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March 30, 2009 - School Enrolment/School Capacity Comm. of the Whole Bd. Minutes
School Enrolment/School Capacity Minutes
Committee of the Whole Board Meeting

March 30, 2009
A meeting of the School Enrolment/School Capacity Committee of the Whole Board was held on Monday, March 30, 2009, at Ecole Lundy's Lane School, 57 Lundy's Lane, Kingston, at 6:30 p.m.
Present Trustees:
A. Goodfellow, Chair
G. Beavis
H. Brown
H. Chadwick, Vice-Chair
E. Crawford
L. French
D. Jackson
B. McLaren
P. Murray
Present Staff:
Marg Akey, Supervising Principal
Ruth Bailey, Accommodation Review Facilitator
Jane Douglas, Communications Officer
Barb Fraser-Stiff, Superintendent of Education
Richard Holmes, Supervising Principal
Brenda Hunter, Director of Education
Darlene Kirkpatrick, Recording Secretary
Norah Marsh, Superintendent of Education
Roger Richard, Superintendent of Business Services
Wayne Toms, Manager, ITS
Beth Woodley, Supervising Principal and Executive Assistant     
Chair Goodfellow called the meeting to order, introducing herself.  She welcomed those present to this evening’s meeting of the School Enrolment/School Capacity Committee of the Whole Board.

Chair Goodfellow stated that the purpose of this meeting is to receive input from the public, concerning the report from the Kingston East Program and Accommodation Review Committee, as well as the Senior Staff’s Report.

Chair Goodfellow indicated that the nine Trustees of the Limestone District School Board who are the decision makers in the accommodation process are here tonight to hear from members of the public.

Each Trustee introduced him or herself, advising of the district that he or she represents.

Approval of Agenda

MOVED BY Trustee McLaren, seconded by Trustee French, that the agenda, as distributed, be approved.–Carried

Chair Goodfellow stated that the role of the Trustees this evening is to listen to the public’s input.  She advised that Trustees have received the Kingston East PARC Report, as well as the Senior Staff Report.  She said, however, as a committee, they have not discussed these materials and certainly have not made any decisions.  She commented that as individuals, Trustees have been reviewing the reports informing themselves about the content.

Chair Goodfellow indicated that the Kingston East PARC Report and the Senior Staff Report have been posted on the Board’s web site for some time.  She said that she trusts that members of the public have had an opportunity to read both of them.

Chair Goodfellow indicated that some of the PARC members are present this evening, and she thanked them for their service on this important committee.

Chair Goodfellow stated that the PARC report is very extensive, filling a whole binder.  She indicated that the pages in the handout represent a summary of the work done by the committee and the recommendations.  Chair Goodfellow remarked that the School Enrolment/School Capacity Committee has also received a report from the Senior Staff as per Board policy.  She said that both reports will be reviewed, as well as the input provided this evening.  All of the materials and comments will be considered carefully by the nine Trustees in their decision making.

Chair Goodfellow stated that this evening is the public’s opportunity to speak directly to the Trustees before they begin their deliberations and decision making.  She asked the public not to be offended when the Trustees do not interact with them about their input to the PARC Report and the Senior Staff Report.  She said that the public should be assured that the Trustees will be listening very attentively to the opinions and ideas expressed this evening.  She said that minutes are being taken and the input will be recorded as accurately as possible so that Trustees can refer back to it and review the comments made.  She said that if, when the two reports are examined and all of the input, including from this evening, we find that we need further clarification we will consult the appropriate people.

Chair Goodfellow reported that at the table tonight, as well as the Trustees, are the Director of Education, Brenda Hunter, and the Superintendent of Business, Roger Richard, noting that they are here in their roles as Secretary and Treasurer of the Board, to support the Trustees as needed.  She indicated that the Superintendents, Supervising Principals, and Manager Toms were also in attendance in the audience.  She advised that the Board’s Recording Secretary, Darlene Kirkpatrick, will be taking the minutes of the meeting, including each speaker’s comments.

Chair Goodfellow stated that in the package that was handed out this evening, are:

•       The agenda for this meeting;
•       An outline of the presentation on the accommodation review process;
•       A copy of the protocol for receiving input tonight, which she said that she will review later in the meeting; and
•       A copy of the body of the Kingston East PARC Report and the Senior Staff Report in case anyone would like to reference a particular section when they make their comments.

Overview of Kingston East Accommodation Review Process

Superintendent Richard provided an overview of the Kingston East Accommodation Review Process, as follows:

•       In January 2008, the Limestone District School Board approved the formation of the Kingston East PARC with the mandate to review program and accommodation issues and make recommendations to the Director of Education for the École Lundy’s Lane School and J.E. Horton Public School group of schools.

        Superintendent Richard reported that the formation of the Kingston East PARC came about as a result of the Director of Education’s preliminary report to the Board identifying a school or group of schools in which challenges may be faced in providing a suitable and equitable range of learning opportunities for students, and in respect of which there may be a need to consider the possible consolidation, closure or program relocation in respect of one or more schools.  He indicated that after reviewing the Director’s preliminary report, the Board approved the creation of a PARC in Kingston East to review J.E. Horton Public School and École Lundy’s Lane School.

•       On July 14, 2008, the Ministry of Education gave initial planning approval of $11,173,894 to address facility condition for students in J.E. Horton Public School and  École Lundy’s Lane School for 708 new pupil places.

•       PARC Kingston East held 10 public working meetings between April 21, 2008 and December 9, 2008.

•       PARC Kingston East held four public meetings to present information, respond to questions and receive input from the public.  The meetings were interspersed among working committee meetings.

•       PARC Kingston East initially considered 16 potential options for the schools in the review.

•       The PARC report was finalized by the committee at their working meeting on December 9, 2008 and the final report was presented to the Director of Education on Friday, December 12, 2008.

•       Senior Staff reviewed the PARC report and all of the support materials and submitted a report as per Board policy to the School Enrolment/School Capacity Committee of the Whole (SE/SCC) on Monday, February 2, 2009.

Superintendent Richard reviewed the PARC Process – Timelines/Next Steps.  He said that subsequent to this evening’s meeting, Senior Staff will consider all of the comments made at this meeting, and provide a follow-up report to the Trustees.  He said that the Board will review the PARC report (including all background information and input), Senior Staff’s initial report and Senior Staff’s final report, and all of the comments and input received throughout the accommodation review process.  Superintendent Richard advised that Trustees will review everything, and if they want more information from Senior Staff, they will ask for it.  Once Trustees have considered all of the information, they will make their final decision.   

Superintendent Richard reported that Senior Staff’s follow-up report will go to the April 8, 2009 Board Meeting, and that the Board’s decision regarding the Kingston East PARC could be made as soon as the May 27, 2009 Board Meeting.  However, if the Board feels that it needs more time, this decision may be delayed.  The creation of a School Integration Committee will follow the Board’s decision.

Chair Goodfellow referred to Policy 15 (School Accommodation), section 3.2.0 Board Meeting for Public Input, and read the following paragraph:

“The Board/SE/SCC will hold a meeting for public input no sooner than 30 days after Senior Staff’s report and recommendations are presented to the Board in public session, in order to provide an opportunity for the public to make formal presentations to the Board concerning Senior Staff’s report and the matters that are addressed in it and in the PARC report.  The public meeting will be scheduled at one of the affected schools.”

Chair Goodfellow stated that Trustees value the input from the public, and this evening is the public’s final opportunity to tell the Trustees how they are feeling and to provide input on Senior Staff’s report and the PARC report.  She said that the Trustees will listen very carefully to what is being said.

Chair Goodfellow reviewed the Protocol for Receiving Input at Public Meetings, asking those present to look at the paragraphs numbered 1 to 5 in their package.  She said that we would like to follow these points to ensure that as many speakers as possible have the opportunity to provide input to the Committee and that everyone can hear the comments.

1.      Persons wishing to speak should move to the microphone and the Chair will recognize each speaker consecutively.

2.      Each speaker shall identify him or herself; the school community in which s/he lives or where his/her children attend school; the group or organization, if any, for which he or she serves as spokesperson.

        The Chair indicated that Jane Douglas, the Board’s Communications Officer, will be near the microphone to ensure that names are recorded correctly and to assist those with the sound system if needed.

3.      The Chair will require adherence to a five (5) minute maximum time limit allotted to each speaker.

        The Chair advised that Wayne Toms, the Board’s ITS Manager and Planning Officer, will be tracking the time.  When he indicates that five minutes has passed, the speaker is asked that the microphone be given to the next speaker.

4.      A speaker may address the committee only once during the course of the meeting.

5.      Persons whose comments are not heard due to time constraints or speakers who would like to add to their previously recorded comments may communicate in writing with the PARC Facilitator, Ruth Bailey, within five (5) days, for inclusion of their comments with the input from this meeting.
The Chair indicated that information about how to contact Ruth Bailey, the PARC Facilitator, is listed at the bottom of the protocol page and on the Board’s website.  She said that Mrs. Bailey may be contacted at the Board Office, 220 Portsmouth Avenue, Kingston, K7L 4X4, or by telephone at 613-544-6925, extension 206, or by e-mail at

Public Input

Scheduled Formal Presentation

Ruth Bailey, Accommodation Review Facilitator, indicated that there were no scheduled formal presentations.

Input from the Public

Brian McConnell, J.E. Horton Parent

Mr. McConnell stated that he would like to reiterate two points that he had brought forward previously.  He said that he is concerned that the Greenwood Park site for the new school is not the right site.  He commented that he sees from the report that it would be less costly to build the new school on the Greenwood Park site, rather than the J.E. Horton site, and he said he was not sure if he believes this to be true.

Mr. McConnell advised that he has been involved in construction.  He questioned the quality of the estimates, noting that there could be a plus or minus 30% in accuracy because the estimates for the two options overlap.  He said that he cannot say for certain that the Greenwood Park site is less expensive than the Barriefield site for the new school.

Mr. McConnell commented that the Barriefield site is adjacent to DND property, which has 3.5 acres available.  He said that it may take time to purchase the DND property, but it has been assessed at $263,000 in value.  He said that the Board would still have the ability to built a new school at the Barriefield site while J.E. Horton remains operational.  He said that the new school could be commissioned, and once completed, the students could move in.

Mr. McConnell said that if a new school were built on the Greenwood Park site, the Board may, in two or three decades, be in the same situation as it is now, looking for another piece of property.  He said that in three or four decades, the new school at the Barriefield site could keep functioning while a new school was being built.  He said that information strikes him as being worthwhile to investigate the cost.

Jeff Szumlanski, J.E. Horton Parent

Mr. Szumlanski indicated that he had moved on from the previous speaker’s position.  He further stated that he was assuming that the new school would be built on the Greenwood Park site.

Mr. Szumlanski provided a power point presentation, “Great Schools Aren’t Free”.  He referred to the Kingston EMC February 5, 2009 article “New school proposed in Kingston East” indicating that the cost to build the new school exceeds the amount available from the province.  He said that Director Hunter indicates in the article that “a goal of the design process would be to come up with a school that fits within the parameters of the funding”.  Mr. Szumlanski commented that the grant from the Ministry is $13,307,036 and the cost to the build the new school is $15,076,158, leaving an estimated shortfall of $1,769,122, and a school that is 88% funded.

Mr. Szumlanski stated that in the August 25, 2008 PARC Kingston East Working Committee meeting minutes, in response to a question, “Superintendent Richard explained that $11.27 million is the maximum funding that the Ministry of Education will provide to create 708 new pupil spaces in Kingston East.  The Limestone District School Board could decide to increase that amount from its own funding sources, including reserve funds, sale of existing properties, mortgage financing, etc.”

Mr. Szumlanski referred to Mr. Frank Egan’s (École Lundy’s Lane School) comments regarding energy efficiency benefits of a new building being negated by building two facilities, in the Kingston East PARC November 17, 2008 Working Committee minutes.

Mr. Szumlanski presented information “Comparing Apples to Apples”, as follows:

September 2008

$15,782 per pupil x 708 pupil spaces = $11,173,894

$15,782 per pupil x 788 pupil spaces = $12,436,216 + 4% “greening” = $12,933,665

February 2009

$11,173,894 (708 pupils space) + $1,133,142 (for +80 pupil spaces) = $13,307,036 (788 pupil spaces) divided by 788 pupil spaces = $16,877

$15,782 + 4% “greening” = $16,413 per pupil

Mr. Szumlanski stated that in February 2009, the Limestone District School Board estimated that the total cost to build a new school for 788 pupil spaces would be approximately $15,076,158 (788 pupil spaces, 104.4 sq.ft. per pupil) = $19,132 per pupil = $183 per square foot cost.  He noted that the original estimate was $13,545,584 which is $170 per square foot cost.

The 100% New School

Limestone revised total cost:                   $15,076,158
Ministry revised contribution:          $13,307,036
Deficiency for fully-funded school:             $  1,769,122

The 100% Solution

Limestone estimated total cost:         $15,076,158
Ministry revised contribution:          $13,307,036
Deficiency, full-funded school:         $  1,769,122
Value of J.E. Horton property
   (Contribution from sale)                    $     450,000
Remaining:                                      $  1,319,122

Remaining deficiency                            $  1,319,122

Bus transportation costs (estimated by Board):
Option 1 (1 new school, Barriefield)            $     738,901/year
Option 2 (1 new school, Greenwood Park)       -507,043/year
Savings per year, Transportation                $     231,858/year

$1,319,122/$231,858 = 5.7 years payback (plus one new “large school” cited efficiency savings)
Estimated lifespan of new school: 40 years +

Mr. Szumlanski stated that the LDSB assured the community that there would be no impact to future school construction from the $1,000,000 approved by Trustees to expand the Limestone Education Centre on Portsmouth Avenue.

Mr. Szumlanski referred to Policy 15 (School Accommodation), citing the following:

•       Following the SE/SCC Board meeting for public input, Senior Staff will prepare a report to the Board in which it will report on and respond to the representations made by the public for the next regularly scheduled Board meeting.  Senior Staff may revise its earlier recommendations to the Board.

•       Senior Staff’s follow-up report will include copies of the presentations made by the public during the Board meeting for public input and those received directly, and minutes of the Board meeting for public input.

•       Senior Staff’s follow-up report will be released publicly and posted on the Board’s web site.

Mr. Szumlanski suggested that recommendations 1 and 3 in Senior Staff’s Report of February 2, 2009, be amended to read as follows:

1a)     That the Limestone District School Board build one new school (788 pupil spaces) on the board-owned site in Greenwood Park to address accommodation issues at J.E. Horton Public School and École Lundy’s Lane School with an estimated capital limit of $15,076,158 as estimated by LDSB staff.

1b)     That the LDSB use its own funding sources, including reserve funds, sale of existing properties, mortgage financing, etc. to supplement any additional construction costs incurred above the funding allocation provided to the Board by the Ontario Ministry of Education, subject to the estimated capital limit $15,076,158 recommended by Board staff.

1c)     That the Limestone District School Board initiate the disposal and sale of the J.E. Horton Public School property and building when appropriate, and use the proceeds to defray the full estimated cost of construction of one new school in Kingston East.

In conclusion, Mr. Szumlanski stated that “you don’t get to build the new school twice.  Fund the building to 100%.”
Kevin Masterson, École Lundy’s Lane Parent and Mayor of Fort Henry Heights Council

Mr. Masterson referred to recommendation 4, on page 6 “That the Limestone District School Board terminate the lease with DND for the Lundy’s Lane property and building when appropriate.”  He asked when the new school would actually be built, and when École Lundy’s Lane School and J.E. Horton Public School could close.

Superintendent Richard stated that although he does not know what the Board’s decision will be in the end, once the Board receives all of the data and makes its decision, a School Integration Committee would be created to look at the whole design process.  He said that this would take time.  The School Integration Committee will work with the Principal of the school, the School Council and Facility Services staff to get input from a variety of different sources.  He said that we also need to see how quickly approvals are received.  He said that in a perfect process, the new school would be ready for September 2011, but it could actually be September 2012.

Monique Anderson, J.H. Horton Parent

Monique Anderson said that she had spoken at other meetings, and the direction the Board is heading is not what she had hoped.  She commented that she believes the J.E. Horton site is the optimal site.  She stated that she believes that the new school should be in a more central area, and she also believes that the J.E. Horton site is that site.

Ms. Anderson stated that she sees the number of pupil spaces has increased, and she thinks that figure will increase again.  She said that some people in the Greenwood Park area might choose to send the children who currently attend school in the separate system, to the public system.  She said that she is a proponent of small schools, saying that they have phenomenal benefits.  She commented that she feels small schools are very important, saying they are of value, and it is something we should not overlook in decades down the line.

Ms. Anderson expressed concern if the number of students increased.  She said that she knows there will be portables at the new school to accommodate students when it is first built.  She expressed concern that there may be more portables than what is anticipated right now.

In response to a question asking if planning and heritage costs have been taken into consideration for the J.E. Horton site, Director Hunter replied “yes”.

Trustee Jackson asked Ms. Anderson if the value of the school justified the higher costs associated with the heritage designation.

Ms. Anderson said that she believes building on the J.E. Horton site was worth the extra costs.

Chair Goodfellow thanked the public for their comments, noting that the information has been recorded and it will be considered when Trustees review all of the materials.  She said that no decision has been made at this point in time.

Chair Goodfellow stated that Trustees will consider every piece of material that has been presented during its deliberations.

The Chair thanked those present for attending this evening’s meeting, and for providing valuable input to the Committee.

Committee of the Whole Board to Rise and Report

MOVED BY Trustee Chadwick, seconded by Trustee Brown, that the Committee of the Whole Board rise and report.–Carried

MOVED BY Trustee Beavis, seconded by Trustee McLaren, that the meeting adjourn at 7:00 p.m.–Carried