PROGRAM SERVICES P-6
Cathy MacNeil, Coordinator
Literacy Consultant P-6, Audrey Kyte-Murphy
Audrey Kyte-Murphy and Lyn McInnis presented a two-day workshop for all grade six teachers in preparation for the ELA assessment and focusing on teaching comprehension strategies.
Two fulltime mentors for P-6 have been hired. Their focus for the initial part of the year continues to be to support teachers new to elementary or new to a grade level. The mentors are very busy trying to schedule time to respond to numerous requests.
September 29 was the beginning of after-school professional development sessions at Brookland Elementary for any teachers from P-6. Facilitators include Audrey-Kyte Murphy, Donna Sullivan, Geraldine Beaver, and Thelma Libbus.
Audrey Kyte-Murphy delivered a professional development session at Coxheath School on September 27 regarding curriculum mapping.
The Department of Education has allocated money to be used for the purchase of resource for grade two classrooms. Teachers will receive the resources when the ordering is completed.
A team of ten teachers will attend a provincial workshop on the Writing Workshop in early October funded by the Department of Education. They will facilitate workshops later in November for all P-1 teachers in our Board.
Mathematics Consultant P-6, Sharon Boudreau
We are continuing to provide support to teachers in their delivery of the mathematics program as set down in the Atlantic Canada Mathematics Curriculum. There have been a large number of requests from those teachers who have combined grades. As the message is getting out that mentors are there to support teachers, we are getting increasingly more requests for mentoring. Our requests exceed our mentor availability. Mentors with partial and even no full time equivalency are regularly being tapped by teachers.
A Teaching Resource
The grades three and six resources have been sent from the Department of Education and now all grades have this support document. Principals were given a brief overview of this resource and other resources their teachers should have.
Florence Curriculum Night
On Thursday, September 23, at Florence Elementary School, there was a very successful Curriculum Night. The math portion of that night was lead by math mentor, Pam Van Dommelen. There will be a Monthly Math Challenge sent home for parents and children to discuss.
Harbourside teachers are working on their yearly plans and are beginning to work at grade levels together instead of on their own. As support for their mathematics accreditation goal, Tara Colbert, math mentor, worked with the staff on September 27.
This school has a mathematics accreditation goal on number and operations and they are being supported by Ron Muller, math mentor. On September 27, he provided a whole staff professional development session on mental math.
On September 16, Ron Muller presented an after school professional development session on the use of ten frames.
Tompkins has an accreditation goal in mathematics on patterns, and Ron Muller has been requested to support them in achieving that goal.
Harbourside is encouraging parent involvement by having a math fair in October with the support of their math mentor, Tara Colbert.
This school is planning a parent night to provide parents with information regarding the mathematics program.
New Principals Session: Sharon Boudreau and Audrey Murphy, Literacy Consultant, are planning an information session with new principals to provide in formation to support them in their role as curriculum leaders.
On October 22 there will be a Mental Math Session, Tompkins Elementary
A parent night is planned for October 22 where they will have the opportunity to see how their children learn the math concepts.
There will be a whole staff professional development session on mental math on October 4 after school. That session will be delivered by Ron Muller.
On October 26, there will be a Parent Night, supported by Ron Muller, with a focus on mental math.
Arts Education Consultant, Lesley Ann Andrews
Congratulations goes out to one of our Music teachers, Margaret Miles, at Dr. T. L. Sullivan Jr. High School, as a recipient of the NSTU Golden Leaf Award at the Annual General Meeting of the Canadian Educational Press Association during its annual meeting on June 14. Margaret received an award in the category of Writing: Feature Article for her piece 'Understanding Gender Differences - An Education Perspective? (Aviso Fall 2009).
The Celtic Colours in the Schools program has returned to our schools. Twenty-seven schools are participating in the program which started on September 20 and continues until October 25. Schools were sent out educational information and programming to go with the concert that would be in their school during this International Festival. A session for teachers will also take place featuring Maire O’Keeffe on October 14 in the afternoon at Sherwood Park Education Centre.
Professional development will take place on October 14 for Grade 8 Band and Grade 8 Visual Arts teachers. This professional development is being provided by the Department of Education on new curriculum at the junior high level in the arts.
There will be a music sharing session on October 18 for teachers to share concert ideas, programs and music. These sessions are very valuable with the upcoming Christmas concert season.
Dance, drama, music and visual arts teachers are registering for the NSTU Professional Association conference day to take place on October 22. All offering for the arts take place in Dartmouth this year.
Three schools have been selected to take place in a collaborative project with ArtsSmarts, ArtReach and the Cape Breton Centre for Craft and Design. The three schools chosen to participate are Bras d’Or Elementary, George D. Lewis and Holy Angels High School. Further opportunities associated with the ArtReach component of this program will be available for students, teachers and school in March 2011.
The Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board’s 12th Regional Heritage Fair is tentatively set for May 5-6, 2011, at Cape Breton University. A recent national conference call discussed changes to the program nationally. There will not be a National Fair, but other opportunities for students may exist. The Nova Scotia Provincial Heritage Fair has not been decided upon at this time.
Reading Recovery®Teacher Leaders, Susan MacDonald & Joy Cookson
This year our Reading Recovery® teachers have been divided into four continuing contact groups for professional development. Ms. MacDonald will be leading groups B and D and Ms. Cookson will be leading groups A and C. Each group contains either nine or ten Reading Recovery® teachers. These groups will meet nine times during the school year for ongoing professional development sessions as mandated by the Reading Recovery® Standards and Guidelines.
Initially, the four groups came together at Shipyard Elementary on the morning of September 1 for a professional development session which focused on making children active learners from their very first Reading Recovery® lesson. They also discussed the process of assessing children who are being considered for the program as well as how to make the final child selection.
Teaching sessions for September took place on the 14, 15, 22 and 23. The emphasis for these sessions was ‘Building the foundation for effective processing systems’. Two of our trained teachers taught behind the glass at each one of these ongoing professional development sessions.
In addition to their role of supporting Reading Recovery® teachers, Ms. MacDonald provided daily lessons for three children who were carried over in Marion Bridge Elementary, and Ms. MacDonald worked with three children (two who were carried over and one new grade one child) at Bras d’Or Elementary.
On September 17, Ms. MacDonald and Ms. Cookson had the opportunity to attend a Teacher Leader Professional Development session in Amherst, Nova Scotia. Teacher Leaders from the Maritime Provinces gathered to discuss implementation issues related to Reading Recovery®. They examined our regional data and discussed the need for focused goals. Topics were generated to maximize the benefits of the implementation component of a continuing contact session. This was a great day and they left feeling energized to handle the many hurdles that may lie ahead.
On September 7 & 24, Ms. MacDonald and Ms. Cookson met with Cathy MacNeil, Sharon Boudreau, Leslie Anne Andrews, and Audrey Kyte-Murphy in order to plan and organize the board-wide staff development day which will take place at Harbourside Elementary on November 29.
The monthly Reading Recovery® meeting with Cathy MacNeil, Cathy Viva and Audrey Kyte-Murphy took place on the afternoon of September 21. During this time they discussed our data from the 2009-2010 year, the ensuing goals for this school year, the most recent tentative selection sheets received from all schools, as well as the Reading Recovery® teachers who still need extra support.
As part of the school based professional development on September 27, Ms. MacDonald gave an in-service at St. Agnes Elementary. This professional development session focused on the conventions for administering running records; the analysis of running records; using the analysis of running records to inform daily teaching; and also phrasing and fluency and the role it plays in reading comprehension.
Looking forward to October, the lead teachers will continue to teach children at Marion Bridge and Bras d’Or Elementary. The next continuing contact sessions will take place on October 6, 7, 27 and 28. The emphasis for these sessions will be ‘Increasing awareness of strategic activity’. There will be two teaching behind the glass lessons during each session.
For the first time, there will be a ‘pizza night’ for all interested Reading Recovery® teachers. This will take place at Shipyard Elementary on Wednesday, October 13, from 6:00 – 7:30 pm. Attendance is optional. During this time, the lead teachers will talk about any Reading Recovery® issues that weren’t able to be addressed sufficiently at the continuing contact sessions. It is also an opportunity for Reading Recovery® teachers to bring up any questions or concerns that they have been pondering.
On October 22, Ms. MacDonald and Ms. Cookson will be offering professional development to Reading Recovery® teachers who are not able to attend the provincial conference sessions. Topics for this day may include student monitoring tables, careful observation of strategic activities, Biks and Gutches, the Record of Oral Language, and ongoing record keeping.
Throughout the month, Ms. MacDonald and Ms. Cookson will continue to be involved in planning sessions for the board wide professional development day scheduled for November 29.
Library Services Consultant, Carmelita Cousins
With the assistance of our partners the Cape Breton Regional Library and the Cape Breton Police Services, the Adopt-A-Library program raised over $1500 at a "Boot Drive" at Walmart in Sydney River on Saturday, September 18. This fundraiser will help start up our program this school year. In November, the Elementary division of the program will begin in several schools in the Board. This will be another first for the program and it is anticipated that it will be as successful as our Junior High Reading Challenge last year.
The elementary component will end in early April. In January, the Junior High division
will begin a second challenge with more schools already joining the challenge; MacLennan and Whitney Pier are preparing to enter as well.
With all this activity, the beginning of the "Words of Wonder" warehouse, Cape Breton Chapter, is under development in Florence Elementary. Two classrooms have been generously approved by the Board for a warehouse to store the many books, trinkets, awards, etc., to be distributed at the end of these challenges. Cst. John Kennedy visited the classrooms designated for the project and was elated to see this space ready for the many boxes of books and prizes he has provided to our program here in Cape Breton. Property Services has begun this renovation and it is anticipated the space will be available by the end of October. This initiative provides an additional way to support reading within our schools.
PROGRAM SERVICES 7-9
David Brennick, Coordinator
English Language Arts (7-12), Diane Brennick, Consultant
The Staff at Bridgeport received inservicing on visual literacy on September 2nd. Diane Brennick spent the morning going over strategies and providing activities that could be used with their students.
On September 15th the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board hosted all of the English Language Arts consultants provincially. We had a one day meeting with lots of sharing and reviewing what is happening with English Language Arts province-wide.
On the 16th and 17th of September the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board hosted the Grade 7-9 Curriculum Guide committee. We did our revision work on the guide here during the two days.
A Literacy Day for Principals was held on September 24th. We had a busy fact-filled day with great discussions about assessment and activities to share information about literacy. We discussed misconceptions, expectations and changes in English Language Arts.
Mathematics (7-12), Arlene Andrecyk, Consultant
On September 7th, all high school Math Department Heads met at the Staff Development Centre. The morning focused on the 2009 Minister’s Report to Parents and Guardians, particularly the 2009 Student Assessment Results on the NSE Math 12 and Advanced Math 12. The committee engaged in discussions on how both teachers and students involved in this assessment process can continue to be supported. Glace Bay High School Math 12 teacher, Elaine MacEachern presented to the committee. She outlined her communication plan, course plan, some instructional strategies she uses and some samples of prior assessments. In the afternoon, Arlene Andrecyk went through the Math 7-12 website. The committee also discussed Math League and topics for the November 29th board Professional Development day. Math Department Heads were asked to have a meeting with the math teachers in their department to emphasize the importance of collaboration, consistency, cumulative testing, communication plans, authentic assessment and course reflection.
On September 8th, Arlene Andrecyk met individually with the math teachers at Baddeck Academy. Teachers discussed such topics as the Math 7-12 website, available resources, the delivery of the math curriculum, mental math, and assessment.
Arlene Andrecyk is presently visiting math teachers new to schools or teaching math courses for the first time.
On September 27th, Arlene Andrecyk met with Lynne MacKay and Bob Crane to plan a full day in-service for all grade 7 math teachers on October 5th. The day will focus on an examination of the Elementary Mathematics Literacy Assessment (EMLA) and appropriate follow-up to assist children’s mathematical development.
Community-Based Education/Options & Opportunities (Rhonda Smith, Consultant)
There are one hundred and thirty-four students involved in the Options & Opportunities program this year at four high schools: Holy Angels, Cabot High, Glace Bay High, and Breton Education Centre. The Community-Based Learning consultant and the College Prep coordinator at Nova Scotia Community College, Marconi Campus have planned three days, October 13, 14, and 15, for all the O2 students to participate in day long sessions at NSCC.
Co-operative Education continues to grow in our Board. This year the Board will see Memorial, Sydney Academy and Riverview offer a co-op credit to fifty or more students in their schools. Holy Angels will offer a co-op credit to 10-20 students (outside their O2 cohort) in the second semester. On November 16 and 17, Department of Education will offer a province-wide Co-op inservice in Dartmouth. The Community-Based Learning consultant and teachers from the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board will attend.
Work it Grants will be available to junior and senior high schools again this year. This grant is used for projects that promote student awareness and exploration of careers in the skilled trades. Some of the projects funded last year were:
Vocational Education (Ken Collier, Consultant)
Students are presently settling into their classes and getting back into their routines. Enrollment is very good and a great year is anticipated.
On September 15th, Mr. Stephen McNeil, Leader of the Nova Scotia Liberal party, Mrs. Kelly Regan, the Liberal Education Critic, as well some of their staff, visited and toured our school. This was their first time in our school and seemed to be very impressed. Their goal was to view the Skilled Trades/Technical Programs to get an overall picture as to how they work within the public school system.
Plans are underway for the Skills Nova Scotia Competitions in the new year. These competitions give our students the opportunity to showcase their skills, and possibly represent our province at the national competitions. Dates have yet to be established. We are anticipating another successful year.
On September 22nd, two of our instructors will be attending a seminar sponsored by Hilti and Seaboard Industrial on the topic of Firestop. This is a new product to the construction industry, and is becoming more widely used today. We encourage instructors to remain in touch, and see what is new within their industry, and to be able to pass this information on to their students.
We are eagerly awaiting the inspections of the dust collection systems in our school. We are hoping that this takes place very soon as not having an operational system does cause disruption in the delivery of our curriculum.
French Second Language (Laurie MacIntosh, Consultant)
Marie Andrews, Elementary Core French Teacher at Cusack Complex, was presented with the Canadian Parents for French-Nova Scotia French Second Language Educator of the Year Award, on Saturday, September 25th in Dartmouth. The award was presented by Laurie MacIntosh, French Second Language Consultant, who nominated Ms. Andrews for this prestigious award; and Colin Landry, President of Canadian Parents for French-Nova Scotia. The French Second Language Educator of the Year Award acknowledges excellence in French Second Language teaching and rewards teachers’ initiative and innovation. Canadian Parents for French-Nova Scotia seeks to recognize those who motivate students to achieve their best and who contribute significantly to their school and community.
The Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board has three official Core French classes piloting the literacy strategies of Intensive Core French. The teachers have been trained by the Nova Scotia Department of Education, French Language Branch, during a Summer Institute. They attended a workshop in Mulgrave on September 17th and will participate in a full-day inservice in Antigonish on October 1st to discuss the pilot’s progress and to plan for the 2010-2011 school year. Bernice Burke, Whitney Pier Memorial Junior High; David Tobin, Greenfield Elementary; and Sean Duggan, MacLennan Junior High, are the pilot teachers representing the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board.
Laurie MacIntosh, as well as provincial consultants and Department of Education personnel participated in a workshop on October 8th at the Nova Scotia Department of Education, facilitated by the founders of Intensive Core French, Dr. Joan Netten and Dr. Claude Germain.
A full-day inservice for Grade Six Intensive Core French teachers will take place on October 18th at Harbourside Elementary.
Gilbert Taylor will be visiting the Sydney area on October 12th. He will conduct an evening workshop with French Immersion students and their parents at Brookland Elementary School. Mr. Taylor is the Atlantic Representative of the Office of the Commissionaire of Official Languages.
Grade seven Integrated Core French teachers will participate in an inservice in early November. Facilitators will be Laurie MacIntosh, French Second Language Consultant, and Michael Aitken, Oceanview Education Centre.
PROGRAM SERVICES (INSTRUCTIONAL SUPPORT)
Rick Simm, Coordinator
Assistive Technology Consultant
September has been a month of transitions for both teachers and students. The assistive technology consultant has provided schools with support in the placement of hardware, software and adaptive equipment in the learning environment for students new to the school system and students transitioning to a new grade or school. This process involves meeting with school program planning teams, parents, and providing professional development to teachers and support staff.
Throughout the month of September the assistive technology consultant facilitated and participated in professional development sessions for Intellikeys/Intellitools, Kurzweil, and IPP Lead Team. Along with several grade primary and grade one teachers, five Learning Centre teachers were trained in Handwriting without Tears and were provided with the necessary materials to implement the program with students. Six assistive technology student assessments were performed during the month of September.
The assistive technology consultant has been providing on-site support to both principals and teachers with the Support for Students data base. Many principals were eager to clarify their role and responsibility in the data base. School program planning teams were keen to begin program planning for students and required access to student information. New to the data base this year is the student adaptation record which is to be used for all students requiring program adaptations. As well, all resource, learning centre, learning disabilities teachers, speech language pathologists and psychologists are able to do their monthly reporting within the Support for Student data base.
Kurt Kublek, SIS/IT PD Consultant
As the SIS/IT Consultant, most of Mr. Kublek’s time in this position has been devoted to getting the SIS, Powerschool, up and running for the board’s Phase One schools. As project manager for the board, Mr. Kublek has been responsible for converting data from the legacy system, Winschool, and inputting this data into Powerschool. This was done mostly through the summer months. With Mr. Kublek, his team of Tracie Collier and Brad MacNeil has been providing training and configuring the Powerschool system while receiving constant support of Jim McNeil and Tom Baker with data issues. Fifteen schools in the board are now up and running with the new system and improvements are constantly being made. Teachers are entering their attendance will begin to enter their evaluations into the grade-book. Mr. Kublek and his team are now setting up training for Powerschool lead teachers to refine the grade-book process and begin such things as incident referrals from the system.
With respect to the other side of SIS, Outcomes, Mr. Kublek was responsible for getting these schools running as well. These schools needed to have the school years defined, teachers and students transferred, with attendance and courses set up. The next steps for Mr. Kublek, in this regard, are to help schools with their provincial exports and prepare report cards at the end of October.
As part of the SIS umbrella, Mr. Kublek has also been working in School Improvement with Coordinator, Susan Kelley, to provide data to the new schools starting the process this year. To this end, Mr. Kublek recruited the help of a substitute, Cheryl MacInnis, to help him with this work.
The other side of Mr. Kublek’s job is still Instructional Technology PD (IT PD). However, there has been little time for some of the requests with associated with this. SIS has been given priority and the requests for IT support are being evaluated and prioritized by Coordinator, Rick Simm.
Heather Patterson, Community Education
Adult High School Program
It certainly has been a busy start to the school year and we have seen increased interest and enrollment in our program. The program continues to operate in four sites and all four have increased enrollment numbers over last year.
We were able to secure funding for a job readiness teacher through Employment Nova Scotia increasing our teaching staff to twelve. This teacher is coordinating training opportunities for all our learners but specifically our 21 and over students. Our goal is to have all students certified in CPR/First Aid and WHMIS, participate in resume workshops and other training opportunities that we can set up to make them more employable upon completion of their high school diplomas. As well we will be bringing in speakers and organizations who might recruit our students such as the Canadian Armed Forces. Our focus is currently on students who are eligible to finish in January of which we have close to forty. Second semester will focus on the rest of our grade 12 students. It is hoped that our graduates will leave with a portfolio of certifications and skills that will enable them to enter the workforce directly or to be better prepared for post secondary training.
We are also benefiting from guidance support in all four of our sites this year which will be very helpful from a counseling perspective since many of our learners have multiple barriers to attaining their education: emotional, financial, medical and the like. As well it fits in with our push to better prepare our students to go on to post secondary training. Guidance is working with our job readiness teacher to ensure information is shared with students and opportunities to visit institutions like NSCC are created.
Adult Evening Classes
We certainly started the year on a bad note with the robbery on our first night of registration. The investigation and prosecution is ongoing and staff involved is cooperating fully with regional police. I must commend my staff who carried on with registration despite the complete upheaval that occurred and should note that the public who were present that night were amazing in their actions and support in carrying on the registration. There were several hundred people processed that night under incredible conditions.
There continues to be a huge demand for adult evening classes. We are currently running the following programs:
Math 12 2 full classes
Chemistry 12 1 full class with a waiting list of 25 for second semester
Biology 12 1 full class
GED PREPARATION: 4 classes including Glace Bay, Northside, Sydney, and Membertou
A Membertou class was created in cooperation with their education department and is held at the Senior’s centre on the reserve. All of these programs began this week and will run until January. The week of October 4th will see our general interest classes and computer classes begin.
Ms. Patterson will be attending a forum in Sydney on October 4th of adult educators to discuss the development of an Adult Education Act. This is being sponsored by the Department of Labour and Workforce Development to gather response to a discussion paper on plans to create a separate act for adult education.
STUDENT SERVICES (EDUCATIONAL QUALITY AND ACCOUNTABILITY)
Susan Kelley, Coordinator
September is always a busy month in schools. The six schools who received Accreditation last year are back in the cycle and a workshop was held with these school teams. Our other schools continue to work toward their goals and we have eight schools this year set to be accredited.
Mary Lou Andrea - Active Healthy Lifestyles Consultant
Physical Education Assessment Team- The team used part of a PD to integrate technology into physical education. The team did an assessment book study discussion from their schools using a virtual classroom and a webcam. It generated many discussions on the usefulness of this technology for physical education professional development learning communities. The team also looked at reporting
and comment development throughout the day.
Fourth R Training for Healthy Living 9- Once again our board has trained and provided materials for 12 teachers at the grade 9 level in the Fourth R program. One of the guiding principals of the Fourth R
is to help adolescents navigate through risky and unhealthy situations. The program promotes personal safety through the development of healthy relationship skills.
Lyn McInnis – Literacy Support Consultant
During the month of September, a great deal of time and effort was spent compiling the new junior high literacy strategies binders. All grade 7, 8, and 9 English and Social Studies teachers received their own binder. Liaisons from each junior high school met to view the literacy strategy binders and discuss the benefits to them in supporting the “whole class plan” and “summary of student progress” forms. The various genres of text, along with the assessment piece and rubric will certainly be helpful in finding out about student’s strengths and needs and next steps for instruction. Teachers were very appreciative to have a resource to help support the things they are doing within the classroom.
All grade 6 teachers received in-servicing this month. Topics included classroom materials, novel use within the classroom, and reading comprehension strategies. Teachers were also given assessment materials to support the completion of their “summary of student progress” forms.
The monthly Literacy Support Advisory Group meeting was attended. Discussions around the ELLA, ELA, and JHLA, were the focus of the day.
Presently, a new response form is being created for our grade 3, 4, and 5 teachers to be used with students identified as “not yet having met expectations” on the Early Language Literacy Assessment (ELLA).
Debbie Madore – CB-VRSB Dietician
Nutrition for Learning
Breakfast programs are coming together for the 59 school sites. Many programs were up and running on the first day of school! Volunteer recruitment is always a challenge, but things do come together in the end. Volunteers are the key to the success of the program.
Provincial funding was received for the breakfast programs and support for the Food Policy. This provincial funding supports approximately 30% of the budget for the year. I am in the process of negotiating with Breakfast Clubs of Canada for funding. This group receives the funding that is generated during the national Wal-Mart Campaign.
Health Promoting Schools
Schools are actively applying for funding to support school based HPS initiatives and programs. In addition, schools are asked to review the HPS checklist to assess where they are as a Health Promoting School. This tool will also give the Active Healthy Living Committee feedback on where we need to move forward as a board.
The food policy is actively being reinforced at schools. Susan Kelley provided an update and review of the food policy at the September Principal’s meeting to support the policy and validate the fundraising directives.
Ms. Madore did attend the food show in Dartmouth on September 20 to review new products that are available to schools that fit within the food policy. The food show was helpful and new products will be tried at various cafeterias that support the food policy and Strive for Five initiative.
The Healthy Eating committee is working together to develop brochures on label reading for the community.
Cathy Viva, Coordinator
September has been spent providing on-site support for students and teachers, as well as providing Professional Development requested by schools.
The Coordinator of Student Services provided an in-service for Dr. T.L. Sullivan Jr. High staff regarding Teacher Assistant support for students. The Behaviour Support teacher has provided in-servicing and information regarding programming for students with behavioural challenges. The ASD Consultant has started “STAR” training for 2 additional sites for a total of 8 sites. A “Handwriting without Tears” workshop was held on September 23, 2010 for 6 sites.
The focus for Student Services this year is building and strengthening partnerships to provide appropriate programming and support for all students. Three initiatives have started this month:
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