Keeping you engaged and informed
Keeping you engaged and informed
Ward 11 Weekly Update header
Week of April 15, 2019

TDSB Committees This Week

Special Finance, Budget and Enrolment Committee, Monday, April 15, 2019 4:30 p.m. Boardroom, 5050 Yonge Street
Budget Matters
4.1 Approval of Final Budget Strategic Drivers for 2019-20 -  The Finance, Budget and Enrolment Committee will review the Budget Strategic Drivers that have been revised to align with input received during the TDSB Community Budget Survey -  A total of 15,250 respondents accessed the survey - the majority of respondents (53%) identified themselves as parent/caregiver; 21% were TDSB employees; 4% were community members, and 3% were current TDSB students. 
Taking into consideration the budget consultation qualitative and quantitative analysis, and taking into consideration the change (increase) in the Board’s budget shortfall, the operating budget should focus on the following drivers in priority sequence. Subsections within each priority blend together key objectives and outcomes of the driver and relevant pertinent aspects of the public consultation.
 Early Years
 Differentiated Approaches to Serve Our Students including Indigenous Education
 Staff Allocation to Support All Students
 Modernization and Accessibility
 Professional Development
 Parent Engagement and Student Voice 

Board Meeting, April 17, 2019 7:00 p.m. Boardroom, 5050 Yonge Street
14. Confirmation of Minutes of Meeting Held on March 20, 2019
15.1 Governance and Policy Committee, Report No. 17, March 26, 2019
15.1 (1) Integrity Commissioner Comments in Response to the February 6, 2019 Board Decision re PR533, Election Activities and Use of Board Resources
15.1 (2) Restrictions on Alcohol, Drug and Tobacco Use Policy:  New Policy, Phase 5 [3606]
15.1 (3) Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy: New Policy, Phase 5 [3607]
15.1 (4) P060, Home Instruction Policy, Phase 5 [3613]
15.1 (5) P012, Budget Approval Policy Review, Phase 1 [3614]
15.2 Program and School Services Committee, Report No. 74, March 27, 2019
15.2 (1) Aboriginal Community Advisory Committee: Revisions to Terms of Reference re Voting Members
15.2 (2) Aboriginal Community Advisory Committee: Change of Name
15.2 (3) Black Student Achievement Community Advisory Committee: Staffing the Africentric Elementary and Secondary School Programs
15.2 (4) Special Education Advisory Committee: Filling of Vacancy for Alternate Representative, Community Living, Toronto
15.2 (5) Supporting Students With Autism Spectrum Disorder [3615]
15.2 (6) Life Promotion/Suicide Prevention, Intervention and Postvention Protocol [3594]
15.2 (7) Early Years Community Advisory Committee: Indigenous Cultural Competency Training and Resources [3616]
15.2 (8) Annual Indigenous Education Update [3617]
15.3 Finance, Budget and Enrolment Committee, Report No. 30, April 3, 2019
15.3 (1) Contract Awards, Facilities [3618]
15.3 (2) Contract Awards, Operations [3619]
15.3 (3) Second Quarter Interim Financial Report, 2018-19 [3620]
15.3 (4) Update on Capital Projects, 2017-18 [3584]
15.3 (5) City of Toronto Funding for Interior Renovations at Jesse Ketchum Junior and Senior Public School [3611]
15.3 (6) City of Toronto Funding for Site Improvements at Oriole Park Junior Public School: Change in Term Length [3612]
15.3 (7) City of Toronto Funding for Site Improvements at Islington Junior Middle School [3610]
15.3 (8) City of Toronto Funding for Site Improvements at Brown Junior Public School [3608]
15.3 (9) City of Toronto Funding for Fencing at Church Street Junior Public School [3609]

15.4 Finance, Budget and Enrolment Committee (Special Meeting), Report No. 31, April 10, 2019
15.4 (1) 2019-2020 Projected Financial Position [3622]
15.5 Committee of the Whole, Report No. 2, April 10, 2019
15.5 (1) Toronto Lands Corporation: Management Report to the Board, February 2019
15.5 (2) Preliminary Discussion re Ontario Public School Boards’ Association 2019-20 Priorities
Note that re Item 15.5 (3), New Guiding Principles for the Long-Term Program and Accommodation Strategy [3623], a revised staff report will be presented for consideration at the meeting.

Provincial Budget Summary from the Ontario Public School Boards' Association (OPSBA)

Total government spending will be $163.4 billion – up 3.4% from $158 billion last year. Education sector funding will be approximately $29.8 billion, up 2.4% from $29.1 billion last year, or 18.2% of the total provincial Budget. The increase is primarily due to higher student enrolment. This funding will largely flow through the Grants for Student Needs (GSNS), expected to be announced by the end of April. By 2021-22, education sector expenses are projected to increase to $30.1 billion, representing average annual growth of 1.2%. The Budget projects a deficit of up to $10.3 billion in 2019-2020, down from the projected $11.7 billion in 2018-19.
Budget Highlights: Education (See Chapter 1, Section C: Protecting What Matters Most)
  • The creation of a Minister’s Task Force on School Boards to look at all aspects of the education system, including school board operations, while respecting the four publicly funded education systems in Ontario. The Ministry of Education will be undertaking a thorough review of how boards can conduct their operations in the most efficient manner to best serve students and parents while ensuring their long-term sustainability.  A task force framework will be available by the end of the 2018-19 school year.
  • $3.7 million in 2019-20 to fund a revised First Nations, Métis and Inuit studies curriculum, for Grades 9-12 and the Indigenous Graduation Coach Program in targeted district school boards.
  • The conditions under which school boards can run in-year deficits will now be outlined in regulation, as opposed to being part of the Education Act.
  • An amendment to the Education Act to align the authority of the Lieutenant Governor in Council to make regulations regarding First Nations representation on school boards with recently made amendments to the Act, establishing the new Reciprocal Education Approach.
  • More than $500,000 over three years to increase opportunities for students to participate in physical activities, such as cricket, at school. This funding would provide seed funding to school boards and third-party organizations to promote cricket as an opportunity to meet the diverse needs and interests of students.
  • Working with various organizations, including the education sector, to develop a Sports Action Plan to support sports for all age ranges.
  • Finding internal efficiencies in the Ministry of Education, through modernization initiatives, including greater use of virtual meetings, and limiting the use of consultants, to generate an estimated savings of $25 million annually by 2021-22.
  • Examining opportunities to enhance school board participation in formal buying consortia and group purchasing initiatives to leverage economies of scale.
  • The government’s Agency Review Task Force has recommended the dissolution of the Curriculum Council. The Ministry will now obtain specific curriculum advice from stakeholder/expert working groups, rather than this agency.
Skilled Trades
  • Establishment of program that encourage Ontarians to enter the skilled trades, get retrained and become aware of the benefits of jobs in the trades.
  • Developing a “one-window digital portal” for apprenticeships.
  • Incentives for postsecondary institutions to provide the education and training students need to get jobs by tying 60% of funding to performance outcomes by the 2024-25 school year.
  • Lowering tuition by 10% at all postsecondary institutions and making non-essential ancillary student fees optional.
The Budget reiterates several proposals outlined in the Education That Works for You document that the Minister released on March 15, including:
•         A new math curriculum focusing on fundamentals
•         A renewed focus on STEM, skilled trades and financial literacy
•         A modern and age-appropriate Health and Physical Education curriculum
•         Improved teacher mobility (Regulation 274)
•         Development of a Parents’ Bill of Rights
•         Modernizing standardized testing
•         Implementing a new math strategy focused on the “fundamentals.”

The Budget also re-announced $1.4 billion in school renewal funding that originally appeared in the 2018-19 Budget.

TDSB Budget Update

At a Special FBEC Meeting last Wednesday, Trustees received a report on the 2019-2020 Projected Financial Position of the Board.
The TDSB’s budget has provided for additional financial support to help meet the unique costs of urban, inner city educational programs and services. These dollars have also been used to meet Board decisions to provide additional services and supports for students and parents, e.g. the Board provides bus transportation for French Immersion and Gifted students. The additional spending associated with the structural deficit has been financed by in-year budget savings and efficiencies as well as the use of reserve funds. The Board is utilizing $27.8M of reserves to balance the 2018-2019 Operating Budget. Reserves are those funds that either a board sets aside as part of their operating budget for contingencies or as a result of year end surpluses.
Staff has already identified $2.1M in administrative savings (business and operations budget reductions) for the coming budget year resulting in a forecast net structural deficit in 2019-2020 of $25.7M. In addition, the Ministry Announcements has created the following issues for TDSB -
Funding reduction for Designated Early Childhood Educators (DECE). This change in the calculation of funding for DECE does not impact the allocation of DECEs to the classroom, it only
impacts the funding allocation for these staff. Currently, the funding allocation is 1.14 FTE per class and it is now being reduced to 1.0 FTE per class -  $7.9M
Cost Adjustment Allocation. The base amount to offset nonteacher salary benchmark increases in 2005-2006 is ending 31 August 2019. School boards are disputing the ministry's claim that school boards have the flexibility through other grants in the GSNs to address their staffing needs, it has discontinued this amount - $9.9M
Human Resource Transition Supplement to temporarily provide support for the negotiated 2017-2019 agreements ends 31 August 2019 - $1.3M
Classroom Loading Factor in School Facilities Operating and renewal grant is being adjusted to increased class size in Secondary schools - TBD
Grades 4 to 8 class size funding reduction due to new class size funded average of 24.5. Our collective agreement does not allow for class sizes to be higher than a system average of 23.24 -
$9.6M - Total $28.7 +
Projected 2019-20 Budget Shortfall Amount
  • Net Structural Deficit in 2019-20 $25.7M
  • Funding reductions as outlined above (15 March 2019 EDU Announcement) $28.7M
  • Net Projected Financial Position $54.4M Shortfall
In summary, we continue to have serious concerns about the magnitude of the changes to  secondary class sizes averages (from 1:22 to 1:28). There are other significant and far-reaching challenges associated with reducing this many teachers in high schools including:
o Fewer course offerings for students;
o Challenges with growing class sizes;
o Negative impacts on students; and
o Challenges with meeting collective agreement class size caps.
In short, a reduction of 800 teachers represents an order of magnitude that is unprecedented. We are also very concerned that as late as March, the Ministry of Education announced a $28.7 million (this includes $9.6 million penalty we will pay for honouring our elementary collective agreements a not increasing Grade 4-8 class sizes) shortfall to the Board’s upcoming budget. We remain hopeful that there will be no further cuts within the Grants for Student Needs (GSNs) later this month, however we’ll have to wait and see.
Next Steps - The Budget Strategic Drivers are recommended to be adjusted to reflect the reality of that unexpected budget shortfall. Staff will also review the results of the TDSB Community Budget Survey to ensure that the opinions expressed are respected. Those revised Budget Strategic Drivers and the results of the Community Survey will be presented on 15 April 2019 at the Special Finance, Budget and Enrolment Committee meeting as per the Report above.
To keep you well informed, we have created a webpage that will be updated as more information becomes available.

Can you help?

In last week's update, I mentioned although students and parents have not been asked to complete the consultation. However, this week in the Legislature, Minister Thompson invited everyone include students and parents to provide your opinion. Here are the links to access the two guides for the consultation process:
Class size:
Hiring Practices:

Update on the New Davisville/Spectrum

The Board awarded the contract for construction of the new school to Percon Construction Inc at the October 2018 Board meeting, but was not able to enter into the contract with Percon until "Approval to Proceed" was granted by the Ministry. This did not occur until February 15, 2019.
On April 4, 2019 staff received a letter from Percon confirming the construction schedule after they reviewed the schedule with their sub-contractors – I was deeply disappointed to understand, and now share with you, that Percon has advised they need 2 full years to complete the project. During last week staff had tried to see if the timeline could be accelerated and unfortunately it cannot. Again, the reason for the delay in occupancy date is because we are starting later than scheduled. Recall that if construction had started after tender closed last fall, we would have opened in September 2020 as scheduled; since we are now starting in April 2019, contract completion now shifts to Spring of 2021. The contractor is now mobilizing on site and will begin the shoring work, the first step prior to excavation for the parking garage which will be the first phase of construction.
As the work proceeds we will confirm the nature and timing of construction through updates that will be posted on the school’s website; click on “The New Build”. It should be acknowledged that all work will be done per industry standards, and per the City guidelines for environmental protection, noise suppression and dust control.

I have asked staff to set up a meeting for the Davisville/Spectrum community, so we can review the construction schedule in more detail, ensure a plan to keep the community updated, review the new school and answer questions and concerns. The meeting will be held on Tuesday, April 16 – from 7:15-9:00 pm at Hodgson Middle School. 

TDSB Summer Programs

At the TDSB we provide a wide range of enriching summer programs for children, youth and adults.
  • Early Years Summer Learning Programs,
    This summer the Early Years Department will operate two types of Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten Summer Learning Programs. We welcome pre-school students who will be starting school in September 2019, as well as students who are currently in JK or SK at a TDSB school.
  • Elementary Summer School, July 3 - July 26, 2019
    Elementary summer programs are tailored to increase engagement and build self-confidence in our students. This summer, we are opening schools across the city to help build literacy and numeracy skills in students from Kindergarten to Grade 8
  • International Languages Elementary and African Heritage Summer Program, July 2 - July 26, 2019
    Open to all students from K to Grade 8, International Languages Elementary summer programs combine language and culture learning with engaging activities like games, songs, dance, storytelling and writing. No language background knowledge is necessary.
  • TDSB Music Camps
    Join one of our three instrumental music programs this summer. For students in Grades 3 to 9, we offer two day camps in the city - Summer Sounds and Downtown Summer Strings. In addition, we offer Toronto Summer Music Camps, an overnight program at the Mono Cliffs Outdoor Education Centre in Orangeville.
  • Toronto Outdoor Education Summer Camp Opportunities
    TOES offers a variety of traditional summer camp opportunities – both day and overnight camps from the Toronto Island to the depths of Algonquin Park.  We offer rich experiences for students at a variety of age levels.  Activities include: hiking, games, arts & crafts and much more!   
Secondary School
  • Adult Credit Courses for Summer High School, July 2 - July 26, 2019
    There are three adult learning centres open this summer. Courses are open to adults who have current course pre-requisites under the new curriculum
  • Learn4Life Summer Session, July 2 - July 31, 2019
    Take up a new hobby. Hone a skill. Meet new people in your community. Through Learn4Life, the TDSB offers more than 2,600 classes for adults every year. Discover our summer offerings at
  • Summer ESL Program for Adults, July 8 - July 31, 2019
    Learn English with TDSB this summer! Build your literacy and English language skills. Learn about your community and the services available. Prepare for further education, citizenship and language proficiency tests. Improve your conversation skills. Discover our bilingual programs, where English is taught with the help of other languages.

New Invitation

Ledbury Park Elementary and Middle School Marketplace - 95 Falkirk St. You are all invited to join the Ledbury Community on Thursday, May 23rd from 5:00 – 8:00 - more to come, but please hold the date.

Worth Repeating

Brown Jr Public School invites you to join them for a presentation by Brenda Simon - Let's Talk About Play - Why Promoting Freely Chosen Self-Directed Play is Essential for the Development of the Autonomy and Anxiety Relief in our Kids - on Wednesday, April 24th at Brown - 454 Avenue Rd at 7p,m. Register at search Brenda Simon.

School Year Calendar 2018-2019

The official school year calendar for the Toronto District School Board runs from September 1, 2018 to June 30, 2019, inclusive.
  • The last day of class for elementary students is June 27, 2019
  • The last day of class for secondary (full-year) students is June 25, 2019
  • The last day of class for secondary (semestered) students is June 26, 2019 
2018 - 2019 Dates to Remember: Official Holidays and PA Days 
Remaining PA Days & Statutory Holidays
  • Good Friday April 19, 2019
  • Easter Monday April 22, 2019
  • Victoria Day May 20, 2019
  • Elementary School PA Day June 7, 2019
  • Secondary School PA Day (Full Year Schools only)* June 26, 2019
  • Secondary School PA Day June 27, 2019
  • Board-wide PA Day June 28, 2019
Also please note Days of Significance - click for the complete list
You may also find this Days of Significance Resource Guide helpful
  • Passover 2019 will begin in the evening of Friday, April 19 and ends in the evening of Saturday, April 27 (first 2 and last 2 days are considered holy)
  • Ramadan 2019 will begin in the evening of Sunday, May 5 and ends in the evening of Tuesday, June 4 (Dates may vary)
  • Eid al-Fitr celebrated at the end of Ramadan will begin on Tuesday, June 4 
EQAO - The following dates have been established: 
  • Gr. 9 Math:  2nd Semester: June 5-18, 2019
  • Primary/Junior EQAO: May 21-June 3, 2019
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