Board Bits

OCTOBER 26: The School Board has been extremely busy this month already. We attended a confidential discipline meeting on Tuesday, October 10, in Dawson Creek.

The next day we had our regular monthly meeting in Chetwynd. We began the morning with a visit to CSS? new art room now housed in the ATEC building. We then took a tour to see all the students? art work, such as murals and mosaics spread all around the town. What an amazing job Laura Filgate has done with her art students.

Then we returned to Little Prairie School where we began our meeting.

Reports from the Superintendent

? Social Responsibility Report –

? The RCMP will be offering the DARE anti-drug program to four grade 6 classes in the District this year.

? The PARTY (Prevention of Accidents Related to Youth) program will be offered to all grade 10 students this year. This is organized by ICBC in partnership with the School District. Lakeview Credit Union and Northern Health are assisting with some of the costs.

? About 25 grade 10-12 students at South Peace Secondary are signing up to be Big Brothers/Sisters as part of the school?s Youth Leadership Movement. Many graduated students from SPSS have continued as Big Brothers/Sisters.

? The District is looking at funding options for a project that would expose rural grade 7 students to the variety of trades and technology options offered in the District.

? Class Sizes – the District was in compliance with provincial class size regulations as of September 30, 2006.

? For classes with Kindergarten students, the District average class size must be 19 or less and the maximum class size cannot exceed 22. The actual District average class size for K classes is 18.171 and the District?s maximum class size for K classes is 22.

? For classes with Grade 1 to 3 students, the district average class size must be 21 or less and the maximum class size is 24. The actual District average class size for Grade 1 to 3 classes is 19.292 and the District?s maximum class size for Grade 1 to 3 classes is 24.

? For classes with Grade 4 to 7 students, the district average class size must be 30 or less, and any class with more than 30 students must have a consultation and consent from the teacher. The actual District average class size for Grade 4 to 7 classes is 24.256, and there is one class over 30.

? For classes with Grade 8 to 12 students, the district average class size must be 30 or less, and any class with more than 30 students must have a consultation with the teacher. The actual District average class size for Grade 8 to 12 classes is 24.299, and there are 9 classes over 30.

? School Fees – although the District is still seeking clarification regarding the recent Supreme Court ruling regarding school fees, there does not appear to be implications for this District.

? Invoicing for Non-returned Textbooks – the District will now be invoicing families for non-returned textbooks. It costs the District thousands of dollars each year to replace lost books, and it is hoped that this new policy will encourage their return.

? Five Year Capital Plan – The Board approved an updated 5-year Capital Plan.

? Preliminary Enrolment – there is a decline in enrolment again this year. The projected enrolment is 4,426 FTEs, down about 2% since last year. Since 1999, our enrolment has declined 17%. Tumbler Ridge and Chetwynd enrolments have held steady the past two years, after several years of decline. Electric Ed. and the Dawson Creek area rural schools had a significant decline this year

I drove to Dawson Creek on October 16 to attend a Bridges workshop at the Enterprise Center. This is an online program to help women who have been abused to obtain employment. The morning was spent finding out what the program was and how to access it. The afternoon was a hands on exercise which showed us how women could discover what skills they had which could be transferred to the work place. The website access is www.bfwonline.ca.

On October 25, I attended another Board meeting in Dawson Creek, to approve all the District #59 schools Growth Plans and Accountability Contracts. There was important discussion about how the data all the schools collect on their students? performance is interpreted to meet the needs of individual students. This is an exciting time in education. Get involved! As always, if you have questions or concerns, phone me at 242-3369.

Next Regular Meeting – November 8, 2006 at 1:00pm in Dawson Creek