Motions instituting reports from Committee members (never required in the past; several committees Trustees were assigned to in the 2012 term never met or didn’t even exist) carried in June 2015:
Bylaw 9368 Procedure of Board Meetings
100.00 In all meetings of the Board of Trustees, procedures shall be governed by Robert’s Rules of Order, except where provisions of the bylaws of the Board or the Schools Act may conflict, in which case the latter shall prevail.
Debate on the Question p 42 / p 43 RRO 11th Ed : “Speakers must address their remarks to the Chair. Debate must be confined to the merits of the pending question. ..and…should avoid injecting a personal tone into debate. …they must never attack or make any allusion to the motives of members.” // p 392: “The measure, not the member, is the subject of debate.” In plain English, no character assassination.
Bylaw 9368 Procedure of Board Meetings 104.01 Translation: The Board can vote on all motions coming forward from a Standing Committee as a group, not individually, if all Trustees want to do that. This Bylaw procedure had never been followed – as required – until Watters pointed it out in the fall of 2016.We need a Plain English committee to rewrite some of these Bylaws.
Board Meeting Jan 23/17
Present: Leonard (elected 1996), Loring-Kuhanga (elected 2011), McNally (elected 2011), Nohr (elected 2011), Orcherton (elected 1999), Paynter (elected 2014), Watters (elected 2014), Whiteaker (elected 2014)
Regrets: Ferris (elected 1999)
Board work plan here.
A.1 Agenda: Adopted with amendment (McNally; carried; Leonard against) to move A.3 a) to New Business [as it isn’t arising from the Minutes and there is no provision for Old Business, the best place for it, the way this agenda is set up.]
A.2 Approval of Minutes: Board minutes Jan 23/17 here; approved. Lined Paper report here.
A.3. Business Arising From Minutes: None (amended)
A.4 Student Achievement: Joanna Snow, Principal, McKenzie Elementary School
- The presentation included much more than this, but – an intriguing silent bike is used as one self-regulation method / tool in class!
“(Stuart) Shanker, a professor at York University in Toronto, said self-regulation is the energy we burn to deal with stress and how well we recover from that expenditure.Shanker said research shows that deep breathing, like the kind that happens on a stationary bike, triggers a shift in how children handle stress and how they recover from it.“The stationary bikes have a profound self-regulating effect for a great many children, but especially those children that are very restless and those that have problems with sustained attention and heightened impulsivity,” said Shanker in a recent phone interview.“What we have found is that the children very quickly learn when they need to get on the bike and how much time they need on the bike. It’s really quite transformative.”
A.5 District Presentations: None
A.6 Community Presentations: [5 minutes each for members of the public / partner groups to present. The Chair must remind you at the 5 minute limit so please rehearse. Get your name on the agenda by Thursday noon, but it is possible to present after that. Email the Chairs of the Committees and the Board: Ed Policy&Directions firstname.lastname@example.org; Operations Policy and Planning email@example.com; Board firstname.lastname@example.org ]
a) Colette Baty, President, Vancouver Island School of Art: Addressing the lease with SD61 for the VISA premises.
b) Wendy Welch, Executive Director, Vancouver Island School of Art: Addressing the lease.
B. Correspondence (Pp 10-16 agenda)
B.1 Letter from Assistant Deputy Minister Farkas : Student Learning Grant $50 per FTE, one time only.
B.2 Letter from SD62 Sooke Board Chair: Declining to participate in the advocacy below.
SD61 Board motion Nov 28/17:
That the Board of Education of School District No. 61 (Greater Victoria) instruct the Chair to write to the Board Chairs of School Districts No. 62 (Sooke) and No. 63 (Saanich) outlining our desire to work with them to advocate for three separate enveloped funds to address the cost pressures of 1) curriculum implementation, 2) staffing costs, and 3) the implementation of the 2002 collective agreement language, with the goal that a joint letter to the Ministry of Education could be developed and sent to the Minister of Education (copying media and all local MLAs) outlining not only the cost pressures but also the ways in which these dedicated funds will improve learning conditions and outcomes for students.
B.3 Letter re Christie Point (P 16 agenda): Housing affordability, environmental concerns, possible ramifications for Shoreline Middle School.
C. TRUSTEE REPORTS (on video)
C.1 Chair’s Report: Condolences to John Bird’s family. John was a several-term President of VCPAC and President until recently of BCCPAC; a strong advocate for students. / Pleased to have participated in recent Strategic Planning Review with the Board and senior administration.
a) Loring-Kuhanga: That the Board increase That the Board increase the trustee professional development allocation for the 2017 – 2018 school year to ensure that Trustees have access to attend the Canadian School Boards Association Congress. / Postponed – see below.
- McNally: When first elected, I was informed that since some Trustees seldom if ever access their individual $2000 fund, that the funds were pooled. This still appears to be the case so I believe there is sufficient funding.
- Leonard: Not sure where you heard about pooling.
- Orcherton: CSBA expenses will be in next year’s professional development allotment. This year it is expensive as it is in Whistler.
- Nohr: Trustees have a healthy or professional development in contrast to employee groups. Let’s have time for trustees to report out to colleagues about pro-d they attend.
- Loring-Kuhanga: The CSBA Only rarely comes to BC.
- Secretary-Treasurer: $14,000 in the fund now. All attending VISTA, CSBA and BCSTA AGM would go above the limit. We do pool the entire fund on a year to year basis.
- Watters: Need a more strategic approach to who goes to what. How do we manage the allotment?
- Loring-Kuhanga: Funding has been pooled. Some trustees go over their amount because of their assigned responsibilities in Vancouver.
- Watters: Some of this is not Pro – D. Some of it is governance, e.g. BCSTA AGM to vote for Executive of our organization. It’s a priority to have Trustees at BCSTA.
- Whiteaker: Motion to postpone and bring back after CSBA to see if amount went over. / Carried. For: Loring-Kuhanga, McNally, Nohr, Paynter, Watters, Whiteaker Against: Leonard, Orcherton
C.2 Trustees’ Reports (on video)
a) Watters: Reporting on Youth Justice AGM. Included CRD, School Districts, municipalities. It is in contact with justice system. Will bring notes for next month’s meeting. Court Watch initiative involves some of our students.
b) Whiteaker: (P 17 agenda) Attended Saanich Trails and Recreation. Lambrick Ball Diamond rename “Joe Stephenson“. Passing around BC Schools Mental Health booklet; longitudinal study SD61 students; contributor Bonnie Leadbeater worked on WITS. School visits. Attended Central Middle School problem solving workshop.Attended Adolescent Sexual Behaviour in a Digital World (Island Health and SD61):
In today’s age of Internet chat rooms, online forums and social networking sites, people are able to interact online more easily than ever before. These circumstances provide an ideal environment for predators to communicate with and victimize vulnerable children and youth. Coupled with an increased amount of personal information being shared online, the Internet makes for prime ground for predators to meet and manipulate young people. Children of the Street Society of Vancouver have been delivering workshops that empower students with knowledge on the issue of sexual exploitation and tools for healthy, safe relationships for the past 18 years. However they thought it would be great if the adults dealing with children on a daily basis could experience the workshops as well. The highly skilled and personable workshop facilitators have a unique ability to address challenging content while maintaining a fun workshop environment!
11 items coming to BCSTA AGM from BCSTA Aboriginal Education Committee (P 19 agenda). BCSTA election focus “Public Education Is the Key”. Suggest Chair do a call-out for a trustee to coordinate election activities in a non partisan way. “Peer Victimization in Elementary School Children” –Paweena Sukhawathanakul.
c) McNally: January & February 2017 : Attended:
- Feb 27 Public engagement committee
- Feb 23 Saanich Arts and Culture: Attended as assigned liaison, voice but no vote; inquired about Saanich First Nations (Tsartlip, Pauquachin, Tseycum and Tsawout ) participation in upcoming Heritage events; discussion re taxation and Craigflower Schoolhouse, insulation of schoolhouse, Mrs Chessa’s presentation re experiences of her class in the school house (March 10 10:30 – 2, UVic first Peoples’ House). All agendas and minutes available on Saanich Municipal website.
- Feb 22 Vic High PAC Gender workshop with Ambit Gender Consulting. Vic High PAC used Parent Education Fund for this well attended interactive presentation. PAC Executive expressed their pleasure with ability to have school-based discretionary use of funds that SD61 allots to DPAC / PACs.
- Feb 20 Public Engagement Committee; first attendance at Aboriginal Nations Education Council as appointed Board representative / liaison. McNally had comments about the importance of place and heritage / identification.
- Feb 17 Met with Coordinator of Aboriginal Nations Education Nella Nelson as Board Representative to ANED and ANEC. This month’s reading from the ANED library beginning with some K-5 titles: ShiShietko (Nicola Campbell), Home to Medicine Mountain (Chiori Santiago),When I Was Eight (Christy Jordan-Fenton and Margaret Pokiak-Fenton), Not My Girl (Jordan-Fenton and Pokiak-Fenton),The Secret path (Gord Downie and Jeff Lemire).
- Feb 14 Public Engagement Committee, My Place Transitional Shelter .
- Feb 10, 11, 12 Where Are Your Keys endangered language method of learning and instruction at Songhees Wellness Centre, re Lekwungen language and other languages of the BC coastal region. Representatives from WSANEC, Musqueam, more. Song from the 40’s about keeping languages alive very affecting; sung by a person who was given permission. Hul’q’umi’num’ Elder Freda told a story and demonstrated how the language learning could work. Hul’q’umi’num’ is a Coast Salish language that has been spoken by First Nations on Vancouver Island, including those in the Cowichan Valley, since long before Europeans arrived in the area. There is an app with twelve words for cell phones. The Songhees Wellness Centre holds Lekwungen language learning sessions every Monday evening.
- Feb 9 Leadership professional learning and discussion with Associate Superintendent Deb Whitten and Superintendent Piet Langstraat, SJ Willis; well attended.
- Feb 8 Our Place tour personal learning.
- Feb 7 Oaklands School tour with Principal David Hovis
- Jan 30 Public Engagement Committee
- January 26 Vic High PAC substance abuse panel: In response to the fentanyl overdoses and ongoing dangers to anyone who uses street drugs, the Vic High PAC engaged a panel to speak to parents /anyone in the community and answer parent questions.
- January 24 Choices Transitional Shelter: Meeting at Choices (former YDC).Choices still no word from BC housing re extension. McNally asked about transition to long term rehab which was put on the table some time ago. Our Place still hopes for that outcome.
- January 18 Sir James Douglas PAC : Class configurations possibilities given the BCTF Supreme Court of Canada win; head lice strategies.
- January 17 Vic High Stadium meeting : Alumni, Vic High principal. Attended as Vic High group of schools liaison. Long term plan, very active alumni group, big plans for the future with this stadium project.
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 Feb 14/17 info only Pp 20-24 agenda (will be reviewed and amended / adopted next Ed Policy meeting). Lined Paper report for that meeting here./ Correction: Whiteaker attended but did not vote as not a member of the Standing Committee.
b) Recommended motions (recommended because they carried at the Standing Committee meeting. For exact wording see agenda.)
- McNally: Request to sever out iii for debate.
i.All 3 readings of 2016/17 amended budget bylaw approved at this meeting. / Carried. Unanimous.
ii. That the amended Annual Budget for fiscal year 2016-17 amount $233,083,534 be read 3 times and adopted./ Carried. Unanimous.
iii. That the Board accept Policy 1340 School Volunteers as reviewed with no changes. [Motion to refer defeated;see below.] / Carried. For: Leonard, Loring-Kuhanga, Nohr, Orcherton, Paynter, Watters, Whiteaker Against: McNally
- McNally: Motion to refer back to Policy Committee for further study.[Defeated at Operations Policy and Planning Feb 14.] / Defeated. For: McNally
- McNally: This is not about any desire on my part to limit parent access to schools. Nor is it based on any “fear factor” or “mistrust” mentioned n debate at the Standing Committee. Of course parents should have access to their child’s school.
McNally, in Operations Feb 14: [Although assigned to the Policy Committee along with Trustee Paynter for the last 3 month term, I was unable to attend because of a timing conflict, and let all participants know that.] This is not about any desire on my part to limit parent access to schools.I don’t intend that. Of course parents should have access to their child’s school. This is a motion to return this Policy to the Policy Committee for further study and examination to determine which volunteer work in schools and on school property could not be done by a CUPE 382 or 947, or GVTA member.This district experiences high turnover in CUPE 947 staff because of lack of full-time work. This policy encourages and in and run around union employees. Really our policy should be that we encourage full employment for CUPE. If we start by asking which jobs in schools should not be done by CUPE or GVTA, we would have a short list, possibly a list with nothing on it. This motion recommends a broader and more in-depth examination of this policy. We need to ask ourselves what it is that needs doing in a school that neither CUPE nor GVTA could not do with proper staffing. The political climate at this point in British Columbia does not allow for this proper staffing, but picking up the slack with volunteers insures that there never will be needed provincial budgeting that would result in complete school staffing.
- Leonard: Addressed in Regulations which were sent to the Superintendent for review.
- Orcherton: Regulations are how we apply the Policy. Legislation is the law and were bound to follow it.[Referring to School Act provisions re volunteers.]
- Whiteaker: Were you thinking of the Regulation?
- McNally: No. (It’s the “encourage” that needs review. )
iv. That the board direct the Superintendent revise the regulation and associated with Policy 1240 School Volunteers to bring clarity to the regulation with respect to volunteers in schools. / Carried. Unanimous.
v. That the Board direct the Superintendent to provide the Board an updated organization chart when changes are made./ Carried. Unanimous.
E. DISTRICT LEADERSHIP TEAM REPORTS
E.1 Superintendent’s Report
a) That the Board receive the Superintendent’s report as presented. (P 54-55 agenda)/ Carried. Unanimous.
b) Syrian Refugees: Superintendent’s Report (Pp 56-57)
- Whiteaker: Regarding the additional funding for Immigrant Parents As Literacy Supporters, to be hosted at George Jay, how will they get there? Are we assisting with that?
c) School Calendars 2017-18, 2018-19
- Associate Superintendent Kitchen: Post-spring vacation opening Change to April 4, 2018 from April 3.Minutes of instruction are adhered to.
- Hamilton (Communications): Downloadable calendar for phones is in final testing.
- Lo, student rep: Request to consider putting a professional development day on Chinese New Year. It’s a very important day for Chinese families.
d) Interim Funding Update (Pp 62-63; SD61 portion of $50 million interim funding = $1,671,867 = 33.944 FTE teaching positions for remainder of school year.)
e) Field Trips to the United States (P64-66 memo]
- Superintendent: Complex issue. Values of tolerance, understanding, equity are in our strategic plan. If this affects one, it affects all of us.
- Lo, student rep: Student learning is of the ultimate importance. The trips should continue.
- McNally: Opportunities for social justice issues learning here. These lessons in life can be expensive. My thinking is, if my Muslim friend can’t go, I won’t go. It’s supportive solidarity.
- Orcherton: Need to consider adults their country of origin even though they have a Canadian passport.
- Superintendent: We have reached out to the US Border Services for information but have got nothing in writing.
- Orcherton: Have we contacted the Ontario Boards that have cancelled?
- Superintendent: No but we have read their meeting minutes.
- Whiteaker: Don’t want to remove opportunities from the students but most parents are saying let the kids decide.. What is going to be our reaction the student is not allowed entry? How to get to the student? Should others go? Financial the smaller issue. Okay with saying they can travel on trips that now but no more going forward. There are no learning opportunities in the US that we can do here in Canada. We need a backup plan to rescue anyone detained at the border.
- Loring-Kuhanga: Sensitive and complex. Our values are there to guide us in every situation. This is an opportunity to stand up for our values. Support the three categories of trips but we can’t stray from our values. Imagine if a student staff or parent is turned away and couldn’t get back. We need to practice what we preach, when learning community, and let that be are moral compass.
- Paynter: Don’t want people to be out of pocket, but our conscience has to be at work. Don’t want this to be left to people to sort out individually. We need high-level policy.
- Watters: Not safe for one of us, not safe for any of us. Could be very divisive situation in our one learning community. Canadians were not allowed into US if going to US to protest.
- Superintendent: We are taking a consultative approach on trips in the A group but the decision rests with me as the Superintendent.
- McNally: We need to look at a way to help people if they lose money on trips that have been booked but there is too much at stake here to have the trips go forward.
- Leonard: The discrimination potential this wide reaching. For example band trips and who might or might not join the band with the travel ban in mind would like to see most of these trips not going forward. Any trips in the interim need to take an extra chaperone who can help any child detained or who has to come back, as a temporary “escape plan”.
- Orcherton: We have to give kids credit for being aware. Kids don’t have to identify as Muslim. Chaperone/organizer can have the conversation. You don’t know who will be detained. Need to give some voice to parents and students. Were putting our thoughts that are US thoughts on our students. The ones that spent the money should go if they want to.
- Nohr: Strategic plan says equity is a core value. Best process is put this in the hands of the Superintendent. I really would not encourage any field trips to the US at this point. Sacrifice, but students are now drawn any real-life way into our strategic plan.
- Lo: I am a Marketing student at Mt Doug. Students who are going have been talking about this since Grade 10. $600 deposits from parents need to be taken into account. Leave to students for categories A and B. Agree with category C.
- Loring-Kuhanga: [Summarizes discussion] We will trust the superintendent to move forward, make a decision, and bring back that decision to the Board.
f) Student Enrolment Priorities Public Consultation
- Paynter: Applicable regulation doesn’t match with current practice.
- Superintendent: The Policy only relates to secondary schools, and practice has strayed from the Policy and Regulation. Task will be to rewrite Policy and Regulation.
- Whiteaker: Make sure to contact single parents, as they have additional challenges.
g) Trustee Questions: None
E.2 Secretary-Treasurer’s Report (P 70)
a) TTB receive the Secretary-Treasurer’s report as presented./ Carried. Unanimous.
b) 2549 Quadra Warehouse [Vancouver School of Art lease]
- Nohr: Thank you to the two presenters. I will certainly take the presentation into account in my decision making.
- McNally: That’s how it works at this Board table. All of us take into account information from presenters.
F. QUESTION PERIOD: (Written, submitted in the meeting questions from the public / stakeholders):
i. Colette Baty re VISA: Is the proposed cost per square foot fair market value on the current market value of the site as it is, or after future remediation? / Secretary-Treasurer: The number is approximate based on our own estimate.
G. PUBLIC DISCLOSURE OF IN-CAMERA ITEMS: (report out after an in camera motion and majority vote in favour, to disclose to the public): None
H. NEW BUSINESS/ NOTICES OF MOTION
H.1 New Business
a) 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. [Was postponed to this meeting from October, until after the Board invited BCSTA Executive members to meet with the Board, and the meeting took place. See motion rationale H.1 d here.] / Defeated. For: Loring-Kuhanga, McNally, Nohr Against: Leonard, Orcherton, Paynter, Watters, Whiteaker
- Whiteaker: Concerns with effectiveness but the 11 motions are coming out of BCSTA Aboriginal Education Committee are excellent. BCSTA is doing the “Public Education Is The Key” election preparation [stressing non-partisan] and providing suggestions for Boards. Sooke did not agree to work together outside of BCSTA in reply to our letter suggesting a South Island coalition.BCSTA is the one place to have a provincial voice.Yes there is diversity of opinions across the province.Have made a motion to review all the Bylaws after our discussion of the Honourary President issue.[See H.1.d Lined Paper Nov 28/16]Staying in the provincial organization is the way to have a provincial voice.
- Orcherton:BCSTA member Boards are us, so work with the organization to change it.Don’t blame an organization that is made up of its members. Strength in numbers. We are now putting in motions to the AGM.The membership agreed to sign the MOU. Letter from Sooke makes it clear there is no appetite for a separate organization. Meeting with BCSTA was good; they heard us.Progressive discipline kind of thing.
- Nohr: 15 years of underfunding and no BCSTA unified position on this? Never one workshop or presentation on chronic underfunding- ludicrous. The BCSTA has been silent, and takes a subservient position to government.The BCSTA says “Public Education Is The Key” and want Boards to do some work pre-election but never do any as an organization. Support this motion.
- Loring-Kuhanga: Used to be a group called TAG – Trustee Action Group.It was not allowed a spot at BCSTA. When I co-chaired the Aboriginal Education Committee as a Trustee in SD63 Saanich, we were calling for a very strong change at the provincial level. We could not even get a room provided by the BCSTA to organize a march. The Board of Directors seem to have great ideas when they re campaigning for election but but after election they all look the same.Trustees who want change are silenced. Support this motion.
The Trustee Action Group (TAG) has been getting a lot of attention in recent days. Now the B.C. School Trustees’ Association is striking back. In an email to members, president Connie Denesiuk states that TAG is not an official part of the BCSTA.Small point, you say? Perhaps. But the fact that Denesiuk sent this message to members suggests she is trying to put TAG in its place – along with TAG founder Mike Lombardi.Lombardi said he sent an invitation to join TAG to Denesiuk and asked her to distribute it to all trustees. I gather she won’t be joining – although at last count, TAG had 150 of a potential 420 members. At least two TAG members will be seeking election as BCSTA directors at the annual general meeting this weekend. Lombardi told me today he has no interest in running for office. Here is Denesiuk’s letter:
“Dear Trustees, In the last few months you may have heard about a group called the “Trustee Action Group” (TAG). I have received several questions from members and the media regarding TAG and would like to take this opportunity to clarify the relationship between BCSTA and TAG. TAG is not an officially recognized group or committee within BCSTA. Although BCSTA welcomes and is enriched by the wide variety of views held by our members the official voice and policies of BCSTA are expressed solely through our existing governance structures. BCSTA has been a strong voice of advocacy for public education for 105 years. The strength of BCSTA is that it is able to embrace and represent the wide variety of views and opinions of boards of education across the province. As such, we must continue to welcome the input of all of our members and encourage the expression of those views through BCSTA’s existing governance structures such as Branches, Provincial Council, and the Board of Directors.Our upcoming Annual General Meeting is a time for the individual voices of our members to be heard and to emerge united in the form of resolutions, policies and Board of Director elections. I look forward to seeing you all at AGM and continuing the important work of our Association.Connie Denesiuk, President” – Janet Steffenhagen April 2009
- Leonard: I don’t go to BCSTA events or the AGM, but support the organization. Rarely do we w send them anything about our opinion. We’re not giving them direction.Change from within.
- Paynter: Others have different values than this Board and shape BCSTA. Internal structure needs work. A lot going on and they don’t report out or ask for our input. BCSTA doesn’t have the money to keep their Policies up to date.Don’t have the capacity we would expect. But walking away is not the way to do it. We need to be more constructive to bring issues to the President, BOD, AGM.
- McNally: (To close on the motion): It is possible for an independent voice to have a very large influence, possible more than as part of a herd. The “non-partisan” stance on the upcoming election is so diffuse as to be completely ineffective. Motions at the BCSTA AGMs are always for someone else, some other body, to do something. I’m used to organizations that make motions for that organization itself to take action. The BCSTA is so noncommittal as to be invisible, when the organization’s mandate is to defend public education. I urge support for the motion.
11 PM: McNally: Motion to extend the meeting past normal adjournment time to deal with all items on the agenda. / Carried. For: Leonard, Loring-Kuhanga, McNally, Nohr, Paynter, Watters, Whiteaker Against: Orcherton
i) That the board provide the following motion to the BCSTA AGM: “That the BCSTA Board of Directors request the legislative committee (or other ad hoc committee) to review the BCSTA current bylaws to ensure they continue to best serve the membership and the organizational structure and bring any recommendations to the 2017 AGM.” / Carried. Unanimous.
ii. That the Board provide the following motion to the BCSTA AGM: “that the BCSTA urge government to bring Early Childhood Development and the appropriate for funding under the responsibility of the Ministry of Education.”/ Withdrawn with consent of the meeting.
H.2 Notices of Motion (Heads up re motions coming to a following meeting; for 2012 -2014 term this was a way to get motions on the public record as the then-Chair(s) often refused to accept motions for the agenda; and many perfectly in order motions were arbitrarily ruled “out of order”. That seems to have been cleared up now.): None
I. Adjournment: 11:10 pm.