Week of November 18, 2019
Bullying Awareness and Prevention Week –November 17-23, 2019
Ontario has designated the week beginning on the third Sunday of November as Bullying Awareness and Prevention Week to help promote safe schools and a positive learning environment.
Providing safe, inclusive and positive spaces accepting of all students, is a priority in the TDSB. Our schools should be communities where all students are respected, welcomed, nurtured, engaged and encouraged.
Be part of making our schools safer – report bullying.
If you are a student who is being bullied, reach out
If you are a parent/guardian and your child is being bullied, reach out
If you are a staff member, read your responsibilities
Although we always encourage students to talk to an adult that they trust, the Student Safety Line
is another way to make schools even safer, fairer and more caring learning environments for everyone. If you don't want to e-mail, please call 416-395-SAFE (7233)
. In an emergency, call 9-1-1. For counselling support, call Kids Help Phone
, 1-800-668-6868. Whether the bullying happened at school, between students off school property or online, if it impacts student safety, the school must investigate and respond to any reports.
The TDSB takes bullying very seriously. As a system, we focus efforts on prevention efforts and creating a welcoming school community. Staff and students are educated on what bullying looks like and how to report. They are engaged through events, activities and prevention programming and encouraged to take on leadership roles to enhance the school community. We take a whole school approach to promoting a safe, inclusive and accepting school climate. By working together with staff, students and community we are able to address inappropriate student behaviour and to build strategies that promote and foster positive behaviours.
Students are also invited to share their voice through the bi-annual school climate surveys that provide valuable data for the Caring, Safe and Accepting School Committee. Each school has one of these committees which includes one student, one parent, one teacher, one non-teaching staff member, one community partner and the school principal
Bullying is defined as a form of repeated, persistent and aggressive behaviour directed at an individual or individuals that is intended to cause (or should be known to cause) fear and distress and/or harm to another person's body, feelings, self-esteem or reputation. Bullying occurs in a context where there is a real or perceived power imbalance.
Holodomor Memorial Day
Holodomor Memorial Day is November 22, 2019. For schools (4th Friday of November). Worldwide, Holodomor Memorial Day is November 23 (4th Saturday of November).
Canada has recognized the Holodomor in Ukraine as one of 8 genocides it officially acknowledges, setting aside a day for its remembrance. This year is the 86th Commemoration of the Holodomor – the Genocidal Famine created as a result of the policies of Joseph Stalin and his Soviet regime in Ukraine in the years 1932- 1933. We remember and recognize the Holodomor during which millions of people died from deliberate starvation, 31% of whom were children under the age of 10.
Studying the Holodomor is especially relevant today as we strive to educate the world about different modes of genocide and human rights abuses in order to prevent future horrific acts against humanity. It is important not only to commemorate those who perished and to honour the survivors of the Soviet genocide, but to also take time to remind ourselves of the value of speaking out and standing up for those victims. https://education.holodomor.ca/holodomor-memorial-day-2019/.
Labour Negotiations Update
NEW UPDATE - Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) - Update: November 14, 2019 - The Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) announced today that phase 1 work-to-rule strike action will begin on Tuesday, November 26, 2019. According to ETFO, “the action targets Ministry and school board administrative tasks and does not impact on students.”
The work-to-rule directives include, but are not limited to:
- Not participating in any EQAO-related activities
- Not completing Term 1 Report Cards (teachers will provide the school administrator with a class list of marks for the various subjects/strands taught, or one brief comment per frame for the Kindergarten Communication of Learning)
- Not participating in any school or Ministry of Education professional learning offered outside of the instructional day
During this phase of work-to-rule, schools will remain open and instructional programs will continue to run. However, should the work-to-rule progress to include further sanctions, it may have a more significant impact on school activities, permits and school operations. We will continue to update parents/guardians with new information as soon as it becomes available. For ongoing updates, please continue to check https://www.tdsb.on.ca/About-Us/Labour-Negotiations
and follow @tdsb on Twitter.
Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF) -
Update: November 1, 2019
The Ministry of Labour has released a no-board report for OSSTF Teachers and for OSSTF Education Workers. This means that OSSTF Teachers and OSSTF Education Workers will be in a legal strike position in 17 days, which is November 18, 2019. At this time, OSSTF has not indicated that strike action (partial withdrawal or full withdrawal of services) will begin. Negotiations between the OSSTF, OPSBA and the Ontario government continue.
Previous Updates - https://www.tdsb.on.ca/About-Us/Labour-Negotiations/OSSTF
A tentative agreement on a new contract was reached with the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) and we are hopeful that a new contract can be negotiated with ETFO, OSSTF and all other school board employee groups.
The TDSB is currently bargaining locally with the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE). We anticipate local bargaining with the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) in the near future and with the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF) in the next two weeks.
Committee Meetings This Week
All committee and board meetings are at 5050 Yonge St and are open to the public
Organizational Meeting - Monday, November 18, 2019 6:00pm
“Organizational Meeting” means the annual regular meeting at which the Board’s Chair and Vice-Chair are elected, committees (including Standing Committees, Statutory Committees and Community Advisory Committees) are established, and Trustee members are appointed to committees and external organization.
- Election of Chair of the Board (who will preside once elected)
- Election of the Vice-Chair of the Board
- Election of Members of Standing Committees
- a. Finance, Budget and Enrolment Committee
- b. Governance and Policy Committee
- c. Program and School Services Committee
Note: Each member of the Board, except the Chair and Vice-Chair of the Board, will be appointed to one standing Committee [Bylaw 4.4.3]. Therefore, two standing committees shall have seven members and one shall have six members. (The Chair and Vice-Chair of the Board are exofficio members.) Audit Committee members were appointed to 2 and 4 year terms and are not expired.
- 7.1 Parent Involvement Advisory Committee
Note: Trustees were appointed to the Special Education Advisory Committee last year for 4 years.
- a. Urban Indigenous Community Advisory Committee
- b. Alternative Schools Community Advisory Committee
- c. Black Student Achievement Community Advisory Committee
- d. Community Use of Schools Community Advisory Committee
- e. Early Years Community Advisory Committee
- f. Environmental Sustainability Community Advisory Committee
- g. Equity Policy Community Advisory Committee
- h. French-as-a-Second-Language Community Advisory Committee
- i. Inner City Community Advisory Committee
Note: Trustees were appointed to the LGBTQ Advisory Committee for a term expiring in 2020.
- a. Negotiations Steering Committee
- 10.1 Canadian National Exhibition
- 10.2 Ontario Public School Boards’ Association
- 10.3 Toronto Lands Corporation Directors
- 10.4 Toronto Student Transportation Group
Further Information on the Yonge-Eglinton Review
As I noted previously in my weekly updates, the Yonge-Eglinton Phase 2 Program Area Review Team (PART) was established in early 2019 to discuss potential solutions to the accommodation pressures facing a number of local elementary schools. The review was paused in April 2019 after changes were announced by the province affecting secondary school class sizes and funding. In particular, the changes to class sizes have the potential to increase the amount of space available in secondary schools. Staff required additional time to review these changes, specifically to consider whether or not local secondary schools could provide opportunities to address long-term accommodation pressures impacting elementary schools.
Additionally, the TDSB is currently undertaking a system-wide review of secondary schools and programs. A system review of French programming was recently completed, and staff are currently working towards implementing the approved recommendations. Recognizing that these reviews could have significant implications on schools right across the City, the original PART process is not able to be re-engaged. Moving forward, staff will be exploring a broader and more diverse range of options to address student accommodation in the Yonge-Eglinton area. This work will continue through the course of the 2019-20 school year. A new Program Area Review Team will be initiated at the appropriate time.
Recognizing that accommodation challenges continue to exist, specifically at Eglinton Jr PS, actions have and will continue to be taken to ensure that enrolment growth is mitigated at the school. For example, the Board of Trustees approved a boundary change between Eglinton Jr PS, Hodgson MS, and Northlea E & MS in June 2019. Also, new residential developments within the attendance are of Eglinton Jr PS are being redirected to schools outside of the area with sufficient capacity available. There are presently nine developments redirected to Whitney Jr. PS, with one more on the way, and an additional four developments to Rippleton PS (subject to Board approval at the end of the month).
Construction Hub Coordination Pilot
The City has launched a new pilot project at Yonge and Eglinton to reduce the impacts of construction, improve road safety and keep traffic moving around areas in the city with a dense concentration of construction activity.
The Construction Hub Coordination Pilot will see City staff proactively manage work zones in a ‘construction hub’ – a high-growth area with multiple construction projects happening near each other. The Pilot will minimize disruption to the travelling public by engaging with public and private sector contractors to ensure safety, manage parking and loading to improve accessibility, work with businesses and communities to forecast and curb disturbances.
The one-year Pilot will be deployed at the Yonge-Eglinton area in November 2019 and will conclude in December 2020. An on-the-ground ‘hub coordinator’ will conduct logistical planning of the right-of-way, review Construction Management Plans, connect travellers with real-time information, collaborate with enforcement officers and communicate impacts and changes to businesses and communities in the neighbourhood.
E-Cigarettes & Vaping
To help educate our students about the risks of using e-cigarettes and vaping products, we have collaborated with Toronto Public Health to provide our educators with professional learning sessions and a website with lesson plans and resources so that they can provide students with accurate, non-judgemental information. We have also banned the use of e-cigarettes and vaping products on and within 20 metres of our school grounds.
The Chair has also written a letter on behalf of the Board to the Federal Government to urge them to consider the following actions:
- ban e-cigarettes in Canada until the science about the adverse health impacts is known, to ensure that these devices can be properly regulated to protect youth from severe pulmonary disease that has resulted in death in some cases;
- remove flavoured e-cigarette products from the Canadian market;
- provide additional regulations on the sale of e-cigarettes and nicotine-containing vape products, similar to the regulations in effect for the sale of alcohol and increased funding for enforcement;
- provide advertising restrictions that are identical to those in effect for tobacco products to ensure that children and youth are protected; and
- provide funding for schools to install vape detectors as a deterrent for youth vaping in schools.
In addition, a fact sheet was developed to help educate parents/guardians, students, teachers and school communities about e-cigarettes and vaping products, and the harmful effects they can have on our youth. Please click here to access the Fact Sheet
We Want to Hear From You
The Toronto District School Board (TDSB) is committed to open and inclusive policy decision-making and values community input and participation through consultation. Consultation is a two-way communication process between the Board and external participants, including students and their parents/guardians, school councils, advisory committees, community members, different levels of government, service agencies, professional organizations and union partners. The objective of consultation is to gather public input regarding options, alternative courses of action, as well as to identify unintended effects for various participants and to find solutions.
Current Policy Review Schedule
Attendance at Schools Outside of Designated Attendance Area (formerly Optional Attendance) (P013)
As per the Secondary Programs Review and the TDSB Policy Review Schedule, the Optional Attendance Policy is currently being reviewed. We are asking all members of the TDSB community for feedback on the proposed draft.
Closes - February 03, 2020
Draft Policy - https://www.tdsb.on.ca/Portals/0/docs/Draft%20-%20P013%20-%20Post%20for%20Consultation.docx
Survey - https://surveys.tdsb.on.ca/index.php?r=survey/index&sid=556612&lang=en
To provide policy direction about access to schools outside a student’s designated attendance area. The Optional Attendance policy allows students to apply to schools other than their designated school by home address. This is possible because there is excess capacity at some schools across the system. This has afforded students choice of school and program as well as enabled students to remain with cohorts if a family changes residence. However, optional attendance has prevented equity of access and has created an imbalance of enrolment in our secondary schools (under and over-utilized schools). It has also created an environment where schools are forced to compete with each other to attract more students in hopes of increasing their enrolment.
Note: Please note that in the Review Work Plan that was approved in June 2019, it was recommended to separate and clarify provisions related to requests for Regular Schools vs. Specialized Schools/Programs. This working draft Policy would only apply to Regular Schools and schools with French programs. A separate draft Policy on Specialized Programs will be developed and posted in the coming months for feedback and comment.
Priorities in new Draft Policy -
6.1.7. If sufficient space is available at the requested school, spaces will be filled by grade according to the admission priorities below. For each of the admission priorities (in priority order), the school principal will conduct a lottery if the number of applications exceeds available spaces:
- Priority 1: Students who are attending another school as an Out-of-Area student at and who wish to return to their designated school by address.
- Priority 2: Secondary students whose child/children is/are enrolled in a child care centre in the designated attendance area of the secondary school.
- Priority 3: Students who have siblings currently attending the requested school and the siblings are expected to be at the requested school for the next school year.
- Priority 4: Students currently attending a feeder school of the requested school.
- Priority 5: Children enrolled after January 1 in the school-based child care pre-school program of the requested school (see 6.1.6).
- Priority 6: Children attending child care programs in the designated attendance area of the requested school.
- Priority 7: Current TDSB students.
- Priority 8: Other students residing in the City of Toronto.
- Priority 9: Students residing outside the City of Toronto.
Please note - The new draft policy on Specialized Programs will be coming to committee in January 2020.
2020-2021 Optional Attendance
Please note that not all programs/schools are open to Optional Attendance if you do not live in the school's catchment area. Acceptance at these schools is subject to space availability and program suitability. The procedures, conditions and timelines relating to optional attendance are described in the Optional Attendance Policy and the Optional Attendance Operational Procedure.
Each year in December, schools are classified as limited or closed to optional attendance based on the space they have available for the upcoming school year.
Note: It is the parent/guardian’s responsibility to deliver this application (no faxed or scanned copies) to the school or schools of choice.
High School Information Nights
To help you make an informed decision when choosing a school, TDSB schools host open houses and information nights for parents and students each year between October and January. Learn everything you need to know about our incredible variety of schools, programs and courses. Please click here for the schedule https://www.tdsb.on.ca/OpenHouse. If you have questions about a specific school or open house, please contact the school directly for more information.
Early French Immersion Parent/Guardian Information Sessions
For families interested in the Toronto District School Board's French Immersion or Extended French programs, we offer an online process at this time, we guarantee an offer of placement in the program (not a specific school) to all on-time applicants. The timelines for applying for these programs for September 2020 are
- Applications for Early French Immersion which begins in SK (for a Junior Kindergarten aged child), must be completed online between November 4, 2019 and November 29, 2019.
- Applications for Junior Extended French which begins in Grade 4 must be completed online between January 6, 2020 and January 31, 2020. Please note that this will be the last entry class for this program as it will be transitioning out - Grade 4 Immersion Program will continue.
Offers of placement within your chosen program will be made to all on-time applicants in the weeks following the close of the application window.
Secondary Program Review
The Toronto District School Board (TDSB) is undertaking a review of secondary schools to ensure all students have equitable access to programs and opportunities, as close to home as possible. As part of this review, modifications and updates to current policies and procedures will be required. This includes the Optional Attendance policy (P013) and its procedures (PR545 and PR612). Please note, however, there are no changes to the Optional Attendance Policy for September 2020. For more information, please visit https://www.tdsb.on.ca/High-School/Secondary-Program-Review
Remaining Consultations on Optional Attendance P013 - Public Meetings:
- November 20, 7 p.m. at East Education Office, 140 Borough Drive, Committee Room 3/4
- November 26, 7 p.m. at C W Jefferys Collegiate Institute, 340 Sentinel Road, Cafeteria
- November 28, 7 p.m. at John Polanyi Collegiate Institute, 640 Lawrence Avenue West, Cafeteria
Hold the Dates for Ward Forums
Please hold the following dates - A Ward Forum is a meeting of parents, school community, Trustee and Board staff of schools in a ward
Ward Forums -
- November 26, 2019 - Long-Term Program & Accommodation Strategy with Dan Castaldo, Senior Manager, Planning - 6:30-8:30 at Forest Hill Collegiate Institute
- February 6, 2020 - Joint Ward Forum with neighbour Ward 11, Trustee Rachel Chernos Lin with Director John Malloy
- April 28, 2020 - TBC
- June 2, 2020 - TBC
School Year Calendar 2019-2020
The 2019-2020 school year at the TDSB begins on Tuesday, September 3, 2019 following the Labour Day long weekend. For more information about important dates and holidays for the upcoming school year, please refer to the 2019-20 School Year Calendar
The official school year calendar for the Toronto District School Board runs from September 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020, inclusive.
- The last day of class for elementary students is June 25, 2020
- The last day of class for secondary (full year) students is June 23, 2020
- The last day of class for secondary (semestered) students is June 23, 2020
PA Days & Statutory Holidays
- Board-wide PA Day December 6, 2019
- Winter Break December 23, 2019 to January 3, 2020 (inclusive)
- Last day of school is December 20, 2019
- School resumes January 6, 2020
- Elementary PA Day January 17, 2020
- Secondary PA Day (Semestered Schools only) January 30, 2020
- Board-wide PA Day February 14, 2020
- Family Day February 17, 2020
- March Break March 16 to 20, 2020
- Good Friday April 10, 2020
- Easter Monday April 13, 2020
- Victoria Day May 18, 2020
- Elementary School PA Day June 5, 2020
- Secondary School PA Day (Full Year Schools only) June 24, 2020
- Secondary School PA Day June 25, 2020
- Board-wide PA Day June 26, 2020
Also please note -
- Hanukkah begins sunset of Sunday, December 22, 2019 and ends nightfall of Monday, December 30, 2019
- Passover begins sunset of Wednesday, April 8, 2020 and ends nightfall of Thursday, April 16, 2020
- Ramadan 2020 will begin in the evening of Thursday, April 23, 2020 and ends in the evening of Saturday, May 23, 2020 (dates may vary)
- Eid al-Fitr 2020 will begin in the evening of Saturday, May 23, 2020
Gr. 9 Math: 1st Semester: January 13-24, 2020
Gr. 9 Math: 2nd Semester: June 2-15, 2020
OSSLT: March 31, 2020
Primary/Junior EQAO: May 19-June 1, 2020