Education/Human Resources Committee
November 21, 2007
A meeting of the Education/Human Resources Committee was held at the Teachers’ Resource Centre, Duncan McArthur Hall, Queen’s University, on Wednesday, November 21, 2007, at 4:30 p.m.
H. Brown, Chair
A. Goodfellow, Ex-Officio
A. Labrie, Superintendent of Human Resources
P. Warren-Chaplin, Superintendent of Education
D. Kirkpatrick, Recording Secretary
Chair Brown thanked Donna Lynch, Librarian at the Teachers’ Resource Centre at Queen’s Universi
ty, for conducting a tour of the facility. She welcomed those present to the meeting and called the meeting to order.
Approval of Agenda
The Chair advised that Trustee Jackson would be bringing a resolution forward under Item 3, Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre. She said that he is also bringing a Notice of Motion forward regarding the Ministry of Education Aboriginal Education Funding for the fiscal year ending August 31, 2008.
The Chair advised that Item 6, Healthy Choices – Cafeterias is to be deferred to the January meeting.
The Chair advised that Superintendent Labrie, on behalf of Manager Toms, ITS Department, will be providing an update regarding the Board’s corporate website.
MOVED BY Trustee Goodfellow, that the agenda, as amended, be adopted.–Carried
Presentation – Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre
Chair Brown called on Jennifer Garofalo, a parent whose children attend Polson Park Public School, to come forward to address the Committee.
Jennifer Garofalo thanked the Committee for allowing the delegation concerning the Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre, to address the Committee at this afternoon’s meeting. She provided a brief history, noting that Polson Park School opened in the late 1950s and 15 years later the Correctional Service of Canada opened the Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre. She said that the Portsmouth Centre is classified as a minimum security level 1, the same classification as Frontenac Institution. It is not a halfway house. In the 1970s and 1980s, the community accepted the responsibility of working together with CSC to be an integral part in reintegrating low risk offenders. In 1991, CSC wanted to expand the Portsmouth Centre and it was made apparent that it was to accommodate the rising numbers of sex offenders
who were being paroled. Ms. Garofalo said that high risk sex offenders were being rejected by the private halfway houses for the obvious reasons, and advised that with this knowledge, residents from both Polson Park and Calvin Park stated their grave concerns to CSC at a public meeting. Also, Kingston City Council pleaded with the government to stop the expansion of the facility for the sake of the children in the surrounding area. Ms. Garofalo said that the community felt that CSC was asking too much, and 16 years later the community still disputes CSC. She commented that the latest placement of child molester, Christopher Goodwin, caused outrage and alarm. She further commented that Nic Gravonic, retired parole officer, and Mike Finn, retired police officer, were also dismayed at the actions of CSC. Ms. Garofalo advised that this afternoon’s delegation has had the pleasure of receiving support from Mr. Gravonic and Mr. Finn who both dedicated their careers and lives
to keeping our community safe. Both of these professionals live in Calvin Park and both understand the function of the Portsmouth Centre. She said that their concern for the children at Polson Park and the other schools in the area has prompted them to be vocal as they have first hand knowledge of CSC.
Ms. Garofalo said that the purpose of this delegation is to focus on the types of high risk repeat sex offenders, in particular pedophiles and child molesters, who reside at the Portsmouth Centre. The National Parole Board puts specific restrictions as to where this type of offender cannot attend, for example, a park, a school yard, a place where children frequent. Placing this type of offender at the Portsmouth Centre ignores these restrictions and places our children in harm’s way. The Correctional Service of Canada Research Division provides information to support our claim. Specific strategies have been designed to help the sex offender reintegrate and rehabilitate more successfully. Relapse prevention uses several procedures for self-management and avoiding relapse. One procedure is the avoidance and escape
strategy. Avoidance strategies control the offender’s external environment. To quote directly from CSC's research, “A pedophile, for example, should not reside in direct proximity to a school yard or playground. Expedient execution of escape strategies is paramount, as the offender in a high risk situation is akin to being in a room with a ticking time bomb." The sight of children can act as a trigger for pedophiles and child molesters.
Ms. Garofalo advised that in 2005/2006 there were 52 walk-aways from the Portsmouth Centre, and as of today, the Centre has eight high-risk sex offenders residing there, out of the 30 available beds.
Ms. Garofalo commented that her oldest son is in grade 5 at Polson Park, and every year he has been subjected to memorandums alerting of high-risk pedophiles residing at the Portsmouth Centre. She said that as her son was able to read, and this information was put in his agenda with a picture of the offender where he could see it, it prompted him to ask several questions, some of which her husband and she felt he was not psychologically ready. She stated that she understand that these community notifications are not intended to create fear, but rather inform parents of potential dangers so they can make appropriate decisions; however, for the children it is a stress to which they should not be subjected
Ms. Garofalo remarked that the delegation is present to ask for the Board’s support once again. She said that Trustee Jackson's motion would help to ensure that the children have a voice. The Correctional Service of Canada needs to be pressured to move the high-risk offenders to a different location for reasons of public safety, and to follow their own mandate. She remarked that the fact that there are only three of these Community Correctional Centres in Ontario is no excuse to place high-risk sex offenders, such as Mr. Goodwin, so close to children. She said that it baffles our delegation that this continues to happen. Ms. Garofalo said that the Board’s support in being a participant in the relocation of the Portsmouth Centre is essential.
Mr. Gravonic advised that he had written editorials to The Kingston Whig-Standard expressing his frustration with regard to this situation concerning the Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre. He provided information and profiles about some of the offenders who have been located at the Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre, whom he referred to as “garbage” several times, noting that offenders from the Peel and Hamilton Community Correctional Centres have been sent to the Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre.
Mr. Gravonic commented on one community correctional centre being closed and turned over to an outside agency, noting that after about two weeks, and numerous incidents, it was closed.
Mr. Gravonic commented on the Community Assessment Team, suggesting that representatives of the Limestone District School Board and the City of Kingston Council be part of the Community Assessment Team so that their issues and concerns can be known.
Mr. Finn stated that he retired from the Kingston Police Force 22 years ago, and reported that Gerry Doherty, Kingston City Police, is now involved in keeping track of the individuals released to the Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre.
Trustee McLaren stated that she had some grave concerns about this issue based on her 10 years’ experience as a citizen escort with Corrections Canada. She noted that her training included information that indicated the real danger with regard to offenders exists with those whose warrants have expired. These individuals have sometimes refused treatment or support programs and have not had the benefit of being slowly integrated into society by living in a minimum security facility or a half-way house, and could be living next door to any one of us.
Ms. Garofalo stated that the delegation’s only concern at this point was with the offenders at the Portsmouth facility because of their close proximity to the school.
Chair Goodfellow advised that the Board has been in contact with Nancy Stableforth, Correctional Services Canada, regarding the Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre, numerous times over the last number of years.
Ms. Garofalo stated that she believes that The Honourable Stockwell Day is the person to whom concerns should be made known.
Trustee Murray stated that the issue is the type of offender located in the Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre being placed so close to schools and the park. She commended members of the delegation for their persistence in dealing with this matter.
MOVED BY Trustee Jackson, seconded by Trustee Murray, that the Secretary of the Limestone District School Board be directed to write a letter to The Honourable Stockwell Day, Minister of Public Safety and Correctional Service Canada, requesting the following action with respect to the operation and placement of the Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre:
1. That the Limestone District School Board be included in all communications between Correctional Service Canada and the Corporation of the City of Kingston with respect to both the placement of high-risk offenders to children in the Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre and the relocation of the Centre; and
2. That a Senior Staff representative or a Trustee of the Limestone District School Board be invited to all meetings between the Corporation of the City of Kingston and Correctional Service Canada with respect to both the placement of offenders of high risk to children in the Portsmouth Community Correctional Centre and the relocation of the Centre.
Trustees Goodfellow and Chadwick indicated that they would meet with The Honourable Peter Milliken, MPP, Kingston and The Islands, and Speaker of the House of Commons, to discuss this matter. As well, other Trustees who are available are also invited to attend the meeting.
Chair Brown thanked Ms. Garofalo, and Messrs. Gravonic and Finn for their comments.
School Effectiveness Framework
Superintendent Warren-Chaplin shared the good news that transpired within the LDSB regarding the School Effectiveness Framework. She reported that a new process has been developed by the Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat. She said that the Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat was created in 2004, and its role was to work on school improvement overall. She stated that the Board and schools moved forward with the Turn-Around Project, and the OFIP Project was the outgrowth of Turn-Around which the Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat undertook. Superintendent Warren-Chaplin said that the Board is moving forward, building on its exemplary practices, and OFIP continues. As a result, a framework was developed for schools that looks at sharing with teachers and federations school improvement to help all of our schools become better.
Superintendent Warren-Chaplin said that the schools are excited about the extra support they are going to have.
Superintendent Warren-Chaplin reviewed the following information:
Setting the Context
• Momentum for improvement exists in Ontario.
• Boards and schools are ready to move to a new level of accountability.
• A key priority for The Secretariat has been to build internal capacity within boards and schools.
• The framework that has been developed by the Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat is based on a philosophy of shared commitment and collegiality.
• Implementation of a self-assessment process means improving our schools without externally imposed accountability measures.
Rationale for the Framework
The key purposes are to:
• Build board and school capacity in diagnosing strengths, areas that require attention and next steps;
• Foster introspection, reflection and analysis;
• Lead to better improvement planning with precision and intentionality;
• Act as a catalyst for collaborative and collegial conversations about improvement from within;
• Implement high yield research-based strategies;
• Determine the monitoring and feedback strategies necessary for improvement and accountability;
• Provide a forum for consensus building and school improvement;
• Develop deeper understanding of the unique improvement needs of schools; and
• Communicate, celebrate, and continue to build public confidence around school effectiveness.
Design of Framework
• Intended to provide indicators for critical analysis of key components of school effectiveness;
• To be used for School Self-Evaluation Process and District Review Process;
• Based on Literature on what makes effective schools;
• Nine components have been identified.
School Effectiveness Framework
The Essential Components:
• Student learning and achievement
• Instructional leadership
• Assessment and evaluation
• Curriculum and Instructional Strategies
The Locally Selected Components:
• Mission, Vision and Values
• School Culture
• Interpersonal Relationships
• Home, school, Community Outreach and Partnerships
• Student Leadership and Engagement
• Other (based on locally identified priority)
Superintendent Warren-Chaplin reviewed the framework, its components and how they contribute to equity of student outcomes, as well as the Responsibilities of the School Improvement Team, and the School Self-Assessment Process.
Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat Staff:
• Student Achievement Officers
• LNS Field Team Lead
• Supervisory Officers
• Seconded Elementary Principal
• Program Team
• Educational Support Staff
• School Councils
District Review Process
• Pre-meeting – Review of data and progress from School Self- Evaluation
• Phase 2 – Determine Scope of the Review
• Phase 3 – The Visit
• Phase 4 – Feedback to Staff
• Phase 5 – Sharpen the focus of SIP and Build Capacity
• Phase 6 – Assist school in evaluating progress, communication results and revising SIP
• Phase 7 – Identify trends and patterns to inform board improvement planning and capacity building
Key principles for engagement:
• Focused on continuous improvement in student achievement
• Collaborative, collegial and respectful
• Open, honest, and transparent
• Reflective, self-critical and growth-promoting
• Resulting in capacity building and acquisition of new knowledge and skills; and
• A basis for dialogue and inquiry
Not an Evaluative Tool:
• It is essentially about schools that are ready to learn from observation, analysis, reflection and feedback
Support for Schools
• OFIP 1 and 2 has provided support in terms of time and professional learning for staff within the following OFIP 1 and 2 schools
• OFIP 1: Frontenac, J.G. Simcoe and First Avenue Public Schools
• OFIP 2: Odessa and Prince Charles Public Schools
*Plans for the use of the OFIP days are to be submitted to Tiffany Mountenay for approval prior to use of those days.
School Effectiveness Lead: Tammy Giles
• OFIP 3 Schools – Some support from OFIP 3 plus some support from School Effectiveness
• All K- 6 schools will receive some Professional Learning Opportunity days based on a formula and the number of K-6 teachers
*Plans for the use of the School Effectiveness days are to be submitted to Tammy Giles for approval prior to use of those days.
• Intermediate schools will receive some additional funding for school improvement professional learning opportunities.
*Plans for the use of the Improvement Planning days are to be submitted to Pat Warren-Chaplin for approval prior to use of those days.
**All schools will receive individual communications with the specific number of days for their sites.
The Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat has provided two funding envelopes:
• $150,000 to hire a school leader (either a supervisory officer or principal) and to establish the process for undertaking the School Effectiveness Framework Review in every school in the system;
• $110,000 for Professional Learning Opportunities to assist teachers in developing the necessary skills and knowledge to ensure ongoing school improvement.
• Self-knowledge and self-efficacy are as important for schools as they are for individuals;
• Reflective, self-critical schools are better schools for teachers and students;
• Share understanding ... provides the basis for dialogue;
• Tools of self-evaluation, built into the day-to-day life of the school, improve the quality of teaching and learning, schools ethos and leadership.
... (Riley and MacBeath 2000, p.1)
Chair Brown thanked Superintendent Warren-Chaplin for providing information about the School Effectiveness Framework.
Elementary Board Improvement Plan
Superintendent Warren-Chaplin distributed copies of the Limestone District School Board Improvement Plan Report, 2007-2008 School Year, October 30, 2007 (Updated Draft), Elementary Level, providing the following information:
Goal of Alignment
Beliefs and understandings
Mission, core values and resources
Leadership and coordination
Leadership and coordination
Standards and targets
Standards and targets
Monitoring and assessment
Monitoring and assessment
Classroom teaching strategies
School improvement strategies
Professional learning communities
School and classroom organization
System structures and processes
Student intervention and special assistance
School intervention and support programs
Home, school and community partnerships
Superintendent Warren-Chaplin said that in developing the Board Improvement Plan, we looked at our EQAO results. She reviewed the LDSB Grade 3 and LDSB Grade 6 Results Over Time.
Superintendent Warren-Chaplin reviewed the following information:
Board Improvement Plan Provides:
• System Expectations
• Key Strategies
• Indicators for Success
• Planned Actions, Timelines and Monitoring
A) There will be at least a 5 percent increase in the number of students achieving level 3 and above in reading and writing on the provincial Primary Assessment and every effort to move toward the provincial target of 75%.
B) At least 5 percent increase in the number of students in the grade 6 Junior Assessment achieving at level 3 and above in reading and writing at the end of the 2007-08 school year and every effort to move toward the provincial target of 75%.
• Focused attention to literacy through implementation of an uninterrupted literacy block;
• Implementation of Common Assessment Tools in the Primary, Junior and Intermediate Division;
• Continue implementation of the reading, writing and oral language components of the First Steps Teacher Resource in all classrooms;
• Implement the curriculum direction outlined in the Board’s Balanced Literacy document in every classroom and build lateral capacity;
• Implement the initiatives associated with the Ministry Early Reading Strategy and with Junior Teachers based on the Expert Panel and Junior Literacy Ministry Regional Training with continued focus on the Elements of a Comprehensive Balanced Literacy Program including Shared Reading, Guided Reading, Read Alouds, Independent Reading and providing the Reading/Writing Connections, Grades 1-6. There will be a strong focus on the Junior Division;
• Intensive Grades 1-6 Tutoring through Tutors in the Classroom will be provided to schools based on the availability of tutors.
• Continue the early identification of struggling readers SK to 3 with an increased focus on SK and Grade 1 students by classroom teachers in order to identify supports required to assist these learners;
• Continue to implement the “Right to Read” After-School Program focused on struggling learners (Levels 1 and 2) in Grades 3-6.
• Students in SK to Grade 6 wil have the opportunity to attend two week Summer Reading Programs;
• Students in grades 7 and 8 will have the opportunity to attend two week Summer Literacy Programs;
• Parents of students in SK to grade 2 will be provided with the opportunity to take a four session course to increase their knowledge about how to assist at home with reading;
• School Improvement Teams will set ambitious targets in alignment with the Board targets based on data to improve student achievement in schools;
• All teachers will work toward the establishment of an environment for independent assessment at regular intervals;
• Teachers will use the type of assessment items on the EQAO primary and junior test with exemplars as models for develop assessment tasks;
• Teachers of grade 3 and 6 classrooms will incorporate the sample EQAO assessment units into the year plan;
• Teachers in Core and Immersion programs will continue to receive in-service on Shared Reading and Read Alouds;
• As part of the Education For All Board Direction, teachers shall Differentiate programs for all students within their classrooms;
• Monitoring of Student Progress toward achievement of targets.
• In writing tasks, there will be an overall increase of 5 percent with every effort to move toward the provincial target of 75% on both Primary and Junior EQAO Assessments in the number of students performing at or above the provincial standard.
• Through ongoing in-service sessions, staff will receive additional strategies to assist with enhanced writing instruction focused on the Reading/Writing connection;
• Implement the curriculum direction outlined in the Board’s Curriculum Direction on Balanced Literacy with specific attention to Write Alouds, Modeled Writing, and Shared Writing and the Reading/Writing Connection.
A) There will be at least a 5 percent point increase in the number of students achieving at level 3 and above in mathematics on the provincial Primary Assessment by the end of 2007-08 school year and every effort to move toward the provincial target of 75%.
B) There will be at least a 5 percent point increase in the number of students achieving at level 3 and above in mathematics on the Junior Assessment by the end of 2007-08 school year and every effort to move toward the provincial target of 75%.
• Continue to implement the initiatives associated with the Ministry Early Math Strategy project and develop the focus on Mathematical Literacy;
• Continue to implement the clear curriculum direction focused on balanced mathematics program in every classroom;
• Provide ongoing in-service sessions to Junior Teachers on Teaching and Learning Mathematics. The Report of the Expert Panel on Mathematics in Grades 4 to 6 and the Technical Guides (upon release);
• Provide in-service sessions for Junior Teachers and implement initiatives related to the Junior Numeracy Ministry Regional training and focus on the use of Manipulatives in Mathematics Instruction;
• Parents of students in SK to Grade 2 will be provided with the opportunity to take a four-session course to increase their knowledge about how to assist with mathematics;
• All Grade 7 and 8 math teachers will be provided with opportunities to collaborate and share effective practices related to the TIPS4RM and Notable Strategy resource.
• Schools will begin the implementation of uninterrupted Mathematical Literacy/Numeracy Blocks.
• Provide teachers with the manipulatives needed to provide quality math programs.
• Develop instructional Leadership Capacity.
Alignment of Plans
• The Board Improvement Plan provides the provincial and system expectations for improvement planning.
• The Ontario Focused Intervention Partnership Plan supports the Board Improvement Plan.
• The School Effectiveness Framework Plan links to both plans and provides the opportunity for self-reflection on the part of both the school and the system.
The Chair thanked Superintendent Warren-Chaplin for providing information about the Elementary Board Improvement Plan.
Trustee Goodfellow withdrew from the meeting.
Board Corporate Website
Superintendent Labrie, on behalf of Manager Toms, ITS Department, provided an update with regard to the Board’s corporate website. He advised that the Request for Proposal (RFP) has been distributed. He said that the new website should be ready in late January or February. All departments are currently working on their part of the website.
In response to a question from Trustee Jackson, Superintendent Labrie stated that he would find out where the RFP is found on the Board’s website.
Notice of Motion – Aboriginal Education Initiative
Trustee Jackson served the following Notice of Motion:
MOVED BY Trustee Jackson, seconded by Trustee ______________, that the Limestone District School Board take the following action with respect to Ministry of Education Aboriginal Education funding for the fiscal year ending August 31, 2008:
1. That the Limestone District School Board allocate up to $15,000.00 for individual supportive programming for Aboriginal students; and
2. That the Limestone District School Board develop a consultation process in collaboration with First Nations, Metis organizations and urban Aboriginal groups located in the areas served by the Board. These groups would include the Kingston Aboriginal Community Information Network (KACIN), the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, the Algonquin First Nations located in and north of Sharbot Lake, the Metis Nation of Ontario, the Katarokwi Native Friendship Centre, Kagita Mikam (Aboriginal Employment and Trianing) and the Geaganano Residence at Hotel Dieu.
Chair Brown thanked Committee members for their support and participation over the past year, noting that she appreciated them bringing forward any suggestions of topics they wanted placed on the Education/Human Resources Committee agenda.
Next Meeting Date
The next meeting of the Education/Human Resources Committee is scheduled for Wednesday, January 23, 2008, at 4:30 p.m.
MOVED BY Trustee Beavis, that the meeting adjourn at 6:20 p.m.–Carried