Category Archives: policy

Please comment on Draft of Policy on Student Catchment, Registrations, and Transfers

The school district’s policy on catchment, registrations, and transfers is being revised. Parents are strongly encouraged to put forward their comments on this policy, and DPAC will be working to highlight some of the important changes and questions raised by this policy. The deadline for submissions is January 6, 2014 – get your input in now!
If you’re interested in participating in this discussion, please email chair@sd57dpac.ca, or call the DPAC cell phone at (250) 649-6770 and leave a message.
We also have a short survey – we are actively seeking input from parents, staff, and other members of the community on various issues around catchment, registration, and transfers. Please click here to fill out our survey: http://fluidsurveys.com/s/dpac/shortsurvey/
Some resources:

 

Citizen Letter to the Editor – School district policy dividing families

My two older children go to Peden Hill.

I also have two younger children, one of whom starts school in September.

We live about eight blocks away from Peden Hill. On the day of registration we went to Peden Hill to register my daughter, but we were told that because we lived closer to Westwood, we would have to go there and to request a transfer.

Figuring that her two older siblings go to Peden Hill it would not be a problem getting her transferred. We were wrong.

I contacted the school asking to speak to the principal and was told she was too busy to talk.

I was then told by the secretary that we would have to wait till August to find out if she got in and that there were only three spaces left. We have four children and I really don’t think its appropriate for them to go to two different schools.

Something has to be done.

D. Ross Prince George

 

DPAC had released a report in February that referred to some of the issues around kindergarten registration that would be coming up. In the recommendation section of the report, we state:

As an example, it appears that elementary school capacities are being reached or exceeded in some areas, while other areas have excess capacity…

The district policy 5119, for student registration and transfers, was recently revised. This revised policy gives more emphasis to catchment for regular schools and programs, rather than allowing children to register in whichever school they wish. This policy will be more used in the future, given the implementation of full time kindergarten, the increased numbers in the building of classes, growth in different areas of the city, and the upcoming increase in elementary school aged children across the district. Some schools will not have any room for additional children, and some schools would be faced with an inability to add more children without rebuilding classes and adding teachers.

The revised policy does not appear to give the school district any clear  responsibility to transport children to a school that they can be accommodated in, should their catchment school (or other local schools) be too full to fit them. The school district may have unwritten, customary policies as to how this issue is handled – but it is the written policy that must be followed. It is unclear if any record is kept when children are turned away from a school due to capacity issues.

DPAC is hearing of a number of parents having problems getting their children into schools, but this is only anecdotal evidence.

http://sd57dpac.ca/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/Enrolment-History-and-Projections-updated-Feb-22-2012.pdf

Additionally, DPAC had comments when policy 5119, which governs student registration and transfer was revised:

http://sd57dpac.ca/2010/12/comments-welcome-on-policy-5119/

We have heard from parents at other schools who have been informed that their application to transfer their kindergarten child to the same school their elder sibling is registered in will only be reviewed in mid-September. This is not an acceptable situation for parents to be in.

 

DPAC Submission to Policy and Governance Board Committee

As voted on at our June DPAC meeting, our submission to Policy and Governance:

2012 june 5 DPAC letter re partner groups and committees

June 5, 2012

 

Board of Education – Prince George School District

Attention: Tim Bennett, Chair of Policy and Governance Committee

2100 Ferry Avenue

Prince George, BC  V2L 4R5

 

Dear Mr. Bennett,

Re:     Partner Groups and Committees

The Prince George District Parent Advisory Council would like to provide some input to the Policy and Governance Committee regarding Bylaw 1, specifically with the area of committees of the board.

Currently, partner group representatives are invited to attend some of the committee meetings. These representatives are not members of the committees, and have no rights in these meetings other than those granted by the chair of each committee. While partner groups may request that items be placed on the agenda of each committee, this ability is shared by all members of the community according to bylaw 1, and the committees are not required to place any items on their agendas.

We would like to suggest that the partner group representatives be made full members of the committees. As full members, they would have the right to vote, make motions, and speak during committee meetings.

While it is valuable for the partner groups to be able to know what happens in committee meetings, it is equally valuable for the school district to have full and meaningful input from their partner groups.

Yours truly,

District Parent Advisory Council No. 57 (Prince George)

Don Sabo
Chairperson

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/

 

Draft – BCCPAC Fall Conference Delegate Selection Policy

This is a draft policy, posted for discussion, and is based on the Kamloops/Thompson DPAC policy. 

  1. 1.      Background

 

The Fall Conference of BCCPAC is a training-oriented conference, where delegates attend multiple workshops to improve their skills in building effective PAC’s.  As well, the conference is a major networking opportunity for PAC executives to meet each other and build working relationships.  All BCCPAC member PAC’s in our district will be encouraged to attend.  In the event that DPAC has travel reimbursements available yet cannot send sufficient delegates to use the funds, the unused portion of travel subsidies will be offered to member PAC’s.

Continue reading Draft – BCCPAC Fall Conference Delegate Selection Policy

Draft – BCCPAC Spring Conference Delegate Selection Policy

This is a draft policy, posted for discussion, and is based on the Kamloops/Thompson DPAC policy.

 

  1. 1.      Background

 

The Spring Conference is the AGM of BCCPAC and is a policy-oriented conference, where resolutions are put forward and voted on by BCCPAC members.  It is a means of bringing the parent voice of the school district to the provincial table.  All BCCPAC member PAC’s will be encouraged to attend or pass their proxies to those delegates from our district who will be attending.  In the event that DPAC has travel reimbursements available yet cannot send sufficient delegates to use the funds, the unused portion of travel subsidies will be offered to member PAC’s.

Continue reading Draft – BCCPAC Spring Conference Delegate Selection Policy

Financial Hardship Policy

The school district has a policy regarding financial hardship for students, and how students shouldn’t be denied opportunities because their parents can’t afford to pay for things such as field trips:
The Board of Education of School District No. 57 (Prince George) is committed to ensuring that no student is denied an opportunity to participate in a course, class or program because of financial hardship.

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

If parents are having difficulty, they are encouraged to contact their school administration to ask for information about the hardship application process. As per policy:

“The hardship application process may be formal or informal.  The process must always, however, respect an individual’s privacy and dignity and adhere to strict principles of confidentiality and fairness. “

Kindergarten Registration and Transfer Process

Kindergarten registration will be taking place Wednesday, February 2, 2011.

The transfer process will start Monday, February 7, 2011, and closing Friday, March 18, 2011.

The policy that will govern how these proceed will be finalized after the Tuesday, January 25, 2011 Public Board of Education Meeting. It is possible that the policy will be the proposed 5119 policy, a revised proposed policy, or the 2008 revision of the policy.