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Excellence in all we do

Superintendent’s Report to the Board | May 2022

Circle Of Care: Students

    1. DSLT Student Spring Forum: Students from all SD46 secondary schools gathered in-person recently for this annual DSLT event. The forum brings together trustees, secondary principals and vice-principals, the District Student Leadership Team, senior management and grade 8 – 12 SD46 students to discuss relevant topics of the student journey and learning experience. Mental health, environmental impacts, substance use, student voice, post-secondary preparation, and safe welcoming schools provided rich and deep conversations which will help inform our practices as a district going forward. (1a)
    2. Food Program Survey: SD46 and community partners seek to improve supports for all students by increasing the consistent access to healthy food in schools across the district. In an effort to learn how we can best support all students in our district, the Food in Schools Committee released an exploratory survey. The survey was open for two weeks, from April 20th-May 4th. We had a tremendous response with over 900 families participating. A student survey is now currently circulating through all of our grade 4-12 students until May 20th. The staff survey will be released at the end of May. Once the information from all of the surveys is received and collated, the Food in Schools Committee will then examine the data to inform next steps. (1g)
    1. Inspire, Create and Innovate: We have launched Innovation kits in all SD46 schools’ libraries. Just like you can borrow a book from your school library, a student can now borrow an Innovation kit. The two Innovation kits that are now available are the Makedo Innovation kit and the Ozobot Innovation kit. Makedo is a kit with kid-friendly tools for building and creating anything from animals to cars with cardboard. The Ozobot Innovation kit has a small ‘artsy’ robot that follows coloured lines drawn on paper which will allow the robot to go fast, change colour, or even spin around like a tornado. There are also various Innovation kits available for classes to borrow, including Dash robots, a Makedo classroom kit, Microbits, Spheros, a 3D Printer and more. (1j)
    2. Elementary ArtStarts Performance of Axe Capoeira: Elementary schools were treated to a martial arts/dance performance from Axe Capoeira this month. These performances are made possible by funding from ArtStarts and SD46. (1k)

Circle of Care: Staff

  1. Pro-D Day session with Kevin Lamoureux: 100 staff joined in-person at Chatelech Secondary Theatre with over 170 staff joining via ZOOM for this moving and thought-provoking session with Kevin Lamoureux. This year, Kevin Lamoureux has been guiding us in the work of ‘Ensouling our Schools’ through a series of ZOOM sessions provided on professional development days. (2b)
  2. Communicating Student Learning on the Sunshine Coast: This year, teachers across the district have been learning about the design of standards-based assessment and reporting. We are developing goals linked to learning standards, creating proficiency scales, and practicing how to collect a wide variety of evidence. Many teachers have been reading the book ‘Rethinking Letter Grades’ and are having conversations about the WHY and the HOW. In April, teachers participated in the last session of the in-service series, where they created CSL Planning Charts & Proficiency scales with colleagues. Moving forward, we have Katie White offering 3 sessions this May focused on ‘Softening the Edges’ of Assessment – May 4th (elementary); May 5th (secondary) & May 30th for all. (2b, 2d)
  3. Mental Health in Schools Conference: Our counsellors participated in the Ministry of Education and Child Care Mental Health Conference held on May 5th and 6th. The theme of the conference was Mental Health in the Classroom, with a focus on embedding mental well-being in the learning environment. (2b, 2d)
  4. ePortfolio Open House: 45 teachers and administrators, representing 10 different schools and District Services, met at Chatelech’s library to discuss the future of ePortfolios in SD46. Staff were presented with a mix of updates from our Teacher Focus Groups, viewed introductory videos from potential ePortfolio platform providers, and then participated in round-table discussions focused on what we value about ePortfolios moving forward. A follow-up survey has been made available to those who attended, and the information collected will help us move closer to selecting a replacement in time for the next school year. (2d)
  5. SPARK! to Secondary: This virtual offering for all parents with children entering high school next year is supported by a grant from United Way of the Lower Mainland’s School’s Out program. Four evening sessions in April and May cover the topics of the emotional world of adolescence, navigating the secondary social scene, supporting healthy independence, supporting success with homework and routines and keeping the lines of communication open. (2e)

Circle of Care: Community

  1. Vision Zero Grant for Active Travel: SD46 is receiving $20K in funding from Vision Zero to improve road safety for staff, students, and their families on the Sunshine Coast. SD46 in partnership with Transportation Choices Sunshine Coast and Vancouver Coastal Health will use the funding to expand on its ‘Best Routes to School’ active transportation maps, to identify the safest routes for cycling and walking to school/work to encourage children and adults to remain active on the Sunshine Coast. The project intentions will also include: active travel months, bike safety training, bike trains/walking school bus pilots and student and school community engagement. Another goal of the project is to see active transportation as an opportunity for climate action. Supporting students, staff and the school communities to engage in active travel addresses student needs, supports learning and provides an attainable and uplifting activity which gives everyone agency to be part of the solution to addressing climate change. These initiatives will be rolled out during the active travel months of May and September of this year. (3c, 3d)
  2. Mental Health and Substance Use Committee: The Sunshine Coast Child & Youth Mental Health & Substance Use Committee is a group of people from various professional organizations who have met regularly to discuss the needs of children and youth in our community. Research has shown that the transition between grade 7 and high school is a critical time, where youth may first experiment with alcohol and cannabis. The purpose of this panel is to provide factual information, from trusted professionals, to encourage good decision making and to introduce the students to community resource personnel who they could seek out for support. This year, students watched a short video presentation put together by our panelists during the week of April 26th-29th followed by live, in-person school visits the following week of May 2nd-6th. Follow-up visits provided the opportunity for students to ask questions and for important discussion and collaboration time between the panelists and the students. (3c)
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