Parent Focus Group for SD57 Strategic Plan 2021-2026

Parents!! Do you have questions about numeracy, literacy, how your child’s academic level is assessed and measured, how the district is planning on improving education and education outcomes ? Are you curious on what your school and our school district is going to do to support your child’s education and development in the next few years and how they plan on doing that? Do you wonder where your child is at in terms of literacy and numeracy and how that is assessed? Curious about how the data from the Student Learning Surveys administered in Grades 4, 7, 10 and 12 is used and what is shows? psst… check out page 4 and onwards on the Implementation Plan for Year 1 and 2 document 🙂

Well now you can find out!!!! SD57 Acting Superintendent Cindy Heitman is inviting any and all parents and families of children in our school district to attend a Virtual Parent Focus Group via Zoom in order to hear your questions, feedback, concerns and thought on SD57s 2021-2026 Strategic Plan.

January 13th @ 6:30-8:pm

and/or

January 27th @ 6:30-8pm

via Zoom: https://ca01web.zoom.us/j/66767919771

Attend one, attend both…your pick! Join from the comfort of your home. Better yet, bring a friend – bring that other parent who you know is curious about their child’s numeracy and literacy. This is a safe, virtual space to have your voice heard and make a difference so make sure to attend!

At the June 22, 2021 Regular Public Meeting, the Board of Education approved the Strategic Plan 2021-2026 and its implementation plan for year one and two.  The Board also approved the Framework for Enhancing Student Learning Report 2020-2021.

This is your opportunity as a parent to have your voice heard and be actively engaged and involved as our school district works on revising and implementing the 2021-2026 Strategic Plan. This work is extremely important – did you know that all of our district schools have their individual School Plans (look on your schools website), which tie into our districts Strategic Plan which then in turn ties into the The Ministry of Education’s Framework for Enhancing Student Learning that states:

“Boards of education will set, create and maintain a strategic plan, annually report on student outcomes and put systems in place to continuously improve the educational outcomes for all students and improve equity for Indigenous students, children and youth in care, and students with disabilities or diverse abilities. The policy is grounded in a shared commitment and common values including literacy, numeracy, graduation, belonging and career and life goals to support each and every learner and improve equity of outcomes.

Provincial, district and school educational outcomes, goals, objectives and measures should be specific, meaningful, measurable, and evidence informed. The focus of planning and reporting is to understand the evidence and develop and implement actions to improve student outcomes.

Provincial, district, and school educational outcomes should align with the School Act, the Goals of Education and the Educated Citizen in Parts B and C of the Statement of Education Policy Order (Mandate for the School System) … Educational outcomes should also align with policies, reports and other frameworks that focus on supporting educational outcomes of all students.

MoE, July 6th, 2020

January 2022 Monthly DPAC Meeting

Happy January everyone!!! Our first DPAC meeting for 2022 is this coming Monday January 10th @ 6:30pm so join us via the comfort of your home and PJ’s via MS Teams at this link.

If you are attending virtually and are new to using MS Teams, we suggest downloading the app and creating a free Microsoft account. Alternately you can click on the meeting link and attend the meeting via the your browser of choice as a guest either on a computer or mobile device. When you join the DPAC meeting MS Teams will ask for your name – please fill in your full name and school or organization you are representing.

For obvious safety reasons and the current state of the Covid pandemic there will be no in person meeting this month, instead our January meeting will be held virtually only. Our theme this month is District Innovation and Strategic Plan and we are discussing:

  1. Two virtual SD57 hosted Parent Focus Groups to hear from parents on their feedback, thoughts, and input on the 2021-20216 SD57 Strategic Plan on January 13th and 27th from 6:30-8pm via Zoom 
  1. What do you as a parent need clarity or information on with the district’s current Strategic Plan? 
  1. Have you read your current school plan? Do you know where to find it? 
  1. What questions, feedback or concerns do you have about your school plan? 
  1. Do you understand how the individual school plans and district plan fit into the larger provincial education picture and plan? 
MonthTheme
SeptemberAdvocacy
OctoberSOGI; Inclusivity & Equality
NovemberSafety – Emotional, Psychological & Physical in our School  Communities
DecemberWhere’s Waldo? Where are things at? PACs to provide updates to Partner Groups, Rights & Stakeholders
January 2022District Innovation & Strategic Plan
FebruaryCatchment & Capacity in SD57
MarchFinancial & Budgets
AprilMental Health & Wellness
MayExtracurricular Activities
June Truth & Reconciliation

Welcome Back – Important Information for January 2022

Friday December 31st, DPAC attended a meeting of SD57 Stakeholders on the January 4-7 Re-entry period.  Information is limited at this time, open for constructive feedback and subject to change.  We all wish for nothing more than for school to function as normally as possible in a safe and predictable manner but the Omicron variant of Covid-19 is going to make this very difficult to achieve in the coming weeks.  
Please understand that School Staff, District Staff and the Board of Trustees are working diligently to implement these changes appropriately.  Our parent community will be understandably frustrated and we ask for your patience and respect towards our partners in public education during this period of uncertainty. Commentary on how and why this is being done should be reserved at this time and respectfully expressed to elected representatives and relevant provincial Ministries.   

What we currently know: 

  • Essential workers are defined as parents who are Essential Health Care Workers or SD57 Staff.
  • No changes to district calendar.
  • School Trustee By-Election will proceed as scheduled
  • No funding or support from MOE other than this ‘prep’ period (no PPE, no money, limited guidance yet)
  • They are planning for Functional Closures due to staff illness (Functional Closure: not enough staff to safely supervise students)
  • Classroom layout will adapt to be similar to 2020/2021 (more space and no face-to-face configurations by removing non-essential furniture, no ‘carpet time’ spaces)
  • There will be no ‘instruction’ during the week of Jan 4-7 although electronic/self-serve supports and resources will be available and distributed to families in a general way. 
  • There are multiple competing priorities from government to balance on behalf of the people of BC and all are valid: health, healthcare, continuity of learning for students, predictability for families.  

There are almost no new ‘enhanced’ measures from the Ministry of Education plan (more detail available here: Addendum to the K-12 Communicable Disease Safety Plan)

  • No spectators for sports; only 2 teams allowed for games (no tournament play of 3 or more teams at one place/time)
  • Essential visitors in schools only (not sure if PAC hot lunch would be essential – requested that clarification)
  • Virtual gatherings for student assemblies and staff meetings
  • Reinforce the importance of previous mitigation efforts (hand washing, health check, stay home when sick, masking effectively and importance thereof – exemptions will continue to be respected but may be reviewed individually)
  • Reviewing traffic movement within the schools, staggering breaks but no cohorts.

What we will see from School District 57 in the coming days: 

  • Letter released December 31 to all parents/families.
  • Bussing will run normally on Tuesday for student safety and revised for the remainder of the week.
  • Planning will be underway to have a process ready to support Functional closures on a school-by-school basis as needed basis (more information coming on what this would look like)
  • Outreach to specific families/students from a school contact
  • Outreach to school-level PAC and parents on implementation of Enhanced Measures
  • Communication on Ventilation in schools
  • Changes to Covid Exposure notification in conjunction with Northern Health Authority and the Ministry of Health/BC CDC as contact tracing will not be able to function on a case-by-case basis as it was September to December 2021

Parent Concerns: 
There have been a wide-range of responses to this news.  All responses and view point are valid, and we understand that this is extremely disruptive now with 5 days’ notice let alone what it will be like if families are facing Functional Closures with less than one day notice which is entirely probable. Thus we want and need to hear from you, our parent voice, to make sure we are advocating for what you need for your families and children.

Please send all your thoughts, feedback and concerns to us at: info@sd57dpac.ca

Thank you for your attention, thank you for your patience, thank you for supporting our school communities. 

SD57 DPAC Executive

If you or a family member are experiencing concerns with your mental and emotional well-being support is available.  Please review this list from the Province of BC for specific supports: 
https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/health/managing-your-health/mental-health-substance-use/virtual-mental-health-supports#students

Additional free support options are available through this Government of Canada portal: https://wellnesstogether.ca/en-CA

BCCPAC EGM Cancelled

There were 5 delegates from SD57 on tonight’s Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) on Zoom. Unfortunately the number of delegates to reach quorum is 72, but we only had 70 registered, and 60 in attendance. Therefore, the meeting was open for 30 minutes to answer questions, and then adjourned.

The next opportunity for resolutions to be passed will be at the May 2022 AGM in person. There is a plan to review and revise the Constitution and Bylaws. If you are part of a member PAC/DPAC and wish to volunteer for this Committee or any other opportunities, contact us exec@sd57dpac.ca or info@bccpac.bc.ca.

BCCPAC Parent Conference Day 1

We have 8 parents participating from SD57 and we are enjoying some learning and community among parents all over BC, approximately 120 participants.

We received an engaging message from the Minister of Education, Hon Minister Jennifer Whiteside. She highlighted some good news stories featured here: Good News in Education – Province of British Columbia (gov.bc.ca) She mentioned many issues and initiatives that the Ministry is engaged in and some exciting changes.

Presentation on Mental Health in Schools (MHIS) Strategy.


Presentation on the Framework for Enhancing Student Learning (FESL) attached.

Some great breakout group discussions and ideas. The parent voice is so important and valued by the Ministry and Districts in BC. Keep engaging!

Virtual PAC Cafe Networking Event

It would be great if we could have representatives from all 41 PACs at our networking event tomorrow May 17 from 6:30-8pm. Zoom allows us to connect more people at the same time to share information and resources. Grab a drink and a device, and come chat with us!

Find us on Facebook and view the event here. Feel free to invite all PAC parents!

Email DPAC@sd57.bc.ca for the Zoom link.

Social Media Awareness for Students and Parents

Here are some opportunities for students and parents to do some training regarding Social Media Awareness, Internet Safety, and Cyberbullying.

Contact DPAC@sd57.bc.ca for the link to any of these events below.

ERASE: Social Media Awareness, Digital Footprints and Cyberbullying
Date: Monday May 17
Time(s): either 10:30-11:30am OR 1:00-2:00pm
Who: Students in grade 8-12 and their parents

White Hatter – Nukko Lake Elementary
Date: Tuesday May 25
Time: 9:45am
Who: Students in grade 6-7

White Hatter – Glenview Elementary
Date: Tuesday June 1
Time: 6:30-8:30pm
Who: Parents of Glenview students, parents of other student groups who received a recent White Hatter presentation, or any interested SD57 parents

Contact DPAC Executive anytime you have questions exec@sd57dpac.ca.

BCCPAC May Updates

Take a peek at some PAC and Parent resources in the BCCPAC update including The Framework for Enhancing Student Learning, updates about Gaming Grants and Zoom licenses, and links to parent information websites to enhance social emotional learning and safety for children.

May Newsletter

Any parents who are interested in attending this Conference, contact your PAC or DPAC for your $35 reimbursement.

Annual Parent Education Conference – May 28-29, 2021

We are excited for you to join us virtually for our annual parent education conference on Friday May 28 and Saturday May 29, 2021. Our conference speakers and sessions will cover 10+ hours of valuable content for you and your PAC parent community! Our online format over two days enables parents/guardians/caregivers from across the province to safely participate from their home or office. Register Now!

Virtual PAC Cafe – May 17

As discussed with the Membership at our last two DPAC Meetings, we would like to hold a Virtual PAC Cafe in May to facilitate communication between PACs and DPAC. This is a place where PAC Members can share information with each other and give input to DPAC on how we can support. An opportunity to network and discuss what is working and what concerns your school may have. For elementary and secondary PACs.

Virtual PAC Cafe
DATE: Monday May 17
TIME: 6:30 – 8pm
ZOOM Info: email DPAC@sd57.bc.ca to register and receive the Zoom link

We are starting with a few announcements about DPAC and BCCPAC. We will briefly outline a recent Gaming Grant Seminar. Then our discussions will follow these themes: Engagement, Advisory, Sponsorships.

1) Engagement – How does your PAC connect with parents in your school? What does your PAC do to engage with students, staff, and parents? What are some ways you can engage with the whole school community?
2) Advisory – How does your PAC discuss and advocate on issues related to education, funding, and policy within your school and district? If there is a concern raised, do you feel like you have the support from School Administration, DPAC, and other resources?
3) Sponsorships – How does your PAC spend your funds? What can you sponsor and support that benefits the school and is sustainable? How has the pandemic effected your ability to support meaningful initiatives?

Look forward to seeing you there! Spread the word to ALL your PAC Members (not just Execs). Thanks!

DPAC Minutes – May 2021

Our DPAC AGM went well. Thank you to all the PACs for joining and creating quorum.

We are pleased to announce our new executive members:

  • Chair – Andrea Beckett 
  • Vice-Chair – Laura Weller 
  • Treasurer – Arlene McKibbin 
  • Secretary – Rickie Mitchell 
  • Director – Gillian Burnett 
  • Director – Christa Porter  

We had a lively discussion about wellness, workload, and sustainability for teachers and staff at SD57. This is the statement from DPAC:

We acknowledge that teachers have done their best in a difficult year when they have been asked to do more and more with less and less (less certainty, less protection) and that teachers and the public school system are critical to the health and well-being of students and families.  That’s a heavy load to bear.  We acknowledge that teachers in classrooms are critical to reaching students and bringing out their best. This is not to say that other staff members do not contribute in meaningful ways to support our kids – it takes a team, it takes a village. 
But teachers. Teachers are something else and we recognize that teachers don’t come to the profession as anything less than seeing it as a calling and an honour to support children and the community at large.  They are the frontline to children, they become a special part of a student’s growth.  As adults we all remember special teachers that had an impact on our own growth and brought us to a path we would not have discovered without them.  How can we make sure our kids have the same experience without burning out highly trained, compassionate educators? 

Then some questions were sent out to teachers and responses are coallated in the document below.