School Board Meeting Minutes: February 14, 2011 - Special
Category : School Board Meeting - Minutes
Published by Michelle MacLeod [Michelle MacLeod] on 03/02/2011

Central Office
Sydney, N.S.
February 14, 2011



A Special Board meeting of the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board was called to order today beginning at 5:06 p.m.


Present: Lorne Green,Chair Steve ParsonsJackie Organ
Barb MercerCharlie KeaganKevin Ruelland
Cathi PierrardFred TilleyGary Fraser
Sandra MargettieDarlene MorrisonDarren MacNeil
Darren GoogooJoan Currie
Absent: Darrell Flynn
Also Present:
Ambrose White, Superintendent
Beth MacIsaac, Director of Human Resource Services
Paul Oldford, Acting Director of Operational Services
George Boudreau, Director of Finiancial Services
Mary Passerini, Coordinator of Human Resources
Michelle MacLeod, Board Recording Secretary


Mr. Paul Oldford, Acting Director of Operational Services advised that a section of the roof at the school collapsed due to a weak welding section in the roof. It affected one classroom and an adjoining area. We are working with local fabricating companies to construct the material in order to secure and fix this section. We are also reviewing the existing walls and the rest of the roof to ensure that no other section of the roof is in danger. SIP has been on site and we will be working with all interested parties to amend the damage which is done. It was noted the failure was the result of a bad weld when the school was constructed. The snow fall didn’t cause the collapse however it may have expedited the collapse.

The Board expressed concern and wished to have all schools reviewed to ensure that this does not occur in other buildings within our Board.

Superintendent White advised that students will be absent from class for possibly the week however staff will be reporting to work tomorrow at a neighboring school to participate in some professional development.

Commissioner Parsons suggested that Mr. Oldford communicate with the Principal and the school community to reassure them and to provide them with accurate information. Commissioner Ruelland questioned the communication with regards to the educational needs of the students. The possibility of getting work packages in place for distribution.


Moved by Commissioner Morrison
Seconded by Commissioner Margettie

That the Board go to an in-camera session. . .

Motion carried

Commissioner Tilley Chaired the meeting. . .

Moved by Commissioner Organ
Seconded by Commissioner Parsons

That the Board rise and report. .

Motion carried

Commissioner Green resumed the chair.

Commissioner Tilley reported that the Board discussed a personnel issue. . .


Mr. George Boudreau, Director of Financial Services advised that himself, Mr. White and Mr. Steve Parsons met in Halifax last week and were provided with some budget funding targets for 2011-2012. He advised that the overall reduction is significant

He indicated that in addition to a 2.47% reduction in funding revenue our board would have to assume all incremental cost pressures (including negotiated contract settlements (CUPE and NSTU) license changes, increments, utility increases, etc,)

The 2.47A% reduction in revenue could translate into a 4.5 to 5% reduction when the cost pressures are factored in. The funding shortfall could be as high as $6,000.000.00.

Correspondence was distributed which will be tabled at the Management Committee meeting. Mr. Boudreau noted the highlighted areas to be considered during the budget process were listed on page two of the correspondence.

The School Review issue will need to be addressed in order to achieve savings for our Board. Mr. Oldford advised that the Board will meet in March to discuss further the identification of schools which will be included in the review.

School consolidation and school reconfiguration will enhance delivery of programs to our students while also creating some immediate savings.

Commissioner Mercer questioned vacant buildings within our Board that we would be able to dispose of as part of our compliment.

Commissioner Parsons agreed with School Reviews but caution that all schools that meet the criteria be included.

Commissioner Currie expressed her disappoint with the elimination of the Reading Recovery program and noted the importance in any assistance students would receive in reading at the early elementary level.


Commissioner Green advised that the Deputy Minister Penfound will be in the area tomorrow to discuss the issue. Superintendent White advised that the students rallied in front of the Board office at lunchtime today and they were under the impression that the Board was meeting this evening to make a decision. He advised that there is a lot of misinformation out in the community which is causing a lot of stress. Board members were concerned over all the misinformation which has been distributed through emails, phone calls from not only the possible buyer but community members. Concern was expressed regarding the stress which the students and staff are presently experiencing.

(6) Adjournment of the meeting. . .

the meeting adjourned at 6:31 p.m.