February 19, 2019

SWC School Council Minutes

Tuesday, February 19, 2019
Meeting called to order: 5:35

Voting members in attendance:  Margaret Sambol, Fiona Warren, Carolyn Berezowsky, Cara Baas, Amanda Lancaster, Pam Woolridge, Naomi Elias, Harinder Batth, Jillian Ade-Sibbitt, Katherine Percival, Jason Hinek, Eman Mohammedsaaid
Guests in attendance:Yanxing Song, Tamaam Muhumed
SWC staff in attendance: Wanda Mills-Boone, Louise Cesario, Karen Perry

Voting members not in attendance who gave prior notice: Olga Blais, Rebecca Johnston, Jenn O'Reilly, Melissa Forrest, Philip Mansfield, Wendy Mansfield, Leila Chinaei,

Movie Night:
Motion: Council to spend up to $600 to cover expenses for movie night taking place April 5, with intention to recoup costs during the event. Moved by Naomi, seconded by Harinder.  Motion passed.

Motion: Council to reimburse $240 for additional expenses incurred on supplies for January movie night, Moved by Naomi, seconded by Jill. Motion passed.

OCASC motions on health curriculum:

Motion: To Request that OCASC rep ask PIC to write to the Minister of Education and state the following:

  • a year is an excessive delay for a response to the 2018 Consultation: Education in Ontario; and
  • the modern Health and Physical Education curriculum, as was taught in 2015, should be reinstated; or school boards should be given the option to reinstate the curriculum, for the interim period before the consultation response.

For:10, against:0, abstain: 2

Motion: Request that OCASC rep ask PIC to relay concerns, to the Board and the Ministry, about the practice of reporting teachers who answer students’ questions around physical health and wellness.
For:11, against:0, abstain:1

Motion: Request that OCASC ask PIC to clarify whether School Councils can engage parents and offer programming, during school hours, on the subjects from the 2018 Consultation: Education in Ontario.
For:10, against:0, abstain:2

Motion: Council directs SWC representative (Margaret) to ask at OCASC whether the curriculum is ceiling or floor regarding what can be taught and whether teachers can address questions that touch on subjects in the 2015 curriculum.
For 10, against:0, Abstain 2

Library (Naomi)

Council advertised that proceeds from January movie night would be going to revamping the library.

Motion: Naomi, on behalf of council, can use money earned at January movie night with-in the 2018-19 school year to spend on supplies for the library. Moved by Naomi, seconded by Carolyn, motion passed.

  • We have new furniture in library, 2 small benches and 6 cushions.  These are light and can be sat on. The kinders have been enjoying them, sharing books etc.  These first items are a test to make sure items are used and are durable.
  • Art has been purchased, frames purchased from Ikea. There are more hanging mechanisms and frames being kept at Naomi’s home for student’s art.
  •  New books have been catalogued.  Half French half English, novels, picture books.  Not sure which purchases have come out of Indigo/Scholastic fund.  In the last month 400 books have been added to the library.

Motion: Approval of minutes from January. Moved by Harinder, seconded by Fiona. Motion passed.

Welcome (Margaret)

  • Movie night was great.
  • It is possible for individuals to sign up to get news from the board, you can do so by emailing
  • Donation of a working washer (newish) and dryer has been made.  Washer and Dryer are used in autistic life skills classes.

Principal’s Report (Wanda)

  • This week is random acts of kindness week.  Staff and students will learn about being kind.  This helps build self awareness, healthy relationships etc.
  • Report cards have gone home.
  • Second report IEPs go home March 1.
  • Today all kids practiced bus evacuation.
  • Feb 26 is Toonie Tuesday money goes to the Education Foundation, which SWC uses to support students and helps students across the board. Junior council is taking this on this year.  Children will understand that they are giving back so bringing in physical money will be encouraged.
  • Feb 28 is Winter Walk Day.  Collaboration with Transportation Initiative, City of Ottawa, Public Health. Ottawa Health mascot, fire trucks, paramedics etc.  The School Resource Officer will be there.  Each class in turn will do a loop around the school.  Kids not doing their loop at the moment will participate in winter carnival activities.  In March there will be a pedestrian safety presentation.  Kids will make a map of their community exploring safety issues that can be identified by kids, which routes are kids taking.
  • Friday was a PD day, combination of Health and Safety and math.  Staff explored the Board’s exit outcomes,\  and explored how to promote these and support students in learning at SWC. 
    • Setting wellness goals around self regulation, raising hand, seeking help, etc. if you don’t ask, you don’t know, it’s okay to ask.  With juniors, kids are having anxiety about being wrong.  Staff need to build the mindset that making mistakes is okay. Talk about revision, and relooking, looking at a process, focus on process is more important than results. Staff are modeling that.
  • EQAO (Education Quality and Accountability Office or standardized testing) is a snapshot of your child.  As parent you will get a report telling you level your child achieved.  School gets info on how they compare with board, school etc. over time.  At SWC looking at the cohort of last year’s grade 6’s: in grade 3, 73% met provincial standard in reading.  76%, students met the provincial standard in writing  In grade 6 88% of students met provincial standard in both reading and writing.   58% met provincial standard in math in grades 3 and 6.  8% did not meet the standard in math in grade 3 but did in grade 6. 15% met the provincial standard in math in grade 3 but not in grade 6.  19% did not meet the provincial standard in math in grade 3 or grade 6.
    • EQAO is NOT measuring the teachers who teach 3 and 6,
    • Jill- There is a constant revamping of the EQAO, accessibility of problem solving questions,
    • Wanda-next steps to see which questions are problematic for students, and why.
    • Is there a question about amount of prep teachers do for the test?  Are kids being taught to the test?  Wanda: You are not teaching to test, it is a test of everything covered all the way through, exposure to multiple choice is appropriate.  Children with accommodations (IEP) can bring those with them into test. 
    • Is there a difference between girls and boys between grades 3 and 6?  This will be looked at.
  • Staffing for next year has started.  25 kinders registered so far, please tell your friends to register now.  SWC is having a behavior intervention class (BIP) added in September, things will need to be done around school to facilitate that. 
  • Current library space used as a common area looks like it will be a go.  Library will move upstairs. 
  • Our gym dividing wall doesn’t work well, we will get a curtain instead. 
  • Immunization suspensions have started. Only suspended 6 students. 
  • Thanks to Naomi, Jenn and Scott for picking up washer and dryer.  Custodians are happy and kids in the autism program are happy.
  • Mindfulness and Yoga
    • Spoke to Victoria (of Little Souls Yoga). Victoria will be doing a workshop for staff in 2 PD days from now.  Many of kinder children are doing yoga during lunch.  Some staff would like to do a pilot, then be buddies with another class to get it rolling through the school.
  • School Learning Plan is supposed to be finished on Feb. 22.  Won’t be done by then, but shortly after.  Due to being a French immersion school there are less teachers who teach math compared to English schools. Is the SLP going to be public?  Yes it will go on the website/be presented to council.  How to engage parents in new math, self reg etc.

Teacher’s Report

  • Mme. Bianca’s Gr 1 class has been studying materials and structures, naming and describing in French, counting, encouraging French speaking, reading “ai” and “et” sound focus, capital letters and periods. They will be skating for the first time next week.
  • Mathletes included gr 2-6, with 23 Gr. 7 and 8 students from Merivale.  Solved more than 7,000 math problems.  Fun had by all.
  • Grades 2 and 3 had great time skating. Thanks to volunteers in community. They have reading buddies with Gr. 1 and k. They are working on adding fluency and expression. 
  • Music units in Gr. 3 and 5 and have music centres with ukuleles.  In visual arts they start an artist study, students will research about a painter, painting, make an inspired copy of the painter’s art., In science, students are getting through first experiments, heat/melting, changes in matter. Scientists in the School is coming on Friday, it will be a day of hands on experiments.
    • What is Scientists in the School?  Organization brings in a portable lab and do explorations with students.
  • Nicole (autism) cooperative cooking program with different classes and teachers has been good to expose kids to different kids. Teachers. etc.
  • Kinder A and B are doing forest school, 3 days at Macskimming Outdoor Education Centre. March 20 Junkyard Symphony is coming to the school and doing 2 sessions, a kinder session and 1-6 session.     
    • 400 kids can be too many at a time for shows, presentations etc.

Winter Walk Day (Wanda)

  • Parent volunteers needed. For the event to go as planned, weather must be warmer than -25, must be able to negotiate snow banks etc.

Treasurer’s Report (Cara)

  • Naomi’s library expenses were coded to tree grant fund by mistake.
  • Council has $4,000 committed but not spent? 
  • Mic. update: Rebecca spoke to 2 people that thought that 3 mics on the list are not compatible with kids because they attach to shirts.  The person offering the quote works with students/schools regularly. After discussing the issue, council has decided to go ahead with the quote.


Fun Night

  • Fun Night planning is going well. If you have suggestions, go to Jenn. 
  • Jenn is collecting things that could be prizes for kids. 
  • Donate books you are finished with for a books by donation sale at fun night.

Community Garage Sale in May:

  • Scott is interested in doing a garage sale in May.  Last time, tables were sold for $20 to people who wanted to sell stuff.  It was somewhat successful.  Raised $600 last time. It was hard to get the word out.  Council has decided not going to do it this year. Too much work at busy time of year.

Pizza program: 

  • Melissa has stepped down.  Do we keep the program going? Scott has offered to make spreadsheets and help.  Carolyn will take on running the pizza program for this term. The program offers good bang for buck.

Constitution: Introduction to draft (Fiona)

  • Council is supposed to have a constitution, but we have not had one before. Fiona has reviewed other parent council constitutions for inspiration, most of the proposed is standard.  Capping the number of voting members is important to ensure quorum, if people sign up to be voting members and don’t attend, council cannot function.  Other changes to what council has been doing up to now include the secretary would prepare council correspondence, the role of fundraising committee chair has been added, the clause that a voting member misses 2 consecutive meetings without notifying council they will no longer be a voting member has been added.
  • Council is not compliant with board policy without a constitution. Chairperson would like to get a constitution worked out then add more policies, financial guidelines, fundraising guidelines, templates etc.
  • A link has been shared (with voting members?) to the draft constitution. Annexes can be added in the future. Council needs to approve the constitution before sending it along to the board.  Please read and comment on the draft constitution so it can be hopefully be  passed at the April meeting.

Communication Policy

  • Is anyone interested in talking about communication policy?  Margaret doesn’t want to do it alone.

Other Business

  • Classroom Representation started to fill out, please fill it out.
  • Thank you cards please stay to fill them out.
  • Gift cards for custodians will be discussed in April
  • No meeting in March
  • April meeting there will be a school travel planning update
  • No caregiver sale this year due to lack of volunteers

Meeting adjourned: 7:35 p.m.

Website by SchoolMessenger Presence. © 2020 Intrado Corporation. All rights reserved.