety training. There were 135 incident claims last year – an increase of 39 per cent.
School Bus Ride Times and Route Allocation Summary Report
Trustee John Danaher presented a report on ride times on area school buses, as well as an update on the Student Transportation of Eastern Ontario (STEO) consortium. STEO has an objective to keep ride times under an hour with no more than 3 per cent of students riding over an hour. As of December 31, 2019, 279 pupils – 1.04 per cent of UCDSB students – were riding longer than an hour. Danaher added the average ride time is 23 minutes. He also presented a draft communication plan outlining how the Board and STEO will consult and inform staff, contractors and communities members regarding the second phase of a project harmonizing school bell times.
District Wide Timetabling and Synchronous eLearning
Staff are working to harmonize bell times and schedules at all UCDSB high schools to create a common five-period day. The effort will permit the UCDSB to expand its synchronous eLearning program across all UCDSB secondary schools, permitting students at our small high schools greater access to needed courses. Through synchronous eLearning, students at different high schools are able to take online courses at the same time in real time, and under the guidance of a teacher using the board’s Desire2Learn platform. Two of such courses are being offered this semester as part of a pilot at Seaway District High School, North Dundas District High School, Gananoque Secondary School and Almonte District High School. As of September 2020, 19 out of 21 secondary schools will have aligned bell times and their students will be eligible to participate in six synchronous eLearning courses. Char-Lan District High School and Tagwi Secondary School bell times will be aligned in September 2021, enabling students to participate at that time.
Board Adds Second Student Trustee
Trustees voted to expand the number of Student Trustees to two, bringing the Board in line with recent provincial legislation. The two Student Trustees, who will be elected by Student Senate, will serve one-year terms, as is currently done.