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September 12, 2019

SWC School Council Minutes

September 12, 2019

Members attending: Margaret Sambol, Fiona Warren, Carolyn Berezowsky, Cara Baas, Amanda Lancaster, Jenn O'Reilly, Harinder Batth, Philip Mansfield, Wendy Mansfield Jillian Ade, Olga Blais, Jason Hinek, Leila Chinaei

Guests attending:Cindy Chan, Scott Dawson, Karen Roberts, Angela Boudreau, Christoph Hutter, Julie Carver, Taylor Hutter, Joanne McAuley, Alex McAuley, Virginia Dafoe-Dickey, Kelly Manweiler, Mark Bylsma, Rania Tfaily, Dumaima Lamrani

Staff attending: Wanda Mills-Boone, Christina D'Angelo, Breanna Durnin

Members sending regrets:Pam Woolridge, Naomi Elias, Katherine Percival

Meeting called to order 5:40pm

Welcome (Margaret):

  • Introduction of attendees
  • Thanks for coming, we are so happy to see new families. Many families who have been involved in the past have kids in grade 6, so we hope to continue to see you new families. If you are interested in taking something over, please speak up
  • Regrets: if you choose to become a voting member of council and you can’t make it, please send your regrets to keep track of who is an active member of council
  • Motion to approve the minutes from June 2019. Moved by: Jenn, seconded by Olga. Minutes pass.

Principal’s Report (Wanda):

  • Welcome, I am happy to be here for my second year .
  • Summer was busy at SWC with renos/painting. The old tech room is now a kinder room, cubbies have been installed, both kinders and room 104 have a bathroom. There is a doorbell at back door, it is to be used for deliveries and as an accessible entrance. The library is now upstairs.
  • 423 students last year, 480 students this year. There may be an adjustment in grade 2 with a grade 1/2 class. Lining up outside last year was a challenge, classes now enter at second bell and are greeted by their teacher. Most students are in class at 9:25 for O Canada
  • The Board has released their strategic plan, focusing on Culture of Innovation, Culture of Caring & Culture of Social Responsibility within our district. School Learning Plan (SLP) will focus on this as well as math.
  • Planning for Mathletes, presentations,sports etc. has begun
  • Terry fox presentation was today. Sept 26 is Terry Fox run. The course of this years run will symbolically finish the parts of the run that Terry couldn’t do.
    I look forward to working with you!

Teachers Reports (Breanna):

  • Everyone is getting back into the swing of things. Kids seem comfortable etc. Terry Fox Pledge forms went home today for gr 1-6
    Parent questions
  • Are we doing t-shirts this year?
    • Shirts have not been ordered.
  • Are we having agendas?
    • Agendas are available. Some kids prefer to make their own, but agenda’s are available for those who want them. Teachers can choose to use them or not. An alternative communication tool will be provided if teachers choose not to use agendas. If teachers aren’t using agendas they will send home the important info that is located at the front of the agenda
  • Did an almost lock down take place today?
    • A lock down did not take place today. We went into secure school (all students stay in room with normal classroom teaching continuing) so that a student could be supported. In a lock down kids are on the floor, silent, up against a wall with no window.
    • There will be no communication to families when secure school takes place due to the need to balance confidentiality and communication with parents. Wanda will send notice of lockdown practices to parents. Suggestion that Wanda send an email describing what a secure school is vs a lockdown.
    • Secure school can happen for lots of reasons: students leave classroom w/o permission, SWC has a behavior intervention program (6 children). This class is located in back staircase “the secret staircase”. There may be frequent secure school events.
  • A parent was concerned that a staff member letting parents into building.
    • Staff will sometimes open the door for people they know. The door code is for EDP parents. Code should not be shared with anyone.

Treasurer’s report (Cara):

  • Successful fundraising campaign last year. Pizza sales raised $10,000, QSP $1700, movie nights (3) $3500, Fun Night $1700, for a total of $17660.
  • Anything council makes in a year, we spend the next year. We can have a constant flow of money that way. We have done this for a long time. Our constitution allows us to allocate funds to a major project, last year funds from movie nights and fun night went towards the new library. Naomi and Jenn have been working hard on the library and council dedicated $5300 of last years funding to it.
  • Council has $12,500 to spend this year. Cara has a binder full of financials from last year. The library fund has $2600 left in it.
  • Council generally spends our money in Nov. In September we have updates. In October a new slate of council members and executive is elected.
  • Last year there was an online fundraiser (Flipgive). Naomi has to ask for those funds to be paid out ($950). The program was underused, only 10 families used it. Simple to use. It would be good to start a new flipgive campaign for general funds.

Review constitution (Margaret):

  • Last year council passed a constitution. It is available on the website. I want to highlight that there are up to 25 voting members. This cap is in place to maintain quorum. If you want to become a voting member, you are elected by anyone who comes to the meeting. When you vote you represent your own view, but also parents at large.
  • Anyone is allowed to attend and speak at council meetings. You don’t need to be a voting member to be involved.
  • The constitution sets up parameters for conflict resolution.

Review approved spending guide from June 2019 (Margaret):

  • The spending guide is a guide intended to give ourselves some structure and help make some spending decisions. Council is trying to support diversity in how we spend: academics, financial support for students who need it, classroom support, arts, running council etc. Providing childcare and meals is an important part of council support to help parents be able to come to meetings

NAC performance (Wendy):

  • In 2018/2019 council paid for a NAC brass performance (50 min duration) for the school. The NAC also offers two performances for a shorter duration, so younger kids could have a performance and older kids could have a performance.
  • Wendy suggests percussion for this year as students have brass and strings before. Percussion performances are in spring. Council saves 20% if we book before Oct. 1

Motion: To financially support an NAC performance in the springtime up to a cost of $300. Moved by Wendy, seconded by Jenn. Motion passed.

Annual Report and Principal profile (Margaret):

  • These are due oct 30. Margaret will send out a version via email as a google doc. Please comment.

Library update (Naomi):

  • Looking like an October grand opening, maybe movie night.
  • Mr. Brandy has begun shelving books
  • 2 Computers have been donated, one for Mr. Brandy and one for checkouts and research. There is a tech station to come with 3 chrome books that stay in the library at all times
  • $1000 from the council library fund needs to be transferred to the school so that payment for upgrades to Mr. Brandy’s desk are covered.
  • New carpets, cushions for kids, shelving racks, are coming in from Scholastic
  • The older book collections continue to be pulled out/replaced with newer versions - updated resource books and brand new reading material for ALL ages. (Including books on cd and a listening station!) LOTS OF BRAND NEW FRENCH MATERIAL!
  • the next projects will encompass the following: getting new books into the system and on the shelves; working with staff to encourage frequent use of the library space, and encouraging volunteers to work in the library with Mr. Brandy or alongside teaching staff (reading and helping with book selection - still to be discussed and designed with Wanda’s permissions)
  • Special thanks to janitorial staff who have carried books up to the new library location.

School travel update (Scott):

  • 6 years ago Scott started to work with the principals on traffic flow at pick up and drop off, also OSTA, bylaw, police etc. Signage has been changed on Walgate, SWC has moved its bus loading zone and has opened up the south parkwood hills lot for parking.
  • Come from east on walgate. At pick up there are lot and road parking options. If you have questions or concerns please come out and talk to Scott
  • Is the lot going to be open through the winter? Yes!
  • At what time can Walgate be a two way street again? Anytime, but after busses are gone, two way traffic is welcome.
  • Big changes have been made. Parents are happy to do the right thing from the start instead of changing their habits later.

Walking school bus (Wanda):

  • No one is on it. OSTA was supposed to promote the walking school bus.
  • Wanda has a meeting with Julie from Enviro centre. Can OSTA supply the school with the email addresses of the families that live on that route so Wanda can reach out to them? Julie will get on it.
  • Can we change to a different route if it works for more families? Juilie will find out.
  • Walking school bus route is currently on the North side of Meadowlands. Some council families are interested in using it, but the route would need to change.
  • The walking school bus takes cars off roads, makes roads safer. The public health nurse is working on this too.
  • Julie could come during meet the teacher night. Parents who were interested in the walking school bus could put push pins into a map for where they live so OSTA could pick the best route.

Fundraising Activities 2019/20 (Naomi):

  • Naomi would love to have a partner this year, talk to her or email council email. Making contact does not mean committing.
  • Could more gym mats be purchased for movie nights? Council is looking for volunteers to shadow at a movie night so other parents could take this over. Also next meeting a sign up sheet to volunteer at the first movie night will be available.
  • Movie night committee (Naomi, Wendy, Philip, Katherine):
    • 4 movie nights are booked for this year. October, November, January and April.
    • Plans are for Oct., Jan., and Apr. movie nights to be regular movie nights in the gym and for the Nov. movie night to be organized and run by the grade 6’s with proceeds from the grade 6 movie night going towards a grade 6 end of year celebration. The Nov. movie night would be for grades 4-6. Parents still need to attend with their child.
    • Older kids may not have been coming to regular movie nights because the movie is too “young”
    • It is not possible to split the movie nights between the gym and maker space because of food/volunteers/kids moving between spaces.
    • The board has license with two companies, which covers almost all Disney movies.
    • Describe movie night: Doors open at 6. Samosas, pizza, chips, popcorn, cookies/treats are available. Historically, healthy food has not sold well. Movie starts at 6:30. There is a 50/50 or raffle. Some kids wear pj’s
    • Council owns a popcorn machine.
    • It is decided that council offer the November movie night date to the grade 6 students to run. Can we make a zero waste event? Have some ideas about encouraging composting. Will discuss this more.
  • Fun night
    • Fun night has bouncy castles games, etc. It is a celebration at the end of the year.
    • It has been run as a break even event.
    • Margaret proposes a team planning approach since Jenn is stepping back from organizing it this year. If you want to be involved in fun night it is several months of planning. Jenn has contacts, information etc. if you want to do it alone, go ahead!
  • Macmillians
    • QSP magazine and cookie program has been sold this year. Macmillians is an option.
  • Flipgive
    • Has been discussed. You can find the link on our facebook page.
    • If an email about flipgive was sent out, parents might take it up.
  • Pizza (Carolyn):
    • If you want your child to have pizza this term, put in the order today. Pizza is at first break every Tuesday, order as many slices as you like. Cost is $2.25/slice. Half of that cost goes to council, Half goes to pay for pizza. Toppers is the pizza supplier.
    • Council needs someone to take this over. This is good for someone who loves working with spreadsheets.
    • Volunteers hand out pizzas during the break. Volunteer sign up is online. Most spots for term 1 are filled except for oct 29. There are still open spots later on in the year if anyone else is interested. It’s a great way to know the kids/school etc.
  • Indigo fundraiser
    • Jenn will look into it. Close to $1000 was made last year
    • It is a night at indigo and a percentage (15%) of all purchases from parents/supporters from SWC go towards the school. Talk to Jenn if you are interested

Yoga and Mindfulness pilot project (Harinder):

  • Last year council approved $1000 to be spent on yoga and mindfulness. Wanda thought it would be better to spend it early this year. Wanda will get back to council in Oct.
  • Parent question: Has council looked at the big life journal? No.

CS project (Jason and Leila):

  • This is going to happen. Four grade 3 classes will get a visit 1x per month in starting in Oct. Classes will be working computational thinking etc. Jason and Leila will bring a device next month.

Multicultural night:

  • Would like to see it happen this year. Amanda will spearhead this.

October elections(Margaret):

  • Vacancies on council:
    • Secretary: keeps basic recordings of what happens.
    • Co-vice chair: leads the meeting in margs absence, financial oversight, cheque signing.
    • Fundraising co chair.
    • OCASC representative: A group of all councils across the Board have meetings and discuss issues. Meetings are once a month on Thursdays.

Other business:

  • Council has a public Facebook page, Would there be a benefit to having a facebook group so that there would be more privacy? Discussion of pros and cons of this. Council will be sticking with the Facebook page.
  • Meet the teacher night is on Tue. Sept. 17 from 5-7. Some of us are wo/manning a meet your council table. If you’d like to join in, please do. Coffee and cookies will be offered.
  • The QSP program no longer exists. If someone wants to take on MacMillian fundraiser (cookie dough) We need to move on that now to do the fundraiser before christmas. It is not much work for $1700.
  • Fall grounds clean up will be discussed in Oct. Families come and rake, pick up garbage, pruning etc.
  • Council training day is Nov 9. 8:30-1:30. Workshops cover council finance, running a council. Food is provided.
  • Is the school doing anything about the elections? Running a minielection etc? Not sure yet, but it is part of the curriculum so something will probably happen.

Meeting adjourned 7:25.

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