Ontario Safe Schools Act
As of September 1, 2001, Safe Schools initiatives are in effect in all schools of the Province. The Ministry of Education has directed school boards to develop policies which set out the way in which schools and boards will implement and enforce the Safe Schools Act. It is important for parents and students and the school community to be aware of the expectations and processes involved in implementing the various parts of the Safe Schools Act. It is even more important for students and their parents to understand that there are consequences for breaches of both the Provincial Code of Conduct and the Board’s Code of Conduct that can result in suspensions and expulsions from school. We encourage parents and students to download and read the Ontario Safe Schools Act.
Student Safety— Lockdown Drills
In the interest of student safety, the Upper Grand District School Board has directed all schools to conduct at least one Lockdown drill each school year. A Lockdown is used when it is suspected that an intruder has entered the school and poses a threat to the safety of our students and staff. Detailed procedures have been developed in conjunction with our local police services and proved to all schools as part of our emergency procedures manual. In a Lockdown, students and staff are directed to secure areas where doors can be locked and the students are kept out of sight (such as classrooms and portables). No one may leave their secure area until they receive an “all clear” from the authorities. In planning to do a drill, we can ask the local police to monitor and assist us, and we will also hold one if we are asked to do so by the local police. Before a drill is held we will inform our school council and give advance notification of the date and the time to our parent community. Students and staff will be instructed on what they are to do when a drill is held. Lockdown drills will become familiar to students just like fire and tornado drills which we are also required to do every year. Some schools have already held Lockdown drills and report that the students understand and follow the directions provided by school staff. If you have any questions, or concerns about Lockdown drills, we would be happy to discuss them with you.
Recording School Events & Privacy
Personally recording school events and then subsequent public posting of those recordings on social networks like Facebook or You Tube is not respectful of the privacy rights of all those parents, staff and particularly students whose images they share without their knowledge. Please do not share any recording on any social networks. Thank You!
STUDENT PERSONAL INFORMATION – ROUTINE USES AND/OR DISCLOSURES
The Upper Grand DSB collects and processes personal information to provide educational services. Some examples of personal information are names, addresses, phone numbers and date of birth. School boards have a duty under provincial law to protect personal information (Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act). The Act requires that parents/guardians of students under the age of 16 (and students 16 years of age and older) be informed about how their personal information is used, disclosed and maintained.
All students have an Ontario Student Record (OSR). The OSR is the record of a student’s educational history and progress in Ontario. The school principal is responsible for the OSR. In addition to the OSR, we maintain secure electronic student records that contain personal information.
The personal information identified in this form is collected pursuant to the provisions of the Education Act including but not limited to sections 169.1-173
Information shared without further notification
We will disclose your child’s and/or your personal information without further notification to you in the following
• If your child suffers from a life-threatening medical condition, a Plan of Care will be developed and shared with appropriate staff, volunteers and transportation services (including bus carriers and their drivers).
• The Board provides the Wellington-Dufferin–Guelph Public Health Unit with the pupil’s full name, address and telephone number; if applicable, every alternate name; gender; date of birth; school; Ontario Education Number; grade or class and the full name, address and telephone number of every parent of the pupil and their preferred language (as per Regulation 645 made under the Immunization of School Pupils Act (ISPA)).
Secondary schools will:
*receive information in advance about incoming grade 8 students
* share information about individual student’s progress with the student’s previous elementary school
* send information about potential graduates (contact information, marks and transcripts) to the Ontario College Application Services and the Ontario Universities Application Centre
Names and phone numbers may be shared with school approved volunteers or parents for safety and information purposes. Examples include:
* emergency contact lists
* safe arrival programs
* school-related notices
* safety patrol lists
* school trip, excursion, or school related event where volunteers are supporting students
Student names (first and last) and/or photographs may be printed in school programs for plays and musical productions, on student awards and plaques and in school yearbooks. Some schools may display the names and/or photos of graduating students in their school. Yearbooks often contain personal information collected for different purposes, such as class and individual photographs. Most people within the school community expect that these photos, along with the student’s name, will be published in the yearbook. Where an individual can reasonably expect a disclosure, this is considered to be a disclosure for a consistent purpose, which is permitted under MFIPPA.
Student names may be included on their work displayed in classrooms or in hallways
Student accounts are provided for their own use and private to them but the board has the right to audit, investigate, conduct e-discovery, and monitor accounts for appropriate use.
* The board uses surveillance equipment in all of our schools and on all school buses for safety reasons and property protection. The recording may be shared with authorities if necessary, according to board policy.
*Video Recording or Photographs: Board staff and board-approved professionals may record or photograph students in school or during school activities as part of their educational program or for
assessment. Informed consent is required to share this information outside of the school.
Sharing Information with Agencies Working with the Board
Personal information may be shared with approved agencies that assist the Board in providing educational and administrative services.
Examples include but are not limited to:
* transportation services (STWDSTS) to identify students who qualify for busing
* the Board insurance company and the Ministry of Labour
* automated telecommunications provider to notify parents of upcoming events or that their child is absent from class
* school photographers who take individual and class photographs to sell to parents and students, for student identification cards and for school records
* vendors who provide online services to create school yearbooks
* vendors who provide specialized equipment, resources and training for special needs students
* Special Olympics Ontario and the Ontario Federation of School Athletic Association (OFSAA) for students who participate on athletic teams
* service providers endorsed by the Board/Ministry of Education for online learning and educational administrative services (e.g., Homework Help, D2L, Maplewood, Schoolcashonline.com, etc.)
Information for the General Public
Media outlets (including online, newspapers, radio and television stations) may be invited to schools to report on activities such as graduations, student achievements/awards, and current events. Their reports may include only non-identifying photos of groups of students. Students are only photographed and/or identified with informed consent.
Note: If photography or video recording is permitted during events open to the public, such as school concerts or sporting events, it is generally not possible for the Board to control the use of such recordings. However, we kindly remind anyone who may be taking pictures that they are respectful of the privacy rights of anyone they may capture in their recording and that they not share them in any way without the consent of the individual or if the individual is under the age of 16 the consent of their parent or legal guardian.
When informed consent is required Listed below are some examples of where informed consent is required before sharing or disclosing information:
- to school-based Psychological Services Staff (including Child and Youth Counsellors), Social Workers and Communication, Language and Speech Services staff
- when photographs or videos are taken for educational purposes and are to be shared outside the school publicly displaying student work that includes their name
- identifying students by name and or photograph in school newsletters and on a class, school and/or board websites and other web services (e.g., Twitter, Facebook or teacher blogs or websites)
If you have concerns or questions about any of the information described above please contact your principal as soon as possible. The above will apply unless an objection is made in writing with the principal and an alternative solution found.