Board Meeting Update, December 12, 2022

Board Meeting Update, December 12, 2022
Posted on 12/12/2022
meeting graphic

This update is a summary of the December 12, 2022 public meeting of the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board. It was livestreamed (the recorded version will be available within 24 hours) and is an unofficial summary of the meeting; official minutes will be approved at the next regular meeting.


Acknowledgement of Traditional Lands

Recited by Stacey Lewis, Trustee, South Prince Edward: As Trustees for Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board and as settlers to this land, we acknowledge and honour the land on which we reside, occupy and meet as part of the traditional territories of the Haudenosaunee, Huron-Wendat and Anishinabek people. These Indigenous Nations agreed to mutual sharing obligations and responsibilities as stewards of the land and water. Today these responsibilities and obligations extend to all Peoples. These lands are steeped in rich Indigenous history, traditions and modern cultures that are proud and vibrant. The Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board supports and is committed to the stewardship of the land, and the responsibilities that we hold to ensure learning, education programs and services support all staff and students.

Centennial Secondary School Vocal Performance

Students shared the gift of music through their dynamic vocal performance this evening. They performed the following pieces: 

  • “The Wellerman”, a traditional sea shanty
  • “Memories” by Maroon 5/Pachelbel
  • “Pie Jesu”, from Requiem by Andrew Lloyd Webber

Soloists: Olivia Dafoe and Natalie Samfiru, with Teacher Pete Hercus on guitar. Thank you to the Senior Vocal Class and Junior Advanced Placement students.

group pic

Roll call and declarations of conflicts of interest

All current Board members were present in person and declared no conflicts of interest.

Rise and report from Committee of the Whole Closed Session

It was reported that the Closed Session meeting was about labour relations.

Committee Updates

Report from the Ontario Public School Board Association (OPSBA) representative

Highlights from this report included an overview of the November OPSBA Board of Directors Meeting and the OPSBA Advocacy Day held November 28, 2022. Find out more starting on page 8 of the December 12, 2022 agenda.

Report from the Governance and Policy Committee

Highlights from this report included an update on the next steps in filling a trustee vacancy and approval of a governance directive about public participation and delegations at Board meetings. Board members approved the Governance Directives for the Trustee Vacancy Ad Hoc Committee and also approved the Governance Directive 7.3 Public Participation and Delegation. Find out more starting on page 10 of the December 12, 2022 agenda.

Report from the Parent Involvement Committee, November 23, 2022

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • outline of the Parent Involvement Committee purpose;
  • presentation from Dr. Ethan Toumishey, Hastings Prince Edward Public Health, about masking;
  • school applications for Parents Reaching Out (PRO) funding grants; and
  • governance directive for the Parent Involvement Committee.

Report from the Special Education Advisory Committee, December 1, 2022

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • review of the election process for SEAC chair and vice-chair, with both roles acclaimed;
  • presentation about reviewing Individual Education Plans and analyzing the data; IEP statistics and considerations to improve student learning;
  • preparedness for online learning, when/if required;
  • letters shared from Durham District School Board and Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board.

Report from the Student Voice Committee

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • Student Voice Survey released on December 2, 2022, with 203 responses; and
  • meeting with Bayside Secondary School about progress made there.

Staff Updates

Report from the Director of Education

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • negotiations for new collective agreements: CUPE has ratified and other parties are expected to report on final word of ratification by December 19; negotiations are continuing with other labour groups at the provincial and local levels;
  • staff absences due to illness remain a concern and we continue to advise staff to stay home when ill; we have paused professional learning and meetings that would take staff out of schools; a next step would have been to pause extracurricular activities that required supply coverage, although we do not need to take that step at this time; after the holiday season may continue to be of concern due to larger and more gatherings that take place at this time of the year;
  • Eastside Secondary School received a CNC milling machine valued at $50,000 from the Canadian Tooling & Machining Association (CTMA) and Ontario Council for Technology Education (OCTE); a manual engine lathe valued at $25,000  and hand tools valued at $5,000 will be delivered in the coming weeks; and
  • schools are alive with the sounds of holiday activities: lunches, holiday concerts, activities and more are happening.

2022 Director’s Annual Report

The 2022 Director’s Annual Report is a collaborative effort among department and school staff to feature aspects of HPEDSB. It presents a cross-section of stories and information that make us Proud to Be HPEDSB!

Reading/Literacy update

This update provided an overview of foundational literacy practices within HPEDSB for elementary students. Through explicit and systematic instruction, a goal is for students to be able to decode and recognize individual written words, allowing them to comprehend a text as a whole unit. To develop automaticity in word recognition, students need to be exposed to three keys aspects of instructional practice:

  1. Address and correct the students’ phonological awareness difficulties and teach phonological awareness to the advanced (phoneme) level.
  2. Provide explicit, systematic phonic decoding instruction and/or reinforcement.
  3. Provide students with ample opportunities to apply these developing skills to reading connected text.

Find out more starting on page 52 of the December 12, 2022 agenda.

EQAO update 

This update provided an overview of student achievement, as measured by the Education and Quality Accountability Office (EQAO) for the 2021-2022 school year. Students experienced many disruptions to their learning during the pandemic. The EQAO data, along with other sources of information, can strengthen conversations about student learning.

The data is being used by educators to:

  • see trends in student learning and progress;
    gain insight into whether students are meeting curriculum expectations in reading, writing, and math at key stages of their education, as well as student attitudes and habits towards learning;
  • identify areas of growth and need; and,
  • assist with improving student achievement and well-being at individual, classroom, school, board and provincial levels.

Find out more starting on page 54 of the December 12, 2022 agenda.

Staffing and Recruiting update

This report provided an update on the strategies implemented to address staff shortages and recruit new employees to fill vacant positions and daily absences. Since the pandemic, school boards across the province, including HPEDSB, have struggled to recruit new employees. Human Resources Support Services has introduced simplified application processes and is continually improving its recruiting efforts. Find out more starting on page 56 of the December 12, 2022 agenda.

Revised Estimates

This report provided an update on revised estimates. Revised estimates are budgets that are updated for changes in enrolment, staffing, revenues and expenses, and are submitted to the Ministry of Education by December 15 each year. Revised estimates are more accurate than budgets as the information and assumptions they contain are more certain than those of the previous spring when the budgets were developed. 

The main factor driving changes between (spring) budget and (current) revised estimates is increased student enrolment, which results in increased revenues because school boards are generally funded on a per pupil basis. The increased enrolment creates a requirement for additional teachers and teacher assistants, which increase expenses. As well, HPEDSB has received new Priorities and Partnerships Funding (PPF) for short-term or high-value initiatives. This PPF funding adds to the revenues but has matching expenses for staff and resources. Find out more starting on page 58 of the December 12, 2022 agenda.

Tender for Gym/Auditorium HVAC and Lighting at Trenton High School

Board members approved a tender for work at Trenton High School, Phase 2: Gym/Auditorium HVAC and Auditorium Lighting in the amount of $1.96 million to Jean Daoust Construction Inc. Find out more starting on page 72 of the December 12, 2022 agenda.

Upcoming meetings

  • Physical Planning, Finance and Building Committee: January 9, 2023
  • Student Learning, Well-Being and Equity Committee: January 11, 2023 Governance and Policy Committee: January 16, 2023
  • Public Board Meeting: January 23, 2023 Special Education Advisory Committee Meeting: January 26, 2023

Upcoming school events

  • Central Hastings School:
    • January 11, 2023: Grade 8 Shadow Day
    • January 19, 2023: Grade 8-9 transitions Parent Info Night, 6:00-8:00 PM

A full list of committee and meetings dates/times is online.

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