June 26, 2017: Board Meeting: District Facilities Plan & Enrolment Priorities

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Bee in flower at Kispiox

Lined Paper (The Record Off The Record) is my personal record of and commentary on SD61 Board and Standing Committee meetings. Official, approved minutes are on the SD61 website, one month after the meeting.

SD61 Greater Victoria School District primarily serves students in Esquimalt, Oak Bay, Victoria, View Royal, parts of Saanich and the Highlands, and the Traditional Territories of the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations. 

Strategic plan here.

P1: Backgrounders/ Trustee  Appointments
P2:
Board  Meeting: Meeting agendas posted on SD61 website Friday before the meeting. Board meetings  audio and video recorded, though Standing Committees are not. (Under the Board of Education menu.)
P3 : Students with Intensive Behaviour Support Needs / Severe Mental Illness [inadequately  funded support : Level 3 supplementary funding (highest level)  $ 9,500 per student / $24.59 District Education Assistant hourly  /    = 2 hours and 15 minutes per each 5 hour day. No problems  after lunch,  apparently, according  to  Ministry of Education funding. Not hard to figure out where the funding for the gap comes from. Check page 3 for a funding idea from Alberta.]

gvsd-org-chart

GVSD 61 TRUSTEE REPRESENTATIVES AND TRUSTEE ASSIGNMENTS 2017
Board Chair:
Loring-Kuhanga  Vice-Chair: Ferris

Ad Hoc Committees of the Board and their terms of reference are listed on the SD61 website.

BOARD STANDING COMMITTEES 2017
(Loring-Kuhanga member of both, ex officio)
Operations Policy&Planning: Chair Watters, McNally, Leonard, Paynter
Education  Policy Development : Chair Whiteaker, Ferris, Nohr, Orcherton
Policy SubCommittee: ongoing appointments by the Chair

Standing  Committees  operate on less formal   Rules of Order than does the Board, ie. no need for a seconder for a motion, and a Trustee  can speak as many times as the Chair thinks is reasonable; members of the public and presenters can ask questions of each other and engage in dialogue.The question can’t be called in a standing committee, meaning debate can extend for some time.  After a motion to restrict voting in Standing Committees  to only assigned members of the committee (sensible, as if all Trustees are present and vote, it’s an improperly constituted  Board meeting). If Trustees choose not to attend the committee for which  they don’t have a vote, it’s very possible to  miss vital information.

Trustee salaries (aka “stipend): $20,486/year effective Dec 1/14. Chair and vice-chair receive an extra $3,000 and $1,500, respectively.

INTERNAL COMMITTEES 2017

Aboriginal Nations Education Council McNally
District Facilities Planning Committee Ferris
Gender Sexuality Alliance Watters
Equity Ad Hoc Committee Paynter & Watters
French Immersion Advisory Ferris
Needs Budget Advisory Committee Orcherton, Leonard, Nohr
Public Engagement Ad Hoc Committee McNally & Orcherton
Student Registration & Transfer Committee Ferris & Nohr
Middle School Review Committee Whiteaker & Leonard

EXTERNAL TRUSTEE LIAISONS – COMMUNITY 2017

Saanich Arts, Culture & Heritage McNally
Saanich Parks, Trails & Rec Whiteaker
Healthy Saanich Advisory Committee Orcherton
Victoria Family Court & Youth Justice Committee Watters

CONTRACT NEGOTIATIONS 2017

Allied Specialists Association Orcherton
CUPE 382 Watters
CUPE 947 Paynter
Exempt Staff Ferris (Alternate –Whiteaker)
GVTA Nohr (Alternate –Leonard)
Principals & VP Loring-Kuhanga (Alternate –McNally)

SECONDARY SCHOOL CATCHMENT AREA GROUPS LIAISON 2017

Spectrum Ferris& Leonard
Mount Doug Paynter
Oak Bay Loring-Kuhanga
Reynolds Nohr&Orcherton
Vic High McNally
Lambrick Whiteaker
Esquimalt Watters

BOARD-ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES TO EXTERNAL  ORGANIZATIONS 2017

British Columbia Public School Employers’ Association (BCPSEA) Paynter
British Columbia School Trustees Association (BCSTA) Whiteaker

April4/16: EdPolicy&Directions: Bus Passes, Mental Health, Reading Recovery

“Mental health” is too important an issue to have one-off presentations at various schools. There is a province-wide bandwagon effect regarding student mental health initiatives, and the providers need more scrutiny from the District.

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Fern new growth April 2016

The Record Off The Record

P1: Meeting Schedule / Backgrounder / Standing Committee Meeting Summary
P2:
Standing Committees Backgrounder  / Trustee  Appointments
P3: District PAC (aka DPAC, VCPAC) Constitution excerpts / School Act re DPACs

The Record Off The Record is  my personal record of and  commentary on SD61 Board and  Standing Committee meetings. Official, approved  minutes are on the SD61 website, one  month after the meeting.  Sticky post: Motions and Trustee Voting Records  January 2012 – December 2015.

SD61 Greater Victoria School District includes  students in Esquimalt, Oak Bay, Victoria, View Royal, parts of Saanich and the Highlands, and the Traditional Territories of the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations.

Next Meetings
Wed April 6 7:00 pm Special  Board Budget Meeting to receive public input: Round Table Budget Discussion / S.J. Willis Auditorium
Mon Apr 11 7:00: Operations Policy and Planning Standing Committee and Special Budget Meeting to receive public input: (250) 475-4106 to pre-register for the speakers’ list
Mon Apr 18 7:30 pm: Board Meeting
Wed Apr 20 7 pm: Final debate and vote on 2016/17 Budget

Meeting agendas posted on SD61 website Friday before the meeting. Board meetings are now video recorded, though Standing Committees are not. (Look under the Board of Education menu.) Most substantive debate on motions takes place at the standing committees (Education Policy and Directions / Operations Policy and Planning). Standing Committees also provide for dialogue between  presenters and the Board.

A Policy Subcommittee has been formed to review Policies,  some of which have not been reviewed for several decades and some of which are redundant.

Nov 16/15: Board Meeting: The Record Off The Record: Board Elections / Provincial Framework

“We have all provincial ministries here in Victoria and we don’t discuss anything but education. “

P1: Disclaimer / Backgrounder
P2: Board Meeting Report
P3: SD61 Applicable Bylaws / Standing Committees / BC School Boards Letters Link
P4: District PAC (aka DPAC, VCPAC) Constitution excerpts / School Act re DPACs

Next Meetings
Mon Dec 7/15
7 pm Ed Policy/OPPS Standing Committees combined
Mon Dec 14 7:30 pm Board
Winter Break Dec 19-Jan 3
Mon Jan 4/16 7 pm Ed Policy Location  TBA

SD61 Greater Victoria School District serves students in Esquimalt, Oak Bay, Victoria, View Royal, part of Saanich and the Highlands, and the Traditional Territories of the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations.

Meeting agendas posted on SD61 website Friday before the meeting.

Sticky post: Motions and Trustee Voting Records  January 2012 – March 2015.

Links for more info /sources in blue.

The Record Off The Record is  my personal record of and  commentary on SD61 Board and  Standing Committee meetings.

Robert’s Rules of Order 11th Edition: Debate on the Question p 42 / p 43: “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.”

Trustees  are assigned by the Chair as members of one of the two standing committees, Education  Policy and Operations Policy and Planning. Agenda setting is the prerogative of the Chair, with input from senior administration.

 OPPS
Chair Leonard; McNally, Paynter, Whiteaker (ex officio Loring-Kuhanga – vote but not counted for quorum)
Ed Policy
Chair Nohr; Ferris, Orcherton, Watters (ex officio Loring-Kuhanga – vote but not counted for quorum)

Trustees don’t “have to”  attend Standing Committee if not assigned. Standing  Committee structure operates on  less formal   Rules of Order than does the Board,  which simply means no need for a seconder for a motion, and a Trustee  can speak as many times as the Chair allows. It doesn’t mean “no rules”,  or “Board traditions”.

External Trustee Liaison assignments are made by  the Board Chair to groups which replied “yes” to last year’s  District query re their desire to have a Trustee liaison, so there are fewer than for the 2012-2015  Board term, and for many years before that.

https://linedpaper1.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/assign-family-of-schools-jan-151-e1433354276773.jpg?w=452&h=585

Trustees and student representatives are referred to by last name only for brevity; “The Board of Education of SD No. 61 (Greater Victoria)” is referred to as “the Board”. No audio or video recordings are made of Standing Committee meetings, only of Board meetings.

Motions may be shortened but retain essential wording. Seconders not noted (and not required in Standing Committees).

In Camera meetings / Section 72 Reports

Legally required reports posted beside relevant meeting. (Click “view all” on Bylaws, Policies and Regs menu. under “Board” on SD61 website). “Section 72” refers to Section 72 (3) BC School Act :  “ A board must prepare a record containing a general statement as to the nature of the matters discussed and the general nature of the decisions reached at a meeting from which persons other than trustees or officers of the board, or both, were excluded….

Any report beyond the very basic one required must be done by in camera motion / majority vote.

SD61 Bylaw 9360.1: “In-camera items that may be discussed confidentially include legal, property, personnel and privacy matters as defined by provincial legislation. Full board meetings must be held in public unless the board decides that it is in the public’s interest to hold a private session (closed or in-camera meeting). However, it is important not to abuse this power. Potential controversy or embarrassment to the board is not usually sufficient reasons for an in-camera meeting.” (Civic governments bound by Community Charter (except City of Vancouver); move into in camera meetings by public motion of Council. Public has to leave for  duration of secret meeting, then come back. School Boards are governed by  BC School Act which states that Chairs can set in camera meetings before public meetings.)

Trustee attendance:

Don’t “have to”  attend Standing Committee if not assigned.  Imo good idea  though for keeping up with motions and debate, and if Trustee  wants to speak more than once, committee structure is more relaxed.

SD61 now has an Attendance Manager to “encourage and support” return to work for employees (even though SD61 employees generally below provincial average in sick days, and generally under number of negotiated available days in Collective Agreements, and have union-contracted return to work provisions through their own providers). This will soon be mandated by the Ministry of Education for all school districts.

 Trustee disqualification from holding office: ( BC School Act:52 (2) ): Trustees can miss almost 3 months of meetings – just not show up – ie. miss 6 Standing Committees, and 2 Board meetings, with no reason given, no cut in pay, and no approval required from the Board.

Oct 5/15: Ed Policy: The Record Off The Record: Charter School Proponent Supports “Program of Choice”

Is the “Dr. Greg Forster” quoted in the supporting document the Republican Evangelical who works for the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice? And is a senior fellow of the Kern Family Foundation that funds Charter Schools, obviously working toward privatization of the public school system?

 

Salt Spring Island
Salt Spring Island

P1: Disclaimer / Backgrounder
P2: Ed Policy Standing Committee Report
P3: SD61 Some Applicable Bylaws / Standing Committees / BC School Boards Letters Link
P4: District PAC (aka DPAC, VCPAC) Constitution excerpts / School Act re DPACs

Links for more info /sources underlined.

Sticky post: Motions and Trustee Voting Records January 2012 – June 2015. The District now posts a record of motions carried, but the motions that fail are equally interesting. (They do appear in the minutes of meetings, along with the vote, but not until a month after the meeting.)

Next Meetings
Tues Oct 13/15 7:30 pm Operations Policy and Planning
Mon Oct 19/15 7:30 pm Board
Mon Nov 2/15 7 pm: Education Policy Development
Mon Nov 9/15 7:30 pm: Operations

SD61 Greater Victoria School District:

  • approximately 20,000 students
  • 27 Elementary Schools
  • 10 Middle Schools
  • 7 Secondary Schools
  • 13 Programs of Choice, 155 BAA courses
  • School District for Esquimalt, Oak Bay, Victoria, View Royal, part of Saanich and the Highlands, and the Traditional Territories of the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations
  • Approximately 650 adult learners register with the SD61 Continuing Education / Distributed Learning Program
  • 6th largest employer in the Capital Regional District
  • 2015-16 budget of $206,361,204. (Out of that, nine Trustees are each paid approximately $1,400 a month, and are expected to attend two meetings a month. Each Trustee has access to an individual $2000 annual professional development fund, which at this point, rolls over if not used.)

The Record Off The Record is my personal record of and commentary on Board and Standing Committee meetings in School District 61 Greater Victoria.

  • Official approved minutes of Board and Standing Committee meetings and official voting records posted on the SD61 website under “Board of Education” menu one month after the meeting.
  • Agendas  posted for the public the Friday before the meeting.

Legally required reports (Section 72 Reports) from In Camera meetings are posted beside the relevant meeting. (Click “view all” on the Bylaws, Policies and Regulations  menu).

  • “Section 72” refers to Section 72 (3) of the BC School Act which states “A board must prepare a record containing a general statement as to the nature of the matters discussed and the general nature of the decisions reached at a meeting from which persons other than trustees or officers of the board, or both, were excluded, and the record must be open for inspection at all reasonable times by any person, who may make copies and extracts on payment of a fee set by the board.” [Kind of an antique process now that these are posted online.]
  • Key word: “general”. Any report out beyond the very basic one required must be done by an in camera motion and majority vote.
  •  SD61 Bylaw 9360.1 states: “In-camera items that may be discussed confidentially include legal, property, personnel and privacy matters as defined by provincial legislation.  Full board meetings must be held in public unless the board decides that it is in the public’s interest to hold a private session (closed or in-camera meeting). However, it is important not to abuse this power. Potential controversy or embarrassment to the board is not usually sufficient reasons for an in-camera meeting.”

Civic governments are bound by the Community Charter (except for the City of Vancouver, which adheres to the Vancouver Charter) and move into in camera meetings by a  motion made by a Councillor in a public meeting and carried by majority vote of the Council.  The public has to leave for the duration of the secret meeting and them come back. School Boards are governed by the BC School Act which allows  Chairs to set in camera meetings any time, often before public meetings.

Trustees and student representatives are referred to by last name only for brevity; “The Board of Education of SD No. 61 (Greater Victoria)” is referred to as “the Board”. No audio or video recordings are made of Standing Committee meetings, only of Board meetings. [No record of how the audio recording decision was made, or any debate on proposed uses of and storage of the record appears to exist. However, the video recording was debated at length in 2014 OPPS meetings.] Motions may be shortened but retain essential wording.Seconders not noted (or needed in Committees).

Trustees are assigned by the Board Chair as members of the two Standing Committees, Ed Policy and Operations Policy.  Board and Committee agenda setting is the prerogative of the Chairs, with input from senior administration.

 OPPS:
Chair Leonard; McNally, Paynter, Whiteaker (ex officio Loring-Kuhanga)
Ed Policy:
Chair Nohr; Ferris, Orcherton, Watters (ex officio Loring-Kuhanga)

 External Trustee Liaison assignments have been made by the Board Chair to groups which  replied “yes” to a recent query I asked for regarding their desire to have a Trustee liaison, so there are fewer than there were for the 2012-2015 Board term, and for many years before that. [Some assignments had continued for years to committees or groups that no longer existed.  A propos of that situation, no one has been able to find a contact for the Vancouver Island Labour Relations Association for years, so my position as elected rep to that body may not last for as many years as the previous rep’s did.]

Assign & Family of Schools JAN.15

SD61 now has an Attendance Manager (soon to be mandated by the Ministry of Education)  to “encourage and support” return to work for employees, even though SD61 employees generally are below the provincial average in sick days use, and generally under the number of negotiated available days in Collective Agreements, and have union-contracted return to work provisions through their own providers.

Trustees can miss almost 3 months of meetings – just not show up – ie. miss 6 Standing Committees, and 2 Board meetings, with no reason given, no cut in pay, and no approval required from the Board:

School Act, BC: Trustee disqualification from holding office: 52 (2) If a trustee is continuously absent from board meetings for a period of 3 consecutive months, unless the absence is because of illness or with the leave of the board, the office of the member is deemed to be vacant and the person who held the office is disqualified from holding office as a trustee until the next general school election.