January 8, 2019

SWC School Council Minutes

Tuesday, January 8, 2019
Meeting called to order: 5:35 p.m.

Voting members in attendance: Margaret Sambol, Fiona Warren, Carolyn Berezowsky, Cara Baas, Amanda Lancaster, Naomi Elias, Harinder Batth, Melissa Forrest, Rebecca Johnston, Philip Mansfield, Wendy Mansfield, Olga Blais, Jason Hinek, Leila Chinaei, Pam Woolridge Guests in attendance: Catherine Kyeremontery SWC Staff: Wanda Mills-Boone, Breanna Durnin

Welcome (Margaret)

  • Cathy agreed to take responsibility for movie nights!
  • Vice Chairs, Fiona and Carolyn are checking the treasurer’s work instead of Margaret, to share the workload
  • Council insurance certificate has arrived. Available at office, or Margaret has a copy. Insurance is only good if Wanda or her designate is in attendance, Wanda can not designate a parent.
  • Fiona has been working on a draft of constitution, this should be ready to discuss in February.
  • Motion to approve December minutes . Motioned by Carolyn, seconded by Phillip.

Principal’s Report (Wanda)

  • December book fair brought in $3,000. Probably running another book fair in the spring.
  • Immunizations: On Nov 14, Ottawa Public Health sent letters to families whose vaccinations are not up to date, or whose records were not up to date. If records are not up to date, suspensions start on Feb 13. Staff has sent emails to affected families to encourage them to get their child’s vaccines up to date/update their child’s vaccination record so that child will not be suspended.
  • Kindergarten registration week will be Jan 21-28. Info night is 23rd from 6-7pm. Parents can pick up registration pack from the school or can register online. Parents can register anytime, but registering as early as possible is best because staffing allocation is done in the spring.
    • Question: A council rep has come to kindergarten information night in the past, would we be able to do it again this year? Answer: This info night is more high level, spring info night is more specific to the school. Council could send a rep to the spring parent night. The council rep could also invite parents to fun night and invite them to follow SWC on social media. Wanda will include a slide in the Powerpoint presentation at the spring meeting. Council will also have a flyer available at the spring kindergarten information night.
  • Staff meeting this morning discussed the School Learning Plan.
    • Parents often ask What does success criteria look like?
    • How do teachers get more classroom discourse k-6. School learning plan must be around math (ministry directive) SWC wants everyone to be in on the student learning plan. How do we enrich language across all grades, english and french. This is the place to start over the next few months. Sentence stems, how to start, for example: I respectfully disagree with… Hope to move ot students building the success criteria with the teacher.
    • Started with WITS crew, 4 junior students in two groups of 2, in primary yard, help out with playing soccer etc.
  • There was a pizza party before holidays to acknowledge the lunch monitors.
  • Looks like there will be two NAC concerts, first one (brass) will be winter 2019, THEME organization interested in building music for children paying for another one in spring (woodwinds).

Teachers Report (Wanda)

  • Orange and purple kinders are creating outer space in the dramatic area.
  • Gr. 3 are continuing with swim to survive at the Pinecrest rec complex.
  • Gr. ⅔ split is working collaboratively working on a class book with er verbs. The class is also kicking off the year with growth mindset work, working on patience, etc.
  • Mme Perry Gr 5 working on integrative arts projects, exploring scientific method, kitchen science experiments, active listening.
  • Triple ball for interested Grade 5’s information comes home shortly.
  • Report cards are coming home Feb 14
  • PD day Jan 25 Kinder update (Breana)
  • Kinders had a multicultural holiday day in Dec, included nativity, New Years, Chanaka, Kwanzaa, Santa Lucia , Santa
  • Kinder performances (songs) in Dec.
  • Red and yellow classes are going to forest school 1x/week for 3 weeks
    • What is forest school: Kids get to go explore in nature, get to ask lots of questions, inquiry based child led education. Lots of logs etc to build with. Happens at macskimming,
  • Orange and purple classes have been learning about space and winter
  • Green and blue classes have a bakery and hot chocolate store in their class
  • Red and yellow have been studying winter in preparation for their forest school experience.

Treasurer’s Report (Cara)

  • Not much has changed since December meeting.
  • On the balance sheet there is a box showing our council spending status, allows to add a line showing fundraising efforts going to next year.
  • 501st legion (hired for fun night) has not cashed their cheque from last year.
  • Baby sitters for council meetings are unpaid, Naomi has bought gift cards with her own funds for Christmas time, council to purchase $100 in gift cards for end of the year. This doesn’t require a motion as it falls under council support

SWC School Council spending plan 2018/19 Margaret

  • Yoga and mindfulness pilot
    • Do we have teacher support? Does the board have a yoga person already? Board does not have a yoga person. Wanda did not discuss teacher support at staff meeting this morning, she missed it. Some feedback: Teachers would like teaching to be ongoing rather than a one off event, want it to be part of the programing. Kinders have long days, yoga has been helpful for them.
    • Harinder says that Little Souls yoga has been selected to talk about the benefits of mindfulness/yoga on the Jan. PD day to the board.
    • Little Souls has options for mindfulness, or mindfulness and yoga. Whether funding comes from council or is student supported, or both can we get a trial run to see what teachers think of program? If teachers and admin don’t buy in, there is not much point. Little souls teacher could potentially come in on a PD day and present to teachers.
    • Question: Can she come in on Jan 25? Answer: PD days can be onsite, or off site, the ministry dictates what can happen during the PD days. Admin is sent a directive and told what to present.
    • Wellness is also part of school learning plan
    • Feb 15, is a PD day. Wanda does not yet have a directive for this day
    • Q: Is this (mindfulness/yoga) something we can do this year? OR should we plan on implementing this next year?A: staff and admin and students all are getting to know each other this year. If there is no buy in, then it is no so useful.
    • Harinders goal as a parent, like to introduce yoga/mindfulness to children for their well being. She can not get to private sessions. Teachers who buy in to it could benefit from from it. Harinder would like to see progress on it this year.
    • Rebecca: What is the minimum number that is needed? Harinder: Mindfulness minimum is $840 for 6 classes, 15 minutes per week for 4 weeks. Options available for 8 sessions, yoga and mindfulness 1x per week or 2x/week.
    • Naomi: It might be a good idea to have Little Souls come in on the Feb PD day to talk to staff to get their buy in.
    • Harinder: Information on benefits to kids is already out there.
    • To be a presenter to the board the person must go through each division and be approved. (Little Souls seems to have gone through this process) Wanda may not get a directive before 3rd week of january or even the end of month.
    • Margaret: How does something like this work logistically, where does this fit into a day? It does upset the regular schedule. Need to have a discussion with Little Souls to see how this could work
    • Through a show of hands, council members present strongly support pursuing a mindfulness or mindfulness and yoga initiative this year.
    • Next step for is for Wanda to discuss this with teachers to see if they are interested and Little Souls yoga, to see how this could work in the school Motion: Pending staff buy in and staff considerations, council will allocate $1,000 of our current funding to support a mindfulness or yoga and mindfulness program in the school. Moved by Rebecca, seconded by Harinder. Approved.
  • Microphones
    • Naomi: To have a decent quality , durable, etc, mic $700 is not a lot of money. Naomi purchased one for $40 off of amazon to test, Thinks it will not be durable enough.
    • Carolyn: Is there a warranty or hours of use over lifetime etc. guarantee? No
    • Has Philip talked to music guy about mics? No
    • May Rebecca ask her partner to make a technical recommendation? Yes
    • Council can buy mics and equipment from wherever we want, not only from board approved suppliers
    • Quote was for 3 shure diversity wireless mic receiver, 1 shure 4ch vhf antennae distribution, 3 shure LX1 wireless beltpack transmitter, 3 shure omni Lavalier condensor mic w/TA4F, 1 wooden rack for receivers….. From Professional Sound and Lighting . These are reconditioned mics, and a staff member has a contact with this company
    • When do we need the mics? For the talent show in Dec. 2018...
    • Where would mics be kept?. Wanda’s office or a room close to the gym.
    • Lots of community folk use SWC building, teacher keys let people in around the gym, but not into principal’s office. Could change a lock on a room close to the gym to be a principal key.
    • Rebecca: Is uncomfortable with googling a mic and deciding what to get, wonders are things going to be compatible with our existing equipment. Wanda will confirm that staff member gave information about SWC’s existing equipment to her contact with Professional Sound and Lighting
    • Motion: Council will support the purchase of microphones and the associated technical equipment for $734.50. Moved by Naomi, seconded by Jason. Approved
    • Wanda will send the information to Rebecca so she can find out if the offer Karen solicited is compatible with our existing equipment, and Wanda will find out if the offer is still available. Rebecca’s goal is to have mics and equipment by Feb.


  • Fun Night (Naomi)
    • Planning is just starting, anyone can participate, Jenn and Naomi are NOT organizing fun night next year.
    • There is a giant binder of contacts etc already in place from previous years. Whoever takes over does not have to do it the same way that it has been done in the past. Please speak to Naomi if you are interested.
    • Booking for the event has to start soon. Date is June 14,
    • For anyone who has not attended before, event runs from 5:30-8. All kinds of neat stuff, reptiles, wagon ride, etc. Event has been run as a break even event, although a small profit has been made. The intention of night is to celebrate the school, and kids, to give back to them for their hard work. Lots of volunteers are needed.
    • In terms of organizing the event, the week before the event requires time, and night of requires time, but not that much before that.
  • Crayola colorcycle program (Naomi)
    • People can bring in dried up markers and they will be sent recycled in a responsible fashion
    • Crayola does not give SWC money for this.
    • Enviro club will support it.
  • Movie Night (Cathy)
    • Next movie night Jan 18, another movie night in April, april 24?
    • Cathy has been updated on the logistics of the event. Cathy is happy to be organizing it. Everything will be running same as usual this night. Incredibles 2 is the movie. 50/50 draw instead of raffle to reduce time needed. Margaret has agreed to do popcorn. Flyers are going out to teachers tomorrow. Council has made a pack of free tickets for entry into movie night as a prize, for families of limited means etc.
    • Thanks Cathy!
  • Motion: Council will allocate $600 to be spent on supplies for movie night in with the expectation that funds disbursed will be recouped from funds raised. Moved by Wendy, seconded by Naomi.
  • Can funds from movie night go to the library? Yes
  • Have we been given approval for library moving yet? No, but maybe this week
  • Even if superintendent does not give approval for moving the library, we can still use this furniture etc. for this library
  • Flipgive (Naomi)
    • More than $500 raised so far, fundraiser will remain open for the rest of the school year
    • Carolyn used it, but wonders is it working for people? When people sign up for flip give and don’t make an account, it puts it under Naomi’s account. Retailers have a certain amount of time to put money into the Flipgive program If you notice that the retailer hasn’t given the money to flip give, show receipt to flip give and Flipgive will go after retailer for the money. You can only see if the retailer has given Flip Give the money if you make an account.
  • Pizza Program (Melissa)
    • No updates
    • Volunteer sign up should be up soon

School grounds update (Wanda)

  • Splitting the yard into two seems to be working. The tree at top of the ramp is the Thinking Tree. The Thinking tree is a place to go for if kids need a teacher to come to them, kids need some quiet time, or a place for kids to go if they are looking for a friend.
  • The “line” dividing the yard goes from the Thinking Tree to the gate on Meadowlands. Junior on west side of the yard primaries on the east side of the yard.
  • The reason for dividing the grounds is to reduce injuries when kids of different sizes play together. It has helped kids play with others they might not have otherwise. This issue will be looked at again in the spring, because we only have one play structure/rocks are clustered in east end of yard etc.
  • There have been challenges with icy surfaces. Contractor sometimes hasn’t been out to sand etc. so indoor recesses are more common.
  • Were most of the problems with snow boulders? Soccer was a big problem, games with 20 players-10 players, grade 6’s against grade 1’s don’t seem to work well.
  • Wendy appreciates splitting of the school yard because her younger child now has to play with his peers rather than play with his older brother
  • Rebecca: What is happening with buddy bench? Buddy bench is staying where it is, outside the office because it is used where it is, plus it is showing rust.
  • Was there an empathy program with the bench? Unknown, but that ship has sailed
  • The back parking lot is not for parents to drop off students. Wanda has a few things in the works about getting around the site.
  • Council will talk further about yard improvements later in the year.
  • Fiona:This year there seems to be less interaction between kids of mixed ages. Eg. spirit days, colour days activities. Fiona really appreciated the interaction between kids in different grades in the past. Wanda: Reading buddies are happening and are mixed ages. Wanda will look into the subject further

Other business

  • If you need access to council google drive see Margaret for access.
  • Cheque requisitions form internal account. Board would like a list of people who are requisitioning cheques from internal account with signatures. If you often requisition cheques from the council internal account, please see Margaret.
  • Volunteers are needed:
    • Caregivers Sale: Before mother’s day, council collects regiftable gifts, bags, students (has been kinder and grade 1) can make a donation or not, and receive a gift to give to their parent or caregiver
    • Equator coffee: Volunteer needed it’s an easy thing to do. Pick coffee up from Westboro, then sort it.
  • Naomi/Rebecca: Would like to increase parental volunteer involvement.
    • Would like to put a letter out to classrooms so that there would be a parent from each classroom at council
    • Trying to build up lines of communication to parents, facebook group would require teacher involvement initially.
    • We can do a lot more to grow our pool of interested parents. Many hands make light work etc.
    • Could send an email to parents of classes who are not currently represented at council. As long as council drafts the letter, it isn’t work for teachers.
    • Council members will identify the class(es) their child(ren) are in
    • Rebecca will write this letter
  • Is the Snowhawks ski program happening this year? Maybe. Kristy said they could do it, but we haven't heard if there are any spots available. Last year, only 15 students from SWC participated and SWC students went on the same bus as Merivale students.
  • Rebecca is interested in having more after school programing in our school, like the Young Rembrandts art classes.

Meeting adjourned at 7:33

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