Keeping you updated on the TDSB
Keeping you updated on the TDSB
Ward 11 Weekly Update header
Week of September 6, 2015
The 2015-16 School Year begins Tuesday!
Two more sleeps! Staff at every level in the TDSB has worked hard ensuring schools are ready for students… hoping everyone has much success this year… feels welcome and is engaged… Do not forget to provide your e-mail address to your school or sign up directly to their updates. Each of our schools does a great job of sharing information with students and parents.
Communication is key and that’s why I send out Weekly Updates… your feedback is important. I look forward to hearing directly from you on issues that impact our schools and community. Please send me your community updates and invite me to your School Council Meetings – I will do my best to attend. And I hope you will join me at my regular ward forum meetings (dates and topics to come). If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at
I look forward to meeting and working with you this year.  
The TDSB website is a great resource that you can use to find important information about the upcoming school year. Visit the Back to School page for information about the 2015-16 school year calendar, get homework tips, learn about school safety, and more. I also try and put key documents on my webpage on the site and will often link to them in my updates. 

Improving Communication to the TDSB’s Multilingual Students and Parents
Did you know that English is the sole first language for less than half (44%) of all TDSB students? Or that there are more than 115 languages spoken by TDSB students and their families? 
To improve the way we communicate with students and parents who speak different languages, the TDSB has introduced an added feature on our website – a multilingual website with key sections of translated into 23 different languages, including Chinese, Tamil and Urdu. Examples of translated pages include Find Your School, Calendar, Newcomers, Kindergarten Registration, Special Education, Frequently Asked Questions, Safe Schools and Governance. 
The multilingual website can be accessed by visiting or by clicking on the banner on the homepage of the TDSB website. It will be updated periodically with new information.

Communicating with the TDSB
I know that navigating the TDSB can sometimes be confusing. To help make things a little more clear, a poster has been developed and posted in schools to advise who you should contact with any questions, concerns or feedback. The poster is also on my website – For more information, read the Parent Concern Protocol.

Follow Us on Social Media
Join the conversations happening on TDSB's social media communities. You'll find the most up-to-date information about us on Twitter and Facebook, and plenty of useful information too. You can also follow what's happening at TDSB in images through our Instagram account and see what our pinners are recommending on our Pinterest boards. See you there!

School Board Trustees — Who are they? Why are they important?
School board trustees are the members of the district school board. They are locally-elected representatives of the public, and they are the community’s advocate for public education. They are required to carry out their responsibilities in a manner that assists the board in fulfilling its duties under the Education Act.  A trustee’s role is to maintain a focus on student achievement and well-being and to participate in making decisions that benefit the entire board district while representing the interests of his or her constituents. Trustees must also communicate the views and decisions of the board back to their constituents.
To get a snapshot, please click on this short video - TDSB Trustees.

Getting Involved
When parents get involved in their child's education and school life, the benefits are endless. From increasing student achievement to enhancing the experiences and opportunities available to students, your participation in our schools makes a big difference. 
School councils are an excellent way for you to get involved in your child’s education. Your school council is an important forum for involving all members of the school community in matters that affect the education of students. I have a number of resources for School Councils on my webpage – click on 
If you are unable to attend school council meetings, there are many other ways you can volunteer. Please contact your School Council Chair or visit for more information.
Do you want to make your school an even healthier place?
As of September 1st, publicly funded schools across Ontario are able to register online for the 2015-2016 Ophea Healthy Schools Certification. There will be 250 spots available on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration will remain open until Friday, September 18th at 5pm or until all spots are filled. To register visit: For a complete list of registration information, please click here. For more information: 

Walk to School!
The TDSB is supportive of Active and Safe Routes to School…. Most of the schools in the Ward are closed to optional attendance which means most elementary students live within walking distance. In addition to the benefit for the environment, walking or cycling is a great daily physical activity for both parents and children.  Neighbours get to know each other, and community safety is improved by reducing traffic in school zones. Traffic in and around our schools is often very problematic. Please take the time to work out your route… Some TDSB schools employ "walking school bus" programs. To learn more, visit

Labour Relations Update as of September 4
Up-to-date information is posted on the TDSB website at
Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)
The union representing school education workers (support staff) has provided notice that they intend to strike beginning on September 10, 2015. At this time, the strike action is a work-to-rule not a full withdrawal from schools. The next round of collective talks are scheduled for September 10, 2015.
Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO)
Bargaining took place from September 1-4. On September 4, although progress was made according to a joint statement, ETFO, the government and the School Boards AAssociation agreed to take a break over the long weekend. Bargaining resumes Tuesday, September 8. Previously, ETFO had announced Phase 2 of its work to rule strike action that will begin on the first day of work for the 2015-2016 school year. Please note, this strike action does not include extra-curricular activities.
Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation (OSSTF)
A tentative agreement has been reached between OSSTF, the province and the School Boards Association. A ratification vote by OSSTF members is expected during the first few weeks of September. OSSTF has indicated that their sanctions (work to rule actions) will be suspended while its members take part in a ratification vote. It is our understanding that this includes extra-curricular activities. Local negotiations with OSSTF District 12 (TDSB) are still ongoing. As we receive updates on local matters, we will provide updates.

Managing Class Size – Why your child may be asked to change classes
Each year, our TDSB planning department works with schools to develop enrolment projections with drive the staffing allocation of each school. During the first weeks of school you may notice fluctuations and larger or smaller class sizes than anticipated. For example, in elementary schools where there is a primary class size cap of 20 students in Grades 1-3, (90% of all classes must be no more than 20 with an exemption of up to 10% of all classes up to 23 students system wide) changes in registration of just a few students can have an effect on how the school may need to realign and can result in many students having to change classes. For Full-Day Kindergartens, unlike primary classes, there is no cap on kindergarten size – funding for staffing is provided to the TDSB based on average class size of 26 across the district.  Most of the FDKs in our Ward have over 30 children. Most of the schools in our ward are at or near capacity which compound classroom space issues.
Each September, elementary school Principals review the enrolment on a daily basis during the first two weeks and report the enrolment centrally at the end of the first week and again each day leading up to the official count date (September 18) with regard to potential piercing of Primary Class Size caps or having large grade 4-8 classes and Full Day Kindergarten classes (FDK). Principals consult with Parent Councils and School Staffing Committees with regard to student attendance and any possibilities that may require realignment and work with central staffing to make adjustments to the loading of classes so that they are compliant with the ministry requirements. In secondary, there may also be addition or reductions of new sections of subject classes.
On September 18 (count day), should realignment be necessary, Principals make any necessary final changes to meet parameters in consultation with their staff and Council and Superintendent. Classes are then realigned during the next week and students start working with their new teachers. It is important to note that realignment for some schools may mean significant change while for others; the changes may be minor or not required. Everyone works to minimize disruption to the extent possible. Please be patient

53 Division Town Hall Meeting Wednesday, September 9th at 7pm @NTCI
This Wednesday, 53 Division of the Toronto Police Service will be hosting a ‘Town Hall’ meeting in the auditorium at North Toronto Collegiate, starting at 7:00pm. (Located at 17 Broadway Ave, north Of Eglinton Ave, east off Yonge Street, just minutes from the subway). Special guest for this event will be Chief of Police, Mark Saunders. There are other scheduled speakers, concluding a Detective from the ‘Sex Crimes Unit’ who will speak on the current topic of ‘Human Trafficking’. I look forward to seeing you there.

Have a great first week!
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