Board Highlights, November 9

School Calendar:
The Board approved the school calendars for the 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 school years, which align with Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools calendars in order to honour the cooperative busing agreement. The Board honoured as many guiding principles as possible, based on stakeholder feedback. The calendars are in the process of being posted to the website.

Collaborative Days:
The Board reviewed survey data and results, and approved Collaborative Time for the 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 school years. A full report on learning and achievement will continue to be presented to the Board annually. The Board noted that purposeful staff collaboration is occurring within schools, across schools and across the division and that it is achieving positive results for students in Chinook’s Edge. Teachers, staff and administrators have the opportunity to come together through collaborative time to address student academic and behavioral needs on a regular basis. The Board is very supportive of the productive and professional use of the collaborative time provided.

Support Staff Compensation:
The Board made a motion to maintain non-teaching staff compensation at the current level, and established a bus driver health spending account of $250 to support vision care. Another salary review process will be conducted in the spring, to ensure staff know they are valued and the Board is committed to ensuring that their compensation is fair and competitive.

Trip Requests:
The Board approved in principle the following trips: a trip request from Didsbury High School Band trip to Seattle, Washington April 19-24, 2017.

Red Deer Festival of the Performing Arts:
The Board approved $700 support for the 2017 Red Deer Festival of the Performing Arts.

Closure of Chinook Center School:
The Board reviewed a letter from the Minister of Education, which exempts a portion of the formal school closure process and allows the transition plan to move ahead. The Board and Central Office staff are working with families and staff at Chinook Center and École  John Wilson Elementary schools to ensure effective plans are in place as students transition for the start of the 2017-2018 school year.

Background: At the time Chinook Center School originally opened in 1996, it was in response to a pressing need for additional instructional space in Innisfail. The relocation of approximately 100 students into Chinook Center was a temporary measure to alleviate the crowding at John Wilson Elementary. Through the intervening years, Innisfail Middle School was formed and the grade configurations at each school were modified accordingly. Finally, accommodation to house Chinook Center students within the $12 million modernization project at  École John Wilson Elementary School became a distinct part of the extensive project plans at the Innisfail Campus.

National Communications Award:
Communications Officer Sandy Bexon accepted a Bravo Award from CACE President Catherine Shedden at a conference of the Canadian Association of Communicators in Education. The award is for the Safe and Caring Committee’s ‘Relationships Matter’ campaign - particularly the three banners that were designed to promote the priorities identified through focus group conversations with all the Matters Committees. The project had already received an award from an area radio station, which covered printing costs so that the banners could be printed as posters and displayed at every school.

The next meeting of the Board of Chinook’s Edge School Division No. 73 is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, December 14, 2016.