January 28th Minutes

31 Jan

                                                                DPAC meeting – January 28th, 2016

In Attendance:

Kim Dumore      Margaret Snow          Tina Collinson       Kirsten Juneja

Nicole Bowden     Natasha Bowman       Jill Ogloff       Jodi Murphy

Deanna Lackey    Misa Van Der Mey       Nicole Lewthwaite      Joshua Nicholas

Sylvia Russell    Karen Kuxhouse      Sabrina Mattson      Kylie Wilcott

Jill Constable      Kristi Blakeway     Stacey Burke     Raewyn Hewitt

Mike Murray     Susan Carr      Nathalie Currie        Dana Bates

Courtney Connor

Welcome: Kim gave thanks to Harry Hooge for hosting us.

Kristi Blakeway (Principal)-415 students, Strong Start, Media Club (tech and school news focus), Music, lots of sports teams and activities, Art Club, Knights for Change (community focus of giving back), buddy program; 2 goals (self regulation and student inquiry); new furniture allows for different styles of learning, Zones of Regulation room, Mindfulness club, youth worker, PAC support; 365 Give (Giving Tree represents the ways students/classes give to each other)

Rick Bulter (Wild Play)-10 parks across Canada; working with the District to promote fitness for youth; Familiarization tours for PACs coming in March – free event – further details to follow; have a 3 part lesson plan/activities for teachers that ties into the new curriculum; year end event activities are booking up already rbutler@wildplay.com

Kristi Blakeway (Happiness)-science of happiness (what determines happiness – genetics 40% , actions/thoughts 40%, external circumstances 10%); Shawn Achor –The Happiness Advantage, researcher on happiness; impact of happiness on others; parenting ideas: random acts of kindness, who did you help today, 5 happy thoughts, volunteer, exercise together; 21 day challenge (practice gratitude for 21 days to see the effects); welcome slips (instead of late slips), “spot a give” week…

Wendy (Bodhi Natural Food Market)-clean eating grocer and deli business in the community; looking to branch out and work with PACs to provide clean lunch program for kids; cost would be slightly higher than other sources, but they are willing to work with schools to put together a hot lunch menu

-please contact at  info@bodhinaturalmarket.com or call 604.380.3831

Superintendent’s Report (Sylvia Russell):

-Student Forum held yesterday, 200 students out at Swan-e-set, gathering input from students on what makes school inclusive, passionate, caring places to learn

-District is now fully in the process of proposing a new school in Albion, together with the City of MR, as the facility could include a neighbourhood facility; 2 public consultation workshops coming up Feb. 10 at Albion 6-8:30, Feb 25 at SRT 6-8:30

-Feb. 19 first curriculum implementation training day for teachers

-DPAC has been working with schools to implement a breakfast program; early results show that kids are benefiting and the program is growing

-also working on an emergency plan, particularly each school having an exterior storage bin to keep all the supplies to care for kids in a ‘rough camping’ type situation; individual schools will be working with their PACs to determine what can be donated, what they have already, and what needs to be purchased

Trustee report : (Mike Murray, Susan Carr)
-really embracing the idea of engaging students more in the process of planning for their education activities (Student Forum, students speaking at Budget meeting, visits to schools)

-budget review and planning phase, meeting last week had input from all the partner groups; provincial budget in Feb. will determine what direction our SD42 budget will take this year

MRTA report: (no rep present)

– please direct any questions you may have about the new curriculum to DPAC and we will forward along to the MRTA

CUPE report (Karen Kuxhouse)

-glad to be present at the meeting

DSAC report : (Courtney Connor, Joshua Nicholas)

-great feedback from the Student Forum; students from all areas of the school system represented

-COR project for DSAC year end event – ‘365 Give’ creator coming to be the keynote speaker

-coins for kids raised over $3064 which was a fantastic success!

-very pleased to be included in the budget process (4 kids were able to speak about how budget affects them)

-will be looking for adults from DPAC to help with the COR project

-‘Model UN’ event was attended by some students in our district (very enjoyable learning experience for kids)

DPAC Report (Kim Dumore):

-Save the Date May 26th PAC Appreciation Dinner @MRSS 6pm

-breakfast program growing; contact kids@friendsneedfood.com

-no plans to change the grading system in high school; some individual teachers may approach their grading in different ways but no official change to the system in place now

-PAC resource sharing program is being explored

-still need a school to host our June 16th meeting

Treasurer’s Report (Deanna Lackey):

Regular account: $5669.72

Gaming account: $3528.15

PAC sharing:

-Harry Hooge Winter Carnival February 12 5-8pm

-Strong Kids Team -March 7th 6-9:30 at the ACT; free event for parents, focusing on the topics of interest recently indicated in a survey that are a top priority for parents (mental health, addictions, social media)

Meeting adjourned at 8:55 pm

Next meeting: TBA

(Due to a conflict with the Public Consultation Workshop on the 25th,

we are rescheduling our meeting to another night. As soon as we determine the

details we will pass along the information to you.)

DPAC letter presented at Budget meeting

21 Jan

Date: January 20th, 2016
Board of Education

School District #42
Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows
22225 Brown Avenue

Maple Ridge, B.C. V2X 8N6

Dear Trustees, Superintendent and Secretary Treasurer:

 

On behalf of the parents of SD42, DPAC executive respectfully submit the following response to the question: How has the budget of 2015/16 affected families? With our efforts to obtain as much feedback from parents as we could, but receiving minimal response, it has become abundantly clear that parents are feeling disillusioned and burnt out. There is definitely a feeling of relief amongst parents with the threat of job action not sitting before them, but there is also a feeling of “Where do we go from here?” that has been left in its wake.

We believe that parents, as a collective whole, feel that no matter what concerns they raise, the underlying issue of not enough funding remains present and is consistently chipping away at the quality of experience our children encounter at public schools. This issue is of course not restricted to SD42, but is felt by districts across the province that are all feeling the effects of inadequate funding by our provincial government.

As parents in multiple schools across SD42, we see the strain of lack of funding within all these schools. We see the frustration and the burden teachers and support staff are carrying due to the lack of funding. They are constantly being asked to do more, but being given less to take on those added tasks. Staff are not just dealing with ever present and varied academic needs, but also increasing social, emotional, behavioural needs of students. Yet, funding does not match what this increasing need requires. Our schools do not have the adequate personnel required (enough teachers to support smaller class size, regular support staff, specialized support staff, clerical and janitorial staff) or the material resources (textbooks, art supplies, photocopy paper, technology equipment, sports equipment, out of building school experiences and transport for those activities).  Funding for all of these things is necessary for the education system to work effectively. The system is broken. Parents, via their children, all feel the effects of this.

Yet, many parents still work tirelessly to help support public education, in an attempt to prevent their own children, and in effect everyone’s children, from falling through the cracks. The cracks that at times seem to be gaping…

For many years parents, through the determination and dedication of PACs, have been filling in the gaps to lessen the impact of budget cuts on our kids. PACs have been helping to provide funds for, amongst other things: supplies for art, replenishing sports equipment, team jerseys, books for library and reading programs, computers, iPods and iPads, charging carts to house these various technology items, field trips, guest speakers, music equipment and playgrounds. These are all commonly needed items our students require as part of their experience at school.   What was once provided for them by the schools and District, is now relying on PAC dollars for funding. PAC’s main focus is fundraising, rather than providing meaningful opportunities for students and building school community.

Parents are constantly bombarded with fundraising as PACs try to keep up with the demand of providing all these much needed funds to their school. Some schools are fortunate enough to have an active PAC and a parent community that is financially able to contribute to fundraising efforts. But many schools are not in the position to raise the funds to support the needs present within their schools. This leads to disparity amongst schools and this has been noted by parents. In fact, this was the topic of much discussion by a group of parents who attended a DPAC workshop last fall. If adequate funds were present within schools, then all schools would feel equal in what they are able to offer to their students. Not all PAC fundraising is equal, therefore not all schools are equal. This should not be so. All the parents present at our workshop were in agreement on this. The cuts to the budget this past year (and many years before that) that have deemed PAC fundraising so necessary, have in turn caused the negative impact of creating inequality and divisiveness between schools.

In some schools the lists of needs are changing, as the priorities are changing. For example, some PACs are stocking schools with supplies to support breakfast programs. (The dishes or equipment required for the service of food, as well as airtight storage containers to keep food items protected from mice and ants, in at least one instance.) It leaves one to wonder how long all of this can be sustained, as the need for all of these items is going to increase. And of course, the schools with the most inherent need to provide meal programs are also the schools who struggle the most with raising funds to support the school.

The District is finally moving ahead with a plan for emergency preparedness and parents are very pleased about this. However, we know already that the budget will not support all of the spending that will be required to get this program up and running. This expense will fall primarily on the parents, as PACs will have yet another item to add to their long list of fundraising priorities. And really, given our Lower Mainland location, how much longer can we chance not being adequately prepared for the emergency that will happen one day and directly impact all our students? It seems beyond comprehension that an approved budget would not provide for this crucial safety for our students and staff.

There are many cracks that we can’t fill. The presence of staff in the office is one of them. Cuts to clerical staff have left many schools with only one staff member in the office, and while they are on breaks, off in another part of the school, or simply not there due to reduced hours, there is often no one present to deal with issues that may arise. This concerns many parents and in fact was the primary concern for a parent who provided feedback to us regarding the budget cuts. For her, the cuts to clerical and administrative staff have a profound effect on student safety. Security within schools that can be at least partially realized by having staff present at all times at the point of entry, should be a top priority and reflected in the budget. All parents share the view that student safety is crucial, and budget cuts that undermine that safety are not acceptable.

Although the majority of parents in the District are not affected by the budget cuts that led to the elimination of bussing, there are a small number of parents who are about to be faced with the effects of that decision. We have yet to see exactly how those effects will impact those families, but in the coming school year those effects will become evident and keenly felt, as well as perhaps some unexpected fallout. Will enrolment in certain schools decline? Will student participation in certain activities decline? Will parent contribution to fundraising efforts be further limited as they face the added cost of transporting their children to school? Like many other impactful budget cuts, there is likely to be the direct effect as well as the trickle down effect that will surface in due time.

As we met to discuss this issue and craft our response, we acknowledged that our response this year is very similar to our response last year, and likely similar to what our response next year would be. The reason being that the same fundamental issue exists from year to year – our District is not allocated sufficient funds to meet the needs of students and staff in our schools. While the Trustees and Board staff are faced with the impossible task of stretching and juggling inadequate funds, the end result is that our students are being denied their optimal educational experience. While no parent would deem this acceptable, the unfortunate reality is that so many parents have simply given up.

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of parents:

D.P.A.C.

Maple Ridge – Pitt Meadows

School District #42

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Movie night for Parents at MRE

20 Jan

Here is a SAVE THE DATE for the following amazing opportunity for parents:

“Most Likely to Succeed” is an independent film that has had acclaim at festivals such as Sundance and Tribeca. It will be shown at MRE on Tuesday, March 8th at 7 pm in the gym. Entrance by donation.Most Likely to Succeed.jpg

January 28th Agenda

17 Jan

Maple Ridge/Pitt Meadows SD42

District Parent Advisory Committee Agenda Thursday, January 28th, 2015

WELCOME

Thank you to Harry Hooge for hosting tonight.

INTRODUCTIONS

Principal’s remarks: Kristi Blakeway

SPECIAL GUESTS:

*Rick Butler from Wild Play- opportunities for PACs and outdoor activity

*Kristi Blakeway – Happiness: connection to student learning

REPORTS

-SUPERINTENDENT

-TRUSTEE

-MRTA

-CUPE

-DSAC

-TREASURER

OLD BUSINESS

  • 2 Tickets to be raffled for The ACT – Alice in Wonderland 1pm-2:30
  • Breakfast/snack program in connection with the Food Bank is up and running- any schools wishing further info please see Kim Dumore

NEW BUSINESS

-Save the Date: May 26th PAC Appreciation Dinner @6pm MRSS

-Still need a host school for our June 16th AGM

-New Curriculum: impact on grade 8 and 9 grading system

-Update on district-wide resource sharing

PAC SHARING

ADJOURNMENT

NEXT MEETING

THURSDAY, February 25th @7PM            Fairview

Aboriginal Education in SD42

Image

Upcoming parent info event, by Alouette Addictions

13 Jan

AA.jpg

November minutes

26 Nov

                                      DPAC meeting – November 19th, 2015

In Attendance:

Kim Dumore          Charmaine Pietrzak  Margaret Snow          Riz McCormack

Nicole Bowden           Pascale Shaw             Jill Ogloff                    Jodi Murphy

Deanna Lackey          Korleen Carreras      Todd Patrick              Tina Collinson

Sylvia Russell             Christine Calvert       Miranda Carpenter   Kylie Wilcott

Jill Constable              Rae Hewitt           Bruce Cunnings         Sabrina Mattson

Randi McMyn            Tammy Cikor             Holly Murton             Josh Nicholas

Courtney Connor      Nathalie Currie

 

Welcome and introductions: Kim gave thanks to Edith McDermott for hosting us.

 

Bruce Cunning (principal at EMcD)

-school on traditional territory of Katzie Nation, a number of Katzie students attend here

-fabulous PAC, small/mid size school 321 FTE, gr 6/7 iPad programs, inquiry based learning, great athletics program, intramural program, family based events

 

Holly (Kiwanis)

-“to serve the children of the world, one child at a time”

-literacy and health initiatives around the world

-in SD42 Kiwanis sponsors scholarships, supports hot lunches, KEY clubs at high school, $300 bursaries to elementary schools, $500 donation to high schools

-for more information contact: christmasberrys@gmail.com

 

Mike Murray (Board of Educaton):

-Trustees represent citizens and provide support

-Trustees support the Senior Team (8), who support Principals/VP(51), Support Staff (586), Teachers (776), Students (14,000)

-look/listen/learn (school visits, round table, liaison), plan (strategic plan, Facilities Plan, budget), govern (set policy, establish priorities, hire Superintendent), provide advocacy (BCSTA, communicate with MLAs, Ministry)

-meet formally once a month, and each Trustee has specific roles they fulfill within SD42

-budget challenges (over 10M in cuts over 2 years), further cut of $3M which impacts bussing and bring your own device for iPad program

-asking government to acknowledge the cost containment to date, the cuts have a negative impact on students, a commitment to other Ministries to step up (health, social services), commitment to fully fund additional costs over which Board has no control over, review tax policy

– many initiatives achieved and a created a roadmap of the Board Operational Plan

 

Superintendent’s Report (Sylvia Russell):

-curriculum implementation days: extra days school not in session Feb. 19, May 2; the following 2 years will have 1 extra day of students not in session

-Emergency Preparedness: the plan is to have each school in the district to have a pod outside stocked with food, water and some basic supplies); covering the cost of these supplies will be shared by the District and by school budgets and by PAC funds; principals are going to be getting a list of recommended items for each school to have – will be bringing list to PACs for discussion)

-Syrian refugees will be coming to our district, but not a large population like some other districts; children may be joining our schools by February

-gender neutral washrooms are available in all schools in district; MRSS had an article in the paper highlighting the opening at that school

-enrolment is up over 400 FTE

 

Trustee report : (Korleen Carreras)
-nothing specific beyond presentation above

 

MRTA report: (Todd Patrick, Susanne Hall)

– very happy with the increase in funding due to the block funding initiative at the high school level

-all new curriculum will include aboriginal content (MRTA very pleased with this)

-MyEdBC $100M program to collect data, produce marks; teachers have some concerns about the bugs; there is a link for further information that will be shared

-for the meeting next month, please submit any questions regarding teachers/BCTF/MRTA prior to meeting so that they can adequately prepare

-please RSVP for that meeting so they can have refreshments; an specific email will be asking for your RSVP and any questions you may have

 

CUPE report: no rep present

 

DSAC report : (Josh and Courtney)

-DSAC group is comprised of high school students who volunteer to take part and then an executive is voted in (meet once a month)

-6 or 7 students from each of the elementary schools come and meet with the high school team once a month to work on student leadership

-initiatives such as jersey day, coins for kids, 365 give, core project (Celebration of Respect) in May

-working on the connection between executive and the grade 6/7 students

-excited to increase the student voice within the district (at round table, DPAC meetings etc)

 

DPAC Report (Kim Dumore):

-Friends in Need food bank is sponsoring a breakfast/snacks program in our district; the SBO has contacted all principals to make them aware of the resources and encourage each school to take advantage of this free food; different schools can implement the food however works best ( formal breakfast program, snack sharing basket, classroom snack baskets etc.); FIN can arrange for food to be delivered if no one from the school can come and pick it up

-Caring Place needs volunteers; good student leadership/social responsibility opportunity

 

Treasurer’s Report (Deanna Lackey):

Regular account: $5820.16

Gaming account: $3532.05

 

Pac sharing:

-Edith McDermott Christmas Market Thursday, Nov. 26 5-8pm

-Eric Langton Holiday Fair Dec. 6th 10-4

 

 

Meeting adjourned at 8:54 pm

 

Next meeting: December 17th @MRTA – Traffic Safety in School Zones

Please look out for an RSVP email

 

ONLINE STRONG KIDS survey

26 Nov

Our Trustees are asking PACs to please spread the word about the Strong Kids Parent Survey that is now online at the City of Maple Ridge http://fluidsurveys.com/s/Strongkidssurvey/

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