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WCDSB Board Meeting Bulletin — December, 2018

Meetings

Inaugural Meeting of the Board of Trustees

Highlights

New Board of Trustees, Chair & Vice-Chair

On December 3, 2018 the Board of Trustees of the Waterloo Catholic District School Board elected Cambridge / North Dumfries Trustee Bill Conway as Chair of the Board, and Waterloo / Woolwich / Wellesley Trustee Melanie Van Alphen as Vice-Chair of the Board.

Most recently Vice-Chair of the Board, Trustee Conway succeeds Cambridge / North Dumfries Trustee Wendy Price, who remains as a Trustee.

The Inaugural Board Meeting was preceded by a special Mass, celebrated by the Most Rev. Douglas Crosby, O.M.I, Bishop of Hamilton. The Mass featured a special Commissioning Ceremony of members of the Board of Trustees, who were elected in the October 2018 municipal elections.

As part of the ceremony, the Board warmly welcomed first-time Trustees Kevin Dupuis and Tracey Weiler, both of whom represent Kitchener / Wilmot.

The new Board of Trustees is comprised of the following representatives:

Bill Conway (Cambridge / North Dumfries)

Manuel da Silva (Cambridge / North Dumfries)

Kevin Dupuis (Kitchener / Wilmot) **

Jeanne Gravelle (Waterloo / Wellesley / Woolwich)

Wendy Price (Cambridge / North Dumfries)

Greg Reitzel (Kitchener / Wilmot)

Brian Schmalz (Kitchener / Wilmot)

Melanie Van Alphen (Waterloo / Wellesley / Woolwich)

Tracey Weiler (Kitchener / Wilmot) **

Meghan Nemeth and Izabella Tyc are the Student Trustees.

**  =  first elected in 2018 election

At the December 10th Public Board Meeting, newly-elected Board Chair Bill Conway presented his first Chair’s Report. The report is available on page 33 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Director of Education’s Annual Report

The Multi-Year Strategic Plan provides the road map for the staff of Waterloo Catholic District School Board and proclaims to the broader community our goals and aspirations. Per Section 283(3) of the Education Act the Director of Education must submit an Annual Report at the first Board meeting of December of each year reporting on the progress of the Board against the stated goals. As was reflected when the June 2018 Report Card brought to board on the Multi-Year Strategic Plan 2015-2018, there has been strong progress against all nine of our strategic directions, within our three priority areas.

The report takes a primarily electronic format this year – which is to say, while there will be a limited number of hard copy versions of the report, the primary design was intended for web presentation, and the hope is that the points of celebration will be seen equally strongly in word and picture.

We are tremendously proud of the accomplishments of our staff and students, and the vibrant connection that exists between home, parish and school.

Please visit https://annual.wcdsb.ca/ to view the report.

New Multi-Year Strategic Plan

The Education Act requires school boards to develop multi-year plans that are 3 years or more in scope. The multi-year plan provides focus and direction to the board to achieve both the Ministry of Education goals but just as importantly, the vision of the board.

The province has clearly identified its aspiration that Ontario’s educators will be supported in learning continuously and will be recognized as among the best in the world.  The Waterloo Catholic District School Board’s Multi-Year Strategic Plan has endeavored to be faithful to these articulated priorities, as well to our Catholic Graduate Expectations and the principles of our Catholic Social Teachings.

The current three-year Multi-Year Strategic Plan (MYSP), approved in December of 2015, concludes at the end of December 2018. In the spring of 2018 a system survey took place to both inform the report card on the current plan and to inform direction for the next iteration of the MYSP.

The new plan continues to be anchored by the role our faith plays in all our experiences in our Catholic schools, our vision for equity and inclusion, the focus areas of graduation rates, numeracy achievement in grade 6 and 9 and secondary literacy achievement, as well as fostering and celebrating our strong culture of innovation.

For a summary of the 2018-2022 MYSP, please see pages 27-32 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Equity Action Plan

In Waterloo Region’s Catholic Schools our Equity, Diversity and Learning (EDL) Committee has set a goal of building educator capacity to serve all students and assist in removing identified barriers to success.  In our Catholic context, we employ a lens of liberation theology with a strong emphasis on the social teaching of preferential option for the poor.  Simply stated, this involves empowering students and their families to advocate for change so that they may not just survive but thrive in our school communities.  Additionally, we have committed to supporting our school administrators and educators in understanding and working to remove barriers that exist for students in accessing their learning.

Throughout this school year, we are following the Ontario Education Equity Action Plan’s key priorities in four areas:

  • School and classroom practices
  • Leadership, governance and human resource practices
  • Data collection, integration and reporting
  • Organizational culture change

The report is available on pages 21-24 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Upcoming Board Meetings

Committee of the Whole Board Meeting

Monday, January 14, 2018

Regular Public Board Meeting

Monday, January 21, 2018

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board, representing more than 96,000 Catholic school supporters, operates 49 schools and four adult education facilities, serving more than 40,000 elementary, secondary and continuing education students in Waterloo Region – continuing a 182-year tradition of quality, inclusive, faith-based education. Follow us on Twitter: @WCDSBNewswire – #WCDSBAwesome.

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 For more information, please contact:

John Shewchuk – Chief Managing Officer | (519) 578-3660 | john.shewchuk@wcdsb.ca

2018-12-11T14:39:36+00:00December 11th, 2018|

Board Meeting Agenda for December 10, 2018

Regular monthly Board and Committee of the Whole Board meetings of the Waterloo Catholic District School Board’s elected Board of Trustees are open to the public, and members of the public are always welcome to attend.

Please CLICK HERE to view the agenda for the December 10, 2018 Regular Public Board Meeting.

Please CLICK HERE to visit the Board of Trustees page on our website.

Please CLICK HERE for the Waterloo Region Catholic Education Centre’s location information.

Meetings generally adhere to the following schedule:

Committee of the Whole
Second Monday of each month at 6:00 p.m.

Regular Board Meeting
Fourth Monday of each month at 6:00 p.m.

Special Education Advisory Committee
First Wednesday of each month at 6:30 p.m.

Delegations wishing to address a committee or the Board are required to e-mail alice.figueiredo@wcdsb.ca by the Wednesday prior to the meeting. Each delegation will be allowed ten minutes.

2018-12-06T15:30:33+00:00December 6th, 2018|

New Catholic Board of Trustees Elects Chair & Vice Chair

The Board of Trustees of the Waterloo Catholic District School Board has elected Cambridge / North Dumfries Trustee Bill Conway as Chair of the Board, and Waterloo / Woolwich / Wellesley Trustee Melanie Van Alphen as Vice-Chair of the Board. The meeting was held Monday, December 3, 2018 at the Waterloo Region Catholic Education Centre.

Most recently Vice-Chair of the Board, Trustee Conway succeeds Cambridge / North Dumfries Trustee Wendy Price, who remains as a Trustee.

The Inaugural Board Meeting was preceded by a special Mass, celebrated by the Most Rev. Douglas Crosby, O.M.I, Bishop of Hamilton. The Mass featured a special Commissioning Ceremony of members of the Board of Trustees, who were elected in the October 2018 municipal elections.

As part of the ceremony, the Board warmly welcomed first-time Trustees Kevin Dupuis and Tracey Weiler, both of whom represent Kitchener / Wilmot.

The new Board of Trustees is comprised of the following representatives:

Bill Conway (Cambridge / North Dumfries)

Manuel da Silva (Cambridge / North Dumfries)

Kevin Dupuis (Kitchener / Wilmot) **

Jeanne Gravelle (Waterloo / Wellesley / Woolwich)

Wendy Price (Cambridge / North Dumfries)

Greg Reitzel (Kitchener / Wilmot)

Brian Schmalz (Kitchener / Wilmot)

Melanie Van Alphen (Waterloo / Wellesley / Woolwich)

Tracey Weiler (Kitchener / Wilmot) **

Meghan Nemeth and Izabella Tyc are the Student Trustees.

**  =  first elected in 2018 election

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board, representing more than 96,000 Catholic school supporters, operates 49 schools and four adult education facilities, serving more than 40,000 elementary, secondary and continuing education students in Waterloo Region – continuing a 182-year tradition of quality, inclusive, faith-based education. Follow us on Twitter: @WCDSBNewswire – #WCDSBAwesome.

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For more information, please contact:

John Shewchuk – Chief Managing Officer | (519) 578-3660 | john.shewchuk@wcdsb.ca

 

 

2018-12-04T10:20:16+00:00December 4th, 2018|

WCDSB Board Meeting Bulletin — November, 2018

Meetings

Committee of the Whole Board

Monday, November 12, 2018 – Meeting Agenda Package

Public Board Meeting

Monday, November 26, 2018 — Meeting Agenda Package

Highlights

Teacher Learning & Leadership Program

The Teacher Learning and Leadership Program (TLLP) is an annual project-based professional learning opportunity for experienced classroom teachers. Through the TLLP, the Ministry of Education has, for the past decade, supported hundreds of teacher-led projects across the province. The program funds proposals from classroom teachers who seek a peer leadership role in curriculum, instructional practice or supporting other teachers.

Goals:

  • Create and support opportunities for teacher professional learning
  • Foster teacher leadership
  • Facilitate the sharing of exemplary practice with others for the broader benefit of Ontario’s students

There has been no communication to school boards from the Ministry regarding requests for proposals for Teacher Learning and Leadership Program (TLLP) for 2019-2020. While this leaves the future of TLLPs uncertain, the WCDSB will continue to support current TLLPs and search for ways in which these collaborative endeavours align with other initiatives and priorities.

To view the complete report, please see pages 7-11 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Pastoral Plan Update

We began our three-year pastoral plan with the theme People of Love in 2015-2016. During the 2016-17 school year our focused theme was on People of Hope. Over this past school year our focus has been People of Faith.

Each year of the current pastoral plan has been animated across the district with the use of an artifact that is used in all our schools to unify our school communities around the common theme. In October of the 2017-18 school year, we used the experience of our annual Spiritual Development Day to launch the third year of our three-year pastoral plan, and to introduce the pilgrimage cross, the artifact selected to animate and amplify our theme throughout all school communities.

As we prepare to conclude our present pastoral plan, we are encouraged by the fact that in our most recent Multi-Year Strategic Plan (MYSP) survey, 87% of survey responders agreed or strongly agreed that school communities were engaged in understanding and living our three-year pastoral plan. Our goal with the soon-to-be-released new Pastoral Plan will be to carry this same momentum forward.

For a complete summary of the 2016-2018 Pastoral Plan, please see pages 12-14 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Autism Support Plan

Within the Waterloo Catholic District School Board, there are many support services available for students with a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder. Through a collaborative approach within a school team, the classroom teacher works alongside the Special Education teacher to develop and provide appropriate programming for students diagnosed with ASD. Other school-level support staff involved may include an Educational Assistant and/or Child and Youth Care Worker.

Additional supports are also available for students who are:

  • arriving from another school or school board
  • transitioning from Preschool
  • newly diagnosed
  • covered by an updated assessment result that calls for a review of strategies
  • needing Individual Education Plan (IEP) revisions
  • needing an IEP (e.g. students who may be experiencing challenges with transitions and the classroom environment).

To view the full report, please see pages 53-55 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

English as a Second Language Update

Trends in the number of newcomer students processed through the Newcomer Reception Centre continue to increase year over year. The vast majority of these students have English as an Additional Language learning needs.

There are more than six hundred students at the WCDSB who are in their first two years in Canada and almost 1,000 students in elementary schools who are in their first four years in Canada. The board currently serves students from 114 different countries who speak a total of 118 different languages.

To view the full report, please see pages 56-59 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

New Ontario Human Rights Policy

The Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) released its new policy on accessible education for students with disabilities, along with recommendations on how to best meet legal obligations under Ontario’s Human Rights Code.

The policy:

  • recognizes that education is vitally important to a person’s social, academic and economic development
  • reflects a broad definition of disability
  • provides students and families with up-to-date information about their human rights and responsibilities
  • offers practical guidance to education providers to meet their legal duty to accommodate
  • reminds schools of their obligation to maintain accessible, inclusive, discrimination and harassment-free spaces

On November 26, 2018 the Board of Trustees received a detailed report on how the WCDSB plans to address the requirements of this new policy. The report is available on pages 60-63 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Student Trustees Report

Student Trustees Izabella Tyc and Meghan Nemeth presented their monthly report on activities in WCDSB’s secondary schools. The report is available on pages 64-65 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Upcoming Board Meetings

Inaugural Meeting

Monday, December 3, 2018

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board, representing more than 96,000 Catholic school supporters, operates 49 schools and four adult education facilities, serving more than 40,000 elementary, secondary and continuing education students in Waterloo Region – continuing a 182-year tradition of quality, inclusive, faith-based education. Follow us on Twitter: @WCDSBNewswire – #WCDSBAwesome.

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For more information, please contact:

John Shewchuk – Chief Managing Officer | (519) 578-3660 | john.shewchuk@wcdsb.ca

2018-11-27T10:55:43+00:00November 27th, 2018|

WCDSB Board Meeting Bulletin — October, 2018

Meetings

Committee of the Whole Board

Monday, October 15, 2018 – Meeting Agenda Package

Public Board Meeting

Monday, October 29, 2018 — Meeting Agenda Package

Highlights

Renewed Math Strategy Update

An update on Renewed Math Strategy initiatives was presented to the Board of Trustees on Monday, October 15, 2018. The report contains:

  • A summary of the 2017‐2018 Renewed Math Strategy
  • A description of the Numeracy Initiatives for 2018‐2019
  • The intentional purpose of these Numeracy Initiatives
  • BIPSA updates in Numeracy and the reasoning behind these additions
  • The model for professional learning in Mathematics 2018‐2019 as it pertains to Board needs

To view the complete report, please see pages 7-16 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Information Technology Services (ITS) Summer Projects

The Information Technology Services (ITS) department has had a very busy summer preparing for the 2018/19 school year. ITS successfully completed many technology related projects and initiatives that aligned with the Multi-Year Strategic Plan — which will enable staff and students to excel in the coming year.

Key areas of focus for introduction of new technologies, upgrades and maintenance were:

  • New StaffNet Portal Transition
  • Minecraft EDU, Technology Pedagogy and Intune Rural Pilot Projects
  • Broadband Modernization Project
  • Implementation of School Messenger
  • Educational Space Technology Updates, Refreshes and Moves
  • Data, Systems and Information Support Team Projects
  • Administrative Team Projects

To view the complete report, please see pages 17-26 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Learning Commons Transformation Project

The 2015-2018 Multi-Year Strategic Plan committed to creating and engaging in a multi-year plan to transform school libraries into collaborative student-friendly spaces called Learning Commons. The transformation consists of minor renovations to library spaces and investments into furniture, technology, and equipment that support 21st century learning practices.

As part of preparing the multi-year plan, each school was visited by the Library Support Services Supervisor to scope out proposed changes as well as to draft an annual budget for the investments. Administrators, library technicians, and other school staff at each site were part of the planning process.

Year 1 of the plan was undertaken in 2017-2018 with all schools projected to be completed by the end of the 2021- 2022 school year.

The complete project schedule is provided on pages 17-19 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Student Success – Intermediate Update

Towards the end of the 2017-18 school year, the Ministry of Education increased funding to school districts to increase the number of guidance and other teachers in elementary schools to better prepare students for a successful transition to high school, and to help Grade 7 and 8 students take their first steps in career planning.

With this funding increase, the Waterloo Catholic District School Board was able to expand the number of student success consultants from two to five, moving from a model of support for only those fifteen schools who require more intensive support, to being able to support all our elementary schools using our Family of Schools model, with some adjustments for equity.

In this new model of support for intermediate students, the Student Success Consultants (SSC) offer a variety of supports to intermediate students and teachers. These areas include the following:

  • Pathway & transition planning
  • Individual/small group social-emotional academic support
  • Restorative Justice, mediation & conflict resolution
  • Capacity building and instructional coaching (e.g. restorative justice, myBlueprint implementation, Engagement Through Innovation Initiative)
  • Intensive support for individual students in-risk (“Check & Connect”)

For a deeper look at the work of the Student Success Consultants, please see pages 20-22 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Student Trustees Report

Student Trustees Izabella Tyc and Meghan Nemeth presented their monthly report on activities in WCDSB’s secondary schools. The report is available on pages 34-35 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Upcoming Board Meetings

Regular Committee of the Whole Board Meeting

Monday, November 12, 2018

Regular Public Board Meeting

Monday, November 26, 2018

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board, representing more than 96,000 Catholic school supporters, operates 49 schools and four adult education facilities, serving more than 40,000 elementary, secondary and continuing education students in Waterloo Region – continuing a 182-year tradition of quality, inclusive, faith-based education. Follow us on Twitter: @WCDSBNewswire – #WCDSBAwesome.

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For more information, please contact:

John Shewchuk – Chief Managing Officer | (519) 578-3660 | john.shewchuk@wcdsb.ca

2018-10-31T12:11:12+00:00October 31st, 2018|

D8 Sr. Boys Football MVP Award Named for Fr. Mike Cundari, C.R.

WATERLOO REGION (October 30, 2018)

District 8 is proud to announce that the senior boys football Most Valuable Player award will be renamed the Father Mike Award after the late Father Michael Cundari, C.R., who tragically lost his life in November 1986 in an automobile accident.

Better known as Father Mike while serving as principal of St. Jerome’s High School, he was a strong supporter of high school sport and football in particular.

“Father Mike was a tremendous supporter of football programs at every school he was part of,” said Dan Hutter who sits on the District 8 Board of Directors. “As a student, teacher, priest, athlete, Principal or coach, Fr Mike lived by the principles of faith, integrity, honesty, commitment and teamwork, and was always first to celebrate the achievements of his staff and students.”

A ceremony to commemorate the naming of the football MVP award will take place at the District 8 football championships. Joining District 8 and Waterloo Catholic District School Board representatives will be some of Father Mike’s living relatives; Laura Campigotto (sister), Rita Cundari (sister) and Mike Campigotto (nephew).

“Our entire family is both grateful and humbled at the creation of this new award that remembers Fr. Mike,” said Mike Campigotto. “We hope that it will inspire athletes to become leaders in sport, to win with humility and to embrace losing with the pride of giving their all.”

This sentiment of ‘Winning with dignity and losing with pride’ is one regularly repeated with the athletic departments of local high schools, even painted on walls outside of gyms, as it was Father Mike’s motto.

Father Mike taught history and religion at St. Jerome’s and was named the school’s principal in 1980.

“Once he assumed the role of principal, his love for his students became very evident,” said Bernie Farwell who was named principal following the passing of father Mike. “He began each school year speaking to every student at grade-level assemblies impressing upon them the wisdom of setting goals and working hard to achieve them. In this way, each person builds upon the strong reputation of the school and has no regrets at graduation.”

As a supporter of high school sport and the coach of the football and hockey teams, Father Mike would meet with all teams to begin each sport season.

“Father Mike did not emphasize winning in his personal philosophy although the results of his guidance with students consistently saw them reach the top of their game. His motto lives on within so many of us who knew him, worked with him and highly admired him,” said Farwell.

The ceremony will take place on Thursday November 8, 2018 during the halftime of the District 8 senior boys’ football Championship at Warrior Field in Waterloo. Resurrection is set to take on St. David’s or St. Mary’s with kickoff scheduled for 7:30 P.M.

For more information contact:

Derrick Stryker

District 8 Coordinator

e: derrick.stryker@wcdsb.ca

 

2018-10-30T11:34:35+00:00October 30th, 2018|

St. Mary’s H.S. Launches Campaign for Community Legacy-Multi-Purpose Outdoor Sports Court

St. Mary’s High School in Kitchener has entered the Aviva Community Fund competition with plans to transform the tennis surface at the school with a Mateflex court system. This multipurpose court will be suitable for basketball, tennis, ball hockey, pickleball and a variety of other community events. The facility will be accessible to a wide range of user groups, where everyone can gather, play, and learn.

Please visit the St. Mary’s High School website and click on “Aviva Community Fund” for instructions on how to vote. https://stmary.wcdsb.ca/

Voting takes place from Tues. Sept 25 12:00 p.m. to Oct. 4 5:00 p.m. Log on once to vote 10 times for the St. Mary’s Multi-Purpose Court. The top 10 ideas by votes advance to the Judging Round where 3 will receive $100,000. The other 7 receive $15,000. Winners are announced in November.

Please encourage your friends and family to vote as well. Where Kindness Matters, Community Grows! Thank-you for helping!

2018-10-01T10:25:06+00:00September 26th, 2018|

WCDSB Board Meeting Bulletin — September, 2018

Meetings

Committee of the Whole Board

Monday, September 10, 2018 – Meeting Agenda Package

Public Board Meeting

Monday, September 24, 2018 — Meeting Agenda Package

Highlights

EQAO Results for 2017-18 

The annual EQAO results for reading, writing and mathematics in grades three, six, nine and ten were released on September 19. For the second consecutive year, WCDSB students scored at or above the provincial average in all grades in Math.

  • The Grade 9 WCDSB to Ontario comparison shows WCDSB’s Applied Level Mathematics students above the province by +7% (at 52%) — while the board’s Academic Level Mathematics students matched the provincial average of 84%.
  • The Grade 3 WCDSB to Ontario comparison shows WCDSB above the province by +6% in math (at 67%), by +2% in reading (at 77%) and +5% in writing (at 77%).
  • The Grade 6 WCDSB to Ontario comparison shows WCDSB math +3% above the provincial average (at 52%), writing even with the province (at 80%) and reading one per cent below the provincial average (at 81%).

For an in-depth look at the results and an analysis of the data, please see pages 31-41 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Construction Update

During the 2017-18 school year, a number of construction projects were carried out at schools across the Region, with the majority of the work being completed during the months of July and August. These projects were associated with building renewal, school priorities, and capital projects funded by the Ministry of Education. The total value of the projects was $12.5 million.

A complete list of projects – with a brief description of each – is available on pages 17-23 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package 

Appointment of Spiritual Animator

For several decades, the Waterloo Catholic District School Board has engaged a local priest to serve students and staff in the important role of Spiritual Animator. In August, 2015 Fr. Joseph de Viveiros, C. R., was appointed to succeed Fr. Fred Scinto, C.R., in that contract position.

In the Spring 2016, Fr. Joseph informed the Director that his many obligations as a parish Pastor made it challenging for him to feel fully effective in his new role within Waterloo Catholic, and thus would be respectfully and regretfully stepping away from the position in the fall of 2016. He was followed in the role by Fr. Toby Collins, C.R. who ably and enthusiastically fulfilled the role for the past two years.

This past spring (2018), Fr. Toby was named as Pastor of St. Mary of the Seven Sorrows parish in Kitchener and, on September 10, 2018 the Board was very pleased to welcome Fr. Joseph back to the school system as Spiritual Animator.

For more information about Fr. Joseph’s career and dedication to our community, please see pages 8-9 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

2018-2019 Board Improvement Plan for Student Achievement (BIPSA)

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board’s Board Improvement Plan for Student Achievement (BIPSA) sets specific operational direction to ensure that the key components outlined in the WCDSB’s Multi Year Strategic Plan as well as other relevant initiatives and priorities are addressed. Updated annually and responsive to shifting contexts and needs throughout the year, the BIPSA reflects our system’s continued commitment to improved student achievement and wellbeing. It assures that the board’s mission, “As disciples of Christ, we educate and nurture hope in all learners to realize their full potential to transform God’s world”, is embedded in all we do. It is rooted in the evangelical vision of Catholic education which is beautifully defined in our Ontario Catholic School Graduate Expectations.

The BIPSA provides the framework for each school’s School Improvement Plan for Student Achievement (SIPSA). The SIPSA allows for a more nuanced and focused plan that meets the specific needs of our unique and diverse school communities, each of which has its own metrics and targets that are monitored throughout the year and revised annually. BIPSAs reflect a three-year timeline with each individual year having a more specific plan that responds to the shifting needs of students. It is drawn from a variety of data and ongoing professional discernment. The current BIPSA marks Year III of a three-year (2016-2019) plan.

To view the full report, please see pages 10-14 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Grade 9 Summer Credit Course Pilot Project

The transition from elementary to secondary school is the most difficult transition our students make during their developmental years. The Waterloo Catholic District School Board has been running the summer HeadStart program successfully for a number of years. In this program, incoming Grade 9 students are able to attend a two-day session (formerly four half-day sessions) at their home secondary school shortly before the academic year begins. This is a strategy that allows for a more seamless transition to secondary school: students are able to spend time on site before the school year formally begins; they get to know peers; they meet some teachers and learn more about life in high school. As a strategy for transition from elementary school to secondary school, this program has proved extremely popular. This past August, there were 865 participants across all five Catholic Secondary schools — with a student to teacher ratio of 15:1.

During Summer, 2018, a special pilot project called “Bridges to Success – Your Future Begins Now” was conducted at St. Benedict CSS. Twenty-three Grade 8 students enrolled in social a science course: H1F101 (Individual & Family Living). This course was chosen because it came with a Ministry of Education recommendation, it did not conflict with other Grade 9 course selections, and the course content allows for foundational support in meeting the challenges of transitioning from childhood to adulthood: life skills, social skills, literacy and numeracy skill building in an experiential learning environment.

As a result of this initiative, twenty-three incoming Grade 9 students are beginning their high school careers with one credit already secured.

Two next steps have been identified:

  • Continue offering this same program in each Family of Schools as need / interest warrants.
  • Track the twenty-three students from this summer to monitor credit accumulation, student engagement and achievement, and ultimately graduation rates over four and five years.

To learn more about the pilot project, please see pages 15-16 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Health & Physical Education (HPE) – Sexual Education Curriculum Update

Further to the election promise made by the Ontario Conservative Party under leader, Doug Ford, the provincial government has recently announced their intention to repeal the revised health and physical education curriculum introduced by the previous government in 2015. This decision has prompted renewed discussion with and among parents, teachers and those tasked with preparing the curriculum.

Beginning in September 2018 — and until the release of a revised elementary curriculum – Waterloo Region’s Catholic Schools will be utilizing the full elementary Health and Physical Education curriculum that was last taught in 2014. This is The Ontario Curriculum, Grades 1–8: Health and Physical Education, Interim Edition, 2010.

As a publicly-funded school system, we have a responsibility to teach the curriculum set out by the Ministry of Education, and we have always done so in a manner that conveys, respects and models our Catholic values to our students. As with all curriculum, we teach it through a Catholic lens.

For more than 30 years, our schools, and all Catholic schools in Ontario, have successfully provided a family life and sex education curriculum within a Catholic framework under the guidance of the Catholic Bishops of Ontario. The program is called Fully Alive. It was developed by the Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Ontario in collaboration with educators and families. The teacher resources were last updated in 2016. The Institute for Catholic Education (ICE) will address any aspects of the Fully Alive program that require updates in response to Ministry Directives.

Meanwhile, our classrooms and schools will continue to reflect and support equity and diversity and actively create and provide an inclusive and welcoming environment, as we have always done.

Student Trustees Report

Student Trustees Izabella Tyc and Meghan Nemeth presented their first monthly report on activities in WCDSB’s secondary schools. The report is available on pages 42-43 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Upcoming Board Meetings

Regular Committee of the Whole Board Meeting

Monday, October 15, 2018

Regular Public Board Meeting

Monday, October 29, 2018

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board, representing more than 96,000 Catholic school supporters, operates 49 schools and four adult education facilities, serving more than 40,000 elementary, secondary and continuing education students in Waterloo Region – continuing a 182-year tradition of quality, inclusive, faith-based education. Follow us on Twitter: @WCDSBNewswire – #WCDSBAwesome.

– 30 –

For more information, please contact:

John Shewchuk – Chief Managing Officer | (519) 578-3660 | john.shewchuk@wcdsb.ca

2018-09-26T12:58:09+00:00September 26th, 2018|

WCDSB Students Continue to Outpace Provincial EQAO Averages in Math

Waterloo Region, ON – The Waterloo Catholic District School Board today released its 2017-18 Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) assessment results for reading, writing and mathematics in grades three, six, nine and ten. Grade nine students are only assessed in mathematics. Grade 10 students participate in the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT).

For the second consecutive year, WCDSB students scored at or above the provincial average in all grades in Math.

QuickFacts

  • The Grade 9 WCDSB to Ontario comparison shows WCDSB’s Applied Level Mathematics students above the province by +7% (at 52%) — while the board’s Academic Level Mathematics students matched the provincial average of 84%.
  • The Grade 3 WCDSB to Ontario comparison shows WCDSB above the province by +6% in math (at 67%), by +2% in reading (at 77%) and +5% in writing (at 77%).
  • The Grade 6 WCDSB to Ontario comparison shows WCDSB math +3% above the provincial average (at 52%), writing even with the province (at 80%) and reading one per cent below the provincial average (at 81%).
  • Schools that received the greatest “Intensive” support within the WCDSB’s Renewed Math Strategy (RMS) for the past two years have showed increased achievement (average of 15% growth in Primary and 1% growth in Junior, among participating schools).
  • Schools that received more “Increased” support within the WCDSB’s Renewed Math Strategy (RMS) for the past two years are showing increased achievement on the Junior Math Assessment (overall 4% growth among participating schools) and no change in overall achievement in the Primary Math Assessment, among participating schools.
  • In Grade 9 Math, the gender gap between girls and boys (with girls surpassing boys) has decreased by 2% in Applied Math (gender gap was 9% in 2016-2017 and 7% in 2017-2018) and decreased by 4% in Academic Math (gender gap was 7% in 2016-2017 and 3% in 2017-2018)

Strategies for continued improvement going forward, include:

  • Increasing focus on Grades K-8 through Numeracy Coaches and Instructional Coaches;
  • Introducing a Gap Closing Teacher to support Grade 9 Applied Math in each secondary school;
  • Building the capacity of Lead Mathematics Teachers in every school (2-3 teachers per elementary school; 2 teachers per secondary school);
  • Providing a Mathematics Additional Qualifications (AQ) course within the WCDSB, to approximately sixty teachers;
  • Providing the data platform enCOMPASSto all educators — allowing them to triangulate historical and real-time achievement data from multiple sources within a single student profile, to pinpoint the individual learning needs of each student.

Quotes

“We are conscious that EQAO scores are but one measure of our success, and require careful consideration for each school and in each year. That said, we are proud of our students and our staff who continue to experience strong success. Our mathematics gains, while modest, suggest that where we have channelled supports and energy, the positive results are following. Our Waterloo Catholic school communities have adopted a growth mindset and see all things as possible, with the proper supports. We see the potential for success in every child, and our students deserve nothing but excellence in their learning. There is more work to be done, and our schools remain committed to the journey”.

~~ Loretta Notten, Director of Education

Related Links

Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO)

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board, representing more than 96,000 Catholic school supporters, operates 52 schools and five adult education facilities serving more than 40,000 elementary, secondary and continuing education students in Waterloo Region – continuing a 182-year tradition of quality, inclusive, faith-based education. Follow us on Twitter: @WCDSBNewswire – #WCDSBAwesome.

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2018-10-01T15:35:04+00:00September 19th, 2018|
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