Key Decisions from Final Board Meeting
There were many key decisions made at the last Board Meeting of 2015-16 - among them was the dedication of October as Islamic and Somali Heritage Month as well as June as Pride Month. There is no coincidence to the importance of the vote on these months together in light of the tragedy in Orlando last month.
The Board also voted for the Director to report to the Board in October 2016 on the development of an Action Plan for an Integrated Equity Framework,
as described in the Report
, that will guide the Board’s strategic efforts. Because of the Board vote, staff will undertake a comprehensive, system-wide Equity evaluation and strategic planning process to support the development of a Integrated Equity Framework with a phased multi-year implementation plan. This action plan will include the following components:
- Budget and Policy
- School Improvement Process
- Programs and Professional Learning
- Secondary Program Review
- Inclusion and Special Education
- Employment Equity
We believe that ensuring equitable and inclusive learning opportunities for all our students is a moral imperative, because we understand that education is the most critical factor in an individual’s ability to fulfill his or her potential. Our commitment to Equity is clearly articulated in the very first Guiding Principle of the Board’s recently adopted Learning Centres Strategy: “Improve student achievement and well-being, and ensure equitable access and outcomes.”
More on the Long-Term Program & Accommodation
I have added information on the updated Plan on my website. Please click here
for the Context and Background to the Report. Please click here
for all the program studies and please click here
for the studies specific for Ward 11. Also included on my site is background
to the decision to enter into a process for the potential closure of Vaughan Road Academy and the presentation with the data that was presented to their School Council.
More on the Capital Plan
We approved a 3-Year Capital Budget on June 22, 2016 that will see significant investments in schools for the future. The plan reinstates four previously-closed Board properties — Bannockburn PS, Castlebar PS, Sir Sandford Fleming Academy, and Boyne River Outdoor Education Centre — for future use by the TDSB. The plan also identifies eight priority projects to be submitted to the Ministry of Education for funding approval including a 12-room addition at Hodgson Sr PS.
We also voted to declare five schools as surplus to the Board’s needs, including three already-closed schools and two to be closed as of June 30, 2016.McNicoll PS (closed as an operating school in 2000) and Silver Creek PS (closed as an operating school in 1982) have been declared surplus but have not been transferred to the Toronto Lands Corporation (TLC) for sale at this time. Instead, the Director of Education will continue discussions with the Province on the transfer of ownership of both properties. The goal is to keep current community services operating in these sites. Thistletown MS (closed as an operating school in 1985) has been declared surplus but has not been transferred to the TLC for sale at this time. The Director will continue discussions with the City on the transfer of ownership of the property to keep current community services operating in this site. The Director of Education will present a report to Board with regards to these three school sites before any further action is taken. Sir Robert L. Borden Business & Technical Institute and Nelson A. Boylen CI will close June 30, 2016 and be referred to the Toronto Lands Corporation for sale. Finally, Trustees voted to maintain Buttonwood Hill Public School (closed as an operating school in 1983) as a core holding.
And although we made a record investment this year of $156 million in capital repairs to improve our schools and expect to make a further investment of $166 million for capital repairs next year, we still face a renewal backlog of $3.5 billion (May 2016) – the cost to complete every identified repair – we continue to make this work, and the health and safety of our students and staff, a priority... but we must not stop advocating to fair funding to Toronto schools including access to Education Development Charges. For more on what you can do to support visit www.fixourschools.ca