Board of Education Report November 20, 2019
Following are some highlights of items discussed at the regular Board of Education meeting held on Wednesday, November 20, 2019. District staff reported on a number of field trips that occurred over the last few weeks. Included in these trips were the SESS Grades 10-12 Photography and French trips to Camp Tulahead in Princeton and the OSES and OSS trips to We Day in Vancouver. The Board would like to thank the teachers leading these trips for exposing the students to these varied experiences and learning opportunities.
The Ministry of Education has released the six-year completion rates for 2018/19 for our district. The Board is pleased to see improvement with Indigenous learner completion and anticipate an even stronger completion rate for 2019/20. Reported six-year completion rates for Indigenous learners is 65.4% – up from previous year of 56.3%. This is the highest rate of completion in the past five years. There will be further information on this item presented at the December Board meeting.
Superintendent Young, Secretary-Treasurer Paliappa along with Teacher Melia Dirk attended the first multi-ministry (Education, Health, MCFD, Provincial Child Care Council) Early Learning Summit on November 8th. The purpose of this summit was to demonstrate the Ministry of Education’s leadership in early learning, present the current research and evidence on social and financial benefits of investing in early learning, discuss school-age childcare and listen to school district/community stories. Superintendent Young also had the privilege of sitting on a panel to share the District’s story on the seamless extended day and our partnerships with third-party providers.
The Board was pleased to hear that on November 14 the Ministers of Health, Finance, and Education made an important announcement concerning vaping regulations and an education campaign in BC. The new regulations target product access, flavours, nicotine content, packaging, and advertising, and intends to increase taxes on vapour products, to protect youth from risks associated with vaping. The Board would like to thank the many other Boards of Education and the BCSTA who joined with us in advocating for these changes.
We are pleased to have once again received a grant to support action plans and capacity building in the area of mental health and well-being. This grant is in the sum of $30,500 and will support several areas including Social Emotional Learning, Trauma Informed Practice and Mental Health Literacy. These initiatives will be further developed through district counselors and administrators.
Rob Zandee, Chairperson School District No. 53 (Okanagan Similkameen)