Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board


PROGRAMS & STUDENT SERVICES UPDATE - March 2004

Archie MacEachern, Director


PROGRAMS SERVICES (P-6)

                                                                                                                                                           

Annette Currie, Coordinator

 

Language Arts (Brenda MacIsaac)

 

On February 5 & 6, two teachers from our Board, Theresa MacKay, Boularderie School, and Heather Anderson, Baddeck Academy, as well as Brenda Mac Isaac, Literacy Facilitator, attended a debrief/sharing session in Halifax.  At this two-day session, pairs of teachers from each Board in the province presented an integrated curriculum unit which they had prepared as part of a Department of Education pilot project under the direction of Erna Fraser.  Theresa and Heather presented their completed unit which was constructed around the theme of Structures-Bridges.  Their integrated unit was very impressive and well received.

 

Grade six teachers, elementary school principals and resource teachers attended an inservice at the Coast Guard College on February 12 & 13 on Elementary Literacy Assessment. The morning was devoted to sharing information about the assessment process and what happens next.  It was facilitated by John Astephen and Annette Currie, opening remarks by Archie Mac Eachern, overview of assessment slide show by Brenda Mac Isaac, and informative session by Tom Henderson from the Department of Education. In the afternoon, teachers, principals and resource teachers were given the opportunity to begin formulating support plans for those students in their respective schools who had not met outcomes in reading and/or writing.

 

An invitation was extended to grades four to six teachers in our Board to meet for a >Caring And Sharing= session. This meeting took place on February 16 at 3:30 p.m. at Harbourside Elementary School and was hosted by Lynn Crawford, Jeannie Stone, and Brenda Mac Isaac. Attendees expressed  interest in meeting on a regular basis to share ideas. They thought that each get-together could focus on a topic of interest to them and this would generate discussion and sharing of ideas. The next get together is tentatively scheduled for April 19 at Harbourside and the focus will be >Literature Circles:  Making Them Work in our Classrooms=.

 

Carl Anderson facilitated workshops on >Write Traits= for grade five teachers at the Staff Development Centre, North Sydney, on February 23, 24, & 25. Carl attended a three-day conference on >Write Traits= in Bloomingdale, Minnesota, last year. Teachers at the grades five and six levels should be receiving Write Traits kits from the Department of Education at any time. The workshop was excellent and teachers went away with many ideas to help them facilitate the teaching of writing in their classrooms.  Evaluations received from teachers following their inservice session have been very favorable.

 


Plans are progressing for March 10 and 11 when P-6 English Language Arts liaison teachers will attend workshops at the Staff Development Centre. During these two days there will also be a publisher=s display at the Centre. All elementary school teachers have been invited to visit the display. The theme of the in-service is the >Speaking and Listening Strand=.  Workshops will focus on literature circles, storytelling, facilitating read-aloud=s and poetry.  It is expected that each literacy liaison teacher will share the inservice handouts with their staff during the monthly staff meeting sessions.

 

Reading Recovery

 

As part of the continuing monitoring of Reading RecoveryTM, teacher-leaders Linda Neville and Paula Muise are working with Annette to devise an individual student report for schools operating Reading RecoveryTM programs.  It is expected that this form will be activated during the current year 2003 - 2004 and will assist us in tracking students who accessed the program in grade one.

 

Mathematics (Ron MacLean)

 

Successful workshops were held for the following groups:

 

$  Teachers new to grades four to six:  Strategies they could use in their math classes.

 

$ All grade two teachers:  Strategies to develop the addition facts with their students.  We    would like to have three second recall on these facts.

 

$ All grade four teachers:  Strategies to develop the multiplication facts with their students.    Again,  we would like the students to have a three second response on these facts.

 

Feedback from teachers in attendance at these workshops has been very positive.

 

Mathematics Mentors met for the day to discuss the mentorship program.  Also discussed were the cognitive coaching sessions and content focused coaching.

 

The meeting for the provincial consultants was re-scheduled to March 2nd and 3rd.  The new teaching resources for grades three and four may be delayed due to the changes the publisher will be required to make in the text to comply with the mathematics outcomes for Nova Scotia students.

 

Resource teachers have been scheduled to participate in a math workshop during the last week of March.

 

Fine Arts (Cathy MacNeil)

 

A successful in-service day for visual art and instrumental teachers was held at Glace Bay High on February 27. Robin Jensen and Diane Lewis led discussions/sharing for the art teachers, and instrumental teachers viewed a number of music software programs followed by discussions on standards, band recruitment, and the instrumental program in general.


On March 1, at Centre 200, the Canadian band, Nickleback, presented $10,000 worth of band equipment to students from Sydney Academy. As one of eleven selected schools in Canada to receive the Band Aid grant for the 2003-2004 school term, their music teacher, Sean McLennon, was able to order much needed band equipment to supplement and replace aging instruments.  The Band Aid program is sponsored by CARAS , the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, and is intended to provide instruments to help re-energize music programs.

 

The theme for this year=s Annual Art Exhibit is Art InSight. Planning is now taking place for this event which will once again be held in Gallery II, UCCB. We have been informed that Lieutenant Governor, Myra Freeman, will be attending the official opening ceremony for the exhibit on May 4. We are very grateful to the Cape Breton Artists Association for their continued support and use of Gallery II to present the artistic works of students in grades 4-12.

 

A Technology Integration Questionnaire was forwarded to the Fine Arts staff to ascertain the needs around technology, i.e., hardware, software, software application, strategies for integration, etc. It is hoped that the survey results will help in supporting increased technology integration.

 

 

PROGRAM SERVICES (7-12)

 

David Crane, Co-ordinator

 

Professional Development

 

Semestered high schools held a full day inservice on February 27th.  Riverview, Sydney Academy, Breton Education Centre, Glace Bay High, Holy Angels, Northside Staff Development Centre, and University College of Cape Breton were the venues.  The evaluations of these sessions were very high.  Congratulations to principals, department heads, and teachers who organized and presented so that this day could be so successful.

 

The Canadian History 11 in-service was finally held (third try) on February 25th.  The teachers gave high marks for this session presented by Reg Johnston, Technology Professional Development.

 

Non-semestered schools 7-9 held a Professional Development and Parent / Teacher Day.  All schools submitted their plan for that day.

 

Breakfast Program - Nutrition for Learning

 

Debbie Madore, Nutrition for Learning Co-ordinator, is organizing a golf tournament at Bell Bay, June 25th, 2004.  Already there are five corporate sponsored teams.


Also, Ms. Madore is working on a nutrition survey and speaking to principals about nutrition choices in their schools.  She has also been in contact with Ann Blackwood, Director, English Program Services, regarding our nutrition initiatives in the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board.

 

Nova Scotia International Student Program

 

There are ten International Students already registered for September 2004.  Our goal is to achieve fifty-two students.  A three year projection plan is underway to determine the number of students capacity for 2005 and 2006.

 

Transition Committee

 

The Transition Committee will meet on April 5th to finalize a document that will assist grade six students entering Junior High.

 

Pilots

 

The Grade Ten Mathematics Extended Pilot at Sydney Academy is going well.  The  evaluation of this pilot is ongoing.

 

There are plans to pilot grade eight Social Studies at Malcolm Munroe and grade ten English Extended at Riverview.

 

Human Sexuality

 

Janet Bickerton RN MEd, Community Health Co-ordinator, Cape Breton Wellness Centre, UCCB, has been given permission to carry out research in our region.  The title of the proposed research is: Factors affecting capacity of teachers to deliver sexuality education within the local school region.

 

Janet is also planning a Professional Development Day for PDR and CALM teachers in May involving sexuality education.  This initiative will be supported by the Department of Education.

 

Mathematics (Ron MacLean)

 

Mathematics Mentors met for the day to discuss the mentorship program.  Also discussed were the cognitive coaching sessions and content focused coaching.

 

Senior high math teachers met on February 27th for a daylong session to discuss topics relevant to the high school program.

 

Grade 7 math teachers met for a workshop on star office and its integration into the math class, development of questions at the three levels, mental math and 3-D geometry.

 


Grade 8 teachers met for a workshop on questioning, patterning in Algebra, 3-D geometry, and mental math.

 

There were discussions on the planned workshop for high school math teachers at the end of April and the piloting of the grade 10-math essentials course across the province.  One school per board will participate.

 

There is a math workshop planned for the end of the March for the Resource teachers in our Board.

 

Literacy (Brenda MacIsaac)

 

Teachers at the junior high level expressed interest in producing a magazine for junior high students which would provide a forum for publishing the creative endeavors of students in grades 7-9. A memo was sent to junior high English Language Arts teachers regarding this idea and a meeting was held at Sherwood Park on Feb. 3, but attendance was low. It was suggested that one more attempt be made to drum up interest for this potential project. Therefore, another memo will be sent to junior high schools to see if any teachers are interested in working on this project.

 

February 27 was an in-service shut down day for high schools. Grades 10-12 English teachers attended a workshop at the Staff Development Centre facilitated by Brenda Mac Isaac. On Nov. 19, high school English teachers completed an English Language Arts PD wants and needs survey. The survey results showed that teachers were interested in workshops on: Novel Ideas, Poetry Workshops, and sharing of ideas sessions, so the April 27 in-service was organized around these three topics.

 

Physical Education (Mary Lou Andrea)

 

Healthy Sexuality Document - On Monday February 16th, Mary Lou Andrea, Physical Education Consultant, attended the Boards Education Committee meeting to hear the presentation on the Healthy Sexuality Document.  It was suggested that the document be sent out to all the parents via the mail .  The Board would send a letter before this mail out explaining the document and when the parents should expect to receive it.

 

Grade 4-6 Health Inservice - The Guide By My Side  This inservice took place on Friday, February 6th at the Staff  Development Centre.  The health liaison person from each school was in attendance.  Ms. Andrea was the planning team leader and also did a presentation at this inservice.

 

CAHPERD Meetings - On March 4-7, Ms. Andrea attended meetings in Ottawa.  Topics included 2005: International Year for Physical Education and Sport, Quality Daily Physical Education, Healthy Behaviour Assessment Tool.   These were very productive meetings with plenty of time to discuss what was happening in physical education across Canada.

 


Healthy Sexuality Network - Ms. Andrea attended a meeting on March 9th to discuss the possibility of an inservice for PDR/CALM  teachers on Healthy Sexuality and Inclusion. Also discussed was the research project underway  in conjunction with UCCB which would deal with the barriers teachers face when teaching Healthy Sexuality. 

 

Active Healthy Lifestyles Week - A planning session was held with some physical education teachers on February 9th to plan for this week across the Board.   Each day was given a theme.  This was presented to the elementary principals on March 2nd.  Lesa MacPhee , who is off because she is pregnant and waiting for her blood tests to come back for the Fifth Disease, is assisting Ms. Andrea with this project.  A detailed package will be sent to each of the schools this week.

 

Alliance for Healthy Eating and Physical Activity Nova Scotia - Ms. Andrea attended a meeting on March 2nd on this topic.  It was a brainstorming session on how we can change the eating behaviours and activity levels of our communities.

 

French Second Language (Laurie MacIntosh)

 

Four French Language pilots will take place after the March Break in our local schools.  Pilot teachers identified are:

$                   Hélène Crane, Glace Bay High (Anthologie 11, Extended Core 11)

$                   Natalie MacKay, George D. Lewis (Mémo-Photo, Grade Seven Core)

$                   Jeanette Kennedy, Breton Education Centre (Le Mystère Sous Marin, Grade Seven Extended Core)

$                   Barb MacKay, Malcolm Munroe Memorial Junior High (La Guerre aux déchets, Grade Seven Core)

These materials are published by Pearson, Oxford, and Gage/Nelson.

 

A successful Professional Development session took place on February 27 for all Senior High French teachers.  Among the workshops was a presentation by François Bélanger, Université Ste-Anne, on integration of grammar through games.

 

Jennifer Moss, Riverview Rural High School, attended a workshop on climatic changes organized by the Federal Department of the Environment, on March 5 in Halifax.  Jennifer will also participate in marking sessiona for Chemistry 12 Immersion examinations on March 24-26, in Halifax.

 

Upcoming Initiatives in French Second Language

$                   The annual French Public Speaking Contest/Concours d=art oratoire will take place at Malcolm Munroe Memorial Junior High on Wednesday, March 24tfor Core, Extended Core, and francophone categories; and Thursday, March 25 for Immersion categories.

$                   A Professional Development Day for Junior High Late French Immersion/Extended Core on Lecteurs Actifs 7/8 / Active Readers 7/8 is planned for early April.  Facilitators will be Anne Doyle, Suzanne Aucoin, and Laurie MacIntosh.

 


$                   A young theatre troupe from Cheticamp will present a play at the Savoy Theatre entitled Le Vieux Soldat on Wednesday, March 24.  Grade 8/9 French Immersion students have been invited to attend along with students from francophone school:  Étoile de l=Acadie.

$                   Major Lester LeBlanc will visit Late French Immersion Students at Holy Angels High and Riverview Rural High on Wednesday, March 24 to speak on his recent tour of duty in Afghanistan.

 

 

STUDENT SERVICES

 

Kevin MacNeil, Coordinator

John Astephen, Coordinator

 

Resource

 

A meeting was held for resource teachers and classroom teachers interested in beginning a Master=s in Education program focusing on training as a resource teacher.  The meeting was held on March 3, at Dr. T.L. Sullivan Junior High School.  Dr. Fred French, Department of Education, Mount Saint Vincent University, presented an outline of the program.  In excess of 75 educators attended the meeting.  An initial cohort group of 25 educators will begin the program in April.  An additional cohort will being in September.  This program is in addition to our initial resource cohort, who will be graduating with their Master=s in Resource from St. F. X. University this spring.

 

Transition Planning

 

As recommended in the Special Education Review, the Provincial Transition Handbook has been revised.  The revised handbook will be shared with the Provincial Transition Committee in May.  Regional transition planning committees will be established and an implementation plan for the revised guide will be developed.  The Provincial Transition Committee will include two student services coordinators as well as representatives from Health, Justice, and Social Services.

 

Professional Development

 

In-services were held on February 27, at Memorial High School for students services personnel who were not involved in school based professional development.  Michelle Aucoin, Coordinator of the Cape Breton Branch of Learning Disabilities Association of Nova Scotia, provided a full-day workshop on Screening for Success.  Screening for Success is designed to offer adult education practitioners the tools and expertise needed to screen adults at risk for Learning Disabilities.  The Learning Disabilities Association of Canada developed this screening tool that helps identify young adults at risk for learning disabilities.  The manual given was a complement to the training workshop that provided background knowledge about Learning Disabilities  and hands on training in the use of the screening tool.


Grade Six Elementary Literacy Assessment

 

The Elementary Literacy Assessment was administered from October 14 - 17, 2003, so that grade 6 students in the Province of Nova Scotia could demonstrate their achievement of selected reading and writing outcomes of the elementary language arts curriculum.  Student Reports for School Administration and Teachers were received at schools during the week of February 3 B 6.

 

On February 12 and 13, a Supporting Literacy Learners In-service was held for all principals and grade 6 teachers as well as resource teachers and LD teachers working with students in grades 4 B 6.   Mr. Tom Henderson from the Testing and Evaluation Division of the Department of Education assisted with the interpretation of the assessment results.  School teams were provided with some time in the afternoon session to begin to develop Literacy Support Plans for students identified as having difficulty.  Teams also had an opportunity to share ides on the development of support plans during the afternoon session.

 

Student Reports for Parents/Guardians will arrive at schools on Monday, March 22.  The reports will be given to students just prior to dismissal on Wednesday, March 24.  On Thursday, March 25, parents/guardians of students who have not met expectations in reading or writing will be contacted by the school to arrange a meeting to discuss the results of the assessment and to work with the school in the development of a Literacy Support Plan for their child.

 

 

PROGRAM SERVICES (INSTRUCTIONAL SUPPORT)

 

Rick Simm, Coordinator

 

Assistive Technology  (Liz Mahoney)

 

All equipment ordered for this year has arrived.  The Learning Centre at Glace Bay Elementary received communication devices and software valued at approximately twenty-two hundred dollars. The remaining devices and software will be placed in the schools in the near future.  This will also mean arranging for training those individual who will be using this equipment.

 

A workshop on Intellikeys was held on March 10 for a small group of teachers and teacher assistants. 

 

Two members of our Assistive Technology Team have been invited by the Bridges Company to a four-day training session by the Don Johnston Company (Intellitools, etc.) to be held in Illinois.  The Bridges Company will incur all expenses for this training.

 

 


Technology PD (Reg Johnston)

 

_    Conducted Canadian History 11 workshop on Feb. 25 (rescheduled from Jan. 16 due to storm day).

_    Conducted a three-day Star Office workshop (Grade 7 teachers) - March 2, 3 and 4.

_    Created web mail accounts for students, teachers and administrators.

_    Provided laser printers to Bridgeport (1) and BEC (3).

_    Conducted after-school workshops on utilizing the Intel Microscope (attached to a computer) in the classroom.

_    Conducted a 90-minute session on AIntegrating Technology into the Curriculum@ to the Social Studies Department at Glace Bay High on Feb. 27 (Staff Development Day).

_    Conducted an Intel Microscope workshop to teachers at Glace Bay Elementary and McDonald Elementary on the morning of Feb. 27 (Staff Development Day).

_    Attended the Online Course Delivery Committee meeting in Halifax on Feb. 18.

_    Provided assistance in organizing the CBVRSB Science and Technology Fair scheduled for April 13.

_    Visited numerous schools to provide on-site PD to teachers and administrators.

 

IEI Extension (Peter MacKinnon)

 

IEIE Grade 4:

 

$                   The two workshops lost to the storm in December are taking place at the SDC March 8 and 9. These workshops give teachers an opportunity to learn how Microsoft Publisher can be used for curriculum integration.

$                   The two-day workshop on creating project-based curriculum units will take place on March 23 and 24 at the SDC. These units, 2 in Science, 2 in Social Studies and 1 in Health will be made available to all grade 4 teachers.

$                   All grade six teachers will be afforded the opportunity to participate in the teaching strategies workshop for the four-computer classroom on March 29, 30 or 31. This will bring to an end the IEIE workshops for the current year.

$                   A report on the current year and a plan for next year will be prepared over the next few weeks. The IEIE section of the website has been posted to the Board=s web page and will be kept updated on a regular basis.

 

Data Management:

 

The demo of the web based Dadavan product took place March 8 at Sherwood Park. The WinSchool user group was present and the product was well received. A meeting is planned for March 9 with Rick Simm, Marvin Harvey, Jim McNeil and myself to evaluate both demonstrations and to make recommendations on a course of action.

 


Mentorship: For the most part mentors have finished in their schools or will finish by March break. A summary report to Ottawa will be done and sent, and then we will prepare our application for next year=s funds. We will meet with all mentors in late April or early May to get feedback on the successes of this year and set plans for next year.

 

Web-Templates:

 

We are currently evaluating the usage of the templates in our schools and should be finished by the end of March. Kevin Kearney worked with the Sydney River Staff in late February helping individual teachers with their pages.

 

Website:

 

The update of the Board website is in progress.  Directors and Coordinators are asked to submit content to Jim McNeil.

 

Brookland Elementary PD Plan

 

To date David Gabriel and myself met twice to lay the framework for a PD Staff Development plan. David will set a committee at the school that is scheduled to meet and work on the plan March 24th.