Board Meeting Highlights for April 2021
For Immediate Release
April 28, 2021
GUELPH, Ontario – The April meeting of the Upper Grand District School Board was held on April 27, 2021. The following provides highlights from the meeting.
Police Presence in Schools
At the Board Meeting on Tuesday night, trustees approved the recommendations put forward by the Police Presence in Schools Task Force.
Background: On June 24, 2020, the Board of Trustees established a Police Presence in Schools Task Force to review police presence in UGDSB schools in response to questions from community leaders and individuals across the board about the role of policing in the UGDSB. The committee met frequently between July 2020 and February 2021 to gather student, staff and community feedback, consult with police, review presentations, summarize research, and analyze data and available historical background information on police presence in schools in both the elementary and secondary panels. The Task Force analyzed the research and data using an equity and human rights-based approach. The Task Force, comprised of staff, trustees, a student trustee, and community representatives, reached unanimous agreement on 7 recommendations offered to trustees.
At the April Board Meeting, trustees approved the 7 recommendations, listed below:
- The UGDSB and police services continue to deliver all foot safety patrol training (including street, driveway, and parking lot patrols) and bus patrol training.
- As per the Violence Threat Risk Assessment (VTRA) Community Protocol, the presence of police at all UGDSB schools continue when a Violent Threat Risk Assessment (VTRA) is activated.
- All police presentations be vetted using the Presentations in Schools Guidelines (updated in 2019) developed by the Student Support and Program Services department of the UGDSB.
- All students and parents be notified in advance of all police presentations at school.
- Staff collect feedback from students and staff on all police classroom/school presentations.
- The School Resource Officer program in the UGDSB be discontinued.
- Administrators collect data on all incidents that police respond to at UGDSB schools.
Draft School Year Calendars 2021-2022
Trustees approved draft school year calendars for the 2021-2022 school year for elementary and secondary schools in the Upper Grand DSB. The draft calendars will now be submitted to the Ministry of Education for final approval.
The calendars were reviewed by a committee of stakeholders, including representatives from all bargaining units, principals, human resources, board staff, transportation, and parents.
Both calendars have 194 days, which include 7 professional activity days. In secondary, 10 instructional days have been scheduled for examinations. The calendars meet the minimum requirements under Ontario Regulation 304 and abide by the elementary and secondary teachers’ collective agreements.
It is proposed that students start the year on Sept. 7, 2021. For the Christmas/Winter break, classes will run until Friday Dec. 17, 2021, and return after the holidays on Monday Jan. 3, 2022. For this school year only, March Break will include Friday March 11 through to Friday March 18, 2022. The last day of school will fall on June 27, 2022, for secondary students and June 29 for elementary students. The Wellington Catholic District School Board will be submitting a similar calendar to the Ministry for approval.
The draft calendars will be posted on the board website under School Year Calendars.
Funding Request for New Elementary School
Trustees approved a staff recommendation that the board submit a business case to the Ministry of Education, requesting funding for a new elementary school in Centre Wellington, through the Ministry’s Capital Priorities Program. The Capital Priorities Program provides school boards with an opportunity to identify and respond to the most urgent pupil accommodation needs.
On March 24, 2021, the Ministry issued a Memorandum, inviting school boards to submit proposals for their most urgent Capital Priorities, which need to be completed by the 2024-25 school year.
The board first submitted a Capital Priorities funding request for a new elementary school in Centre Wellington in 2019, however the proposal was not approved by the Ministry at that time. In this round of the Capital Priorities Program, staff will resubmit a business case for a new 308 pupil-place elementary school in the Township of Centre Wellington due to the projected enrolment pressures.
Preliminary Elementary and Secondary Staffing for 2021-22
Trustees approved staff recommendations regarding preliminary elementary and secondary staffing for next school year. Based on the projected enrolment and system needs, a preliminary allocation of elementary teaching staff will be set at 1392.7 FTE teachers for the 2021-22 school year. A preliminary allocation of secondary teaching staff will be set at 728.83 FTE teachers for the 2021-22 school year.
Trustees approved the following board policy: Policy 113 – Director of Education Performance Appraisal.
Trustees rescinded Policy 512 – HIV/AIDS.
To view all UGDSB policies and procedures, and to provide feedback on draft policies, visit www.ugdsb.ca/policy.
The next regular monthly meeting will be held on Tuesday May 25, 2021. Meeting details will be posted online at https://www.ugdsb.ca/board/board-meetings/board-and-committee-meetings-2020-2021/.