Board Meeting Summary, June 19, 2023

Board Meeting Summary, June 19, 2023
Posted on 06/19/2023

June 19, 2023—This is a summary of the June 19, 2023 public meeting of the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board. Official minutes will be approved at the next regular meeting.

Acknowledgement of Traditional Lands

Recited by Julia Webster, Student Trustee, Eastside Secondary School: 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.

Presentation: Promoting skilled trades in HPEDSB

This presentation showcased the various skilled trades and technology education options for students at Eastside Secondary School. These include Specialist High Skills Majors and the Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program. Presently, topics areas are Aviation and Aerospace, Manufacturing, Construction, Communications/Digital Media and Transportation Technology. Certifications students achieve include WHMIS, First Aid, CPR, Work at Heights, Elevated Platforms, Drone and Radio.

group photo

Thank you to presenters from Eastside Secondary School (L to R, back): Jim Doyle, Teacher (communications); Matt Grunig, Teacher (aviation and manufacturing); Jacob Culp, Teacher (construction); and Sean Pudlis, Experiential Learning Coordinator from the Education Centre. (L to R, front): Eastside Secondary School students Ali Craig, Jonah Hope and Kendra Flindall.

Rise and report from Committee of the Whole

At a closed Committee of the Whole meeting held earlier today, a human resources/governance/operations item was discussed; and another human resources matter and a property matter were discussed.

In addition, Board members approved the Agreement of Purchase and Sale for the former Queen Elizabeth School in Picton.

Report from trustees appointed to external organizations

Food for Learning Steering Committee

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • the committee has a newly-elected chair;
  • approval of a new memorandum of understanding between HPEDSB and The Learning Foundation;
  • discussion about developing a plan to help schools mitigate the increasing food costs; and
  • over $22,000 was raised for Food for Learning programs at the An Evening to Nourish Student Benefit Auction in early June.

Ontario Public School Boards’ Association (OPSBA) Achievement Award presentation

  • Congratulations to Nolan Steen, one of 10 recipients of the OPSBA Achievement Award. Nolan provides tutoring services to students in Grades 1-12 in Belleville, Prince Edward County and Quinte West. Nolan graduated from Prince Edward Collegiate Institute in 2020 and is in third year at Queen's University, where he is studying to be a teacher.three people, award presentation

  • (Pictured L to R): Amanda Robertson, Trustee, Belleville/Thurlow; Nolan Steen; and Shannon Binder, Chair of the Board.

Standing Committee reports

Governance and Policy Committee, June 12, 2023

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • Board members approved the Board and committee meeting dates for the 2023-2024 school year; and
  • Board members approved the new Policy XX: Trustee Honorarium, Expenses and Hospitality Expenditures.

Find out more starting on page 33 of the June 19, 2023 agenda.

Student Learning, Well-Being and Equity Committee, May 29, 2023

Highlights from this report included the following: 

  • Mathematics teaching and learning supports, as well as an update on professional learning for teachers;
  • review of the Quinte Adult Education program and the upcoming graduation; and
  • process for determining educational assistant allotment for schools.

Physical Planning, Finance and Building Committee, June 5, 2023

Board members approved the 2023-2024 budget, which is balanced and includes a small surplus of $22,597. To achieve the balanced budget, the following strategies were used: 

  • no excess funding, Board priorities were removed, deferred, or targeted funding was used;
  • aligned expenses to funding and made reductions where expenses exceeded funding;
  • central staff were reduced and aligned to targeted funding;
  • schools were staffed to meet regulation and collective agreement requirements;
  • temporary funded staff were removed in Special Education and staff were reallocated;
  • auto reimbursement was reduced; and
  • expenses were reduced where temporary funding was removed.

Find out more starting on page 45 of the June 19, 2023 agenda.

Statutory Committee reports

Audit Committee, June 7, 2023

  • Board members approved the 2022-2023 Regional Internal Audit Team Charter. This charter guides the relationship between the Audit Committee and the Regional Internal Audit Team (RIAT) and is to be signed at a minimum when there is a change in the Regional Internal Audit Manager (RIAM), the Director of Education and/or the Chair of the Audit Committee. It is also signed, preferably every year. The charter defines the purpose of the RIAT to “provide independent, objective assurance and consulting services. Find out more starting on page 74 of the June 19, 2023 agenda

Parent Involvement Committee, May 30, 2023

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • cancellation of a family symposium scheduled in May due to low enrolment; 
  • a common area to promote/list school events will be created online for the new school year; and
  • Fresh from the Farm fundraising opportunity for schools.

Special Education Advisory Committee, May 25 and June 8, 2023

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • summer learning and mental health supports;
  • update from the tri-board meeting with Limestone, and Algonquin and Lakeshore Catholic school boards;
  • presentation about ChatGPT pros, cons and considerations to teach students about being accountable and responsible; and
  • updates from the Early Years and IEP sub-committees.

Supervised Alternative Learning (SAL) Committee, June 7, 2023

Highlights from this report included the following: 

  • 72 students were approved for SAL during this school year, with successful outcomes.

Advisory Committee reports

Equity and Inclusivity Advisory Committee, June 14, 2023

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • an update of the English Language Learners/English as a Second Language programs;
  • collection of resources to support various commemorative dates; and
  • action items in the Equity Action Plan, specifically trauma-informed practices training.

Indigenous Education Advisory Committee, June 7, 2023

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • summary of the Indigenous team's work during this school year;
  • discussion about deferred funding and how it could be spent, such as to create outdoor learning spaces at a couple of schools; professional learning for school staff who work with Indigenous students; and
  • restructuring of Indigenous Education funding.

Student Voice Committee

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • provided a wrap-up of actions and activities during this school year: plan and host a student conference in the spring; interactions among the three student trustees together and with other students; and
  • comments about what it has meant to be a student trustee, an eye-opening experience and appreciation to staff for assisting the student trustees learn, feel welcome and accepted.

Report from the Chair

Presentation to outgoing student trustees

Shannon Binder, Chair of the Board acknowledged the outgoing student trustees and presented them with a memento of their time on the Board. We wish all the best to Lawson Hung, Trenton High School; Shoshannah Spencer, Centennial Secondary School; and Julia Webster, Eastside Secondary School. Julia is returning in September to join two new student trustees: Clara Vance, North Hastings High School, representing Indigenous students; and Aashvi Shah, Centennial Secondary School.

group photo

(Pictured L to R): Katherine MacIver, Director of Education; Rachael Prinzen, Vice-chair of the Board; Julia Webster, Student Trustee, Eastside Secondary School (returning next year); Shoshannah Spencer, Indigenous Student Trustee, Centennial Secondary School; Lawson Hung, Student Trustee, Trenton High School; and Shannon Binder, Chair of the Board.

Report from the Director of Education

Highlights from this report included the following:

  • Schools are celebrating students this and next week as students prepare to transition to new grades in the fall, along with secondary school graduation ceremonies on June 29.
  • At the end of May, the public was invited to community drop-ins to review possible accommodation options for students/schools and share new ideas that hadn't already been considered. The feedback from those sessions is online.  A reminder that consultation on options will occur in the fall for implementation September 2024.
  • On June 7, Katherine MacIver, Director of Education attended the Loyalist College Convocation Dinner celebrating the award winners and valedictorians from this college year. The College celebrated graduates from June 6-9.
  • We were pleased to be the grand marshal of the Belleville Pride Parade on June 10. The parade started at the HPEDSB parking lot and ended at Zwick’s Park. The participation was significant from staff, past and present, students, parents and supporters who walked with HPEDSB. It was a wonderful and a demonstration of the HPEDSB  commitment to inclusivity, support and equity.
  • A wonderful retirement dinner and celebration last week to honour employees who are retiring. The 37 retirees in attendance represented 980 years of employment with HPEDSB.
  • Senior staff is planning for next school year. Our priorities remain the same, with small refinements to focus the work: raising the bar in equity for Reading, Math and Grade 9 de-streamed courses. These priorities are important to students and families as we know that strong core skills and high school graduation lead to positive futures. We want to see all our students realize these in the years to come.
  • Bill 98 the Better Schools and Student Outcomes Act received royal assent on June 8. This bill is intended to re-focus Ontario’s education system on student achievement, prioritizing hands-on learning and developing skills in Reading, Writing and Math. Public consultation is underway now on three priority regulations:
  1. Provincial Education Priorities on Student Achievement: The regulation will outline provincial priorities for student achievement, which school boards would be required to adopt in their multi-year plans to help drive student outcomes.
  2. Professional Activity (PA) Days: The regulation will outline requirements by posting a clear outline of PA Day providers, topics, content and activities on a public-facing school board website.
  3. Transitional Certificate for Eligible Teacher Candidates: The Ministry of Education is working with the Ontario College of Teachers to create a permanent pathway for eligible teacher candidates to work as a teacher while finishing their Initial Teacher Education program through a transitional certification.
  • Acknowledgement of Nick Pfeiffer, Superintendent of Business, who is retiring in July. Nick has been with HPEDSB since 2011, first as Controller of Facility Services, then Superintendent of Business Services. Nick has navigated a financial recovery plan, accommodation reviews and building new schools, all with a steady view of doing what is best for students. Best wishes to Nick in retirement!

Staff reports

Skilled trades in HPEDSB

HPEDSB has experienced significant growth in students selecting trades-related courses, which include major credits required for Specialist High Skills Major programs. In addition, students who are interested in pursuing skilled trades after graduation are increasingly enrolling in co-operative education to gain valuable experience in a trade of interest, or to take advantage of the opportunities provided through the Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP). With momentum gaining in recent years, HPEDSB has invested in many school facilities to improve access to newer and safer technologies for schools. Recently HPEDSB received $358,000 through Ontario Council for Technological Education and the Canadian Tooling and Machining Association to add new precision machining equipment to HPEDSB schools. An additional $70,000 has been invested to replace all thickness planers in classrooms with safer, more maintainable units.

Find out more starting on page 81 of the June 19, 2023 agenda.

Borrowing resolutions

Board members approved various borrowing resolutions in order to meet 2023-2024 operating and capital expenditures.

Find out more starting on page 117 of the June 19, 2023 agenda.

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