Monthly Archives: January 2012

Financial Hardship Policy and Field Trips

School District 57 has a financial hardship policy to ensure that all students will be able to go on field trips, even if their parents can’t afford it:

http://www.sd57.bc.ca/fileadmin/cao.sd57.bc.ca/Policy_Manual/Policies/5101.pdf

According to policy:

All communication with students and/or parents regarding fees and deposits
must include a statement that explains that fees will not be a barrier to student
participation in school activities.

Schools will establish a hardship application process that is clear to students and parents. All staff members should be aware of this financial hardship provision and be able to advise students and parents with regard to access.

The procedures for addressing financial hardship must be clearly communicated to parents and students and should be conveyed in such media as the student handbook, the parent handbook, student planners, newsletters and/or the school’s website.

As a example, Heather Park Elementary school has the financial hardship policy on the school website, and has also posted in the information on the PAC website:

http://www.hpar.sd57.bc.ca/index.php?id=6750

http://www.heatherparkpac.info/2012/01/field-trips-and-financial-hardship/

 

BCCPAC Important Dates

Get your resolutions on the agenda!

Make sure your PAC/DPAC’s resolutions aren’t missed out, don’t leave them to the last minute.

Deadline for Special Resolutions is January 31st

Resolution forms and information is posted on the website http://www.bccpac.bc.ca/index/event_calendar/2012AGM.aspx

 

2012 Nominations for the BCCPAC Board of Directors

The deadline for nominations is midnight February 28, 2012.  Nomination forms and information can be found on the BCCPAC website at: (http://www.bccpac.bc.ca/index/event_calendar/2012AGM.aspx).

Inquiries may be sent to the Nominations Committee Chair, Cathy Jewett (cathyjewett@bccpac.bc.ca).

 

BCCPAC is very pleased to offer the following four awards – three for parents and one for a student  

February 28th is the deadline for the four awards offered to BCCPAC members.

Do you or someone you know meet any of the criteria below?  If so, please nominate them for an award.

Information, forms and posters (for your bulletin board) for each award are posted on the BCCPAC website http://www.bccpac.bc.ca/aboutus/awards.aspx

 

2012 BCCPAC Spring Conference and Annual General Meeting

Date:               May 25 – 27, 2012

Location:        Executive Plaza Hotel & Conference Centre, Coquitlam, BC

Conference information and program coming soon http://www.bccpac.bc.ca/index/event_calendar/2012AGM.aspx

 

School Enrolment and Capacity: History, Projections, and Issues

This report was presented to the Board at the school board meeting of January 24th.

Short version – Enrolment History and Projections – jan 23 2012

From the introduction:

The purpose of this report is not to change history, or debate historical decisions, but rather to learn from the past as we look to the future.

As a parent organization, we see future capacity issues with schools in our district, and have shown these issues in this report. There is already not enough capacity in certain elementary schools to accommodate all students who wish to attend those schools, and we see this problem becoming more common in the future in certain areas of the district.

As an example, at the start of the 2011/12 school year, one class in Prince George spent the first months of the school year meeting in a school library as there is no room for them in the school. A number of elementary schools have had their registration capped, and students have been turned away from their neighbourhood schools.

The District Parent Advisory Council would like to see an annual report on the condition of our district’s student enrolment and capacity. This report would be delivered to the school board at a public board meeting, prior to kindergarten registration and the start of the district transfer process, and also be in time to provide assistance to the budget committee when preparing the following year’s budget.  The report would provide information on any caps on registration or transfers, and would also provide the board and the public with information on any problem areas.

There should be time built in for dialogue, discussion, collaboration, and consensus building to take place about options for dealing with capacity issues, and this discussion should not take place in the eleventh hour.

In this report, we have looked at the historic enrolment numbers and projected enrolment numbers, and compared them to the capacity of our schools. This is the type of visual information that can be generated and provided to Board members and the public to ensure that people understand the historical impact of declining enrolment, increases in enrolment, and school closures.  This type of information could easily be included in an annual report so that trends can be clearly visualized.

 

Spring Break in 2013

The Prince George district calendar committee met to discuss the calendar for the 2012/13 school year, and the question of whether or not to have a two week spring break in 2013 has come up.

The school district follows the recommendations of the 2007 District Calendar Committee, two of which are as follows:

  • That the district’s spring break should always be scheduled to coincide with the provincial spring break, as per the Ministry of Education’s standard school calendar.
  • That a two-week spring break be considered only in years where, as a result, a maximum of three instructional days must be made up.

For the next school year, the Ministry of Education’s Spring Break is March 18 to 22, Good Friday is on the 29th, and Easter Monday is on April 1st. It was recommended in the committee meeting that the Easter Monday holiday be moved to the previous week, which would mean there would be only three instructional days off, and therefore Prince George would have a two week Spring Break March 18 to 29, with Easter Monday, April 1st, being a school day. The instructional day would be increased by a few minutes to compensate.

Please note that Easter Monday is not a statutory holiday, although it is common to have this day off in some areas.

The committee has not reached a final recommendation on the matter. The committee would send a recommendation to the board, who would make the final decision.

Note: the District Parent Advisory Council has one representative on this committee, along with other partner groups.

Parents – do you have any comments on this matter? What would your vote be – to have a 2 week Spring Break, or a one week Spring Break?

BCCPAC News

Survey on the Future of a Province-Wide Student Information System

BCeSIS is a province-wide student information systems used by schools and school districts across the province.

The Ministry is assessing future directions for BCeSIS. Gartner Consulting was hired in spring 2011 to review BCeSIS and recommend next steps. Gartner’s report recommends that the Province purchase a new student information system, continuing to use BCeSIS until it can be implemented. You may wish to read Gartner’s full report, its executive summary or a summary of its findings prepared by the Ministry of Education

We encourage you to take the surveys for parents and students which can be found on the Ministry’s engagement site. If you have any questions regarding the surveys, please feel free to contact Elevate Consulting. If you experience technical difficulties, please email surveysupport@elevateconsulting.ca or call 250-483-6660

The deadline for collecting survey responses has been extended until January 20, 2012.

 

Want To Know More About The FSA?

The BCCPAC FSA Toolkit can be found at http://www.bccpac.bc.ca/resources/assessment.aspx which provides valuable information and answers to many questions.

BCCPAC hopes this information will provide answers to questions parents may have on the FSA’s administered in BC to students in Grades 4 and 7 and their intended purpose. Those seeking a deeper understanding of assessment are encouraged to read “A Parent’s Guide to Assessmenthttp://www.bccpac.bc.ca/UserFiles/file/Resources/StudentAssessmentBCParentGuide_2007.pdf

Nominations To The Board of Directors – BCCPAC is currently accepting nominations for the 2012/2013 Board of Directors. The position of First Vice President has been added to the list of positions open for election.  The term for this position will be one (1) year. The other positions open for Nomination: President, 2nd Vice President, Secretary and two (2) Directors have two (2) year terms.
The deadline for nominations is midnight February 28, 2012.  Nomination forms and information can be found on the BCCPAC website at: ( http://www.bccpac.bc.ca/index/event_calendar/2012AGM.aspx).  Inquiries may be sent to the Nominations Committee Chair, Cathy Jewett (cathyjewett@bccpac.bc.ca).

 

Kindergarten Registration

More information has been released by the school district about kindergarten registration. There is more information available at www.sd57.bc.ca, such as maps of catchment areas

The registration and transfer process depends on policy 5119, which was updated 4 times in 2011. This post from last year may assist parents: http://sd57dpac.ca/2011/02/kindergarten-registration-process/

Please note that if you are registering a child in the regular program (not a choice program, such as traditional, aboriginal, Montessori, or French immersion), then you MUST apply to your catchment school. You may then apply to transfer your child, should you wish your child to attend a regular program in a different school. The school you wish your child to attend will be able to help you navigate the process.

This content is copied from a Word document on the school district website. 

 http://www.sd57.bc.ca/?id=499

Pre-registration will take place at the schools between 9:00 am and 3:00 pm on

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

 KINDERGARTEN

Children whose fifth birthday falls on or before December 31, 2012 are eligible to enter Kindergarten in September 2012. Continue reading Kindergarten Registration

Tour and hands-on workshop of District Resource Centre

Tour and hands-on workshop of the District Resource Centre, located at the John McInnis Centre, for parents of school district 57.

The district resource centre has many resources that are available to parents, students, and staff.

Spaces are limited to 15 parents for this tour, but additional tours can be arranged!

Grade 12 Marks

… Glen Hansman, vice president of the B.C. Teacher’s Federation (BCTF) … said the job action was specifically designed to not impact graduating students.

“For Grade 12 students we will be providing marks required for graduation, post-secondary applications and scholarship purposes,” he said. “The (B.C.) Labour Relations Board and the BCTF agreed what the job action would be with the agreement that Grade 12 marks for post-secondary applications and scholarship applications, that data would be provided.”

The job action began five months ago when B.C.’s teachers began the semester while in the midst of bargaining with the Province over class conditions, salaries and benefits. Since September, students have gone without report cards, as part of the teachers’ job action includes not issuing the end-of-semester reports.

But when it comes to Grade 12 students and the transcripts they need for post-secondary and scholarship applications, parents and students are being assured that the job action will have no affect on those processes.

In the end, McCullough would like to get the word out that when the time comes to get transcripts for anything post-secondary related, students and parents should simply speak with the school’s counsellor or principal.

“Part of this job action has been clear that Grade 12 students will not be interfered with,” said McCullough.

http://www.whistlerquestion.com/article/20120112/WHISTLER01/301129967/-1/whistler01/graduating-students-not-impacted-by-job-action-bctf

 

 

Kindergarten Registration

Kindergarten registration is coming up!

Kindergarten Registration Dates
Wednesday, February 1, 2012;  8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Reference Policy:  5119 (School Catchment Areas, Registration and Student Transfers)

Online Transfer Process
Begins 9:00 a.m. on Monday February 6th and runs through to March 2nd at 3:00 p.m.  Students wishing to transfer to another school for September 2012 must apply during this time.
Reference Policy:  5119 (School Catchment Areas, Registration and Student Transfers)

http://www.sd57.bc.ca/index.php?id=559

The school district will soon be publishing more information to assist parents of new kindergarten students.

1.    Kindergarten Registration Dates

Wednesday, February 1, 2012;  8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Reference Policy:  5119 (School Catchment Areas, Registration and Student Transfers)

 

2.    Online Transfer Process

Begins 9:00 a.m. on Monday February 6th and runs through to March 2nd at 3:00 p.m.  Students wishing to transfer to another school for September 2012 must apply during this time.

Reference Policy:  5119 (School Catchment Areas, Registration and Student Transfers)

New Choice Program at Kelly Road – Northern Learning Centre – Parent Information Session

The Northern Learning Center Choice program information night is January 19th at 7pm in the Kelly Road Secondary Multipurpose room.  This information night is for parents and students to come and hear about this new program.  Information and applications will be available at the meeting.  The NLC program’s goal is to engage grade 8 and grade 9 students in a different learning environment.  Students will be using projects that they are interested in to learn the required curriculum all while practicing 21st century skills.  This program starts in Sept 2012 and is available for current grade 7 and grade 8 students.

nlc.sd57.bc.ca  or www.krss.sd57.bc.ca