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Get The Facts
Board Meeting Highlights

May 15, 2007

Vimy Ridge
Chris Walker, Student Senator introduced three other students and their teacher from Chesley District who had participated in the trip.  These three students and their teacher presented a power point presentation detailing the highlights.  This was a once in a life time trip to France to participate in the 90th anniversary service at Vimy Ridge on April 12, 2007 and students from all across Canada participated.  Students from the following Bluewater Schools participated:  Chesley District, Georgian Bay, West Hill and OSCVI.

Beat Goes On Award
Mary Anne Alton congratulated the award winners of the “Beat Goes on Awards” an award created by the Grey Bruce Partners in Health.  Bluewater District School Board won four of the six awards.  John Diefenbaker won for Workplace under 200, Egremont Community School won for elementary schools, Georgian Bay won for secondary schools and Lanny Watters, Food Services at Georgian Bay won the individual award.

Premier’s Award for Agri-Food Innovation
Alana Murray informed the trustees that Chesley District High School was the recipient of a Province of Ontario Premier’s Award for Agri-Food Innovation Excellence recognizing the Specialist High Skills Major program at the school.  Chesley District was selected as one of the final 55 regional winners to receive this award from the 230 plus applications.

Regional Technological Skills Challenge
Alana Murray acknowledged the 4th Secondary Regional Technological Skills Challenge, a competition that allows students to test their skills and knowledge against industry standards and their peers.   Students who receive the top score in each category had the opportunity to participate in the 18th Ontario Technological Skills Competition held May 1, 2007.  Two students from Kincardine District Secondary School, Phil Van Hardeveld and Nick Snieder were Gold Medal winners for their entry Home Building Team of 2.

The May 1, 2007 report of the Business Committee was received.   At that meeting members received information on a draft budget for 2007-08.
The May 8, 2007 report of the Business Committee was received.  Members received a second draft budget for 2007-08.  Discussions were held on opportunities to reduce areas of the budget to achieve a balanced budget.

The May 1, 2007 report of the Educational Issues Committee was received.  Holy Dyker, a student from Chesley District Secondary School, provided a presentation on Learning Disabilities that outlined strategies that she has developed to achieve success despite her learning disability. 

The committee received information on a schedule for four Early Dismissal Days to provide opportunities for teacher professional development to support student learning.  The committee approved the recommendation that Early Dismissal Days be included in the 2007-2008 school year calendar.

Todd Wainwright summarized the work of the Character Education Implementation Committee. 

The committee also reconsidered the wording of the “One School Board Resolution” approved at the April 3, 2007 meeting of the committee.

The April 17, 2007 Report of the Policy Committee was received.  The committee referred the Emergency Procedure – Bruce Nuclear Power Development policy for review as well as the Transfer of Principals and Vice-Principals policy.  The Student Trustee/Senators policy was referred to the Board for approval as amended.

The report of the April 12, 2007 meeting was received.   The committee received updates on the use of insulin pumps in schools, the Student Services Summer Institute sessions and a Career Day at Georgian College on May 14.  The committee received a presentation on the Special Education Plan and they approved the amendments. 

The student senators did not have a formal report but each trustee took the opportunity to thank the student senators for their participation and how they appreciated their presence and opinions voiced while at Board meetings.  All were wished the best of luck in the future and it was hoped that their experience as a student senator would be a memorable one for them.  The student senators thanked the Board for allowing them to participate and for giving them this amazing opportunity.
Field Trips and Exchanges
The following trip was reviewed and approved by the Board:
WHSS–Canada-Cuba Sports and Culture Festivals – March 10 to March 17, 2008

Concours 2007
Thirty speakers competed in categories according to the number of hours of French instruction they had received.  Students who placed first in their divisions were eligible to go on to the provincial Concours d’art oratoire which is sponsored by Canadian Parents for French.

Amendments to Bluewater District School Board Special Education Plan 2006
School Boards are required to annually review their Special Education Plan.  This year was to have been a full review but the Ministry of Education’s directions required that a partial review be completed. This year’s review of the Plan has resulted in housekeeping revisions only.  The Special Education Advisory Committee has reviewed these revisions and voted unanimously to approve the Plan for submission to the Board and to the Ministry of Education.

Bluewater Summer Institute, August 2007
During the weeks of August 13th to 17th and August 27th to 30th a number of workshops will provide excellent professional development opportunities for participants.  Categories of instruction this year include Character Education, Health/Physical Education, Instruction, Literacy, Mathematics, Music, and Special Education.  The additional opportunities week will feature the three day Restorative Justice/Practices Group Conferencing Training workshop.

Bluewater Student Trustees and Senators 2007-2008
A report was received that detailed how the Student Senators were elected in Bluewater Secondary Schools.  Subsequent to their election they met and determined through a voting process that the following students would serve as Student Trustees for 2007-08:

Owen Sound CVI
Lauren Best
Saugeen District
Stephanie Code
West Hill
Laura Campbell
Budget 2007-2008
Dean Currie provided the trustees with a Budget Backgrounder.  Trustees were informed that the Board continues to deal with declining enrolment and that it is struggling to maintain service levels and programs.  An overview of the budget reductions to each of the boards’ envelopes was provided.

The board approved the 2007-2008 Budget in the amount of $182,378,399 including capital and debt payments, contingent upon meeting with the Ministry of Education to review deficit management planning and expenditure category under funding.

Letter from Kathleen Wynn, Minister of Education to Board Chairs
This letter recognized the new role of the student trustees.  Also attached to the letter was an Attendance and Conflict of Interest Guidelines for student trustees.

Director of Education
Jennifer Yenssen
John Chapman
Mary Anne Alton

Next Board Meeting – June 19, 2007

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