All Trustees present.
A.1 Agenda adopted with amendments: Additions at C.2, Trustee Reports.
A.2 Approval of Minutes: Board minutes Oct 24/16 approved. (Official minutes on SD61 website. Lined Paper report here.)
Chair Loring-Kuhanga introduced this month’s student representative, Misha Hasan, from Oak Bay High.
A.3. Business Arising From Minutes: (see p 18 agenda for explanation) : That the Board amend Bylaw 9250.2 Notices of Motion to delete the words “and may vote” from Item #3. / Carried. Unanimous. Read three times.
A.4 Trustee Elections
a) Election of Chair: Nominated: Loring-Kuhanga, McNally. McNally declined the nomination with thanks. Acclaimed: Loring-Kuhanga.
b) Election of Vice-Chair: Nominated: Ferris, McNally, Orcherton (declined), Paynter (declined). Elected: Ferris
c) Election of BCPSEA Rep: Nominated: McNally (declined), Nohr (declined), Orcherton, Paynter. Elected: Paynter
d) Election of BCSTA Rep: Nominated: McNally (declined), Whiteaker Acclaimed: Whiteaker
A.5 Student Achievement: None
B.1 BC Summer Games Society : Number of students from SD61 schools who participated.(Pp 20-22)
B.2 BCSTA : (Pp 23-26) BCSTA Present Teresa Rezansoff’s letter (P 23 agenda) to Chair Loring-Kuhanga in reply to the SD61 Board’s letter of October 28 (below), along with the letter to Rezansoff from the NPA minority group of 4 Trustees ( P25 agenda) on the Vancouver Board (which is not a member of the BCSTA). Rezansoff has asked to meet with the SD61 Board in person.).
C. TRUSTEE REPORTS
C.1 Chair’s Report: On video record : Have met with Chief Andy Thomas (Esquimalt Nation) and Chief Ron Sam and staff (Songhees Nation) in discussions about Local Education Agreement and Enhancement Agreement .
C.2 Trustees’ Reports (all on video on SD61 website)
a) Orcherton: BCPSEA Report (verbal; on video)
b) McNally: Nov 4 Rockheights No Stone Left Alone; Nov 5 Mt Doug 85th Anniversary alumni event; Nov 10 Glanford Remembrance Day event; Nov 15 My Place shelter community meeting; Nov 16 Gordon Head Middle School PAC; will attend Nov 29 100 Year of Loss at Spectrum.
e)Whiteaker: BCSTA report : (BCSTA Annual Board Chairs Meeting – neither Loring-Kuhanga or McNally could attend)
D. BOARD COMMITTEE REPORTS
SD61 Board Bylaw 9368, Article 104.01 stipulates considerations of motions from a committee as a group, unless a Trustee requests one to be severed from the group for consideration.
D.1 Education Policy and Directions Committee
a) Minutes Nov 7/16 info only Pp 27-29 agenda (will be reviewed and amended / adopted next Ed Policy meeting). Lined Paper Record Off The Record for that meeting here.
b)Recommended motions (recommended because they carried at the Standing Committee meeting)
i. That the Board instruct the Chair to write a letter of support expressing our sincere condolences to the Abbotsford school community for the tragedy and loss of life of Abbotsford Senior Secondary student Letisha Reimer. / Carried. Unanimous.
D.2 Operations Policy and Planning Committee
a) Minutes Nov 14/16 info only PP 30-34 agenda (will be reviewed and amended / adopted next OPP meeting.) Lined Paper record here.
b) Recommended motions (because they carried in the OPP Standing Cttee meeting)L
Watters sever #3, Whiteaker sever #8.
i.Delete Policy 2123.044 Supervisor of Data Processing. / Carried. Unanimous.
ii. Regulations for deletion, information only (Trustees debate Policy; senior admin deals with Regulations – Pp 36-84)
iii.Approve naming basketball court in teaching gym at Oak Bay High “
the Don Horwood Court”. / Carried. Unanimous.
- Waters: continuing the tradition of naming after white men. Must be some First Nations individual or woman teacher who deserves the honour.Hoping to look at practice. Education is a female dominated profession.
- Leonard: Nothing in Regs or Policy. Needs to go to Policy Committee to consider gender, ethnicity, diversity in choices for naming.
- Dave Thomson (Oak Bay Principal): Need to know the conduit for communication with Songhees and Esquimalt that could help.Support the intent of comment.
iv.Policy SubCommittee Report (pp 68-72)
v. Delete Policy 3526 Emergency Repairs to School Plant. / Carried. Unanimous.
vi.Retain Policy 3545.2 Field Trips ; replace “the Board of School Trustees” with “the Board of Education”. / Carried. Unanimous.
vii. Retain Policy 3545.25 Overnight Accommodation; replace “the Board of School Trustees” with “the Board of Education”. / Carried. Unanimous.
viii. That the Board request senior staff to establish a link on the District website to provide the public with information pertaining to the Superintendent’s and Trustees’ annual expenses, updated at the end of each fiscal year, and including the first two years of this term./ Carried. For: Ferris, Loring-Kuhanga, McNally, Nohr, Orcherton, Paynter, Watters, Whiteaker Abstain: Leonard
ix. Regulation 3323 Purchasing Services: Info only; many changes (Pp 76-96)
E. DISTRICT LEADERSHIP TEAM REPORTS
E.1 Superintendent’s Report (p 87 agenda)
a) That the Board receive the Superintendent’s report of Nov 28/16 as presented. (P 97)/ Carried. Unanimous.
b) Financial Pressures (Pp 98-100): 1. Principal/Vice Principal and Exempt Staff Compensation 2. Curriculum Implementation and Resourcing the Curriculum 3. Staffing to 2002 Collective Agreement (GVTA) Language
c) Regulation 5141 Concussion Awareness: Info only (Pp 101-102; Regulations are the purview of senior administration; operationalizes motion from Jan 5/15)
E.2 Secretary-Treasurer’s Report
a) TTB receive the Secretary-Treasurer’s report ofNov 28 /16 as presented./ Carried. Unanimous.
b) Cloverdale Elementary (cost overrun update, Pp 104-106)
F. QUESTION PERIOD: None
G. PUBLIC DISCLOSURE OF IN-CAMERA ITEMS: None
H. NEW BUSINESS/ NOTICE OF MOTION
H.1 New Business
a) Nohr: That the Board request that the Superintendent provide a report on trauma support and safety procedures currently implemented in our schools./ Carried. Unanimous
- Nohr: Coming from the tragedy in Abbotsford. Open door policy in all our schools.What kind of conversations with staff and students re someone in school that might cause concern?
- Ferris: Other than headlines, where is this coming from?
- Orcherton: People can’t just walk in to a school; the office staff see who comes and goes.
- McNally: Having worked in schools for 35 years I know that people can enter schools and can evade detection. I have been concerned for many years about low walls dividing some open areas, large glassed areas where there is no place to not be seen. Also, there is literature stating trauma counselling can make a situation worse for many people.
- Orcherton: CIRT [Critical Incident Response Team] exists. Is the purpose of this motion to tighten up security i schools? If so, I have concerns.
- Leonard: Schools have emergency protocols . Ask the coordinator to come to Ed Poicy and cdl get answers.Don’t waste the Superintendent’s time doing this. CIRT exist and has helped when asked, in independent schools.[No reference to which schools or when.]
- Watters: Not every Trustee has been on the Board for 10 or more years.[Leonard, 20 years; Orcherton, 14 years; Ferris, 11(?), Loring-Kuhanga, 5; McNally, 5; Nohr, 5; Paynter, 2; Watters, 2; Whiteaker, 2] The Superintendent’s report could take the form of delegating to someone who will report at Ed Policy.
b) McNally: That the Board direct senior administration to prepare a budget for the January 2017 iteration of the Needs Budget Committee that includes restored language previously stripped from the GVTA Collective Agreement , to be submitted along with the projected budget for the 2017-18 school year. / Withdrawn by mover as this is underway – P99 agenda)
c) McNally: That the Board direct the Chair to send a letter of congratulation to the BCTF congratulating the Federation on its November 10, 2016 victory at the Supreme Court of Canada. / Carried as amended by Ferris, below. Unanimous.
- McNally:As a result of the illegal contract stripping in 2002 by the current BC government, teachers in BC have spent 14 years in court fighting for better classroom conditions for BC public school students, there has been a win at the Supreme Court of Canada. Yes, it is about working conditions for teachers . But even more, it is about learning conditions for students. 3,500 classroom and specialist teachers were laid off. An entire cohort of K-12 students has gone through public school without those needed supports of the former limits on class size, class composition that allows for individualized teacher attention to children with notable needs for support, and support from specialist teachers for struggling students, all illegally removed from contracts by legislation in 2002,.I hope this Board will support BC’s strongest public education advocacy group with a letter of congratulation on the Supreme Court of Canada Victory.
- Ferris: Amendment: Add “urging the parties – BCTF and provincial government – to work closely together to achieve the goals of the Supreme Court ruling“. Nice to also say that we cc the letter to the government. / Carried (debate below). For:Ferris, Leonard, Loring-Kuhanga, Nohr, Orcherton, Whiteaker Against: McNally, Paynter, Watters
- Paynter: Amendment to amendment: Add “as soon as possible”. / Carried 7/9.
- McNally: On amendment as amended: The goal has been achieved. The illegally stripped language is restored. There is no need to “work to achieve the goal”.
- Leonard: The language hasn’t been restored.
The ruling restores contract language from 2002 on class size limits, as well as the number of specialist teachers and the number of students with special needs that can be in a classroom. The BCTF estimates it could mean adding $250 million to $300 million to B.C.’s $5.1-billion annual school budget — though school superintendents estimated as much as $1 billion in 2014.
- Orcherton: It hasn’t been restored. It’s just the place to start negotiating.
“We’re not going to be starting over from scratch,” Hansman said, while warning the government against attempting any more “tricks” against the union….“We’re less than 180 days out from an election,” Hansman said. “I don’t think it’s anyone’s interest to have a long, protracted fight.”… I doubt the Liberals are willing to risk a work-to-rule campaign or some other teacher job action that could disrupt the school system and inconvenience parents — again — right before an election.The union also knows the government is sitting on a big pile of cash. “They’ve got a $1.9-billion budget surplus,” Hansman said.
- Watters: Urging the BCTF to work closely with the party that illegally stripped their collective agreement?
- Paynter: Could send a separate letter for that. Won’t support the amendment.
d) McNally: That the Board instruct the Chair to prepare the necessary documents to effect withdrawal of this Board from the BCSTA as soon as possible. / Postponed until after meeting with BCSTA President Rezansoff (below).
- McNally: As long ago as 2012, and likely before that, Trustees noted BCSTA’s QUOTEuseless but “respectful dialogue” with the Ministry. Clearly if [those] methods had worked over the last decade we wouldn’t be in this under-funded mess right now.” That was 2012. Now BCSTA has dug itself in deeper with the so called “co Governance document”, which has been notably disregarded by the Ministry of Education .BCSTA has given away our strength as elected officials in supposed co-governance. BCSTA recently, at the behest of a minority of Vancouver School Board trustees took the side of the Ministry of Education in a public smackdown of strong public education advocates, the majority elected Trustees of a Board that does not even belong to the BCSTA. Writing more letters and holding more meetings with the Minister keeps BCSTA busy, but what has been achieved? Boards might as well be owned and operated by the Ministry of Education, as we continue to struggle with capricious and one off funding, as well as the continued and increasing diversion of public money to support private schools. The Minister of Education is enshrined in BCSTA Bylaws as the Honourary President . What does that say about BCSTA independence as an advocate for public education? If this motion is defeated, I will bring a motion to the BCSTA AGM to end the status of the Minister as Honourary President. What exactly to do we get for our membership fee [about $80,000]? Conferences in Vancouver with workshops for people who don’t know what social media is ; workshops that tell us to stay way high up in the helicopter,and never ever talk to anyone fighting the forest fire who is actually on the ground with a hose (actual analogy from one workshop for new Trustees); tell us not to ask too many questions, and two recent presentations telling us how excellent charter schools are. [I made a motion that the BCSTA, whose mandate is advocacy for public schools n BC, never have another private school presentation / private school CEO presenter again.] It’s clear that the BC School Trustees Association is no longer useful as an advocacy group for Trustees. Obviously we need a much stronger Association and independent Boards can begin work to form one.
- Nohr: Support this.Shocking absence of or advocacy work for students. Agenda seems to be to weaken Trustees’ advocacy work; no presentations at conferences that address the impacts of underfunding.Disappointed in BCSTA.
- Orcherton: Don’t support this; Have concerns with withdrawal from BCSTA on agenda. Letter from BCSTA requests meeting with us to address concerns of SD61 Board.BCSTA provides a lot of support for new Trustees. Some Trustees may have some pet peeve about BCSTA that fuels this motion…
- McNally: [Interjects]: Chair, Robert’s Rules preclude Trustees attributing motivations to others or speculating about motivations in debate. This will stop right here!
- Leonard: Variety of ways to make voice heard. Just because we’re bitching at this table, they don’t know what our concerns are. Run for the Board at BCSTA and change it from within.[Contemplated that over the years; imo it’s an organization beyond saving.]
- Watters: Could we not have arguments on a motion called “bitching”.
- Paynter: Generally stronger together and work within, but this is not an effective organization.Little gets done.Was incensed by the President’s letter; how her positions were formed by discussions with individual Trustees. Should have talked to the whole Board.
- Whiteaker: Against this motion but acknowledge concerns. What we are hearing is abut leadership. What we see is maybe the passion and drive to represent all pints of view seems to have been lost at the BCSTA. That’s our error. No one here has run for executive.Trustees have managed to change the implementation time for the new curriculum.
- Loring-Kuhanga: Would like to postpone this motion. Real concern with the way the President’s letter is written. It got worse as it went on.Concerns that she spoke with individual Trustees of a Board and spoke to the Minister about a Board that does not even belong to the BCSTA.Very political and out of bounds with this letter.Interested in postponing until we hear from her in person.
- Watters: Would like to see our membership fee going to classrooms.Motion to postpone motion until after meeting with BCSTA President./ Carried. For: Ferris, Leonard, Loring-Kuhanga, Orcherton, Watters, Whiteaker Against: McNally, Nohr, Paynter
- Watters: That the Chair accept the BCSTA invitation to come to SD61 to meet with the SD61 Board. / Carried. For: Ferris, Leonard, Loring-Kuhanga, Orcherton, Paynter, Watters, Whiteaker Against: McNally, Nohr
- Leonard: Suggest including in the letter that the Board is considering leaving the BCSTA.
H.2 Notices of Motion:None
G. ADJOURNMENT : 10 pm