It was wonderful to re-join my colleagues on the Edmonton Public School Board as we held our first meeting of the 2018-2019 year.
As an organization board meeting, it was short and efficient! Our Board elected by acclamation, Chair Michelle Draper, and Vice-Chair Bridget Stirling.
I’m thrilled that our Board has also created a Mental Health Committee to focus on issues of advocacy for the mental health needs of our students and families, with a particular focus of increased funding for accredited mental health professionals providing services in schools. This arose out of a motion I put forward last year, which was approved unanimously by the board.
I also submitted two Requests for Information:
The nature of school consolidation projects undertaken by the District has been evolving, with a current focus on modernized and/or replacement schools. This has resulted in extensive engagement throughout the process of potential school consolidation projects and in certain cases, requests to the Minister of Education for exemption to sections of the Closure of Schools Regulation.
Please provide an outline for a series of steps for school consolidation/school closure considerations, including a timeline for public engagement, and requests for information such as a community impact statement from the City of Edmonton. As well, an outline for reports and recommendations to come before the Board of Trustees in the form of Capital Plan items and amendments, and school closure motions required by the School Act.
Edmonton Public Schools values partnerships with community at the school level, advocates for schools as community hubs, and recognizes the importance of childcare to many families. Many daycares, out-of-school care centres and preschools share space within Edmonton Public Schools.
- How does the district manage relationships and leases with childcare organizations?
- If a school no longer has space to accommodate a childcare organization, how does the District ensure that partnerships are to be ended in a mutually beneficial way?
- Is there a minimum required notice to end a lease agreement with a childcare organization?
I’m looking forward to our next board meeting which will see a longer agenda and more to blog about.