School Enrolment/School Capacity
Committee of the Whole Board Meeting
June 3, 2013
A meeting of the School Enrolment/School Capacity Committee of the Whole Board was held in the Barry C. O’Connor Board Room at the Limestone District School Board Education Centre, 220 Portsmouth Avenue, Kingston, on Monday, June 3, 2013 at 6:45 p.m.
H. Brown, Chair
B. Milligan, Student Trustee
Ruth Bailey, Accommodation Review Facilitator
Krishna Burra, Supervisor of Safe and Caring Schools and Assistant to the Director
Jane Douglas, Communications Officer
Dave Fowler, Manager of Facility Services
Barb Fraser-Stiff, Superintendent of Education
Tammy Giles, Supervising Principal
Richard Holmes, Supervising Principal
Brenda Hunter, Director of Education
Darlene Kirkpatrick, Recording
Andre Labrie, Superintendent of Human Resources
Norah Marsh, Superintendent of Education
Alison McDonnell, Supervising Principal
Roger Richard, Superintendent of Business Services
Trustee Brown chaired the meeting. She called the meeting to order, welcoming our guests in the gallery, Trustees and staff to the meeting. She reported that regrets were received from Student Trustee Yun.
Approval of Agenda
Trustee Brown advised that an additional unrelated item is to be added to the agenda in Private Session.
MOVED BY Trustee Crawford, seconded by Trustee Beavis, that the agenda, as distributed, be approved.–Carried
Conflict of Interest
No Trustee declared a conflict of interest.
Business Arising from the May 27, 2013 Minutes
Information Related to Brownfields
Ms. Bailey indicated that in front of Trustees is a handout with information relating to brownfields. She said that this report was prepared by Manager Toms, in response to a request from Trustees to provide information about what a brownfield is, all of the regulations that manage brownfields and some of the requirements in relation to them.
Ms. Bailey reviewed the information. She said that brownfields are abandoned, idle, or unused industrial and commercial lands that have been or are perceived to have environmental contamination due to historic activities. She advised that a brownfield site may be as small as a vacant gas station with remaining underground storage tanks, or as large as several hundred acres of abandoned factory space that may have dumped waste on its property during its operation.
Ms. Bailey indicated that Kingston, like many municipalities, has a number of brownfield locations. Often these sites are vacant land and/or abandoned buildings that were located in a City’s core area and were once part of the economic viability of the community.
Ms. Bailey reported that until recently very little has been done to revitalize brownfields. However, the Provincial Government has passed the Brownfields Statutory Law Amendment Act that encourages the revitalization of contaminated land and makes other amendments relating to environmental matters.
Ms. Bailey stated that the City of Kingston is also interested in the remediation of brownfield sites, and as directed by Council, formed a task force to review and develop a strategy for the remediation and redevelopment of brownfield lands. She indicated that due to environmental contamination, or perceived environmental contamination, the redevelopment of brownfield sites can be complicated by added costs, time or add an element of uncertainty to a redevelopment project.
Ms. Bailey stated that currently, brownfields development is occurring in Europe, the United States and other municipalities in Canada with a high level of success. There are great economic benefits for remediating brownfield sites. It often allows development in areas already serviced by roads, water, sewers and other hard service infrastructure.
Ms. Bailey advised that often, brownfield sites are in prime areas of the municipality and would generate higher tax revenue once redeveloped. Brownfield sites that were once considered eyesores within the community would become improved and redeveloped for use by the community, which revitalizes the areas and creates new jobs.
What brownfields are
Brownfields are usually former industrial lands that are now vacant or underused but have the potential to be redeveloped for new uses. Brownfields may be contaminated due to past or present activities. Some examples are:
- Closed factories
- Gas stations
- Waterfront lands formerly used for commercial port operations
Why brownfields can be an environmental concern
Left unmanaged, brownfields may pose risks to the environment and human health because of potential contaminants that may be found in the soil and groundwater as a result of past activities of the site.
Why brownfields redevelopment is good
Redeveloping brownfields is good for the environment. It reuses land to make way for new sustainable communities with houses, offices, schools and recreation centres close to public transportation and other services.
Redeveloping brownfield properties:
- Improves air, water and soil quality
- Curbs urban sprawl
- Protects valuable green spaces and agricultural lands
- Supports local economies by promoting urban intensification
- Encourages efficient reuse of lands, buildings and infrastructure
What Ontario is doing to regulate brownfields redevelopment
Ontario is continually taking action to ensure that brownfield sites are properly redeveloped to meet environmental and health standards, and therefore, can be used for other purposes.
To whom brownfields legislation applies:
The Ministry legislation applies to more than just former industrial properties.
Anyone who wants to change the use of their property should review the requirements under Ontario Regulation 153/04 and Part XV.1 of the Environmental Protection Act (EPA). This legislation specifically defines the property use changes where a “record of site condition” (RSC) is required.
In general, an RSC must be filed when a property’s use is changing from “less sensitive” to “more sensitive.” For example, if a property owner wishes to redevelop a former industrial building into residential properties, the owner must conduct an assessment and file an RSC.
What is a record of site condition (RSC)?
A record of site condition (RSC) is a document that summarizes the environmental condition of a property, as certified by a “Qualified Person”, as of a particular date.
These Qualified Persons are defined within Ontario Regulation 153/04. Before a Record of Site Condition can be filed, the Qualified Person must assess the property and find that any concentration of contaminants meets the soil, sediment and groundwater standards applicable to the proposed use.
The Ministry’s standards are set out in the Soil, Ground Water and Sediment Standards for use under Part XV.1 of the Environmental Protection Act.
A property owner may also develop property-specific standards by preparing a risk assessment. For more information, please read the Ministry’s fact sheet, “Understanding Risk Assessment.”
Ms. Bailey reviewed the information concerning the rezoning of the Cook’s Arena site and the Memorial Centre grounds, as follows:
The change would require an Official Plan Amendment, a Zoning By-Law Amendment and Site Plan Control approval.
The studies we would need to include in our application are:
- The planning rationale for the Official Plan Amendment
- An archeological assessment
- A phase 1 environment site assessment
- A servicing study (most important to work with now due to capacity concerns in both of these areas)
- A storm water management report
- A traffic study
- A noise study
The OPA and ZBA would take four to six months. However, the four to six months does not start until we have put together the complete application (i.e. all of the studies listed above) and presented it to the City.
In response to a question by Trustee Chadwick, Director Hunter advised that the City had indicated that there have not been any environmental assessments on either the Cook’s Arena site or the Memorial Centre grounds.
Trustee Jackson stated that the Board would likely need to get environmental assessments for both the Cook’s Arena site and the Memorial Centre grounds because of the overall issues of brownfields. He indicated that it may take a long time to do the studies required, and suggested that the time lines involved in constructing a new school may be long, as well as noting that construction costs may be substantial. He said that the Cook’s Arena site is a designated area for a brownfield. He said that both the Cook’s Arena and the Memorial Centre sites are complex. He said that he would be wary of becoming involved in a brownfield site.
Trustee Jackson indicated that the properties of the existing schools are likely greenfield sites.
Trustee Murray stated that the potential time lines concern her. She said that her other concern relates to legal ramifications concerning brownfield sites.
Trustee Chadwick commented that consideration be given to the fact that we are looking for a longer-term solution, and if we have to wait another six months or more, it could be a sacrifice worth making.
Trustee Jackson commented that some colleagues are interested in new construction, and indicated that we may be looking at a five-year period before construction could be completed. He said that we are not sure of what our enrolment would be at that time. He said that as we learn more and listen to what is going on, it is becoming clear to him that they may be some transitional aspects with regard to the recommendations that Trustees make.
Update on Implementation of Motion to Engage the City of Kingston Regarding Availability of Memorial Centre Site and Cook’s Arena Site
Director Hunter stated that she had indicated to Trustees that this matter has been placed on City Council’s agenda for Tuesday night.
Trustee Jackson indicated that there is a motion on the City Council agenda asking that the Memorial Centre Site and the Cook’s Arena site not be considered as sites for a new school. He said that the Board’s motion with regard to the availability of the Memorial Centre or Cook’s Arena site for a new elementary and/or secondary school follows a motion from certain City Council members asking that the above-noted sites not be considered. He said that the letter sent by the Director goes on to talk about the advantages of developing the Memorial Centre site, and he believes that Trustees did not authorize staff to forward anything to the City other than the motion that was passed.
Director Hunter stated that when she contacted City staff she was asked if the Board wanted to send a delegation, and when she indicated “no”, the person recommended that the Board forward a letter including the motion passed at the SE/SCC meeting of May 27th, and that information about the context of the motion be included in the letter in lieu of being present for questions. She said that she therefore responded in the way the City had suggested.
Trustee Chadwick stated that she did recall from the last SE/SCC meeting some conversation about how to proceed. She said that the Director was to contact City staff, and that City staff would tell her how to proceed. She said that she believes the way the information was presented was fine. She said that she appreciated that the Director said that we would not be sending a delegation. She indicated that the letter sent, with the background information included, was appropriate.
Trustee Beavis indicated that he agrees with the Director’s approach.
Trustee Murray stated that she appreciated Board staff getting the letter in so quickly so that it could be included in City Council’s agenda for Tuesday, June 4, 2013.
Discussion of Models 2, 4 and 5
Trustee Chadwick stated that she is interested in the methodology of Model 2, indicating that she does not understand the methodology of how the numbers were calculated.
Ms. Bailey stated that many students identified in special programming may take regular program courses as well. She said that when identifying regular program courses, in the Senior Staff Follow-Up Report and the summary report, we were talking about students and programs being able to move from one school to another school, and ensuring that programming was not impacted.
Superintendent Richard stated that it is important to note that in any of the options the Facilitator pointed out, the numbers apply to all options. He said in looking at Models 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 or 7, the same numbers related to regular students would apply to all options. We have been consistent throughout.
Trustee Chadwick stated that it does not apply equally to everyone. She said that some methodology throughout does not reflect that regular program number. She said that she does not know how it was achieved.
Superintendent Labrie stated that we are getting at the nature of building a timetable and flexibility. If a group of students all take a specific course then when they choose other courses they are limited based on the constraint caused by all of them being in the same class together. If the same cohort of students take two classes together, it further increases the likelihood that they will be together in the other options as well.
Trustee French stated that Model 2 talks about enrolment numbers. She said that she is interested in this model because it ties to programming options. She said that we have to look at utilization of buildings, noting that they are low especially for the Calvin Park building. She said that we are looking at options as to where to accommodate students, other than in four buildings. She said that student space has driven the accommodation process.
Trustee Jackson stated that his constituents prefer keeping the Calvin Park Public School students within the LCVI building. He said that the Calvin Park building is not used as a school anymore. He suggested that the Calvin Park building be removed from the mix. He suggested that perhaps Model 2 could be eliminated.
Trustee Ruttan expressed concern with regard to Model 2. She said that Trustees had a discussion around the fear that students currently attending KCVI may not attend LCVI or QECVI if KCVI were closed, and that those two schools may not have full enrolment.
Trustee Jackson indicated that he believes that Model 2 is too restrictive in its offerings.
Student Trustee Milligan spoke to the reasons why he is considering Model 2.
Trustee Chadwick stated that personally she likes Model 2 as an option because she sees it as having students at the QE site.
Trustee French commented on perhaps considering a Model 8 which would have a slightly different configuration of the other models.
Trustee Jackson stated that he has concerns about spending any money on the Calvin Park building at this time because we may not use it for the long term.
Trustee Murray stated that the reality is that we have to wait to find out about potential sites. She suggested that Trustees consider an option A and an option B. She said it would be ideal if option B could be a plan for an intermediate stage, if we receive money for new construction. She suggested that Trustees start deciding on an option A and an option B now, suggesting that option B would be a backup plan. She said that she would like a sense of stability for the system.
Trustee Chadwick indicated that Board staff is already working on something in terms of program needs for students for September 2013. The Director said that Principals are developing common timetables so students could move from one school to another for particular courses.
Trustee Ruttan said that she would like to hear City Council’s decision before making any decisions. She said that she would be interested in introducing a new elementary school into this motion as well. She asked if we could consider a new elementary school being built on this property. She said that we must also consider hub partnerships that Trustees have discussed.
Trustee Jackson stated that he agrees with Trustee Ruttan’s comments that an elementary school is a vital piece of this process with regard to the QECVI site. He commented that the exploration of the QE site as a community hub is one of the attractive features of the QECVI site.
Student Trustee Milligan stated that the commonality of Models 2, 4 and 5 is that they all include the Calvin Park building. He suggested that Trustees discuss the other options that include an intermediate school.
Trustee Chadwick stated that when looking at a new school, Trustees should consider Module Vanier as part of the new school.
Trustee Jackson indicated that Models 2, 4 and 5 have Module Vanier relocating to the first floor of the Calvin Park building. He said that Model 7 refers to a range of ideas as to what that model would encompass. He said that Model 7 allows options for the Calvin Park building.
Trustee French stated that Model 7 offers a way to consolidate programs in a plan that Trustees choose without yet naming buildings to at least consider a structure. She said that the Calvin Park building may not need to be one of the existing buildings. She said that the model shows that regular program secondary students would be in one location, intermediate students would be together, and then Trustees would look at what they want to do, keeping in mind the concept of a community hub. She indicated that Trustees need to consider how they want to structure enrolment numbers, and where as a Board do Trustees want to be offering program. She said the Trustees need to then consider what each building offers us to get to the programming we want to achieve.
Trustee Goodfellow commented that this has not just been about secondary programming; we need to remember the Grade 7 and 8 students.
Trustee Jackson stated that Calvin Park Public School and Module Vanier want to stay where they are. He said that the greenest buildings are the ones still standing. He said that the greenest buildings are based on a life cycle analysis. He reviewed the issues we have to deal with when considering new construction. He said that Trustees need to think about what the Board has.
Trustee Ruttan stated that she is supporting the idea of the Calvin Park building being removed from consideration. She suggested that the Grade 7 and 8 students could be relocated in the elementary schools, or they could be incorporated in a secondary school environment.
Trustee French commented that the RECAPP funding we receive from the Ministry does not support all of the renovations we need to do to provide 21st Century buildings. Our Board strives to provide great services to all of our students. She said that we need to move on from dialogue that we want to save our buildings. We need to come up with the best possible option for students.
Trustee Goodfellow referred to Model 2 and asked if we have enough room in two high schools to keep Calvin Park and Module Vanier students in two secondary schools, which would eliminate the need for the Calvin Park building and eliminate one secondary school.
Ms. Bailey indicated that in looking at utilization in Option 2, there is already an elementary combination in LCVI. She indicated that the Calvin Park building in Option 2 has 180-242 students related to the Module Vanier building scheduled into the Calvin Park building. She said that this likely could be done early in 2017.
Trustee Murray stated that in response to the projected enrolment growth in French, we hope to recommend a French review and to extend French programming in the east end which would absorb the potential growth that we see at that site.
Trustee Brown called a 15-minute recess at 8:15 p.m. The meeting reconvened at 8:30 p.m.
In response to comments by Trustee Chadwick, Superintendent Marsh confirmed that there are currently students housed in the Calvin Park building, namely the Limestone School of Community Education (LSCE). There are two main programs housed in the Calvin Park building, one for those students who are under the age of 21 years (approximately 90 students), and one for those students who are over the age of 21 years (approximately 100 students). These students are working towards achieving an Ontario Secondary School diploma with credit-based courses. Superintendent Marsh stated that there is also a non-credit program. This is comprised of new Canadians – five classrooms of English-as-a-Second language, and a literacy skills course for adults. There are also
programs for children to learn International languages that take place during non-instructional time. She indicated that the International Education office is housed at that site. Superintendent Marsh said that Educational Services has also recently moved into the building.
Trustee Chadwick asked if there was anything unique about the building where space would be facility dependent. Superintendent Marsh said that there was nothing particularly unique about the building, but that it is centrally located which assists with the access of services it provides to the greater community.
In response to a question by Trustee Ruttan, Director Hunter stated that the programs housed at the Calvin Park building do not generate revenue; most of them are cost recovery. She said that the International Program does generate revenue.
Trustee Chadwick stated that the funding for the International Languages Program comes from the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration, in the neighbourhood of $200,000. However, by the time the teachers are paid, etc. any revenue generated would be limited.
Student Trustee Milligan withdrew from the meeting.
RECESS TO PRIVATE SESSION
MOVED BY Trustee Jackson, seconded by Trustee Goodellow, that the School Enrolment/School Capacity Committee of the Whole Board recess at 8:10 p.m. for five minutes to reconvene in Private Session at 8:40 p.m.–Carried
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE BOARD
MOVED BY Trustee French, seconded by Trustee Beavis, that the School Enrolment/School Capacity Committee of the Whole Board resolve itself into a Committee of the Whole Board in Private Session at 8:45 p.m.–Carried
PRIVATE SESSION - ATTENDANCE
H. Chadwick, Chair
Trustee Chadwick provided information about a personnel matter regarding conflict of interest.
MOVED BY Trustee Goodfellow, seconded by Trustee Jackson, that the Committee of the Whole Board resolve itself back into a School Enrolment/School Capacity Committee of the Whole Board in Public Session at 9:10 p.m.–Carried
Future Meeting Dates
The next meeting of the SE/SCC Committee of the Whole Board will be held on Monday, June 10, 2013, at the Limestone Education Centre, 220 Portsmouth Avenue, Kingston, at 6:45 p.m. If needed, an additional meeting will be held June 17, 2013, following the Committee of the Whole Board (Budget) meeting. The meeting will be held at the Limestone Education Centre, 220~Portsmouth Avenue, Kingston.
School Enrolment/School Capacity Committee of the Whole Board to Rise and Report
MOVED BY Trustee Murray, seconded by Trustee Chadwick, that the School Enrolment/School Capacity Committee of the Whole Board rise and report.–Carried
MOVED BY Trustee Goodfellow, seconded by Trustee Ruttan, that the meeting adjourn at 9:15 p.m.–Carried