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October 9, 2018

SWC School Council Minutes

October 9, 2018

Attendees: Wanda Mills-Boone, Louise Cesario, Breanna Durnin, Philip Mansfield, Cara Baas, Jillian Ade-Sibbitt, Margaret Sambol, Jenn O’Reilly, Naomi Elias, Katherine Percival, Amanda Lancaster, Carolyn Berezowsky, Fiona Warren, Harinder Batth, Melissa Forrest, Rebecca Johnston, T-C D’Agostino, Wendy Mansfield, Jeyanthi Sivasambu, Olga Blais, Jason Hinek, Leila Chinaei, Susan Johnson, Eman Mohammedsaaid

Meeting called to order at 5:40 p.m.

Welcome - Philip
The package includes the agenda for tonight, minutes from our last meeting, the treasurer’s report, information on council positions for the election tonight. Three candidates for school board trustee will address us tonight: Donna Blackburn, Amanda Purdy and Alex Sivasambu. There is a debate scheduled on Oct. 17 at 7 p.m. at Cedarview Middle School.  
Motion to approve the September 2018 minutes moved by Amanda. Seconded by Jill. Motion approved.

Principal’s report – Wanda Mills-Boone
A huge thank you to all our parents: our Terry Fox event was rescheduled due to rain, and then moved inside and then it didn’t rain while the kids were running inside. Music was played and the whole school was moving for 45 minutes: Some upstairs, some downstairs and some in the gym.  

On Orange Shirt day, students and staff participated in wearing orange and at appropriate age levels, talked about “every child matters.”

Pizza days are a huge success: parent volunteers are making it work smoothly.

Many clubs are starting: cribbage, weaving, cross country (field trip on Wednesday), soccer, WITS, Me to We club. Students are deciding where to go and what they are interested in. There are announcements about what is on each day. Teachers have been asked to send a note home to parents when their kids join a club they are starting up. If the club is going off property, a field trip form will be sent home.

Twitter needs to be handed over from our previous principal.

Learning time is less interrupted in the morning as everyone is getting the idea that school starts at 9:15. O Canada is played outside and when students come inside they are getting boots and coats off and on to learning. Parents are making efforts to schedule appointments around meal times and teachers are noticing that it is making a big difference in the classroom with fewer interruptions.

We are encouraging parents to only use the kiss and ride if kids can exit on the school side, as a teacher was almost hit by a car on the street side. Parents are staying in their cars and children are walking up the ramp to the yard on their own. Supervision doesn’t start in the yard until 9 a.m. so can’t leave children unsupervised before then.

The school yard is quite big and has a lot of entry places. It does allow for people to enter the yard during school hours unidentified. Parents are not allowed on the yard at recess time. Teachers can only do 80 minutes of duty a week, so can’t increase the number of teachers on the yard. We may look at reducing the yard a bit.

The access points to the yard are the ramp beside the gym, the locked gate from the parking lot beside the gym, the gate on the Meadowlands side and the stairs to the parking lot on the Mulvagh side. Kids need access in the mornings. Gates can be locked at recess, but it requires someone to go out and do it. Have had issues with locks getting cut.

EAs can do more duty time than teachers, so one option is to get more EAs.  

Parents commented to maintain the current size of the school yard and expressed a willingness to assume some risk of harm for the benefit of greenspace. Parents asked for information on the reasons to consider reducing the yard to decide if that warranted a change, i.e. number of incidents of concern. Parents commented that the school yard was built for Gr. 7 and 8 students and is large and difficult to supervise for Gr. 1 to 6 students. With no clear consensus, parents requested the opportunity to have input on any proposals for changes to the school yard.

There is also an issue of providing level access to the school office so parents with strollers, etc. can pick up or drop of children. Parents are asked to buzz into the office from the front door, but there is a staircase on the one side and the level entrance is through the kinder yard.

Our school resource officer, Cst. Lee, has scheduled a visit

The hiring process is complete, however there are some new hires who are finishing contracts at other schools before starting at our school.

Our anti-bullying program is called WITS (walk away, ignore, talk it out, seek help). Parents asked if there a cyber bullying component to the program and said they would prefer students to learn this younger so when they encounter it when they are older they are prepared.

Mme. Bianca and Anne Jesseau are running the Me to We club.

We have a lockbox to trial for the QSP program. Schoolcashonline is the preferred method of payment, however there is a slot on the lockbox to deposit cash and only two keys to open it. It will be installed on a wall.

Amanda will forward the report from EnviroCentre on our Safe school transportation plan from the spring. This program is one of the steps in getting a walking school bus. Amanda would like to follow-up with EnviroCentre.

Treasurer’s report: Cara (see attached documents)
Pizza money is coming in. It is divided up between term 1, 2 and 3 on the report because we need volunteers to keep it running and we will have to refund that money from term 2 and 3 if we don’t get them.
We have $9,000 to spend from last year. New council executive will need to have input on how we spend money.
There is $624 for the tree grant remaining
November is usually when make decisions on spending. Harinder would like to hear from the teachers on their spending requests.

Council elections
Scott and Phillip are willing to mentor. Cara is willing to continue but is looking for a volunteer to come alongside and be prepared to take over next year.

Chair – Margaret Sambol – All in favour.
Co-Vice-chair – Fiona Warren and Carolyn Berezowsky – All in favour.
Treasurer – Cara Baas – All in favour.
Secretary – Amanda Lancaster – All in favour.
Fundraising co-ordinators – Jenn O’Reilly and Naomi Elias – All in favour.
Website and facebook – Pam Woolridge. Not present tonight, but willing to maintain – All in favour.
OCASC representative – Carolyn and Jenn as sub – All in favour.

Voting members of council commit to attending the majority of council meetings throughout the year. We need 50 per cent of voting members present to have quorum to pass any motions.
Parents are welcome to attend meetings whether or not they are voting members.
All parents listed on the sign-in sheet agree to be voting members.
Voting members for the 2018-2019 Sir Winston Churchill School Council are:
Philip Mansfield, Cara Baas, Jillian Ade-Sibbitt, Margaret Sambol, Jenn O’Reilly, Naomi Elias, Katherine Percival, Amanda Lancaster, Carolyn Berezowsky, Fiona Warren, Harinder Batth, Melissa Forrest, Rebecca Johnston, T-C D’Agostino, Wendy Mansfield, Jeyanthi Sivasambu, Olga Blais, Jason Hinek, Leila Chinaei, Susan Johnson, Eman Mohammedsaaid

Upcoming Activities
Movie night is coming up on Oct. 19. A sign-up sheet for volunteers is going around.
A school ground clean-up is scheduled for Oct. 27.
A Volunteer recruitment flyer went out to the whole school last week.

QSP - Carolyn
QSP is kicking off tomorrow. There will be an envelope stuffing party after this meeting and the packages are going out tomorrow. There will be a very short assembly on Thursday to kick off the campaign. Melissa is helping and hoping to pass the torch next year. Melissa made a very nice flyer.
There is a ample of cookie dough cookies to share. They do have a gluten-free option. The cookies are made in a facility that also has cookies with nuts so no guarantee that the cookies are nut-free.  

Movid Night - Katherine
The movie night budget is in package. In the spring we passed a $600 budget for food for movie night, and it worked well. We usually make about $1,000 in profit.

On Oct. 19, we’ll be screening the Emperor’s New Groove. The raffle prizes are awesome and are going to be done a bit differently: you’ll buy tickets and put them toward the prize you want the most.

A parent asked about why council always sells unhealthy food. The school is allowed so many unhealthy days a year and council uses them for fundraising because they unhealthy food sells well and is inexpensive. We did try to offer healthy, fresh burritos, but they didn’t sell. We need a Booster Juice volunteer if we want it to happen again.

Rebecca is willing to do the work of looking into baked samosas from a place on Cleopatra that we could sell as a healthier alternative at movie night. She will connect with Katherine.

Katherine moves to spend $600 on movie night with the intention of making it back in movie sales. Naomi seconded. Motion approved.

Yard improvements
Naomi would like to spend the rest of the tree grant ($624) on mulch for the kinder yard. On Saturday, Oct. 27, parent volunteers will disperse the mulch, weed the gardens, pick up litter, rake leaves and enjoy free hot chocolate. Greely company can deliver the mulch at the end of the day Friday and it will be dispersed Saturday morning.
Naomi would like a motion to spend remainder of tree money on mulch. Jenn seconds. All approved.

Volunteers
The volunteer sheet went home last week. There has been one response.

The pizza coordinator position will be vacant in November so pizza will not continue after that unless someone steps up. Sometimes programs need to stop in order for people to feel the vacancy. Money will be refunded for orders made into the rest of the year.

Movie night in October is the last movie night for the team of Katherine, Phillip, Wendy and Naomi. They’ve been doing it for five years and need a break. At movie night, Naomi will announce that it is the last one unless we get new volunteers. The nights that have been booked for movie nights won’t run. We can also post on FB that we need volunteers or it won’t happen.

Booster Juice smoothies was a great fundraiser last spring. Susan is interested.
Melissa is interested in QSP for next year.
Trivia night still has willing volunteers.

There are lots of opportunities for people who want to implement their own ideas. Please invite people to the meeting.

Mindfulness: Jenn
Jenn wants to know if there is enough interest from parents to pursue a workshop on “Working kids through big emotions.”
It is too late to apply for the PRO-Grant too late for this year. 
Council funds cannot be spent on parent activities, so a workshop would have to see tickets to make back costs.
Parents are interested in it.

Jason and Leila work at Carleton and are interested in pursuing a workshop for students on coding. They would like to pursue funding from Carleton.
Breanna says coding club is starting up very soon. They will connect for details after.

Trustee candidates
On Oct. 22, the municipal election will be held and we will vote on candidates for school board trustee for zone 3, which includes schools in Barrhaven and Knoxdale-Merivale. All five candidates were invited to speak to us. Amy Wellings spoke at our September meeting and another candidate was invited but did not respond. Tonight, three candidates are hear to address us. They will each have five minutes to speak and then we will open up the floor for discussion.

Donna Blackburn – current trustee
Daughter attended Barrhaven PS – joined school council, then OCASC, then Cedarview MS council, and stayed on as community rep at Barrhaven PS to keep popcorn program running. Was on exec at OCASC and sat on board committees as a parent rep.
Degree in political science –  worked on Parliament Hill – then Masters degree in social work and worked on mental health, addiction and domestic violence.
Elected 2010, moving forward – will keep doing what I have been doing
Champion of student well-being and equity, instead of just student achievement. In my mind equally important.
Equity issues – got OCDSB to march in pride parade. 
Proud of my testimonial page where parents talk about working with me.
New Ontario government sent memo that not getting increases in grant per students and she looks forward to working with boards to find efficiencies, read cuts. Will advocate for adding EAs, psychs, support, as those are often the first to go in cuts.

Amanda Purdy
Has two young girls. First daughter started at Chapman Mills in 2014. Able to experience a brand new school. Then moved and children at Mary Honeywell. Only kilometres apart but not the same services as at new school, because Mary Honeywell is an older school.
Concerned with eating time at school. Lunches coming home uneaten. Unacceptable when comes to well being: kids need to sit with friends, learn to communicate and have time to eat.
Study that two 20-minute nutrition breaks not working.
Principals happy with it for scheduling breaks, but students and teachers least happy.
Health assessment needed to be done.
Compared EQAO scores at SWC vs. St. Gregory just kilometers away. French Catholic school board getting the highest scores.

Alex Sivasambu
Went to high school in Toronto, then went to Carleton University.
Three children: youngest son goes to this school and two kids at Merivale.
Lot of newcomers don’t have English or French as their first language.
Wants support system for mental health for kids who have been through hardships, both in country of origin or here.
Can’t approach all these kids with the same set of rules.
Wants collaborative approach and to build consensus.
Not divisive.
Focus on math scores
Promise will be a straight shooter. Stand on firm beliefs. Respect other colleagues.

Parents asked questions from the floor

Our next meeting is Nov. 13, and follows a schedule of the second Tuesday of the month, except for March when we do not meet.  

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