Congratulations to all our TDSB students on the completion of another school year. Extra shout out to those graduating from Grades 5, 8 or 12
2019-20 Budget Update
The Toronto District School Board is projecting a budget shortfall of $67.8 million for 2019-20. The shortfall is the result of Ministry of Education grant reductions of $42.1 million and a TDSB annual structural deficit of $25.7 million.
Recently, staff provided Trustees with a proposed balanced operating budget for the upcoming school year. Trustees are now considering the proposed budget reductions at various committee meetings and may make changes to the proposed budget before it goes for final discussion and approval at the June Board meeting. Please note that changes made to the proposed budget are not final until approved by the Board. Trustees are also considering written submissions and in-person presentations from the public at committee meetings. We knew there would be very difficult decisions as everything we currently do is valued by those we serve. For that reason, the Board embarked on a very deliberate consultation to ensure the budget process would be driven by budget drivers or guiding principles. Only after staff reviewed the budget line by line did they put forward their balanced reduction plan to the Board - it includes a number of reductions and changes to the delivery of programs and services but protects special education, early years and model schools. I want to thank everyone who has contributed to the process.
Chair Writes Letter to Minister of Education: Outlines Seven Decisions the Minister Could Make to Support Students
On Friday, May 31, Chair of the Board Robin Pilkey wrote to the Minister of Education Lisa Thompson asking her government to consider a number of decisions that would support students and cut-back the anxiety expressed by students, parents, guardians and school boards across the province.
The letter is now available online.
Statement from TDSB Chair Robin Pilkey: TDSB Cell Phone RFP
On Monday, June 03, Chair of the Board Robin Pilkey issued a statement in response to a story in the Toronto Sun and comments made by the Minister of Education regarding a TDSB Cell Phone RFP.
The full statement is now available online.
On Tuesday, June 11, beginning at 4:30 p.m., trustees met for a Special Meeting of Committee of the Whole to consider substitutions to staff’s proposed 2019-20 balanced operating budget. Committee of the Whole may approve a recommended balanced operating budget that will go to the Regular Board meeting for consideration on Wednesday, June 19, beginning at 7 p.m. Among the substitutions are reconsideration of the cancellation of Saturday International Language Programs, re-looking at Outdoor Education with the hope to reorganize to keep more centres, and the reconsideration of transportation services to ensure access to French programming.
Please note that all meetings are available as live webcasts. To watch the live webcasts, visit https://www.tdsb.on.ca and follow the live broadcast link. If you miss a webcast, it will be posted below under “Watch Our FBEC Meeting Videos”.
We have received many questions and concerns about the $42.1 million in Ministry of Education funding reductions to the TDSB`s budget. Please remember our budget is funded through the provincial government and the decisions approved by the Minister of Education who directs the Ministry of Education to implement the funding reductions. School boards are required by law to balance their budgets. To achieve that balance, the Board must decide where in their budget they will reduce programs, services and staff totaling the shortfall of $67.8 million.
If you have concerns or questions about the Ministry of Education budget reductions, you can also contact the Minister of Education: Hon. Lisa M. Thompson | Minister | 416-325-2600 | email@example.com or contact your local Member of Provincial Parliament. Please note there is speculation that there will be a Cabinet shuffle this week and the Ministers may change.
You can learn more about the proposed program, service and staff reductions in the Questions and Answers from FBEC Meetings listed below.
- Q&As – FBEC Meeting – January 23, 2019
- Q&As – FBEC Meeting – January 30, 2019
- Q&As – FBEC Meeting – March 19, 2019
- Q&As – FBEC Meeting – April 29, 2019
- Q&As – FBEC Meeting – May 13, 2019
- Q&As - Answers to Questions from TDSB Trustees – May 23, 2019
- Q&As – Answers to Questions from TDSB Trustees – May 24, 2019
- Q&As - Answers to Questions from TDSB Trustees - May 27, 2019
- Q&As - Answers to Questions from TDSB Trustees - May 28, 2019
- Q&As – Answers to Questions from TDSB Trustees - May 30, 2019
- Q&As – Answers to Questions from TDSB Trustees - May 31, 2019
- Q&As - Answers to Questions from TDSB Trustees - June 06, 2019
- Q&As - Answers to Questions from TDSB Trustees - June 07, 2019
Jewish Heritage Month
It was my pleasure to accompany several other trustees on Wednesday May 5th. We joined grade 8 TDSB students on a walking tour of Kensington Market in honour of Jewish Heritage Month. We visited Kiever Synagogue and learned of the history and many Jewish traditions. We even encountered a 20th century peddler who taught the students a song that they proceeded to sing as we travelled throughout the streets. Many thanks to all those who help organize such an informative trip back in time.
It was a special night at Valleyfield Junior School on Friday, May 10. The school community came together for Fast Celebrations in honour of Ramadan. The students sang songs and performed skits for an enthusiastic audience. Following the performances there was a feast provided for the families to enjoy. Many thanks to the organizing committee and all the families that contributed the food and beverage donations.
Performance at Hilltop Middle School
On Thursday May 16 I was very excited to visit Hilltop Middle School and to attend a performance of “The Adventures of a Comic Book Artist”. The Gym was full and everyone was treated to great performances featuring laughs, songs and multiple production numbers. Congratulations to Ms. Hanley and Ms. Poulos-Clarke for their direction as well as all the other staff members who generously volunteered their time. The night however belonged to the students, led by performances from Raychel Kaarto, Caitlin Graham, Ibtesam Baloch, Nyima Zagurowska and Elan McMurray. Congratulations to all, you really brought down the house!
Asian Heritage Month at Northview Heights SS
Friday May 17 was a simply a spectacular morning at Northview Heights Secondary School. This was the location of TDSB’s Asian Heritage Month celebrations. The display of talented students was vast and thoroughly entertaining. The vividly colourful costumes added to the tributes of Asian culture. There were singers, dancers, drummers and even a precise martial arts display. It never fails, every time I enter one of our TDSB schools, I am amazed by the students.
Asian Heritage Month at Princess Margret JS
The Asian Heritage Month Committee invited students from Kindergarten to Grade 12 to create the posters that were to be used for the celebrations. Princess Margret Junior School student Cooper Scholsield was honoured as the 3rd place winner from over 120 submissions. Well done Cooper!
Kipling Collegiate Institute Youth Philanthropy Initiative
To give you some background about this event, this is the second year that Kipling Collegiate Institute is enrolled at in the Youth Philanthropy Initiative. All Grade 10 Civics students complete an assignment where they find, conduct research in, and visit a local grassroots charity and deliver a pitch as to why the their chosen charity is in need of a $5,000 grant from the Toskan-Casale Foundation.
This year, over 30 student groups presented their charities; three of 3 went on to finals. The charities competing where: Youth without Shelter, Indspire and TARIC Soup Kitchen.
Members of the winning team – were Akiliya Neil, Abdullahi Mohamed, Althea Shettles-Worth and Alex Servino. Congratulation to all the students who participated but an extra shout out to the winners!
On Monday June 3, 2019, Director Dr. John Malloy and the Vice-Chair, Trustee Chris Moise hosted a Pride flag raising event at 5050 Yonge St. Both gentlemen celebrated the progress that has been made for the LGBTQ community; but the emphasis was on the work that lies ahead to ensure that everyone feels accepted, valued and appreciated for who they are, and that everyone works together to eliminate prejudice of any kind from the TDSB.
Special Night at Bloordale Middle School
June 5 was a special night at Bloordale Middle School. Students put on a great show to the delight of the supporters that filled the Gym. Congratulations to students and staff on the performances that showcased the progress made as a result of considerable practice and perseverance. While I might be dating myself, my personal favourite was a tribute to the “Pink Panther”.
Back to back TDSB Champions
The second year in a row, the girls from Briarcrest Junior School were able to win the TDSB Championship! Congratulations to all members of the team and a big thank you to the coaches. The girls had a big lead early on and were able to withstand a late rally to provide the fans with an exciting finish.
Student and Staff Achievements
The Toronto District School Board is always proud to highlight the achievements of students and staff. Below are a few moments from May 2019:
Donate to York Memorial CI and Jones Ave ALC Fire Relief
On May 7, 2019, York Memorial Collegiate Institute experienced a devastating fire, which resulted in significant damage to the building. This comes a day after fire broke out at the TDSB’s Jones Avenue Adult Learning Centre, which also caused significant damage. Assessments will evaluate the damages resulting from the fires. However, it will take some time to complete these preliminary assessments and to determine how much can be recovered through insurance.
Learn more about how you can donate to support all those impacted by the incident, including staff and students of the two schools and a number of Continuing Education and Safe and Caring Schools programs and administrative staff located in the two buildings, so that they can complete the remaining school year.
Now that the warmer weather has approached us children will be participating in many outdoor activities like bike riding. The Toronto District School Board and Toronto Public Health want kids to be safe while playing outdoors this summer. Parents and caregivers can "stay a step ahead" by protecting children when they ride.
- An adult should always supervise children 10 years of age or younger when they are using a bicycle or other wheeled sports equipment. Even older children may need on-going supervision when riding near the road.
- Make sure children wear the correct helmet properly when they ride. Ontario's bike helmet law requires all children and youth under age 18 to wear an approved bike helmet when riding a bicycle.
- Keep children away from traffic when they use wheeled sports equipment. Make sure they ride in a safe place.
- Teach children how to:
a. steer, brake and ride in a straight line
b. wear the right safety gear, and
c. do a safety check every time they ride a bicycle, scooter, skateboard, use in-line skates or wear shoes with wheels.
- Be within arm's reach when your children are learning to ride any wheeled equipment.
- Always walk a bicycle, scooter or skateboard across a street intersection, instead of riding across.
- Tell children that you are happy when you see them riding safely.
- Remind children of the safety rules when they forget.
- Be a good role model - wear a helmet and safety gear yourself. Children copy what adults do.
Sun Safe Behaviour
Getting students outside and active is good for their health but too much sun can have serious side-effects, including burns, eye damage, premature aging of the skin and skin cancer. We encourage all students to practice “sun safety.”
What exactly does sun safe behaviour look like?
- Cover up: Even on days with a moderate UV index students should wear a hat and sunglasses, especially if they'll be outside for over 30 minutes.
- Stay cool: Students should stay in shady areas, particularly at midday when the sun is strongest.
- Use sunscreen: Choose sunscreens with SPF 15 or higher that include protection from both UVA and UVB rays.
Elementary Summer School
Elementary summer programs increase engagement and build self-confidence in our students. This summer, from July 3 – 26, we are opening schools across the city to help build reading, writing and math skills in our students. Visit www.tdsb.on.ca/summer for a complete list of participating schools. @TDSB_ConEd
Summer High School Credit
This summer, there are three Adult Learning Centres serving adult students and 26 locations for high school students. Reach ahead or make up a credit towards your high school diploma. Registration opens May 6 at 10am. Classes fill up quickly so register early. All classes begin on July 2 and conclude on July 26. Visit www.creditprograms.ca for more information.
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PLEASE HAVE A SAFE AND HAPPY SUMMER!