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School Council meeting minutes - Thursday September 13, 2012

School council Minutes - September 13, 2012 (7-8:30pm)

15 parents, including 1 teacher, Miss Michelle

1.      Welcome and introductions – Kelly Banks

In attendance:  

·        Principal - Douglas Mintz

·        Vice-Principal - Norbert Costa

·        Co-Chair - Kelly Banks

·        Co-Chair - Brad Cunningham

·        Communications – Natasha MacFarlane

 

Regrets:

·        Fundraising - Linda Antoniadis

·        Treasurer - Angela Reid

·        Secretary - Jo Furley,

                             

2.      Elections – Brad Cunningham

Parents invited to volunteer for positions on Council. Jo Furley will not be continuing on as Secretary, so Natasha MacFarlane will fill that role in addition to her Communications Chair duties unless someone wishes to volunteer for the role of Secretary. Everyone else will continue in their roles as there was no call for Election.

 

3.      Committees – Douglas Mintz

Mr. Mintz is asking for volunteers for a variety of committees. Anyone can sign up for the various committees and sign-up sheets were provided. See Council for more details. Here is a list of committees needing volunteers:

  • Halloween Movie Night
  • Spring Fair
  • Festival of Lights
  • Yearbook
  • QSP
  • Staffing
  • Space
  • Ward Council Rep
  • Curriculum
  • Visiting Artists
  • Equity
  • Health and Safety/Safe Schools
  • Eco-Schools

 4.      Budget – Brad Cunningham

Last year was good for fundraising revenue. Fundraising was $9,700 over fundraising target. Brad reviewed financials as provided by Angela Reid. Last year’s Spring Fair was the most successful in terms of net revenue and number of volunteers.

Expenses – highest is the Spring Fair. Field trip budget had excess. Brad addressed each of the larger items to explain how money was allocated in the previous school year. Expenditures were under projections, so the total funds available going forward is $32,375.11.

Q – Was money allocated for a new piano used? A –  Ms. AC has a temporary piano, but is still searching for the piano she wants/needs.

Q – $2,500 was budgeted for library books but nothing was spent. A – There have been purchases but nothing has been recorded.

Q – How are we collecting feedback? A – There was a survey sent out last year. Brad pulled over 40 responses. A link will be added to Parent link and to the School Council Website.

Budget for the upcoming school year will be the 32,000 minus the 10,000 reserve.

5.      Construction – Douglas Mintz

Most of it is done and all of the classrooms were usable. Corrosion of the steel columns within the walls caused additional work. Scaffolding is still up as there is still some caulking and painting to complete. Overall, the work is progressing well. Some final work needs to be completed, such as blinds installed and shrubbery replaced. Lunch room 1 is not ready so those children have been eating in the gym.

Q – Why were parts of the soccer field partitioned off?  A – Due to inclement weather causing a very muddy field making a mess indoors and a mess of the grass.

Q – in the south of the building, the back area was flooded is there a known drainage issue. A – No one was aware and thanks for reporting.

6.      Parent link – Brad Cunningham

Brad explained the purpose of Parent link and the communication process.

Q – Is there was a reason why there wasn’t more information shared with this tool. i.e. There has been some duplication in regards to sending a newsletter in hard copy then again later in an email. A – There is no withholding of information that anyone is aware of. Council will encourage classroom teachers to use the Parent Link communication tool.

7.      QSP – Kelly Banks

Catherine A., Mary R., and Emily A. have offered to return to work on this campaign that begins October 1, running for 2 weeks. A goal and theme is to be determined and this information will be sent home with a package with the children. The online link stays open throughout the year.

8.      Library – Miss Michelle

Due to excessive heat in the library, especially a concern last year, measures have been taken to manage the heat by having blinds installed, using upright fans, putting cloth over the windows and keeping the doors open for circulation. Because of the heat, this is a risk for causing damage to the computers and other electronic equipment. Miss Michelle requested the Council to consider purchasing a free-standing air conditioning unit. Brad agreed to quote some units. Miss Michelle will provide more information to Council.

9.      EQAO – Norbert Costa

Norbert Costa – quick summary of the 2011-2012 results. For grade 3 and grade 6, the school scored above average in all areas except grade 3 reading. Comparing results between the school, the board and the province from the last five years shows positive growth for the school. More information is available under parent resources on www.eqao.com.

Q – When will personal results be provided? A – By the end of the month.

Q – How could it be twice the number of students is better at writing than at reading? A – Once the results are provided, the results will be analyzed as to how the scores were accumulated.

The French students write only the math portion. Overall – the school is continually improving.

Looking for parent volunteers to help with reading. (English and French)

10.   Personal transitions – Douglas Mintz

Mr. Mintz discussed his transition from being a Sehajdhari Sikh to a Keshadhari Sikh.  Basically it means he will be taking certain vows and as part of his observable changes will be wearing a turban and “keeping” his hair (not shaving the beard). He welcomes any discussion or queries on the matter.

11.   SmartBoards/Laptop cart/Website – Norbert Costa and Brad Cunningham

SmartBoards

Mr. Costa said the school has a need for 2 more SmartBoards (as expressed by interested teachers). He hopes to see the SmartBoards become a regular part of every classroom. He proposes that the school buy one and the Council buy one. There are currently 9.  No objections to purchasing a SmartBoard. This will bring the school’s total to 11 SmartBoards.

Laptop cart

The Board has provided a laptop cart equipped with 15 laptops. Mr. Costa is hoping for support from Council to buy another 15. This first cart will live on the 3rd floor, and the goal is to eventually get a cart for each floor.  Cost per computer is approx. $600 each as the cart can support 30 units. Brad suggests this could be a good QSP goal. The existing Cogeco connection would suffice for Internet support and would not require additional work.

Website

Council has a goal to have more people aware of the site and to visit it more often. Instead of Parent Link sending out document attachments, they can send a link to the document on the site. Other functionality includes subscribing to announcements.

Updates are needed for the current school year.

12.   Other business

Q – Is the work to rule suspected to have an impact on the school? A – Mr. Mintz says he hasn’t yet received any direction from the Board. At this point, extra-curricular activities may be suspended, but nothing has yet surfaced.

 

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Susan Docker,
Oct 1, 2012, 6:16 PM