School Board Meeting Minutes: March 26, 2012
Category : School Board Meeting - Minutes
Published by Michelle MacLeod [Michelle MacLeod] on 05/01/2012


Sherwood Park Education Center
Sydney, N.S.
March 26, 2012


REGULAR BOARD MEETING

(1) CALL TO ORDER:

A meeting of the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board was called to order today beginning at 7:00 p.m.

(2) RECORD OF ATTENDANCE:



Present: Lorne Green, ChairCharlie Keagan Sandra Margettie
Cathi Pierrard Jackie Organ Darren Googoo
Joan Currie Gary Fraser Kevin Ruelland
Barb Mercer Steve Parsons Fred Tilley
Darren MacNeil
Absent: Darrell Flynn (sent regrets)Darlene Morrison (sent regrets)
test
Also Present:Ambrose White, Superintendent
George Boudreau, Director of Financial Services
Susan Kelley, Director of Programs and Student Services
Beth MacIsaac, Director of Human Resource Services
Paul Oldford, Director of Operational Services
Michelle MacLeod, Board Recording Secretary


(3) APPROVAL OF AGENDA:

(a) Deletions:

There were no deletions.

(b) New Business/Additions:

Moved by Commissioner Fraser
Seconded by Commissioner Parsons

That the Board accept the agenda as presented. . .

a. Commissioner Tilley - Town Hall meeting
b. Commissioner Tilley - Hiring of Apprentices
c. Commissioner Parsons - Mock Disaster at Riverview Rural High

Motion carried
2012-03-01



(4) APPROVAL OF MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS:

Moved by Commissioner Parsons
Seconded by Commissioner Margettie

that the minutes for the following meetings be approved by the Board. . .

Regular Public Board Meeting - February 27, 2012

Special Board Meeting - February 27, 2012

Special Board Meeting - February 29, 2012

Special Board Meeting - March 5, 2012

Motion carried
2012-03-02



(5) BUSINESS ARISING FROM MINUTES:

n/a



(6) CORRESPONDENCE:

Three pieces of correspondence were distributed by Mr. George Boudreau, Board Secretary. The first piece of correspondence is from the NSSBA; asking the Board to forward any resolutions it may have for the annual meeting. The following resolution was recommended to the Board:

“Change Fiscal year to School Year. School Boards in Nova Scotia have a fiscal year that spans the period April 1 to March 31st. This coincides with the Provincial government fiscal year. However, the natural business and planning cycle of School Boards follows the school year (the period August 1 to July 31). The issue associated with different year-ends has been reported by t he Auditor General with a recommendation that it be reviewed by government. There are a number of issues that would be resolved if the School Board fiscal year was changed to coincide with the school year.

BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Nova Scotia School Boards Association urge the Department of Education to negotiate with the Department of Finance to change the fiscal year to coincide with the school year.”

Moved by Commissioner Parsons
Seconded by Commissioner Margettie

That the Board accept the resolution as provided. . .

Motion carried
2012-03-03



The second piece of correspondence from the NSSBA was regarding the Board’s nominee for Board member of the year. . . .

Nominated Commissioner Tilley by Commissioner Fraser - accepted
Nominated Commissioner Googoo by Commissioner Pierrard – declined with thanks
Nominated Commissioner Currie by Commissioner Keagan – declined with thanks

Moved by Commissioner Fraser
Seconded by Commissioner Pierrard

To accept Commissioner Tilley as the Board’s nominee for Board Member of the Year. . .

Motion carried
2012-03-04



Lastly; requesting the NSSBA nominees for the executive is::

Nominated; Commissioner Fraser by Commissioner Pierrard, Commissioner Fraser declined with thanks
Nominated; Commissioner Keagan by Commissioner Organ; Commissioner Keagan accepted the nomination with thanks

It was further noted that Commissioner Fraser will sit on the Board of Directors.

Voting delegates for the AGM will be selected on April 10th.



(7) SUPERINTENDENT’S REPORT:

Public Hearings were held on Wednesday, February 29, at Cusack Elementary School regarding the School Review process for Ashby Elementary School as well as Cornwallis Elementary School. The Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board heard presentations from the chairs of the study committees from each school. Other comments were heard from various people such as staff and community members of each school. Written submissions were to be accepted up to March 22, and the board will make a final decision by the end of March.

He noted that he had the opportunity to attend the opening of ‘Recontre’, an exhibition of original prints by Jacques Hurtubise and art work by students from Mt. Carmel Elementary School as well as Sydney Mines Jr. High School at the Cape Breton Center for Craft & Design on Thursday, March 1. The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia curated this exhibit featuring the work of artist, Jacques Hurtubise, a famous Canadian artist now living in Margaree. To further the project using Hurtubise’s work, students from Sydney Mines Jr. High and Mt. Carmel Elementary were involved in projects through the Arts Smarts Program. Sydney Mines Jr. High Grade 9 students worked with their teacher, Sharyn Brennan, and local artist, Lynda Lou McIntyre, to create a map-inspired print. Mt. Carmel Elementary Grade 5 & 6 students worked with their teacher, Diane Lewis, and local artist, Onni Nordman, to create large canvases using Hurtubise’s techniques. The final projects are on display at the Cape Breton Centre for Craft & Design from March 1 – April 22, 2012. He further noted that the public were welcome to come and enjoy this exhibit. Teachers are also invited to bring groups of students to the centre to further explore print making. Lessons have been developed by Elizabeth Lalonde to complement this project, and materials have been left at the centre by ‘ArtReach’ for teachers to use. There were also professional development sessions for teachers.

He congratulated all involved in this wonderful project, and it was nice to see how proud the students and teachers were of their endeavor. He thanked Leslie Ann Andrews, Arts Education Consultant for our board, for the invitation and wish everyone continued success in the Fine Arts.

Request for Student Involvement in Identifying the Needs of Youth at Risk:

The Cape Breton District Health Authority is embarking on a project called the “Youth Access Centre – Feasibility Study”. The primary focus of this study is to identify how best to deliver services to youth so that their specific needs are addressed in an effort to improve outcomes. The key objectives are to: establish a repository of best practice; build an understanding of the current range of services and delivery methods; identify youth at risk needs and to provide recommendations to service delivery that are needs driven and respective of best value. The project is targeting 15 to 24 year olds which represent a large population of our students.

Recently the Project lead, Mr. Rob Gair, met with Susan Kelley and himself to discuss the project, and he explored with them some approaches to identify these needs. It is not surprising that he saw the school system as a primary source of information in hopes of retrieving input directly from the youth at risk themselves. Mr. Gair hopes that youth driven dialogue will lead to an understanding of their priorities, the identification of service gaps and innovative ideas for improving the system overall. Each discussion will be driven through an outline which is intended to encourage the youth to identify service issues, gaps and ideas for change.

During their meeting, it was clear that Mr. Gair understood the challenges of initiating dialogue with our young people and the need to engage them through the school administration, understanding, of course, that each school may have to be approached in a manner that reflects their individual culture and student population. In this regard, he will work with each school administration to build an approach which the school has complete control over. Mr. Gair identified the issue of trust, and he has some ideas on how this barrier might be overcome.

In addition to the students, Mr. Gair would also like to meet with teachers, administrators and guidance counselors. He expressed to Susan and myself the need to understand the issues from multiple perspectives in order that any recommendations had the best chance of improving outcomes.

The project is expected to wrap up in June with a full report of recommendations for feasibility. He is targeting the latter part of April to hold these discussions in hopes that this should not cause any disruption to the busy school calendar. I hope that all schools consider participating. Without our input, the study runs the risk of being off mark and limiting in its impact. I have asked Mr. Gair to call each principal separately to discuss the project in more detail and explore how you might best be able to be a part of his work.

Senior staff continues to deliberate on budget reductions and will update the board on the process as it unfolds. We face a 4.3 million dollar deficit and the challenge of this reduction is quite severe.

He directed board members and staff, to read the comments from our school principals that are placed on individual school websites. These items represent the awards, achievements and successes of our students and staff within the boundaries of the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board. He further redirected principals to ensure that these important communications are kept up-to-date.

Moved by Commissioner Ruelland
Seconded by Commissioner Fraser

that the Board accept the Superintendent’s Report as presented. . .

Motion carried
2012-03-05



(8) BOARD CHAIR REPORT:

Board Chair Lorne Green began his report with an update on the recent meeting he attended with Board Chair’s across the province of Nova Scotia. He noted one of the issues which was discussed was shared services. He noted concern was expressed with shared services being located in Halifax rather than other locations across the province. He noted that correspondence will be shared with the Board and it can be found in their mailbox.

The Board Chair Lorne Green referred his report to the Vice Chair, Commissioner Currie, to provide an update with regards to budget deliberations.

Commissioner Currie advised that the Budget Committee of the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board is in the process of deliberating on the 2012-13 operating budget.

The Board is faced with a 2.1% reduction in education funding plus cost pressures which translates into a 4.3 million funding shortfall for 2012, 2013. While the shortfall is 1.2 million less than last year in many ways it will be harder to solve on the heels of last years 5.5 million shortfall.

The Committee is exploring a host of options and will leave no stone unturned in terms of solving the funding shortfall. Areas being looked at are: Administration, Property Services, Pupil Transportation, Board Governance and Educational Service.

The Committee’s focus during these deliberations is to minimize the impact on curriculum and program delivery to all our students. However, because 80-85% of the School Board budget is spent on salaries and benefits, staff reductions will be required in order to balance the budget.

The Committee and the Board will continue to advocate strongly the importance of investing in public education.

A special meeting of the Board will be held on April 10, 2012 to table options for the entire Board to consider.

Moved by Commissioner Mercer
Seconded by Commissioner Pierrard

That the Board accept the report as presented. . .

Motion carried
2012-03-06



EDUCATION COMMITTEE REPORT

(9) REPORT FROM COMMITTEE:

Moved by Commissioner Mercer
Seconded by Commissioner Pierrard

that the Board approve the minutes of the Education Committee Meeting of Monday, March 5, 2012. .

Motion carried
2012-03-07



a. Report of the Director of Programs and Student Services:

Moved by Commissioner Mercer
Seconded by Commissioner Margettie

That the Board approve the report as presented by the Director of Programs and Student Services. .

Motion carried
2012-03-08



b. Report of the Director of Human Resource Services:

Moved by Commissioner Mercer
Seconded by Commissioner Fraser

That the Board approve the report as presented by the Director of Human Resource Services. . .

Motion carried
2012-03-09



MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE REPORT

c. REPORT FROM COMMITTEE:

Moved by Commissioner Parsons
Seconded by Commissioner Pierrard

that the Board approve the minutes of the Management Committee Meeting of Monday, March 19, 2012, , . .

Motion carried
2012-03-10



d. Results of Temporary Confidential Posting – Confidential Maintenance Supervisor Posting

Moved by Commissioner Parsons
Seconded by Commissioner Pierrard

That the Board Committee approve the following temporary confidential Maintenance Supervisor posting. .

Employee#

Seniority date

Name of Employee

Position Awarded
Effective Date

40016379

February 29/00

Mark Madinsky

Acting Confidential Supervisor of Operations – effective date TBA(date to be determined)

Motion carried
2012-03-11



e. Results of Posting WK#0911 –Head Mechanic Posting:

Moved by Commissioner Parsons
Seconded by Commissioner Tilley

That the Board recommend approval of the following individual for a change in status through posting WK#0911. . .

Employee#

Seniority date

Name of Employee

POSITION EMPLOYED IN

Position Awarded

EFFECTIVE DATE

40016234

Jan 4/99(1)

Roderick A. MacInnis

Autobody Mechanic(becomes fall down position)

Head Mechanic

March 26/12

Motion carried
2012-03-12

Moved by Commissioner Parsons
Seconded by Commissioner Fraser

That the Board recommend approval of the following individual for regular status through posting WK#0911 and I so move. . .

Employee#

Preference

date

Name of Employee

Position
Awarded

EFFECTIVE DATE

40036567

Feb 24/09

George Schaller

Autobody Mechanic

March 26, 2012

Motion carried
2012-03-13



(10) NSSBA REPORT:

Commissioner Fraser distributed his report to those in attendance. Highlights of his report is the AGM scheduled to take place in Dartmouth beginning Thursday, April 5, 2012 along with forthcoming Conference in Quebec.

Moved by Commissioner Fraser
Seconded by Commissioner Tilley

that the Board accept the report as presented. . . .

Motion carried
2012-03-14



(11) DIRECTOR OF THE REGIONAL EDUCATIONAL SERVICES REPORT:

n/a



(12) NEW BUSINESS:

a. Commissioner Tilley - Town Hall meeting – He noted that he attended a well attended and organized Town hall Meeting which was arranged by CUPE Local 5050. He would like to see the Board and the unions come forth with some joint correspondence to be forwarded to the Department of Education. He feels we need to take the lead and show the impact of any reductions in our Board. He noted this is about the students and the economy of Cape Breton.

Commissioner Fraser reiterated comments of Commissioner Tilley and the need to continue the fight with the Department of Education. He too congratulated the organizers.
Commissioner Keagan spoke of past governments and their support for School Boards. He noted the present government is trying to balance the budget on the backs of our students and doesn’t feel they are doing enough to help us.
Commissioner Pierrard noted that we all need to work together and possibly create a task force to go to Halifax and meet with the Department of Education.

b. Commissioner Tilley - Hiring of Apprentices – Questioned why our Board doesn’t hire casual apprentice individuals. He noted by hiring apprentice’s we are supporting our own Vocational program and the local Nova Scotia Community College.

c. Commissioner Parsons - Mock Disaster at Riverview Rural High - He noted on Thursday, March 22nd Riverview Rural High school held a mock disaster entitled “Every 15 minutes”. He noted that the students had to write their own obituaries and eulogy and the impact of such an event carried a strong message for both students, parents, guardians and staff.

d. Motion regarding Ashby Elementary:

Moved by Commissioner MacNeil
Seconded by Commissioner Keagan

Having identified Ashby Elementary School, in accordance with Section 16 of the Ministerial Education Acts Regulations; and having completed the requirements of Sections 17, 18 and 19 of these regulations, I move the board, permanently, close Ashby Elementary School.

Motion carried
2012-03-15



e. Motion regarding Cornwallis Elementary:

Moved by Commissioner Currie
Seconded by Commissioner Margettie

Having identified Cornwallis Elementary School, in accordance with Section 16 of the Ministerial Education Acts Regulations; having completed the requirements of Sections 17, 18 and 19 of these regulations, I move the board, permanently, close Cornwallis Elementary School.. . . .

Motion carried
2012-03-16



(13) NEXT MEETING DATE:

Next Scheduled meeting date - Monday, April 30, 2012 at Sherwood Park Education Centre.



(14) Adjournment of the meeting. . .

the meeting adjourned at 7:39 p.m.





__________________________________________________
LORNE GREEN GEORGE BOUDREAU
BOARD CHAIR BOARD SECRETARY


(15) PUBLIC SESSION:

Mr. Donald Jessome spoke with regards to apprentice students who are seeking employment and require hours in order to obtain their red seal journeyman papers.

Ms. Doreen Campbell, an employee of the Board wished to speak however the Board Chair advised her that this would be against the by-laws of the Board.