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School and Education Centre open/close dates for summer 2021

June 30, 2021—Now that the school year has ended, hours of operation for schools and the Education Centre will change to the summer schedule.

Please see below for specific dates.

Requests for student records and transcript will be responded to when schools open. In the meantime, find out more online.

The Education Centre will operate on reduced hours from July 5 to August 20, 2021 and staff will continue to work from home. An annual 2-week shutdown will occur for the weeks of July 26 and August 2, 2021.

General inquiries during the summer

Contact the Communications team at [email protected], or 613-966-1170, extension 62201. Emails and calls will be responded to on weekdays within 24 hours. Please be aware that we will do our best to assist, although if your question is specific to a school, it may need to wait until schools re-open in late August.

Emergency contact (answering service) for building or community concerns

Call TAS at 613-967-8684

Happy summer! Make it safe and enjoyable.

Announcing the new director of education

Katherine MacIver
Congratulations to Katherine MacIver, new Director of Education, effective July 1, 2021.

June 21, 2021—A new Director of Education has been selected for Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board. Congratulations and welcome to Katherine MacIver.

MacIver, known as an influential leader and strategic, innovative thinker, comes to the role with over 25 years of experience in elementary and secondary education. She is a results oriented leader who establishes a culture of high expectations and accountability, with a focus on student well-being, equity and learning.

“I am excited and pleased to welcome Katherine to our team. Everyone is ready to press the reset button as we continue to make students the priority. Our focus is fulfilling the strategic plan goals of student achievement; high expectations; safety and well-being; equity and responsible communication. As the Board of Trustees, we know that Katherine is well-prepared to lead this dynamic, people-centred organization as we continue to learn together,” said Lucille Kyle, Chair of the Board. 

Throughout her career, MacIver’s focus has been on being supportive and responsive to all learners in order to achieve equitable outcomes and strengthen communities. She uses data to make decisions, then collaboratively sets high impact, transparent and clear direction.

“I am excited and honoured to be joining the HPEDSB in the role of Director of Education. I appreciate the confidence the Board of Trustees has in me to lead and support HPE students, staff and communities. As a leader and learner, I keep students at the core of decisions and lead by building relationships with transparency and integrity. I am aware of the care and dedication of staff who have been navigating the pandemic response while supporting HPE students and families. I embark on this new journey with enthusiasm and curiosity, as we move into a period of recovery. I am looking forward to working with all students, staff, families and communities to further realize the vision of the strategic plan, Learning Together.

Some of MacIver’s professional highlights include the following:

  • restructured system supports and budget to meet constraints through rethinking structures with an equitable and student centred lens;
  • established a phonological awareness and phonics continuum to support primary reading skills;
  • coordinated an innovative approach to secondary school scheduling during COVID-19 for the return to school through stakeholder input and strategic planning;
  • conducted Indigenous community outreach and engagement to build partnerships, trust, confidence and student achievement; and
  • identified gaps and set bold goals to align the board improvement plan with the strategic plan.

MacIver most recently served as a superintendent of education at Trillium Lakelands District School Board. She joined TLDSB as a secondary school principal in 2010 after having been a teacher and administrator at elementary and secondary schools at the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board.

MacIver has a 5-year term which takes effect July 1, 2021. She and her family will be relocating to the area in the coming months.

For more information, please contact:
Kerry Donnell, Communications and Privacy Manager, 613-966-1170, extension 62354, or 613-847-0696, [email protected]

How HPEDSB is keeping students engaged in learning during the summer

June 28, 2021—Summer learning is underway for some elementary and secondary school students.

Elementary school summer program

Over 250 K-8 elementary students are participating in the online Summer Learning Program (SLP), with dozens coming from direct referrals from their school. This is significant because the focus is on keeping students engaged in learning for a few weeks after the school year ends. The program runs from July 5-23, 2021 and has 17 classes of 15 students each, with two teachers per class. Learning coaches, learning partners and curriculum coordinators are providing support to the educators.

SLP outcomes are specific, and support students and families to address learning gaps in literacy and math. Pre- and post-program diagnostic assessments are conducted as part of the performance measurements.

Secondary school summer programs

New for this year is the Summer Transition Project: Indigenous Grad Coach Program for students who self-identify as Indigenous and who are going into Grade 9 in September. Two programs will run in late August 2021, one at Eastside Secondary School and another at North Hastings High School. The program focus will be on culturally-informed land-based experiences, integrating well-being, academic strategies and transitions support to enhance Indigenous students’ sense of readiness for high school. Students are eligible to receive a half credit or full credit, upon completion of a two-week or four-week program.

As in previous years, Summer School is online and runs from June 28 to July 26, 2021.

For more information, please contact:
Kerry Donnell, Communications and Privacy Manager, 613-966-1170, extension 62354, or 613-847-0696, [email protected]

 

 

Ministry of Education introduces new de-streamed Grade 9 math for September 2021

June 6, 2021

Earlier this week, the Ministry of Education released the curriculum for the new de-streamed Grade 9 math course, coming into effect this coming September for students entering Grade 9. Per the Ministry, “The new course ends the practice of streaming Grade 9 students into applied and academic courses, a practice that has in the past disadvantaged some students. Ending streaming will keep options open for all students to pursue postsecondary education and training in any pathway they choose.”

All students entering Grade 9 in September will take the new math course, they will not choose between Academic or Applied math. The new course is replacing both Grade 9 Academic Math (MPM1D) and Grade 9 Applied Math (MFM1P).

To assist HPEDSB families with the transition to the new Grade 9 math, an infographic and parent letter have been sent to school families explaining how the change affects students entering Grade 9 this fall.

HPEDSB Grade 9 de-streamed math information package

For more information, please review the curriculum for the new Grade 9 Mathematics course, available on the Ontario Curriculum and Resources website.

De-streamed Grade 9 Math infographic

 

 

Letter to Minister Lecce regarding Easthill Elementary School construction

June 21, 2021—On June 17, Lucille Kyle, Chair of the Board, wrote to Minister of Education Stephen Lecce to request additional funding for the construction of Easthill Elementary School in Belleville. The complete letter and pdf version are included below.

Letter to Minister Lecce requesting additional funding for Easthill Elementary School (pdf)

June 17, 2021

Dear Minister Lecce:

I am writing to express appreciation to you and the Premier for being champions of public education. I also acknowledge our staff who work behind the scenes to improve infrastructure, as well as to create beautiful and safe learning spaces for students. As you well know, the cost of building materials has increased considerably in recent years, yet the work must still go on. Public confidence in education is at its lowest right now, and we need to bring back tangible, visible projects that were anticipated and promised several years ago.

A business case was submitted to and approved by the Ministry of Education for the construction of a new school in Belleville to consolidate Queen Elizabeth School and Queen Victoria School. This was the result of an accommodation review that took place in 2016-2017. The new school is designed for 472 pupil places and a 3,600 sq. ft., 3-room childcare centre. A funding letter was received from the Ministry of Education on March 13, 2018 indicating $12,042,831 in approved funding for the new consolidated elementary school. HPEDSB retained an architect to prepare design drawings and assist with project administration. It is important to point out that the final design was arrived at after several rounds of changes and reductions to match available funding, resulting in a bare-bones school.

An amended funding request was made to the Ministry of Education for the demolition of Queen Elizabeth School, which is on the site of the new build. This was to avoid a time delay given that the demolition of Queen Elizabeth will be essential to the completion of the new Easthill Elementary School. Following Ministry review of detailed construction and site cost estimates prepared by a consultant, an amended funding letter was received from the Ministry of Education on April 28, 2021 indicating a revised total of $12,977,423 in approved funding, which includes an additional $934,592 to demolish Queen Elizabeth School and site costs. An initial cost estimate prepared for the project estimated a construction budget of approximately $11 million, plus architectural fees, applications/permit fee, commissioning, etc.

HPEDSB recently released a construction tender for the new elementary school. Construction was planned to begin this summer, with an anticipated substantial completion date of January 31, 2023. All tender submissions have come in several million dollars over the available budget, ranging from $14 million to $16.6 million. It is not possible to recommend awarding the project given the terms of the Capital Priorities funding. Project timing and budget have been impacted by COVID-19.

As chair of the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board, I am asking you to reconsider allowing us to proceed with constructing the new Easthill Elementary School by approving the additional funding required for this project. This project has been delayed long enough. The student’s families of two schools have been excited about a new school and we cannot allow this to drag on indefinitely.

Our students need something positive to look forward to. It would be a shame to add one more disappointment to our community with everything else going on.

I urge you to provide additional funding to allow this new school to be constructed. I look forward to hearing back at your earliest opportunity.

Sincerely,
Lucille Kyle
Chair of the Board

cc: Todd Smith, MPP, Minister of Children, Community and Social Services
Sean Monteith, Director of Education

Board Meeting Update 195: June 24, 2021

June 24, 2021—This update provides a summary of the online special public meeting of the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board held June 24, 2021, livestreamed (the recorded version will be available within 24 hours). It is an unofficial summary of the meeting; official minutes will be approved at the next regular meeting in September.

Land acknowledgement

Mike Brant, Trustee, Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, recited the land acknowledgement: Let us bring our minds and hearts together as one to honour and celebrate these traditional lands as a gathering place of the Huron-Wendat, Anishinabek and Haudenosaunee people. It is with deep humility, that we acknowledge and offer our gratitude for their contributions to our community, having respect for all as we come together and walk side by side into the future to support our students of today.

Recommendations

2021-2022 Draft budget

Board members approved the draft budget for the 2021-2022 school year representing $215,149,504 for operating expenses and $31,347,113 for capital expenses.

Education funding is intended to mirror cost structures; however, school boards have flexibility in their actual expenditures. There are restrictions on how school boards may use their funding allocation which includes that budgets must be generally balanced, certain components of funding must be spent in a specified manner, and provincial regulations and  ministry memoranda must be complied with.

The draft budget is generally a status-quo budget with adjustments for enrolment changes and the continuing operation of a virtual school to support remote learning. The draft budget contains a deficit for Ministry  of Education compliance purposes of $794,581 which is solely due to the planned continuation of the HPEDSB COVID-19 response and which is compliant with ministry direction and the Education Act. Ministry memo 2021:SB08 states, “[a] school board may incur an in-year deficit up to the lower of one per cent of the school board’s operating revenue or the accumulated surplus for the preceding school year, consistent with the requirements set out in Ontario Regulation 280/19.” The proposed budget deficit is approximately 0.4% of the HPEDSB operating allocation and will reduce the accumulated surplus to $6.1 million.

ASSUMPTIONS

The draft budget was built around the following underlying assumptions:

  • a COVID-19 response will continue into the fall;
  • the current lowered elementary enrolment will continue and the secondary enrolment is forecast to remain at about the same level;
  • a virtual school from Kindergarten to Grade 10 will be offered with a planned enrolment of 356 elementary and 118 secondary students;
  • funding will be as calculated by the ministry’s Electronic Financial Information System (EFIS) forms and is based on the GSN and PPF funding as announced by the ministry on May 4, 2021;
  • central and local labour agreements, which include salary increases and specific funding allocations;
  • number of central and department staff remain similar to 2020-2021;
  • department and school budgets remain generally the same as 2020-2021;
  • absence replacement costs do not increase;
  • some new initiatives and cost adjustments that support student achievement, improve board operation, or reflect cost increases; and
  • there is no explicit provision for a contingency amount.

ENROLMENT

Enrolment in 2020-2021 is lower than forecast in response to COVID-19 and students not attending school. The enrolment has gradually increased over the year and is above the level reported in Revised Estimates as students have gradually returned to school.

In 2020-2021, one-time stabilization funding was provided to offset the decline in revenue due to the unplanned decline in enrolment attributed to COVID-19. This funding is not available for 2021-2022 and the ministry has advised that school boards should take a conservative approach in their planning for the 2021–2022 school year given the uncertainty in enrolment.

Final average daily enrolment (ADE) projections for the purpose of developing the 2021-2022 budget were calculated based upon input from schools. There is a forecast of lower than normal elementary enrolment and little change for secondary enrolment.

Find out more starting on page 2 of the June 24, 2021 agenda (pdf).

Recommendation to dissolve the Ad Hoc QSS Revitalization Committee

Board members approved the dissolution of the Ad Hoc QSS Revitalization Committee.

Find out more starting on page 31 of the June 24, 2021 agenda (pdf).

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For more information, please contact Kerry Donnell, Communications and Privacy Manager, 613-966-1170, extension 62354, or 613-847-0696, or [email protected]

Board Meeting Update 194: June 21, 2021

June 21, 2021—This update provides a summary of the online public meeting of the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board held June 21, 2021, livestreamed (the recorded version will be available within 24 hours). It is an unofficial summary of the meeting; official minutes will be approved at the next regular meeting in September.

Land acknowledgement

Mike Brant, Trustee, Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, recited the land acknowledgement: Let us bring our minds and hearts together as one to honour and celebrate these traditional lands as a gathering place of the Huron-Wendat, Anishinabek and Haudenosaunee people. It is with deep humility, that we acknowledge and offer our gratitude for their contributions to our community, having respect for all as we come together and walk side by side into the future to support our students of today.

Character Moment of Reflection

At Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board, Growing with Character is our intentional focus on creating safe, caring, respectful and inclusive learning environments where students develop the foundation for good character. Through Growing with Character, we model, teach and expect demonstrations of our eight character traits which are: Caring, Cooperation, Honesty, Humour, Integrity, Respect, Responsibility and Trustworthiness.

This evening Bonnie Danes, Trustee, Centre Hastings, asked all to reflect on Respect: We value ourselves, others and our environment. We give consideration to the thoughts and actions of others. We treat others as we would want to be treated ourselves, with courtesy and dignity.

Recommendations

Katherine MacIver
Congratulations to Katherine MacIver, selected as Director of Education, effective July 1, 2021.

Appointment of the Director of Education

Board members approved the appointment of Katherine MacIver as the new director of education. MacIver, known as an influential leader and strategic, innovative thinker, comes to the role with over 25 years of experience in elementary and secondary education. She is a results oriented leader who establishes a culture of high expectations and accountability, with a focus on student well-being, equity and learning. Throughout her career, MacIver’s focus has been on being supportive and responsive to all learners in order to achieve equitable outcomes and strengthen communities. She uses data to make decisions, then collaboratively sets high impact, transparent and clear direction. Congratulations and welcome, Katherine.

(Former) Quinte Secondary School revitalization

Board members approved a recommendation for the former Quinte Secondary School site to remain part of Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board, to be revitalized and repurposed to include:

  • a single stream French Immersion K-8 school;
  • Quinte Adult Education; and
  • the amalgamation of the Education Centre, William R. Kirk building and Georg Umb maintenance building at the former QSS site.

The recommendation further directed staff present options to address capacity and enrollment challenges at the Bayside Public School Annex, Bayside Secondary School, Harmony Public School, Harry J. Clarke Public School and Prince Charles Public School (Trenton), including relocating students, grade structure changes and/or boundary changes, and that this information be provided to the Board in fall 2021.

Find out more starting on page 9 of the June 21, 2021 agenda.

2021-2022 Proposed budget

This item was deferred to Thursday, June 24, 2021 through a motion. It will be presented at a public Committee of the Whole meeting and a public Special Board meeting that evening.

2020-2021 Special Education Plan

Board members approved amendments to the 2020-2021 Special Education Plan. The in-year changes were to program and service offerings, among other topics. The document aligns with the 2020-2025 Strategic Plan: Learning Together and reflects the recommendations in the Special Education in Ontario Kindergarten to Grade 12 Policy and Resource Guide 2017.

Find out more starting on page 92 of the June 21, 2021 agenda.

Policy revisions

Board members approved revisions to the following 13 policies:

  • Policy 3E: Honoraria for Board Members
  • Policy 3F: Expense Reimbursement for Board Members
  • Policy 3G: Hospitality
  • Policy 3H: Filing Vacancies on the Board
  • Policy 3I: Indemnification of Board Members
  • Policy 11B: Executive Committee
  • Policy 11C: Special Education Advisory Committee
  • Policy 11D: Supervised Alternative Learning Committee
  • Policy 11E: Audit Committee
  • Policy 11F: Parent Involvement Committee
  • Policy 11G: Accessibility Advisory Committee
  • Policy 11H: Student Discipline Committee
  • Policy 11I: Ad Hoc Committee

Find out more starting on page 150 of the June 21, 2021 agenda.

Information

Equity Action Plan

This presentation provided an update about the Equity Action Pan and next steps. In 2017, the Ministry of Education released Ontario’s Education Equity Action Plan which establishes clear deliverables and targets for which school boards are accountable. While HPEDSB is progressing in the areas of equity and social justice, the main goal of the 2020-2021 school year was to establish an equity and inclusivity advisory committee (EIAC) and develop an equity action plan. The 2021-2024 Equity Action Plan will be presented to the Board in September 2021 with a rollout plan.

Find out more starting on page 189 of the June 21, 2021 agenda.

2021-2022 Board and committee meeting dates

This report presented meeting dates for Board and committee meetings for the period September 2021 to June 2022.

Find out more starting on page 191 of the June 21, 2021 agenda.

Report from the outgoing Director of Education Sean Monteith

Sean Monteith provided a verbal report in advance of his last day at HPEDSB, which is June 30, 2021. Highlights from this report included the following:

  • planning for the September school start-up is continuing among senior staff; HPEDSB is prepared based on the information available at this time; and
  • acknowledged National People’s Day today; and
  • acknowledged the students, families, staff and the Board of Trustees during the 18 months of his tenure.

Presentation to the outgoing student trustees

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • remarks by Megan Adam, Student Services Coordinator, who acknowledged the leadership positivity and efforts of student trustees Moira Gaddes, Eastside Secondary School; Kiydan Zachariah, Prince Edward Collegiate Institute; and Grace Whyte, Bayside Secondary School. Grace is going to university in the fall; and
  • welcome to Lawson Hung, Trenton High School, who is joining the student trustee team in August.

Report from the Audit Committee, June 2, 2021

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • appointment of new committee member James Edmunds;
  • update from the external auditor and the regional internal audit team; and
  • reviewed pertinent dates for the upcoming year.

Report from the Special Education Advisory Committee, June 10, 2021

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • student use of technology and supports for students during the summer; and
  • IEP and mental health updates.

Report from Indigenous Education Advisory Committee, June 17, 2021

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • new committee members;
  • a new graduation coach role for North Hastings High School;
  • update on the summer transition camps, one in the north and one in the south; and
  • online sessions offered to staff to learn more about Indigenous history, culture and learning.

OPSBA Information Exchange

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • education funding, student transportation review; Indigenous Education Committee meeting;
  • government and public affairs issues;
  • transitioning from COVID-19 to the new school year;
  • French as a Second Language; and
  • the Canadian School Boards’ Conference in early July.

Report from the Chair of the Board

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • acknowledged the efforts of students, staff and families during remote learning;
  • support from Food for Learning and The HPE Learning Foundation;
  • learning to be still and take care of oneself;
  • the importance of interacting in person;
  • missing people’s smiles behind masks and learning to read people’s eyes; and
  • best wishes for a good summer, be kind to one another and help people who are in need.

Correspondence

Letter sent to Minister Lecce regarding Easthill Elementary School

Find out more starting on page 194 of the June 21, 2021 agenda.

For more information, please contact Kerry Donnell, Communications & Privacy Manager, 613-966-1170, extension 62354, or 613-847-0696, or [email protected]

Letter to Grade 12 graduates from Sean Monteith, Director of Education

June 2021

Congratulations Grade 12 Graduates, Class of 2021!

To the Graduating Class of 2021: She:Kon, Greetings, Good Day!

You did it! You achieved academic success during your last year of secondary school and you are moving to the next stage of your lives. Congratulations!

Your accomplishments are significant given the realities of the 2020-2021 school year. The COVID-19 pandemic crept into your lives once again—and you faced it with strength and determination. Some of you may have experienced periods of wonder, question, and at times, perhaps uncertainty, as to whether graduation was even going to happen. For others, graduating this June came relatively easily with few setbacks. In either case, you achieved success, whether you had support from those around you, or you feel like you made it against the odds.

As a member of the Class of 2021, your graduating year is a mix of unique meaning and reflection. It is hard to believe that this school year, like the previous one, will be remembered for the COVID-19 pandemic, a time when school stopped in the traditional sense and online learning became the norm.

I recognize that, for you, graduation is a term of reference, rather than an event. Ceremonies and celebrations look different than in years gone by. I encourage you to remember your achievements and not let the absence of a physical graduation cloud your memories.

Your high school graduation is a significant milestone for you and the people in your lives. For you, it is a mark of achievement with, perhaps, some trepidation about what lies ahead. For your parents/guardians and loved ones, it is a time of pride, while also feeling anxious about what the future holds for you.

From me to all of you, congratulations on this significant life accomplishment. I acknowledge your teachers, the support staff and the principals and vice-principals who supported you along the way. Lastly, I offer a special thank you to your families for their support, care and love of you.

Graduates, feel proud of the fact that no one can take your high school diploma away from you. You earned it every step of the way.

I started this letter by stating, “You did it!” and end it by adding, “Now keep going!”

Che-Miigwech, thank you.

Sincerely,

Sean Monteith
Director of Education

HPEDSB International Student Program seeking Homestay Families for 2021-2022

Would you and your family like to have a cross-cultural experience? The International Student Program (ISP) is looking for families interested in hosting a student from another country for the 2021-2022 school year.

HPEDSB ISP staff manage the host, academic and cultural program, allowing us to support families 24/7 and create a great experience for all! Families are generously compensated monthly for hosting and all families are welcome to apply.

If you are interested, or require more information, please contact the HPEDSB International Student Office at 613-966- 1170  ext. 62422 or [email protected]

The program strictly follows all COVID -19 government & health regulations. The safety and well-being of our students, host families, schools and community is our top priority. As such, the ISP team will be quarantining arriving students in a hotel for their 14-day quarantine period, instead of with host families. Students must be tested and receive a negative COVID-19 result 72 hours prior to leaving their country. Students will take a second COVID-19 test upon entry into Canada, and they will have a third test and negative test result while in ISP care before being released to the host families.

ISP1ISP2

 

Flags flown at half-mast in HPEDSB schools to honour deceased Indigenous children

May 31, 2021

All Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board (HPEDSB) schools and the Education Centre will be flying flags at half-mast to honour the memory of the 215 Indigenous children whose remains were recently discovered on the grounds of the Kamloops Indian Residential School in Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation Territory.

Beginning today, HPEDSB flags will be flown at half-mast for a total of 215 hours – one hour for every child whose life was lost, until June 8, 2021.

Our condolences and deepest sympathies are offered to the survivors, families and First Nations communities impacted by this lamentable tragedy. The discovery of the mass grave is a troubling reminder for survivors of the residential schools, and their families, of the trauma they experienced. Students and families who are distressed by this news, or in need of resources, are asked to contact their school for support.

HPEDSB is dedicated to continue educating our school communities about the disgraceful legacy of residential schools in Canada and the ongoing need for Truth and Reconciliation with Indigenous people.

Every Child Matters logo

#EveryChildMatters

HPE Public Health offering special COVID-19 vaccination clinics for students age 12-17

This information is shared on behalf of Hastings Prince Edward Public Health.

May 26, 2021—The province has made a commitment to offer first and second doses of COVID-19 vaccine to eligible youth before the end of the summer. To ensure eligible youth have access to vaccines as soon as possible, Hastings Prince Edward Public Health (HPEPH) will be holding special youth clinics over the next two weeks. These clinics will offer the Pfizer vaccine, which is currently the only COVID-19 vaccine that has been authorized by Health Canada for use in individuals age 12 and older. 

Letter from HPE Public Health to parents/guardians about upcoming vaccination clinics (pdf)

Book an appointment at special youth vaccination clinics

To get vaccinated as soon as possible, eligible students are invited to book an appointment at the HPEPH special youth clinics taking place from May 31 to June 12, 2021. Please note students need to be 12 years of age at the time of the appointment.

To book an appointment, please visit canadaehs.com/hpepublichealth/students.

If you are unable to book online, please contact HPEPH at 613-966-5500 from  8:30 AM-4:30 PM and follow prompts for the COVID-19 vaccination call centre.

Why is vaccination so important?

Infection prevention protocols have ensured the potential of COVID-19 transmission in the school setting has remained low in Hastings County and Prince Edward County. Ensuring the vaccine is available to eligible youth will further reduce potential risk for everyone in a school setting. All eligible students are encouraged to take advantage of this opportunity for vaccination to help keep schools and community as safe as possible.

Where to find more information

The following resources are available to help youth and families make informed decisions about COVID-19 vaccination:

Additional information about vaccine safety, potential side effects, and building immunity is available at covid-19.ontario.ca/covid-19-vaccines-youth or hpepublichealth.ca/covid-19-vaccines/

For any additional questions about the vaccines, please contact the HPEPH COVID-19 information line at 613-966-5500 from 8:30 AM-4:30 PM.

Board Meeting Update 193: May 25, 2021

May 25, 2021—This update provides a summary of the online public meeting of the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board held May 25, 2021, livestreamed (the recorded version will be available within 24 hours). It is an unofficial summary of the meeting; official minutes will be approved at the next regular meeting in June.

Land acknowledgement

Mike Brant, Trustee, Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, recited the land acknowledgement: Let us bring our minds and hearts together as one to honour and celebrate these traditional lands as a gathering place of the Huron-Wendat, Anishinabek and Haudenosaunee people. It is with deep humility, that we acknowledge and offer our gratitude for their contributions to our community, having respect for all as we come together and walk side by side into the future to support our students of today.

Character Moment of Reflection

At Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board, Growing with Character is our intentional focus on creating safe, caring, respectful and inclusive learning environments where students develop the foundation for good character. Through Growing with Character, we model, teach and expect demonstrations of our eight character traits which are: Caring, Cooperation, Honesty, Humour, Integrity, Respect, Responsibility and Trustworthiness.

This evening Lisa Anne Chatten, Trustee, Belleville/Thurlow, asked all to reflect on Responsibility: We have a sense of duty to fulfill commitments. We take ownership for our own thoughts and actions. We are reliable and accountable in our words and actions.

Recommendations

2021-2022 Student trustees

Board members approved three student trustees effective August 1, 2021 to July 31, 2022. Congratulations to new student trustee Lawson Hung, Trenton High School; and reappointed student trustees Moira Gaddes, Eastside Secondary School and Kiydan Zachariah, Prince Edward Collegiate Institute. Find out more on page 10 of the May 25, 2021 agenda.

New name for Centre Hastings Secondary School

Board members approved the name Central Hastings School for the consolidated K-12 school located on the existing Centre Hastings Secondary School site, effective September 2021. Find out more starting on page 11 of the May 25, 2021 agenda.

Audit Committee membership

Board members approved the appointment of James Edmonds to the Audit Committee for a three-year term effective June 1, 2021. Find out more on page 13 of the May 25, 2021 agenda.

Review of policies 1, 3, 3A, 3B and 3J

Board members approved revisions to policies 1, 3, 3A, 3B and 3J. Find out more on page 14 of the May 25, 2021 agenda.

Information

Policy 19: Board Improvement Plan Mid-year Report

Student achievement and well-being are priority areas for improvement planning and actions. The Board Improvement Plan (BIP) connects to the strategic plan to create alignment between the goals and actions. A BIP goal is to empower each school to effectively program to meet the needs of all students by refining system level support through an integrative and responsive service model. Building the pedagogical capacity of educators leads to growth in student achievement. The BIP mid-year report summarizes several highlights about achieving positive outcomes for students.

Thank you to guest presenters Steve McFadden, Principal, Marmora Public School; Andrew Ross, Principal, Prince Edward Collegiate Institute; and Bessie Stelatos, System Lead. Find out more on page 29 of the May 25, 2021 agenda.

Math destreaming

This presentation highlighted the new approach in Ontario to offering Grade 9 Math to students, which is discontinue routing students through either the Applied pathway or the Academic pathway. This is known as destreaming.

Key points highlighted included the following:

  • all students benefit when they learn together with students of diverse abilities and interests;
  • school systems that do not stream students see higher levels of student achievement for all students; and
  • at HPEDSB, 25% more students are in the Applied stream as compared to the provincial average.

Thank you to guest presenters Dayna Scaletta, Principal, Centre Hastings Secondary School and Dave Lanovaz, Teacher, Trenton High School, for sharing their experiences in planning for the new Math curriculum.

Reports from committees and trustees

Report from student trustees

Highlights of this report included the following:

  • discussions with the director and staff about online learning and planning for September;
  • reviewing applications for the new student trustee; and
  • (from new student trustee Lawson Hung) feeling excited about being selected.

Report from the Parent Involvement Committee, May 17, 2021

Highlights of this report included the following:

  • recognition of regular meetings of this committee as compared to the rest of the province; and
  • specifics from the above-noted meeting. Find out more starting on page 32 of the May 25, 2021 agenda.

Report from the Trustee Policy Review Working Group, May 18, 2021

Highlights of this report included the following:

  • a brief mention of the next policies to be reviewed.

Report from the QSS Revitalization Ad Hoc Committee, May 5 and 19, 2021

Highlights of this report included the following:

  • updates about the four sub-committees: French Immersion, Adult Education, enrolment challenges and amalgamating administrative offices at the site;
  • presentation from Tri-Board Student Transportation Services; and
  • results from a public survey asking for input related to the sub-committees.

Report from the Indigenous Education Advisory Committee, April 22 and May 20, 2021

Highlights of this report included the following:

  • mention of the committee terms of reference;
  • the new reach-ahead Indigenous summer program for students going into high school;
  • funding to support Indigenous programs; and
  •  asking students about what they feel will help them learn and be connected to school.

OPSBA Information Exchange

Highlights of this report included the following:

  • Lisa Anne Chatten, Trustee, Belleville/Thurlow was re-elected as the OPSBA Board of Director’s representative for HPEDSB; and Alison Kelly, Trustee, South Prince Edward County was re-elected as the alternate, for the period May 2021 to May 2022.

Recognition of Jackie Waller, Principal, Trenton High School

  • Last week, Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education and Todd Smith, MPP, visited Trenton High School, online, and met with two classes of students with special needs.
  • Thank you to Jackie Waller, Principal and staff for hosting the visit, and to the students for engaging in conversation and showing off their artwork.

For more information, please contact Kerry Donnell, Communications Manager, extension 62354, [email protected]

We’re recruiting a Director of Education

May 7, 2021—Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board is recruiting a Director of Education.

This is an exciting opportunity for a highly collaborative, principled and visionary public-sector senior educator to lead with integrity, strengthen a culture of excellence, inclusion and high expectations for all, and promote the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board priorities and mission in support of student achievement. We welcome diversity.

The closing date is May 25, 2021 at 10:00 AM.

For more information, please read the complete position posting (pdf) and the Opportunity Brief (pdf).

 

Letter from the Director Sean Monteith: Secondary transition to quadmesters Fall 2021

May 13, 2021

Letter from Director Sean Monteith: Secondary transition to quadmesters Fall 2021 (pdf)

Dear Students, Families and Staff:

Planning for the 2021-2022 school year

I hope this letter finds you well, and that you and your family continue to take care of each other as we deal with the prolonged impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. On behalf of the entire Senior Administration, I want to acknowledge the challenges that you have experienced during the past 18 months; we recognize it has not been easy.

In previous letters, I have mentioned that planning is already underway for the new school year starting September 3, 2021 for staff and September 7, 2021 for students. Late last week, the Ministry of Education sent a memo to school boards with additional guidance for preparations.

ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS

We are planning to operate elementary schools full-time and in person. Elementary students will continue to be cohorted with their classmates and their homeroom teacher. Specialized teachers, for classes such as French, the arts, or health and physical education, will be able to go into classrooms to provide the full range of programming for students.

SECONDARY SCHOOLS

We are planning to operate secondary schools full-time, in person and with a continued emphasis on cohorting students to limit student-to-student contact. Students will take two courses each day, one in the morning and another in the afternoon, for a 10-week block. This schedule is known as a quadmester, dividing the school year into four, 10-week blocks. We will communicate at a later date if any changes to this schedule are required.

The Ministry of Education has asked school boards to have plans to switch to online learning, if necessary. Our experience over the past year has taught us a lot about online learning. I am confident that educators and support staff will be able to provide seamless learning and engagement, if the switch is required.

More guidance from the Ministry of Education about health and safety measures for the 2021-2022 school year will be communicated to school boards this summer. I expect that will include guidance for masking, hand hygiene and screening.

Over the past two school years, the pandemic has had a significant impact on the delivery of education in Ontario. Everyone has demonstrated resilience and flexibility in responding to these changes and for that I thank you. We recognize that whatever mode of learning you choose for your children, ultimately the decision is yours and we respect your choice.

At Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board, we remain committed to the learning, well-being and safety of everyone in the HPEDSB family. We are doing our best to communicate the facts as soon as we know them and this will continue as new information is released.

I wish you the very best. Please stay safe and, equally important, remain hopeful.

Thank you for your patience and ongoing support.

Sincerely,

Sean Monteith
Director of Education

Invitation to join the 2021-2022 EQAO Student Engagement Committee

The Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) is calling for applications from students in Grades 7 to 12, who have completed at least one EQAO assessment, to join the 2021-2022 EQAO Student Engagement Committee. The committee is one of the key sources of student voice for the EQAO and is an opportunity for interested students to have a positive impact on the agency’s activities and the Ontario education system.

To learn more about the committee’s previous work, visit the EQAO website.

You can find the application form at this link: https://forms.gle/a5SHQrDPRRmbbVQi9

Submissions must be received by June 7, 2021, and selections will be announced by the end of June 2021.

Survey: Community input on a K-8 French Immersion school

May 7, 2021—The HPEDSB/QSS Revitalization Committee is inviting community input from the Belleville/Thurlow region about repurposing the former Quinte Secondary School to accommodate the following: 1) a K-8 French Immersion school; 2) Quinte Adult Education; and 3) the Education Centre (for administrative, facilities and maintenance departments).

The committee has created this short survey, which is open until May 16, 2021.

For more information, please contact Kerry Donnell, Communications Manager, extension 62354, [email protected]

Roof improvements at Eastside SS through the Climate Action Incentive Fund

May 2, 2021—Earlier this year, the Climate Action Incentive Fund, a joint initiative of the federal and Ontario government, awarded Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board funding to replace portions of the roof at Eastside Secondary School. The project, which was completed in late 2020, was to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions by increasing insulation and reducing air leakage in the roofing systems.

Read more about the Climate Action Incentive Fund.

Google G Suite for Education information for parents/guardians

April 27, 2021—As all HPEDSB students have now transitioned to online learning, their studies are being conducted online using Google’s G Suite for Education, featuring numerous Google workspace extensions and applications. All HPEDSB students and staff have a G Suite account, known as their “@apps account.”

To assist parents and guardians in supporting their children’s online learning, HPEDSB has created a reference document titled Information for Parents/Guardians about Student Use of Google Workspace Extensions and Applications (Pdf) that details the different apps and extensions, their purposes and how they can be accessed. Please review it for more information.

Board Meeting Update 192: April 26, 2021

April 26, 2021—This update provides a summary of the online public meeting of the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board held April 26, 2021, livestreamed (the recorded version will be available within 24 hours). It is an unofficial summary of the meeting; official minutes will be approved at the next regular meeting in May.

Land acknowledgement

Mike Brant, Trustee, Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, recited the land acknowledgement: Let us bring our minds and hearts together as one to honour and celebrate these traditional lands as a gathering place of the Huron-Wendat, Anishinabek and Haudenosaunee people. It is with deep humility, that we acknowledge and offer our gratitude for their contributions to our community, having respect for all as we come together and walk side by side into the future to support our students of today.

Delegation

Kate MacNaughton, Prince Edward County Councillor, presented on behalf of Project Prince Edward and the PE Environmental Advisory Committee (EAC). Ms. MacNaughton, in the  capacity as an elected representative, as EAC communications lead and as co-organizer of Project Prince Edward, introduced several developing opportunities to engage youth Prince Edward County initiatives through the Hour-for-Hour Challenge. This initiative encourages municipalities to formally establish a mechanism to provide volunteer hour compensation for  students who engage in civic activities in all forms: surveys, open houses/forums, town halls, viewing or participating in council meetings and watching relevant webinars.

Character Moment of Reflection

At Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board, Growing with Character is our intentional focus on creating safe, caring, respectful and inclusive learning environments where students develop the foundation for good character. Through Growing with Character, we model, teach and expect demonstrations of our eight character traits which are: Caring, Cooperation, Honesty, Humour, Integrity, Respect, Responsibility and Trustworthiness.

This evening Grace Whyte, Student Trustee, Bayside Secondary School, asked all to reflect on Cooperation: We work as a team for a common good. We value the opinions of others and show a willingness to work together towards a common goal.

Report from the Closed Committee of the Whole meeting

This report included the following from the April 26, 2021 Closed Committee of the Whole meeting:

  • approved the establishment of an Ad Hoc Director’s Selection Committee. Trustee Krista McConnell, Belleville/Thurlow, will chair the committee.

Recommendations

Tender ITT 2021-012: Mechanical renewal at seven sites

Board members approved tenders totaling $3,083,384.55 for mechanical renewal projects at seven schools. Find out more starting on page 18 of the April 26, 2021 agenda.

Tender ITT 2021-015: Roof replacements and repairs

Board members approved tenders totaling $3,784,358.57 for roof replacements and repairs at 10 schools. Find out more starting on page 20 of the April 26, 2021 agenda.

Rural and Northern Education Fund Allocation Report

Board members approved adding Centre Hastings Secondary School-Elementary to the list of schools eligible for Rural and Northern Education Fund  (RNEF) allocation. The RNEF allocation is dedicated funding to further improve education for students from rural and northern communities. Funding is allocated to school boards based on the number of rural students and two factors measuring the density of rural student enrolment in the school board. The ‘List of Schools Eligible for Rural and Northern Education Fund Allocation’ is determined by the Ministry of Education and comprises schools in which at least half of the students are from rural communities. Find out more starting on page 22 of the April 26, 2021 agenda.

Policy 3-C: Student Representation on the Board

Board members approved revisions made to Policy 3-C: Student Representation on the Board. The approval included a commitment to revisit this policy at the beginning of the next school year to determine if the Student Senate will continue as part of this policy. Find out more starting on page 23 of the April 26, 2021 agenda.

Information reports from staff

Learning Foundation presentation

Maribeth deSnoo, Executive Director of The Hastings and Prince Edward Learning Foundation, presented recent activities and initiatives coordinated by staff to support student achievement and well-being. Find out more starting on page 28 of the April 26, 2021 agenda.

Indigenous education: Purpose, priorities and impact

Troy Maracle, Curriculum Coordinator, presented an overview of Indigenous education priorities and the impact on student achievement. In keeping with the school board vision of Leading with integrity and high expectations for all, this presentation emphasized the importance of learning together for equity for all and to secure greater success for the achievement of our Indigenous student population. Find out more starting on page 44 of the April 26, 2021 agenda.

Information reports from trustees

Report from student trustees

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • Policy 3C: Student Representation on the Board; and
  • participation on the Mental Health Committee.

Report from the Parent Involvement Committee meeting, March 29, 2021

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • destreaming of Grade 9 Mathematics;
  • education worker vaccinations; and
  • COVID-19 spread.

Find out more on page 46 of the April 26, 2021 agenda.

Report from the Special Education Advisory Committee, April 2021

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • tiered supports available to students;
  • preparing a plan to use additional funding this summer; and
  • a return to in-person learning for students with high special needs who cannot be accommodated at school.

Report from the Policy Review Working Group, March 23 and April 20, 2021

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • revisions to Policy 3C: Student representation on the Board;
  • seeking stakeholder input for SEAC and other policies;
  • funds directed to Marmora Public School for playground equipment; and
  • drafting a racism policy.

Report from the QSS Revitalization Ad Hoc Committee, March 31 and April 21, 2021

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • identified the key priorities of facility layout, safety, programming and proposed building use.

OPSBA Information Exchange

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • participation in an Ontario Public School Boards’ Association meeting on April 24, 2021.

For more information, please contact Kerry Donnell, Communications Manager, extension 62354, [email protected]

Board of Trustees speak with Public Health about COVID-19 and schools

April 26, 2021—On April 7, the Board of Trustees participated in a virtual Question and Answer session with Dr. Piotr Oglaza, Medical Officer of Health and Dr. Ethan Toumishey, Resident Physician, from Hastings Prince Edward Public Health. The session provided the chance for trustees to ask questions of the doctors regarding a range of COVID-19-related topics and receive information and reassurance from local medical authorities. The entire session was recorded and can be viewed below or on the HPEDSB YouTube channel.

 

Letter from Director of Education Sean Monteith regarding remote learning after April break

April 14, 2021

Remote learning after April break (pdf)

Dear Students, Parents/Guardians, Families and Staff:

On April 12, 2021, the provincial government announced that the return to in-person learning for Ontario students after the April break will be delayed. This announcement was made in consultation with Dr. David Williams, the Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario, and was based on what provincial public health officials feel is in the best interests of our students, staff and their families.

According to the provincial announcement, “This move has been made in response to the rapid increase in COVID-19 cases, the increasing risks posed to the public by COVID-19 variants, and the massive spike in hospital admissions.”

For students of Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board (HPEDSB) who normally attend in-person school, the delay in returning to school means that teacher-led remote learning will be in effect starting the week of April 19, 2021.

Early next week, your child’s teacher will communicate with you and your child about the remote learning schedule for synchronous and asynchronous learning.

Access to technology for remote learning

Some students may require technology to use at home during the remote learning period. If your child requires technology, please contact your child’s school on April 19, 2021 to make arrangements to obtain it. Please note that devices will be provided based on availability and may take time to distribute.

Support for students with special needs

Safety is our top priority to minimize the possibility of COVID-19 transmission among our most vulnerable learners. With that in mind, all students with Special Education needs will remain home and are invited to engage in remote learning beginning Monday, April 19. School teams will ensure that specific plans are in place to support all students with Special Education needs through remote learning. HPEDSB education workers and professional support staff will work together, along with students and families, for continuity of learning, as much as possible.

Every effort will be made to develop individualized learning opportunities to engage students and keep them learning. Specific schedules of learning activities will be shared by individual classroom educators and support staff, and students will be invited to engage, as appropriate, with their specific plan.

School teams will contact families beginning April 19 to gather information to help inform how we can best meet student needs, while keeping safety as the top priority. More information about a return to face-to-face learning will be provided as it becomes available.

Mental health supports for students

During the remote learning period, various school-based and community supports and resources will be available for students, including the following:

  • Students will continue to have remote access to services, through school-based social workers, child and youth workers, and community partners.
  • Mental health resources are available, including Kids Help Phone, which offers 24/7 counselling and referral services across the province. To use this free resource, children and youth can call 1-800-668-6868, or text CONNECT to 686868.
  • School Mental Health Ontario also has a number of worthwhile resources for students and families on its website at smho-smso.ca.

Child care centres

As per the provincial announcement, child care for non-school age children will remain open. Before and after school programs will be closed. Free emergency child care for the school-age children of eligible health care and frontline workers will be provided.

If you have questions about emergency child care, please contact one of the following:

I want to assure you that we continue to be focused on supporting students and families. Even though the spread of COVID-19 continues to present challenges, our school and central office teams are doing all they can to ensure students are engaged in learning and staying in contact with their teachers and classmates.

I understand how important predictability is at this time. We are doing our best to communicate the facts as soon as we know them and this will continue as new information is released. In the meantime, I encourage you to connect with your child’s teacher next week for any questions about remote learning.

Thank you for your patience and ongoing support.

Sincerely,

Sean Monteith
Director of Education

Grade 10 and 11 students—apply to become a student trustee

May 10, 2021—Students in Grades 10 and 11 now (going into Grades 11 and 12 in September) are invited to apply to become a student trustee.

Involving students in Board business is a valuable learning experience. Hearing from student trustees at Board meetings about student issues and opinions is a way to engage these leaders beyond their school community. They represent student opinions at the Board level and participate actively on committees.

What do student trustees do?

Student trustees are involved in many different ways at their school and also at the Board level. The are leaders who represent the voices of all student. For example, student trustees:

  • Attend school Board meetings and are knowledgeable about policies and procedures
  • Serve as student representatives between the Board and the Student Senate
  • Serve as the Board’s representatives at the Ontario Student Trustees’ Association
  • Attend the annual Ontario Student Trustees’ Association conference
  • Undertake a mentoring role with the incoming Student Senate

HPEDSB has three student trustees, including one representing Indigenous students. Watch the video from the 2020-2021 student trustees sharing their experiences and encouraging other students to become trustees this fall.

Interested in applying?

Tell us who you are! Discuss your lived, living, volunteer and other experiences that you think make you a great candidate.

Send a one-page letter or 60-second video to Sean Monteith, Director of Education ([email protected]), saying why you are interested in being a student trustee. The deadline is Monday, May 17, 2021 at noon. The Board of Trustees will make the decision by the end of May 2021.

For more information, please contact the Director’s Office at [email protected].

Letter from Director Sean Monteith: Planning for school after the April break

April 8, 2021

Planning for school after the April break (pdf)

Dear Students, Families and Staff:

Planning for school after the April break

The much-anticipated April break is almost here. Schools will be closed from April 12 to 16, 2021.

The importance of supporting the emotional well-being of students and staff over the past year has become even more apparent in recent weeks with the increase of COVID-19 cases locally and across the province. We are doing our best to provide as much predictability as possible about schools being open for in-person learning.

At this time, we are planning for all schools to be open when school resumes on April 19, 2021. We continue to operate with as much consistency as possible, while respecting parent/guardian rights to decide whether or not to keep their children home.
Maintaining safe learning environments has been our commitment from the start of the pandemic and continues to be a priority. During the break, additional cleaning and disinfecting will be done at schools.

As a reminder, before coming back to school on April 19, 2021, students and staff must screen for COVID-19 symptoms. If you, your child or anyone in your household is ill, stay home and follow the guidance in the school screener. By following public health advice, we can all enjoy a safe April break and continue to support in-person learning in our schools.

We will share updates as information becomes available. Please continue to monitor our website and social media (@HPEschools), school social media and the local news. The Hastings Prince Edward Public Health website has information and several resources about the COVID-19 pandemic.

Have a safe, fun and restful break.

Sincerely,

Sean Monteith
Director of Education

Letter from Director of Education: students and staff please take personal belongings home

March 31, 2021

Letter to families regarding personal belongings (pdf)

Dear Students, Families and Staff:

Preparing for the long weekend, please take personal belongings home from school

The long weekend is almost here, a welcome break for all. Even so, it will look different this year throughout the province due to COVID-19 social gathering and other limitations, specifically in Hastings County and Prince Edward County, as ordered by Piotr Oglaza, Medical Officer of Health, on March 29, 2021..

On Thursday, April 1, 2021, as a precautionary measure, it is recommended that students and staff take home personal effects, including eyeglasses, shoes, and materials required for teaching and learning remotely, such as technology/SEA equipment,  before heading out for the long weekend.

At this time, it is anticipated that students and staff who are currently learning and working in-person will return to school on Tuesday, April 6; however, we want staff and families to be ready and supported if the Ministry of Education and provincial Medical Officer of Health announce a shift to remote learning for all students.

While this is not intended to cause speculation or added anxiety, our purpose is for students, families and staff to be as prepared as possible after the long weekend. Our hope is that this approach allows everyone to prepare for whatever scenario we may face in the coming days and weeks.

The Hastings Prince Edward Public Health website has information and several resources about the COVID-19 pandemic.

We will share updates as information becomes available. Please continue to monitor our social media (@HPEschools), school social media and the local media.

Thank you for your understanding and support of Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board. If you have any questions, or need further clarification, please contact your child’s principal.

Sincerely,

Sean Monteith, Director of Education

Follow-up Letter from Director of Education Sean Monteith Regarding 2021-2022 Virtual School Registration

March 24, 2021

Follow-up letter from Director of Education regarding 2021-2022 Virtual School registration (pdf)

Dear Students, Families and Staff:

Every year at this time, we begin to plan for the upcoming school year, which starts in September. Part of this planning involves determining the number of students expected in our schools, which directs the number of teaching and support staff required.

To assist in this planning, we are asking families to let us know now if their child will attend in-person school or virtual school for the upcoming school year. Our intention is to be as informed as possible about family choices. This will assist in making accurate decisions to staff our schools, and be as prepared as possible for safe, welcoming and inclusive learning environments in the fall.

If you choose for your child to attend the virtual school in the fall, please contact your home/in-person school principal by Monday, March 29, 2021 to formally register for virtual school for the 2021-2022 school year. If you do not contact the principal by that date, your child will be registered for in-person school.

Please be aware that students currently enrolled in the virtual school will automatically be returned to their home schools at the end of June 2021.

As we look ahead to the fall, we know many Canadians will be vaccinated, and that COVID-19 health and safety practices are expected to remain in place.

In-person learning is the best way to meet students’ academic, social-emotional, physical and well-being needs. Although we expect that most students will return to in-person learning, the Ministry of Education has made it clear that families will have a choice, and that school boards must be responsive to those choices. That means offering a virtual school in addition to the traditional in-person school environment.

We are planning for a JK-10 virtual school to operate for the 2021-2022 school year. Programming for Grade 11 and 12 students will be provided through their home/in-person schools, enabling access to a greater variety of courses to support graduation pathways.

Thank you for your understanding and support of Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board. If you have any questions, or need further clarification, please contact your child’s principal.

Sincerely,

Sean Monteith

Director of Education

 

Board Meeting Update 191: March 22, 2021

March 22, 2021—This update provides a summary of the online public meeting of the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board held March 22, 2021, livestreamed (the recorded version will be available within 24 hours). It is an unofficial summary of the meeting; official minutes will be approved at the next regular meeting in April.

Land acknowledgement

Mike Brant, Trustee, Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, recited the land acknowledgement: Let us bring our minds and hearts together as one to honour and celebrate these traditional lands as a gathering place of the Huron-Wendat, Anishinabek and Haudenosaunee people. It is with deep humility, that we acknowledge and offer our gratitude for their contributions to our community, having respect for all as we come together and walk side by side into the future to support our students of today.

Character Moment of Reflection

At Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board, Growing with Character is our intentional focus on creating safe, caring, respectful and inclusive learning environments where students develop the foundation for good character. Through Growing with Character, we model, teach and expect demonstrations of our eight character traits which are: Caring, Cooperation, Honesty, Humour, Integrity, Respect, Responsibility and Trustworthiness.

This evening Moira Gaddes, Student Trustee, Eastside Secondary School, asked all to reflect on Caring: We demonstrate concern for self and others. We show empathy and express genuine concerns. We consider the long term effect of our actions.

Presentation

Special Equipment Amount (SEA): Process and Assistive Technology Deployment Initiative

Providing students with technology to use for learning is a tremendous undertaking at any time and particularly during a pandemic. This presentation described what has happened in schools for all students in Grades 4-8 to have a Chromebook to use to meet their individual learning needs. Key highlights are that devices remain in classrooms rather than being moved from room-to-room or among schools; ability for staff to build sustainable best practices for teaching and learning; create a level playing field for all students to use technology rather than students with special needs feeling uncomfortable using it; and teachers being able to assess student work in ways not available when the work is only pen and paper based.

Thank you to presenters Geoff Courneya and Matt Charles, Student Services Coordinators; Tanya Whittaker, Principal and Michael McKeown, Teacher, Queen Elizabeth School; and Nathan Lumsden, Teacher, Prince Charles Public School (Trenton).

Recommendations

OSSTF/HPEDSB Tentative Collective Agreement

Board members ratified the terms of the local Collective Agreement between HPEDSB and Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation District 29 for the period September 1, 2019 to August 31, 2022.

Policy 11-A: Committee of the Whole Board

Board members approved revisions to policy 11-A: Committee of the Whole Board. Find out more starting on page 14 of the March 22, 2021 agenda (Pdf).

Appointment of QSS Ad Hoc Committee

Board members approved an updated list of names of people to participate on the QSS Ad Hoc Committee. One committee member approved earlier this month was unable to remain on the committee.

  • Trustees: Kiydan Zachariah, Student Trustee, Prince Edward Collegiate Institute; Lisa-Anne Chatten, Belleville/Thurlow; Spencer Hutchison, Trenton and CFB Trenton; Krista McConnell, Belleville/Thurlow
  • School staff: Anika van der Vink-Neri, Teacher, Prince Charles Public School (Trenton); Rhonda McFaul, Secretary, Park Dale School
  • Union representative: Jo-Anne White, President, CUPE Local 1022
  • Adult/Alternative Education Staff Member: Roger Ramsay, Curriculum Services Coordinator
  • Parents of students attending French Immersion programming: Christine Herrington, Harry J. Clarke Public School; Mark Langewisch, Prince Charles Public School, Trenton; Ashley Thomson, Bayside Public School
  • Community members: Kassandra Bateman; Jim Chapman
  • HPEDSB Senior Staff: Kim Horrigan, Senior Manager, Facility Services; Bessie Stelatos, System Lead, French Immersion

Find out more starting on page 20 of the March 22, 2021 agenda (Pdf).

Information reports from staff

Secondary School Student Achievement Presentation

This presentation highlighted secondary school student achievement and the factors contributing to student success. It featured a comparison of credit completion rates for students in Grades 9-12 for the 2019-2020 and the 2020-2021 school years; credit accumulation rates over this and the previous two school years; evolving culture changes at schools; changes in beliefs and practices; and teamwork and co-teaching. The presenters explained the focus on the tiered approach to supporting students and how it continues to be refined.

Virtual School Planning Report

This report provided an overview of planning for a virtual school operating for the new school year starting in September 2021. The virtual school will be for JK-Grade 10. Students in Grades 11 and 12 will participate in in-person learning to be able to access greater diversity of course offerings in support of their graduation pathways. Find out more starting on page 23 of the March 22, 2021 agenda (Pdf).

Information reports from trustees

Student trustee updates

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • planning for the student-led mental health event;
  • student concerns about the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT); and
  • student concerns navigating classes using the hybrid model where some students are in-person and some are online.

Parent Involvement Committee from March 1, 2021

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • student trustees participating in the meeting and talking about mental health issues;
  • different ideas for food days at schools; and
  • next meeting is March 2, 2021 at 6:00 PM.

Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC) from February 25, 2021

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • discussion at the meeting about why SEAC exists;
  • school year calendar;
  • communications and strategies for supports through a student’s IEP; and
  • vaccinations for students with special needs.

Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) Pathway Partnership Committee Report

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • discussion with Loyalist College about pathways in the skilled trades.

Indigenous Education Advisory  Committee Update from March 11, 2021

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • discussions with Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte and upcoming meeting dates;
  • using data to make evidence-informed decisions in planning for outcomes; and
  • the next meeting is April 22, 2021.

OPSBA Information Exchange

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • next trustee terms begin in October 2022;
  • the OPSBA Annual General Meeting is scheduled for June 12, 2021;
  • the Canadian School Boards’ Conference is in mid-July, 2021 and will be online; and
  • the next regional meeting for Eastern Ontario school boards is in April 2021.

Questions from trustees

A question was asked about cameras on school bus arms. A question was asked about the new student information system, Aspen. A request for updates from the QSS Ad Hoc Committee to be on Board meeting agendas. Condolences to the family of Rick Locke, a former HPEDSB teacher.

Correspondence

Expression of Interest from YMCA about a child care centre at the re-purposed (former) Quinte Secondary School site.

For more information, please contact Kerry Donnell, Communications Manager, extension 62354, [email protected]

Letter from Director of Education Sean Monteith Regarding 2021-2022 Virtual School Registration

March 11, 2021

Letter to Parent of Virtual School Students (pdf)

RE: Virtual School Enrolment for the 2021-2022 School Year

Dear Parent/Guardian and families of Virtual School student(s):

I hope this letter finds you well, and that you and your family continue to take care of each other as we deal with the prolonged impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is truly hard to believe it was one year ago today when we learned our schools would be closed, and how we taught, learned, and interacted with one another in education would be altered in ways we had never imagined.

As we look ahead to September 2021 and the start of the next school year, we know many Canadians will be vaccinated, and that COVID-19 health and safety practices are still expected to be active. With this in mind, we are planning for the majority of students to return to in-person learning with enhanced safety precautions in place. We will continue to offer a virtual school as part of our pandemic response.

The establishment of the HPEDSB Virtual School was not part of a longer-term plan or vision, but rather a direct outcome and response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In-person learning is the best way to meet students’ academic, social-emotional, and physical well-being needs. Acknowledging that there remains much uncertainty for the fall, HPEDSB will offer a Kindergarten to Grade 10 Virtual School option, should families decide it fits their child/ren’s style of learning and meets the needs of their family. Programming for Grade 11 and 12 students will be provided through their home secondary school.

This past year, families have had to navigate so much uncertainty. We want to foster predictability for all to reduce the amount of change for students and staff in the upcoming school year. Good planning provides room for modifications and reduces the chance of school reorganizations (e.g., changing classrooms, grade configurations, teaching assignments, or timetables). The more accurate our student enrolment information is now, the better our planning will be, reducing the likelihood of school reorganizations and promoting predictability for student learning in the fall.

Registering in the Virtual School for 2021-2022 is a full-year commitment with mandatory attendance expectations. There will be no transition dates provided throughout the year. We remain committed to providing high-quality programming through dedicated educators in all our schools, in-person and virtual, no matter which format you choose.

Overview of In-Person and Virtual Learning

In-Person Learning  Virtual Learning
  • All elementary programs will be offered
  • Full-range secondary programs will be offered
  • Specialized Program Classes will be offered
  • Students receive 300 minutes of instruction per day
  • COVID-19 safety procedures in place – distancing, masks, hand washing, protective equipment for staff
  • Cohorting of students and emphasis on smaller class sizes, where possible
  • Incremental resumption of regular operations, as possible, based on health guidance
  • Students enrolled in specialized program classes who opt for virtual learning will be enrolled in regular virtual classrooms
  • School day parental supervision required
  • Students receive 180-225 minutes of online (synchronous) instruction per day, with the remaining 75-120 minutes off-line (asynchronous)
  • Consistent course packages offered to students in Grades 9 & 10

To ensure accurate enrolment projections, all students currently enrolled in the Virtual School will be automatically returned to their home schools at the end of June. If you intend to have your child/ren continue with virtual learning in September 2021, you are asked to contact your home school Principal within the next two weeks. This contact will be considered your formal intent to register in the Virtual School for the 2021-2022 school year.

The conversation with your home school principal about your desire to register your child/ren in Virtual School must occur before the end of the school day on March 26, 2021. If you do not reach out to your child/ren’s home school by March 26, your child will be attending in-person learning in the fall.

In closing, our schools remain open and safe with enhanced health and safety protocols to protect staff and students from COVID-19. This commitment will not change.

I wish all of you the very best, and encourage all families, parents/guardians and students to remain safe, and equally importantly, remain hopeful.

 

Sincerely,

Sean Monteith

Director of Education

 

 

 

Board of Trustees accepts resignation of Director of Education Sean Monteith

March 10, 2021—The Board of Trustees has accepted the resignation of Director of Education Sean Monteith, effective June 30, 2021. The Board intends to begin its search for a new Director of Education quickly in the coming weeks.

Chair Lucille Kyle stated, “Upon accepting the Director’s decision to resign from HPEDSB, I would like to extend my best wishes to Sean Monteith as he pursues other professional and career opportunities. During his time with us, the Director demonstrated his willingness to work hard on behalf of the board and all its constituents.

“Among his accomplishments were his actions of increasing meaningful engagement with Indigenous communities in HPEDSB, working with the Board to develop a five-year strategic plan with a focus on equity, developing board structures intended to improve efficiency in delivering education for our students, and facilitating a fluid response to the significant and ongoing challenges of delivering education in the time of pandemic.

“Thank you for the work you have accomplished in this short time. I respect your desire to focus on your family’s, and your personal, best interests.”

Monteith, who has been an Ontario Director of Education since 2013, and with HPEDSB since 2019, commented after offering his resignation, “I want to thank the staff, students and families of Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board for allowing me the privilege and honour to serve the interests in asserting a student-centered stance. I also want to thank the Board for the opportunity to support them in advancing the organization.

“I am proud of the fact that we created together a brand-new strategic plan that enforces principles of equity, student achievement, and outcomes for all of our learners. The Board’s commitment to reconciliation with First Nation partners is commendable and underscores the desire to be champions of equity and social justice.

“At this time, and with a few good years ahead, the prospect of being part of system-level change in support of Indigenous communities, and in continued support of marginalized and racialized students, is one that I am looking forward to. I am grateful for the opportunity to have been part of the HPEDSB Family and wish the organization nothing but the best.”

For more information, please contact:
Kerry Donnell, Communications Manager, 613-966-1170, extension 62354, or 613-847-0696, [email protected]

Invitation to apply to become an external member of the audit committee

March 1, 2021 – Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board is seeking one community member with financial expertise and business knowledge to serve on the Audit Committee for a 3-year term, effective spring 2021. The Audit Committee is comprised of three trustees and two independent members from the community at large.

Invitation to apply for audit committee The primary role of the committee is to assist the Board of Trustees in fulfilling its duties related to governance and oversight. The Audit Committee duties include the following key areas: financial reporting process; internal control framework; risk management practices; performance and function of the HPEDSB internal and external auditors; and HPEDSB compliance with obligations under legislation.

The Audit Committee meets at least three times a year, plus ad hoc meetings, as required. Induction training material is available online to all committee members to clarify roles and responsibilities of audit committees for the school board sector.

Candidate eligibility

  • Applicants must have sufficient accounting, senior financial management or other relevant business experience to understand public sector accounting and auditing standards.
  • Applicants must not be a current employee or officer of HPEDSB, or of any other district school board or school authority.
  • Applicants must not have a parent, child or spouse currently employed by HPEDSB.

Application submissions

Suitably qualified candidates interested in serving on the Audit Committee are invited to submit a letter of interest and resume by 4:00 PM on Friday, April 9, 2021 to:

  • Nick Pfeiffer, Superintendent of Business Services, 156 Ann Street, Belleville, ON, K8N 3L3, or email Carmel Lessard, Executive Assistant, Business Services, [email protected]

Candidates who are short-listed may be requested to attend a private interview conducted by the Selection Committee.

OPSBA Public Property Assessment Network Scholarship 2021

March 2—Grade 12 students graduating in June 2021 and going into the trades are eligible to apply for the OPSBA Public Property Assessment Network Scholarship.

The Public Property Assessment Network Scholarship: Eastern Region, 2020-21 School Year (pdf)

The Public Property Assessment Network Scholarship in the amount of $1,000 will be awarded to one recipient of the Ontario Public School Boards’ Association’s (OPSBA’s) Eastern Region. Scholarship recipients are students of strong character, leadership skills and potential, who care deeply about their communities and furthering their own learning.

Please send your package in PDF format to David Shields, Eastern Regional Chair at [email protected] by May 28, 2021.

More information about this scholarship

The funds were established from an organization with a core purpose to determine values for properties, which is the foundation for our property tax system in Ontario. This scholarship is to provide financial assistance to students who are pursuing an apprenticeship in the trades, more particularly the building trades, such as HVAC, carpenter, plumber or other property building trade.

Interested students should write a brief statement about why they are pursuing the building trades as an area of study, how the funds would assist them in pursuing this career, and how they intend to give back to the community.

Board Meeting Update 189: February 22, 2021

February 22, 2021—This update provides a summary of the online public meeting of the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board held February 22, 2021, livestreamed (the recorded version will be available within 24 hours). It is an unofficial summary of the meeting; official minutes will be approved at the next regular meeting in March.

Land acknowledgement

Mike Brant, Trustee, Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, recited the land acknowledgement: Let us bring our minds and hearts together as one to honour and celebrate these traditional lands as a gathering place of the Huron-Wendat, Anishinabek and Haudenosaunee people. It is with deep humility, that we acknowledge and offer our gratitude for their contributions to our community, having respect for all as we come together and walk side by side into the future to support our students of today.

Character Moment of Reflection

At Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board, Growing with Character is our intentional focus on creating safe, caring, respectful and inclusive learning environments where students develop the foundation for good character. Through Growing with Character, we model, teach and expect demonstrations of our eight character traits which are: Caring, Cooperation, Honesty, Humour, Integrity, Respect, Responsibility and Trustworthiness.

This evening Kiydan Zachariah, Student Trustee, Prince Edward Collegiate Institute, asked all to reflect on Humour: We celebrate the fun in life. We lighten the emotions of others by interacting in a joyful manner.

Presentations

Centennial Secondary School: Engaging students through the Chromebook Project

The team from Centennial Secondary School presented their approach to fulfilling a vision of empowering empower all staff to meet the needs of every student with a focus on equity. The goals of the Chromebook Project were to create a culture of care and close the achievement gap, leading to a result of all students achieving. COVID-19 required the school to be nimble and able to quickly respond to changing delivery models. That is where the Chromebook technology came into play. By redefining the conditions for learning, and determining new learning models and expectations, the staff was able to distribute 660 Chromebooks. All classes from Grades 7-12 have a 1:1 ratio of students to Chromebooks, taking into consideration school-loaned devices, SEA equipment and student-owned devices.

Find out more by reviewing the Google Slides presentation.

Thank you to the presenters:

  • Marg Thompson, Principal
  • Geoff Courneya, Assistive Technology Learning Coach
  • Geoff Mortaley, Elementary Learning Support Teacher
  • Jessica Stuart, Secondary Learning Support Teacher
  • Blair Yarranton, Teacher

Dr. Piotr Oglaza, Medical Officer of Health, Hastings Prince Edward Public Health: School-based testing

Dr. Oglaza presented about school-based surveillance of COVID-19. This included sharing caution for asymptomatic screening in schools and next steps. Dr. Oglaza explained factors that impact test performance, such as swab collection, processing the samples and an individual’s viral load. He described the manner in which COVID-19 is transmitted, which is through droplets containing the virus being expelled during coughing, sneezing and regular activities. Dr. Oglaza shared that the evidence suggests that schools are not the driving force of transmission in communities and provided data for local schools. With regard to the variants of concern, it is important to continue with the public health measures, including frequent handwashing, physical distancing and wearing masks.

To balance the benefits and harms of increased screening in schools, HPE Public Health proposes offering weekly testing at two schools which may have higher baseline vulnerability to outbreaks, or have decreased access to testing. Public health nurses would do the testing for students who volunteer to be tested.

Recommendation

Dates for the 2021-2022 School Year Calendar (subject to Ministry of Education approval)

Board members approved proposed dates for the 2021-2022 School Year Calendar. The dates are subject to Ministry of Education approval before they are finalized. The proposed school year calendar for 2021-2022 aligns within the start and end dates of the school year and holidays designated by the Ministry of Education. Submission to the Ministry of Education by May 1, 2021 is required for final approval. Public consultation reflected a significant increase in respondents this year: 2,100 as compared to approximately 750 in 2020.

Find out more starting on page 11 of the February 22, 2021 agenda (Pdf).

Reports from staff

Kindergarten registration promotion for September 2021

HPEDSB is committed to providing safe, inclusive and welcoming learning environments for students entering Kindergarten. Promotional activities are underway now and include the following:

  1. Fulsome  website and social media presence
  2. Radio ads voiced by staff and students airing on eight local radio stations (thank you to the the team from Massassaga-Rednersville Public School: Taylor Merritt, Teacher; Sara Liscombe, Early Childhood Educator; and Keely, SK Student; and from Tyendinaga Public School: Stacey McDonald, Teacher; Jodi Burgess, Early Childhood Educator; and Aubrey, JK Student)
  3. Print ads in local weekly newspapers
  4. School-based Kindergarten promotional videos
  5. Online orientation sessions for currently registered and all potential incoming families
  6. A “Welcome to Kindergarten” picture book and message from Director Monteith will be distributed through schools to each registered family

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, public access to schools is unavailable at this time. Kindergarten orientation and events to engage families will happen online.

Find out more starting on page 14 of the February 22, 2021 agenda (Pdf).

Early Years Capital Program

The Early Years Capital Program focuses on making child care more affordable, creating more available choices for families, improving quality and delivering high standards of care.

Currently HPEDSB has three pre-school aged child care programs:

  1. The Hub at Massassaga-Rednersville School with 50 child care spaces, created in 2014 and updated with a renovation in 2017 to create additional spaces, at an approximate total cost of $450,000
  2. Stirling Co-operative Nursery Little Sprouts at Stirling Public School with 35 child care spaces, created by an addition in 2015 at an approximate cost of $1.1 million
  3. Quinte Child Care Centre at Park Dale School with 50 child care spaces, created in 2018 at an approximate cost of $200,000

In collaboration with Hastings County, a joint submission was sent to the Ministry of Education on January 29, 2021, proposing three additional child care locations: Prince Charles Public School (Trenton), York River Public School and Centre Hastings Secondary School.

Find out more starting on page 16 of the February 22, 2021 agenda (Pdf).

Report from the Director of Education

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • reminder that March Break has been changed to the week of April 12-16, 2021;
  • concern about staff absences and the ability to find replacement staff;
  • planning for the ongoing impact of COVID-19 related to setting the budget and virtual schools;
  • destreaming Grade 9 Math (no more Applied and Academic) as announced by the Ministry of Education;
  • funding for technology allowed HPEDSB to procure approximately 1,100 Chromebooks and 170 laptops; and
  • Ministry of Education memo released today about teaching hiring practices.

Report from student trustees 

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • planning a mental health and equity event for students; and
  • editing Policy 3C: Student Representation on the Board.

Report from the Parent Involvement Committee meeting (February 1, 2021)

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • participation at these meetings continues to increase each month; and
  • the topic of doing rapid testing in schools was discussed.

Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC) meeting (January 28, 2021)

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • SEAC drafting a letter to HPE Public Health about testing in schools.

Policy Review Working Group meeting (February 16, 2021)

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • explanation of the policies being reviewed at this time.

OPSBA Information Exchange 

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • information shared at the Eastern Region meeting held online last weekend; and
  • shared notes with Board members from the Public Education Symposium.

Questions, reports and proposals from trustees

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • a comment about Quinte Mohawk School taking the March Break holiday, as usual (not changing to the new April dates).

For more information, please contact Kerry Donnell, Communications Manager, extension 62354, [email protected]

Tentative collective agreement between HPEDSB and OSSTF Hastings-Prince Edward

February 22, 2021—A tentative collective agreement has been reached between the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board, and the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation, District 29 Hastings-Prince Edward.

The agreement for approximately 325 permanent and 140 occasional secondary school teachers spans a 3-year period, from September 1, 2019 to August 31, 2022.

No details will be released until it is voted on by teachers and the Board of Trustees in March 2021.

QUOTES

“Reaching a tentative collective agreement with our OSSTF partners is welcome news for everyone involved. The negotiating teams were committed to the process and we are grateful for their work. Our secondary school teachers are doing remarkable work in their in-person and virtual classrooms during what has become another unusual school year. Thank you to everyone for helping our students of today to become the caring and contributing citizens of tomorrow. – Lucille Kyle, Chair of the Board

“Congratulations to the local OSSTF bargaining representatives and leadership, as well as to the representatives for HPEDSB. I am very pleased and proud that they have reached this tentative agreement, especially during these incredibly challenging times. I also want to acknowledge the tremendous efforts of our secondary school teachers who are important role models for students.” – Sean Monteith, Director of Education

For more information, please contact:
Kerry Donnell, Communications Manager, 613-966-1170, extension 62354, or 613-847-0696, [email protected]

The Learning Foundation surpasses fundraising goal of $400,000

February 17, 2021- In October 2020, The HPE Learning Foundation identified areas of need and launched an ambitious Superheroes of Hope ‘Now More than Ever’ campaign. The campaign goal was to raise $400,000 to help support the Food for Learning, Student Emergency Fund and Food for Home programs.

As shared in the February 16 new release, the campaign goal has been reached, and for the Food for Learning and Food for Home programs, the fundraising goals have been surpassed! There were 536 donations to the campaign. Of that number, 192 were new donors and the largest donation was $125,000.

Programs supported by the campaign include:

  • The Food for Learning program: ensures that all students have daily access to healthy nutritious food while at school. Food for Learning supports approximately 4000 students a day which works out to 80-100,000 meals a month. FFL also supports an average of 175 students through the virtual program (students learning at home) by providing grocery cards and food vouchers.
  • The Food for Home program: provides students with food support during school breaks in the form of a weekly grocery cards. The program currently supports 226 students.
  • The Student Emergency Fund program: provides financial aid and/or gift-in-kind support to students and families (examples of types of support – food, medical/glasses, clothing, transportation etc.).
  • In addition, the Learning Foundation received 352 Student Emergency Fund requests

The Foundation is hopeful that its fundraising efforts will continue to be successful in this year’s Food for Learning Spring Event and Student Emergency Fund Golf Tournament. All contributors are Foundation Superheroes, joining Penny, Harry and Erica in providing equity, fighting poverty and helping the hungry!

For more information about how you can support student well-being and success visit www.hpelearningfoundation.com and @TheHPELF.

Learning Foundation campaign poster

Letter from the Director of Education, March Break postponed

February 11, 2021

Pdf version

Dear Students, Parents/Guardians, Families and Staff:

This afternoon, the provincial government announced that the March Break will be delayed to the week of April 12, 2021. This decision was made with the best advice of Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health and public health officials, including consultations with many local Medical Officers of Health.

For students and staff at HPEDSB, this means that school will proceed, as usual, for the week of March 15-21, 2021. There will be no school for the week of April 12-16, 2021.

I realize this decision by the Ministry of Education is not going to please everyone. I continue to hear from students, families and staff about the emotional rollercoaster they feel they are on—and have been for the past 11 months. For many families, taking another week off work in the middle of March was not an option. As Director of Education, I look at what is reasonable and, at this time, suggest that we try to put ourselves in another person’s shoes to understand their perspectives.

Another topic I want to address is about learning loss over the past 11 months. Again, I am taking a reasonable approach and ask you to do the same. Whatever learning loss has occurred, the five days of a spring break are not going to change the lifetime trajectory of a child becoming an adult. I believe we need to keep things in perspective and again ask that we respect one another’s positions.

The Hastings and Prince Edward region has performed remarkably well during the pandemic, so well, that we are in one of only three regions where restrictions were recently relaxed. We all have a lot to be proud of for our ongoing efforts to be safe and follow public health advice.

As I have said before, and want to assure you again, we continue to focus on supporting students and families during these unusual times. Even though the spread of COVID-19 may still present challenges ahead, our school and central office teams are doing all they can to ensure students are engaged in learning.

Thank you for your patience and ongoing support.

Take care,

Sean Monteith
Director of Education

Invitation to participate on the QSS Revitalization Ad Hoc Committee

February 11, 2021—The Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board is inviting school and community representation on the QSS Revitalization Ad Hoc Committee. This is part of a project to repurpose the former Quinte Secondary School (Pdf) to become a K-8 French Immersion school and become the location of administrative/maintenance offices.

The committee will consider opportunities that arise to address school capacity and enrolment challenges at the following schools: Bayside Public School, Bayside Secondary School, Harmony Public School, Harry J. Clarke Public School and Prince Charles School (Trenton). The committee will develop a recommendation to be presented to the Board of Trustees based on the proposed value of the revitalization project to students, families, community, staff and the Board of Trustees.

The 15-person membership of the committee will consist of:
• 4 trustees, including one student trustee
• 2 school staff (one classroom teacher, one education support staff member)
• 1 union representative
• 1 adult/alternative education staff member
• 3 parents of students attending French Immersion programming
• 2 community members
• 2 HPEDSB senior staff members

The QSS Revitalization Ad Hoc Committee will provide regular updates to the Committee of the Whole, and will also provide a final report, including recommendations and conclusions, at the public Board meeting in June 2021.

If you are interested in applying to participate in the QSS Revitalization Ad Hoc Committee, please complete the brief application by Monday, February 22 at 4 PM. Applicants will be notified by email if they are selected to be on the committee.

For more information about the committee, please review the HPEDSB/QSS Ad Hoc Committee Report and Terms of Reference (Pdf).

Questions? Email [email protected], or call 613-966-1170, extension 62201 to leave a message. Education Centre staff are working from home to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Input needed for the 2021-2022 School Year Calendar

February 1, 2021—Each spring, school boards are required to establish a school year calendar for the upcoming school year, in accordance with Regulation 304: School Year Calendar and Regulation 364/15. These regulations set the beginning and end dates for the school year, stipulate school holidays, and prescribe the minimum number of instructional days (194), and the maximum number of professional activity days (7) and board designated holidays (Winter Break and Mid-winter Break).

In consultation with our two neighbouring school boards, Algonquin Lakeshore Catholic District School Board and Limestone District School Board, the following three options are being shared for input from employees, students, parents/guardians and community partners.

We need your input! Please complete the brief survey before 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, February 13, 2021 to share your preference and help shape the next school year calendar.

Option 1: Proposed Ministry of Education calendar

Students return to school: September 1, 2021, ahead of Labour Day

  • First PA Day: September 3, 2021 (Friday), ahead of Labour Day
  • Last instructional day of the school year: June 27, 2022
  • Last PA Day: June 28, 2022
  • Secondary Semester 2 begins: February 1, 2022 (Tuesday)
  • Follows a PA Day on January 31, 2022 (Monday)
  • Winter Break: December 20, 2021 to December 31, 2021
  • Mid-Winter Break: March 14, 2022 to March 18, 2022

Option 2: One PA Day to start the school year

Students return to school: September 7, 2021, after Labour Day

  • First PA Day: September 3, 2021 (Friday), ahead of Labour Day
  • Last instructional day of the school year: June 29, 2022
  • Last PA Day: June 30, 2022
  • Secondary Semester 2 begins: February 3, 2022 (Thursday)
  • Follows a PA Day on February 2, 2022 (Wednesday)
  • Winter Break: December 20, 2021 to December 31, 2021
  • Mid-Winter Break: March 14, 2022 to March 18, 2022

Option 3: Two PA Days to start the school year

Students return to school: September 7, 2021, after Labour Day

  • First PA Days: September 2, 2021 and September 3, 2021, ahead of Labour Day
  • Last instructional day of the school year: June 28, 2022
  • Last PA Day: June 29, 2022
  • Secondary Semester 2 begins: February 2, 2022 (Wednesday)
  • Follows a PA Day on February 1, 2022 (Tuesday)
  • Winter Break: December 20, 2021 to December 31, 2021
  • Mid-Winter Break: March 14, 2022 to March 18, 2022

Please complete the brief survey before 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, February 13, 2021 to share your preference and help shape the next school year calendar.

Questions? Please contact [email protected]

Board Meeting Update #188: January 25, 2021

January 25, 2021—This update provides a summary of the online public meeting of the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board held January 25, 2021, livestreamed (the recorded version will be available within 24 hours). It is an unofficial summary of the meeting; official minutes will be approved at the next regular meeting in February.

Land acknowledgement

Mike Brant, Trustee, Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, recited the land acknowledgement: Let us bring our minds and hearts together as one to honour and celebrate these traditional lands as a gathering place of the Huron-Wendat, Anishinabek and Haudenosaunee people. It is with deep humility, that we acknowledge and offer our gratitude for their contributions to our community, having respect for all as we come together and walk side by side into the future to support our student of today.

Recommendation

Black History Month, Pride Month, National Indigenous History Month

Board members approved recommendations to encourage and honour Black History Month during February; encourage and celebrate Pride Month during June; and encourage and celebrate National Indigenous History Month in June.

These recommendations connect with actions and recommendations by the Ontario Public School Boards’ Association, specifically, “advocate to the Ministry of Education and the Education Equity Secretariat, that supporting the work of district school boards with regard to anti-Indigenous and anti-Black racism be a priority. This support must include funding, and should involve the sharing of research, including the collection of identity-based data on educational outcomes, as well as effective practices, strategies, and approaches.”

Find out more starting on page 16 of the January 25, 2021 agenda (Pdf).

Information

Policy 19: Board Improvement Plan

The 2020-2021 Board Improvement Plan (BIP) continues to reflect the goals identified in school improvement plans. The work of addressing underachieving results, reversing the declining trend in student achievement, and creating a culture of innovative thinking and evidence-informed risks continues despite the recent at-home learning and ensuing pandemic. The BIP focus continues to be on system culture and practices, leadership development, and on teaching and learning, all through an equity lens of hope, opportunity and outcome.

The work continues to be aligned with empowering all employees to understand and believe in themselves as part of the revitalized system vision of students first, closing achievement gaps, and getting students to graduation.

Though there have been various barriers to collaboration, teaching and learning, the fact is that  new thinking and new ways of addressing student achievement have emerged despite the inability to connect in ways that were once routine.

Find out more starting on page 18 of the January 25, 2021 agenda (Pdf).

QSS Revitalization Report

Consultants have been engaged to develop various plans to revitalize the former Quinte Secondary School. These include creating enrolment projections for a dedicated K-8 French Immersion program for the Belleville and Trenton areas, creating preliminary floor plans for a consolidated French Immersion school co-located with board administrative functions, reviewing  building systems and renewal needs at the Quinte Secondary site, and preparing detailed construction cost estimates. Transportation, financial, and funding analyses have been conducted already.

Find out more starting on page 21 of the January 25, 2021 agenda (Pdf).

2020 Director’s Annual Report

The 2020 Director’s Annual Report was presented for information. 2020 was definitely a year like no other. The COVID-19 pandemic was certainly front and centre, and it affected HPEDSB and everyone connected to our schools and communities. But that was only a part of story at HPEDSB. 2020 was also a year of revitalizing, refreshing and revisioning. A heartfelt thank you to Karen La Rose, Communications Officer, whose creativity, big-picture thinking and commitment to excellence created the comprehensive report.

Report from student trustees

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • the three student trustees meet weekly with the director of education and Megan Adam, Student Services Coordinator;
  • revising the procedure about student representation on the Board; and
  • planning a virtual event for students.

Report from the Parent Involvement Committee meeting (November 24, 2020)

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • 4o participants at the November meeting;
  • will be reviewing policies and procedures to provide input; and
  • reviewing the procedure for playground fundraising with the intent of making it more equitable among school communities.

Find out more starting on page 65 of the January 25, 2021 agenda (Pdf).

Report from the Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC) meeting (December 10, 2020)

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • presentation about the universal design for teaching and learning; and
  • three break-out groups focused on mental health supports for student; IEP structure and strategy; and advocacy and social justice issues.

Report from the Policy Review Working Group

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • this committee will review sub-policies of Policy 11 and playground funding.

Report from the OPSBA Information Exchange

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • provided a reminder about the virtual Public Education Symposium taking place later this week and suggested that participants attend different sessions, take notes, which will be shared later.

Report from the Equity and Inclusivity Advisory Committee

Highlights from  this report included the following:

  • working with external advisor Erik Lockhart to brainstorm and start to process ideas and themes to work through over the next few months and into the next few years.

Questions from trustees

  • A question was asked about articles in the news about COVID-19 testing being done in schools; the Director of Education responded that it will be voluntary, with parent/guardian consent required; the testing will be to reinforce that schools are safe for teaching and learning; more information to come;
  • A question about the Tri-Board Student Transportation Services RFP (request for proposal) being deferred; the Superintendent of Business confirmed that the RFP closing date has been extended to the end of the summer due to complications experienced through provincial closure orders.
  • A question about the Ministry of Education eliminating the discretion to suspend students in Grades 1-3.

For more information, please contact Kerry Donnell, Communications Manager, extension 62354, [email protected]

 

Letter from Director of Education, return to in-person learning on January 25

January 21, 2021

Pdf version

Dear Students, Parents/Guardians, Families and Staff:

In this ever-changing time of living through the COVID-19 pandemic, I am writing with an update about students returning to school next week. Late yesterday afternoon, the provincial government announced that students in seven public health regions of Ontario will return to in-person school on January 25, 2021. Schools in Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board are in one of the regions approved to open. This decision is fully supported by Dr. Piotr Oglaza, Medical Officer of Health for Hastings Prince Edward Public Health.

Please be aware that this is a full return to school on January 25, 2021 for all HPEDSB elementary and secondary students who normally attend in-person school. Our schools will be clean and safe, and staff will be ready to welcome students on Monday. We are working with our busing partner, Tri-Board Student Transportation Services, to ensure that busing will resume, as usual, starting on Monday. Anyone enrolled in virtual school will continue to learn online.

To ensure schools remain as safe as possible, it is important that students and staff self-screen each day using the enhanced provincial COVID-19 School and Child Care Screening. Please follow the directions in the screening tool and self isolate, or seek testing, if necessary.

To support the return to in-person learning, the government also announced additional safety measures to ensure schools remain safe, including mandatory masking for students in Grades 1-3. This will be a new approach at HPEDSB and for that reason, schools will provide masks for these students. Another new measure is the requirement for mandatory masking outdoors where physical distancing cannot be maintained. I recognize that this will be an adjustment for some younger students and ask that parents/guardians practise putting on and taking off a mask with their child at home. Additional information about how to use a mask properly, as well as other common questions from parents and students, is available at the public health website.

One other topic I want to address is the provincial Stay-at-Home Order announced earlier this month. Under it, all businesses must ensure that any employee who can work from home, does work from home. Therefore, we are mandated under the order to have as few people in business offices as possible. That means staff who work in our administrative buildings will continue to work remotely while the order is in place.

I want to assure you that, according to Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health and leading medical and scientific experts, including the Hospital for Sick Children, Ontario’s schools are safe places for learning.

We will continue to do our best to communicate as soon as we can. Even though the spread of COVID-19 may still present challenges in the future, our school and central office teams are doing all they can to support students and each other. Thank you for your patience and ongoing support.

Take care,

Sean Monteith
Director of Education

Board Meeting Update #187: January 11, 2021

January 11, 2021—This update provides a summary of the online special public meeting of the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board held January 11, 2021, livestreamed (the recorded version will be available within 24 hours). It is an unofficial summary of the meeting; official minutes will be approved at the next regular meeting later this month.

Recommendation

International Student Program Readiness Plan

Board members approved that HPEDSB maintain its long standing commitment to international education, in compliance with the guidelines for accepting international students established by the Ontario Ministry of Education and the Canadian Federal Government.

The HPEDSB International Student Department has developed a readiness plan in compliance with the local, provincial and federal authorities. The plan includes mechanisms to address quarantining protocols, and support international students and host families during the COVID-19 pandemic. At this time, 30 new students are enrolled for Semester 2 and are eagerly awaiting their Canadian education experience at HPEDSB. The Attestation of Readiness Plan and supporting documentation will be forwarded to the Ministry of Education for joint review with federal health authorities to determine a list of qualified districts.

Find out more starting on page 2 of the January 11, 2021 agenda (Pdf).

For more information, please contact Kerry Donnell, Communications Manager, extension 62354, [email protected]

Letter from the Director of Education, return to school delayed

January 8, 2021

PDF version

Dear Students, Parents/Guardians, Families and Staff:

Late yesterday afternoon, the provincial government announced that the return to school for elementary students will be deferred until January 25, 2021. This announcement was made in consultation with Dr. David Williams, the Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario.

According to the provincial announcement, These time-limited measures are being taken to help ensure that all Ontarians stay at home as much as possible to minimize transmission of the virus and prevent hospitals from becoming overwhelmed.

For students of Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board who normally attend in-person school, the delay in returning to in-person school means that remote/at-home learning will continue for the next two weeks.

This announcement does not affect students who are enrolled at the virtual schools.

Please be assured that your child’s teacher will continue to communicate with you and your child about the remote learning schedule.

Access to technology for remote/at-home learning

While the HPEDSB has distributed close to 5,000 devices to students this year, we know that some students may still require a device for this remote learning period. Families in need of supplemental technology are encouraged to contact their child’s school to make arrangements to obtain it. Please note that devices will be provided based on availability and may take time to distribute.

Support for students with special needs

Plans are in place to support students with special education needs with at-home learning through school-based staff and school board professionals. Schools staff will contact families directly.

Mental health supports for students

During the remote/in-person learning period, various school-based and community supports and resources are available for students, including the following:

  • Students will continue to have remote access to services, through school-based social workers, child and youth workers, and community partners. In addition, mental health resources are available, including Kids Help Phone, which offers 24/7 counselling and referral services across the province. To use this free resource, children can call 1-800-668-6868, or text CONNECT to 686868.
  • School Mental Health Ontario also has a number of worthwhile resources for students and families on their website at smho-smso.ca.

Child care centres

Schools will continue to provide access to their on-site child care centres.

I want to assure you that we continue to be focused on supporting students and families during these unusual times. Even though the spread of COVID-19 may still present challenges ahead, our school and central office teams are doing all they can to ensure students are engaged in learning, and are keeping in contact with their teachers and classmates.

We will continue to communicate over the next couple of weeks as we know more. In the meantime, I encourage you to connect with your child’s teacher for any questions about remote/at-home learning.

Thank you for your patience and ongoing support.

Take care,

Director of Education
Sean Monteith

What to expect for returning to school in January 2021

Updated January 8, 2021—Yesterday the provincial government announced that in-person learning for elementary students will be delayed for two weeks, until January 25, 2021.

Read more: Province of Ontario news release

Read more: Letter from the Director of Education

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January 2, 2021— Returning to school on January 4, 2021 after the holiday break will be different than previous years. Read on to find out what to expect for learning at the virtual, elementary and secondary schools.

**Please be aware that this information may change if the Ministry of Education provides new details this week. Updates will be posted to this website and social media @HPEschools.**

K-8 and 9-12 virtual schools

Students who attend the virtual schools will have no change, their learning will be the same as before the holidays.

Elementary schools

Elementary schools are closed for in-person teaching and learning during the week of January 4, 2021. As of today, they will re-open, as usual, on January 11, 2021.

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR STUDENTS/FAMILIES

  1. Students will learn remotely, meaning online from home for one week, taught by their normal teacher/early childhood educator, through a combination of synchronous and asynchronous approaches (see explanation below).
  2. This learning will take place in a variety of ways, such as through previously assigned work or new work, using the classroom teacher’s regular communication platforms (e.g., Google or D2L), based on students’ age and grade.
  3. The transition to remote learning will take place over two days, Monday, January 4 and Tuesday, January 5, 2021, with online classes scheduled to begin Wednesday, January 6, 2021.
  4. All homeroom teachers will contact families to make a personal connection, explain what to expect and how to access learning throughout the week.
  5. Educators will use their professional judgement in providing flexibility to students on an individual basis when students are unable to participate in synchronous learning.
  6. The school day will follow the regular daily schedule and subjects by block.
  7. Teachers will support students and families who are unable to access virtual learning synchronously and asynchronously.
  8. Daily attendance and a welcome discussion will occur synchronously to start each day.
  9. A reasonable timeframe for synchronous learning in Kindergarten is 100 minutes each day and in Grade 1-8 is 150 minutes each day during the three days of remote learning.
  10. Literacy and math will be be part of daily synchronous instruction.
synchronous and asynchronous learning

Secondary schools

Secondary schools are closed for in-person teaching and learning during the weeks of January 4,  11 and 18, 2021. As of today, they will re-open, as usual, on January 25, 2021.

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR STUDENTS/FAMILIES

  1. Students will learn remotely, meaning online from home for three weeks, taught by their normal teachers, through a combination of synchronous and asynchronous approaches (see explanation above).
  2. This learning will take place in a variety of ways, such as through previously assigned work or new work, using the classroom teacher’s regular communication platforms (e.g., Google or D2L), based on students’ age and grade.
  3. Educators will use their professional judgement in providing flexibility to students on an individual basis when students are unable to participate in synchronous learning.
  4. Teachers will contact students to explain what to expect and provide direction for continued learning in Octomester/Block D.
  5. Students may receive up to 75 minutes of asynchronous learning, with teacher support available during that time.
  6. The regular school day schedule will be followed, with breaks and lunch the same as before the holiday break.

Students with special education needs

We remain committed to our focus on ensuring equity of access to learning opportunities for students in self-contained classrooms.

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR STUDENTS/FAMILIES

  1. School teams will ensure plans are in place to support students with special education needs
  2. Education workers and school board professionals will be available to support remote learning
  3. Students with special education needs who cannot be accommodated through remote learning based on student needs will be supported on a case-by-case basis
  4. Beginning Monday, January 4, 2021, secondary school administrators and learning support teachers will contact parents/guardians of students in regional programs to discuss options for students who may not be able to participate in remote learning due to the student’s individual learning profile

Mental health supports and services

Students will continue to have remote access to mental health support and services through school-based child and youth workers (elementary) and social workers (secondary), and community partners

  • Child and youth workers, and social workers are available to support students/families, and participate in school team meetings as required
  • Mental health resources:
    • Kids Help Phone offers 24/7 FREE counselling and referral services across the province, children can call 1-800-668-6868, or text CONNECT to 686868
    • School Mental Health Ontario has numerous resources for students, parents/guardians online www.smho-smso.ca

Devices and technology to use at home

Chromebooks and/or WI-FI devices may be available for students to use for remote learning. Please contact your child’s school to find out if any devices are available at this time.

Questions about remote learning?

If you have questions about remote learning, please contact your child’s school as they are best to respond. Alternatively, send an email to [email protected] for a response or re-direction to the school. Please include the school name in your email.

Thank you for your patience and understanding. These are new and different times for all of us. Everyone at at HPEDSB is working diligently to support students and families.

Last updated: July 5, 2021 at 9:55 am
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