Information

Staying up to Date

There is always a lot happening at school and it can sometimes feel like information isn't making it home. Regal's administration sends home both a weekly email (Hebdo Regal Road Weekly) as well as periodic updates. If you haven't already had a chance to check out the Regal Road Guide to Reopening, we would encourage you to read that now for some important information about protocols in place due to COVID-19.

If you ever have questions about what is happening in the school, you can email us for advice. Each teacher has an email address and communicates with parents in a slightly different way depending on their preferred method. We also utilize classroom reps to ensure important information is disseminated amongst all of the classrooms. School Council is always eager to get our news out so that we can get families excited about what we are up to. All of our events require extra help from Regal parents and caregivers and that help can come in many forms. If you have a skill that you think would be useful to School Council, please let us know!

Announcements

Below are the announcements from both School Council and Regal Road about events, date changes, safety concerns and extra curricular activities. These announcements can be time sensitive or relevant for the entire school year. Please click on the headline to see the information.

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Mask Signage at Regal Road

Posted 09-18-2021

Last year, School Council designed and ordered a variety of signs to remind students, staff and visitors that masks must be worn on school property, especially at pick-up and drop-off times where the area can become quite crowded. This is TDSB policy and is mandatory, regardless of vaccination status and personal preference.


Advocacy Letter - Lunch in Classrooms

Posted 08-05-21

This letter was sent to our School Trustee Stephanie Donaldson on August 5, 2021. Additionally, our Chair presented a delegation at the TDSB Planning & Priorities Meeting on August 17, 2021.

Dear Stephanie -


I hope you are having a good summer - I am sure there is much work ahead of you and the other trustees as you plan for the 2021/2022 school year. Thank you in advance for what I am sure will be a very intense period of planning and advocacy.


There is a lot to comment on about the Government of Ontario’s COVID-19: Health, Safety & Operational Guidance for Schools document, and one issue that has our elementary school community very concerned is related to lunch and cafeterias.


According to this policy document, students may eat together “indoors, with a minimum distance of two metres maintained between cohorts and as much distancing as possible within a cohort.” Further, relating to cafeterias, “capacity limits for cafeterias should be established to enable two metres distancing between cohorts, and as much distancing as possible within cohorts.”


I am not sure if “cafeterias” are interchangeable with “elementary school lunchrooms” within this context, but we believe the option of having multiple cohorts eat together - especially in a poorly ventilated lunchroom (ours is in the basement, no windows) - should be off the table.


Lunchrooms have a history of being a noisy, chaotic environment where 100 students are supervised by a single lunch supervisor. Mixing cohorts with only two metres of distancing simply does not offer a satisfactory level of protection for our students under 12 who are not vaccinated, and will only be worse in a noisy environment where students need to shout to be heard, and do not stay seated and act respectfully.


Our parent/caregiver community feels strongly that the safest options are to have students continue to eat outside or in their classroom, as they did in the 2020/2021 school year. It is critical that the TDSB provides funding for supervision that supports keeping our kids fully separated from other cohorts when masks are off. Otherwise, this defeats the purpose of cohorting altogether.


We hope this topic will be placed under serious consideration during future planning meetings.


Warm Regards,


Adam Miller

Chair, Regal Road School Council


The 2019/2020 Yearbook is now for sale!

Join School Council!

Posted 09-15-20

Elections for this year's School Council are coming up! The 2020/2021 school year will be an interesting one so we need all the help we can get. Let's work together to support our teachers and students.

If you’re interested in joining School Council, click here for our self-nomination form. There are both elected positions and general members.

Not sure just what it is that School Council does? Click here to learn what School Council does at Regal Road.

Please submit your finished form by October 16 2020. There are lots of different ways to help, all of which are welcome. Reach out to us if you have any questions at regalroadsc@gmail.com

An Open Letter to our Teachers

Posted 01-20-20

The Regal Road School Council stands in solidarity with our teachers and supports the labour action taken by the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario (ETFO) in response to the Ontario government’s existing and proposed cuts to public education.

Every day, our school’s educators strive to equip our kids with the knowledge and skills they’ll need to make our society stronger, better, happier, and healthier. And their jobs don’t end there. Teachers protect kids who are being harmed, offer love and guidance, wipe noses and tears, and help our kids feel valued and realize their full potential. Set one foot inside an Ontario public school, and anyone can see that this provincial government is creating chaos for our kids.

We urge Minister Lecce to reconsider the austerity that his government is bringing to our public education system. He must support our teachers, reverse the cuts, and move forward with respect for our future generations.

It’s time for the Ontario Government to take the concerns of teachers and parents more seriously.

With gratitude to our educators,

The Regal Road School Council

Kids, Worried About Traffic By Regal Road?

Posted 01-03-20

For any child who has been impacted by the dangerous driving in our community, here's your chance to make your voice heard! Write a letter to Ana Bailão to let her know what you see on your way to school and by your home. We would like to give your letter to Councillor Bailão on January 13th at our School Council meeting. Write, draw, sticker, stamp, mounds of glitter, whatever you like. We would love to get a photo of you with your letter, if you're okay with that. There will be a mailbox in the main foyer for you to drop off the letter. Please include your name and class number!

Make Your Voice Heard - Traffic Safety

Posted 01-03-20

Make your voice heard! School Council's January meeting will feature an important visit from Deputy Mayor/City Councillor Ana Bailão and School Trustee Stephanie Donaldson. We will be discussing the traffic safety issues in our community, both on Dufferin Street and on Regal Road. Let's not wait until someone gets hurt, we need to ask for change now.

The meeting is January 13th at 6:30 in Room 5. Childcare will be provided. Please attend and let Councillor Bailão and Trustee Donaldson know what your concerns are.

Councillor Bailão to attend Regal Road School Council Meeting on January 13 2020

Posted 12-20-19

We are excited to announce that Ana Bailão, Toronto's Deputy Mayor and Ward 9's Councillor, will be attending our next School Council meeting on Monday January 13th at 6:30pm. Also attending the meeting will be our School Trustee, Stephanie Donaldson.

We will dedicate the first portion of our meeting to a discussion about the traffic safety issues our school is facing, both on side streets and on Dufferin Street. For anyone impacted by the dangerous driving in our school zone, please consider attending. We know this is a hot topic right now for many of us at the Regal Road community.

At the meeting, we plan to present Councillor Bailão with our petition to have an Automated Speed Enforcement Camera installed on Dufferin between Davenport and Rosemount. 50 of these cameras have recently been approved to be placed on Toronto's streets, and not one of them is on Dufferin. Please consider signing the petition: http://chng.it/Q4cCSrrY This petition has only received 118 signatures at the time of this posting.

We're also starting another exciting campaign where we're encouraging students to write a personal letter to Councillor Bailão describing their experiences with traffic safety near Regal Road. Please have your student sign with their name and include what grade they are in. We would love to make a photo collage of students with their letters, for families who are interested. These letters will also be presented to Councillor Bailão. We will have a mailbox in the main foyer to receive these letters in the new year.

2018-2019 Yearbooks

Posted 12-06-19

Delay no more!!! The long awaited yearbooks will be arriving at the school on Monday, December 9, 2019 and will be ready for pick-up after school on Wednesday December 11th – Friday December 13th . We will have a table set up in the foyer after school and will hand them out then so we are not disrupting classes or the office. If you are unable to make it here for those dates, we will arrange additional time the following weeks in hopes that you can receive them before the winter break.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Michael Morris, Principal

Quest Alternative Senior School Information Night

Posted 12-16-19

Quest Alternative Senior School is having an information night on Thursday January 9, 2020 @6:30pm-8:30pm - 25 Bain Avenue (inside Withrow Avenue Jr. Public School).


Summary of Extra-Curricular Activities Available

Posted 10-21-19

One of our terrific parents put together a great summary of all the programs available this year (some fee based and some free), check it out! Some are lunch time and others are before/after school.

Activities that are free

1. Junior Librarians (grades 4-6)

2. Primary Eco- Club, Tuesday lunch weekly in the upper east yard

3. Junior Eco-Club, Wednesdays weekly at 12:05 after being dismissed from lunch

4. Parent’s Eco-Club, https://sites.google.com/view/regalparentsecoclub

Sports, also free

1. Term 1 Cross-Country (Grades 2-6, plus Gr 1 kids with parent accompaniment)

2. Term 1 Girls Borden Ball (Grades 4-6)

3. Term 1 Girls Soccer (Grades 4-6)

4. Term 1 Boys Soccer (Grades 4-6)

5. Term 2 Track & Field (Grades 2-6)

6. Term 2 Girls Volleyball (tentative, requires a teacher volunteer)

7. Term 2 Boys Volleyball (tentative, requires a teacher volunteer)

8. Term 2 Girls Basketball (tentative, requires teacher volunteer)

9. Term 2 Boys Basketball (tentative, requires teacher volunteer)

Some activities that happened last year that may happen again this year, depending on teachers’ initiative and on whether Work to Rule happens:

1. Meatless Monday Club at lunch weekly

2. A Musical

3. Guitar Club at lunch weekly

4. Finger-knitting Club at lunch weekly

5. Art Club at lunch weekly

Activities that require payment

1. Chess on Tuesdays after school

2. Arts Express programs weekly after school

  • Cartooning, Oct 16 - Dec 4

  • Glee Time, Oct 21 – Dec 9

3. Language lessons on Mondays after school through the TDSB

  • Mandarin

  • Spanish

  • Portuguese

  • Italian

4. Makom Hebrew and Jewish program, Mondays & Wednesdays after school

5. Ascot before and aftercare program, Mon-Fri

6. St. Alban’s aftercare program, Mon-Fri

Final Note: Activities may change as the year progresses.

Help the Regal Community make sustainability a top priority

Posted 10-04-19

Thanks to Mr. Murtaugh for putting spearheading this initiative and putting together this Regal Parents Eco Club website to help parents get involved. Sign up for updates, give feedback and learn how you can become more involved by visiting the site.

Date change for Terry Fox run

Posted 09-27-19

Due to Rosh Hashanah the Terry Fox run will not take place on Oct 1st, but is now scheduled for Oct 8th!

Terry Fox Run

Posted 09-24-19

Message from the School

Dear Parents/Guardians:

On Tuesday, October 1st, 2019 students at Regal Road will be taking part in the annual Terry Fox School Run. Families are welcome to join us or cheer us on! Please be sure to fill out your child’s online community walking excursion form before Friday.

Junior Students will do their run in the morning after a short assembly and Primary students will run after lunch after a short assembly as well.

Our school is proud to play an important role in keeping the legacy of Terry Fox going. Students will have the opportunity to discuss and reflect on the heroic efforts of Terry over the next few weeks as well as raise much-needed funds for cancer research. Through our participation in the Terry Fox School Run, we hope to encourage leadership in our students and create positive agents of change in our wonderful school community.

Any amount of donation is greatly appreciated and donations of $20.00 or more listed on a Terry Fox pledge sheet (with full donor name and address) are automatically receipted . Cheques and cash are both accepted. Cheques can be made payable to The Terry Fox Foundation. Please return any pledge forms and all monies by October 9th. All monies raised will be forwarded to The Terry Fox Foundation and 82 cents of every dollar raised goes directly to cancer research!

Another way to support The Terry Fox Foundation is by donating online. It’s fast, easy and donors get a receipt immediately by email. Go to terryfox.org and follow the instructions below:

go to www.terryfox.org

click “Terry Fox School Run”

click “Donate to a Student/School”

Enter the name of your school and follow the prompts to donate. Your child may also choose to also set up their own fundraising page by clicking the “Donate to a Student” button. Their page will connect automatically to our school’s fundraising page and they’ll receive a link to email friends and family to help them reach their fundraising goal.

We are very excited to be a part of this year’s Terry Fox Run. This is our opportunity to make a difference in the lives of those suffering from cancer. We hope you will join us as our school community bands together in the fight against cancer. Thank you in advance for your support!

Syringe Found on School Property

Posted 09-17-19

Message from the School:

This morning, it was reported to us that a syringe with a needle was discovered shortly before the start of the school day on school property near the bike racks. No students were harmed. We have informed our caretaking staff as they conduct daily and evening perimeter checks of the building. We have also contacted the Toronto Police Service and Toronto Public Health.

There are protocols in place in every school to ensure safe reporting and removal of hazardous objects including discarded needles. These protocols have been shared with

Staff to educate our students to safely report any seen hazardous objects. If a student finds a needle or syringe on school property, he/she should not touch it. The student should tell a staff member or report it to the office immediately. Please be assured that our staff will continue to take any necessary steps to ensure the safety of our students and staff.

We all take a very active interest in situations that involve safety everywhere in our community, so we also want to emphasize to students and parents the importance of

awareness and the need for extra care, even in the most routine circumstances. We want to continue to ensure our school is a safe place, so should you ever see suspicious activity

around our building after hours, please contact the TDSB 24-hour Emergency Call Centre at 416-395-4620 or the Toronto Police Service at 416-808-2222. Working together, we

can help make our school and our community as safe as possible.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the school.

Sports Teams and Practice information

Posted 09-13-19

Great news - Regal Road will have several sports teams running this fall!

Cross Country Running Team Coached by Mr. Murtaugh

Practices will be held every Tuesday and Thursday mornings.

Meet Date: October 2nd @ Ashbridges Bay

Girls Bordenball: Coached by Mr. Richmond and Mr. Ogden

Tryouts begin next week: Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at lunch.

Bring soccer cleats if you have them!

Boys Soccer: Coached by Mr. Meziane

Open practice starts next week on Monday and Friday at lunch.

Girls Soccer: Coached by Ms. Ryan and Ms. Vasic

Practices will be on Monday and Wednesday mornings at 8 a.m., beginning September 23.

Cross County practices start tomorrow

Posted 09-11-19

Open to students in Grade 2 and above (Grade 1's are welcome to join if parents are present).

Practices start Thursday September 12th. After that practices will be every Tuesday and Thursday until October 2nd.

Where: meet on the Soccer Field @8am

Bring: Running shoes (Mandatory), shorts with track pants on top, t-shirt with sweatshirt on top. Water Bottle.

Cross Country meet will take place on October 2nd. There will be a school bus for transportation to the event. Any student who comes in the top 20 can qualify for the South conference finals on October 17th.

Contact Mr. Murtaugh (Patrick.Murtaugh@tdsb.on.ca) for more information.

There is a permission form that must be completed and returned for students to participate.

Pizza Lunch Forms have gone home

Posted 09-06-19

Check your child's bag to see if you have pizza lunch forms today!

Welcome back

Posted 09-06-19

Hope everyone had a great summer. We are looking forward to a great 2019-2020 school year! Our first School Council meeting is Oct 3rd at 6:30pm, hope to see you there!

Rose Reisman's Kids Lunch Program

Posted 09-04-19

Hot Lunch program is coming to Regal Road! Starting on September 23rd, Rose Reisman's Kid's Lunch Program will be available every Monday.

Register your child at www.kidslunch.ca using Regal's school password RRPS108 and choose from Rose Reisman's healthy and delicious menu! All orders are made and paid online using the Kids Lunch Program website.

Kindergarteners will have their meals brought to their classrooms and grades 1-6 will have their meals brought to their lunchrooms at their appointed time slot.

Any questions? Please ask!


School Council's Meeting Minutes

At each of our meetings, School Council's secretary takes notes of what has been discussed. If you've missed a meeting, you can read the minutes to find out what was covered. There are announcements made by Regal's principal, vice principal, teachers, vendors, as well as by School Council themselves.

2020-2021 School Year

School Council Meeting Minutes for June 17, 2021

June 17, 2021

1. Land Declaration


2. Year In Review/Year End Recap

- Budget

  • We were fairly aspirational in the school council budget at the beginning of the year but ultimately we didn’t do most events that were for fundraising.

  • Direct drive was a good success and was used for classroom enrichment.

  • We had budgeted for virtual trips but since there were many available for free we didn’t spend as much as expected.

  • Books were purchased by the school that might intersect with the equity library initiative.

  • Will there be an open and staffed library next year? - so far there is a staff member assigned, but we don’t know if we will be allowed to open it yet.

  • Some money from the school budget will be spent on technology next year - a couple of carts of laptops

  • Next year the board is providing devices for grade 5 and grade 9s - the student will keep it for the next 5 years - they will be theirs! They will have to look after it etc.


- Equity

  • 4 major equity initiatives this spring

    • SIP workshop - Alexis Dawson

    • Dress Loud day for speech and hearing awareness month

    • 4 days of action for indigenous justice - honouring, learning, advocating and materially supporting

    • Joint workshop on anti-racism

  • Working on building a justice focus - using instagram - seems to have more reach than facebook.

  • Thanks to Wai-Kin for amplifying this all in the weekly newsletter

  • There will be a new parent networking group for families who self-identify as LGBTQ+

  • Next year - will focus on justice, will have a membership drive, will work to develop an event around orange shirt day


- Yearbook

  • Graduation photos for Grade 6

  • Grade 6 grad is June 24th in their own classrooms; Kindergarten may be doing it - up to the individual classes

  • We have a good amount of content for the yearbook - received from parents and teachers.

  • Yearbook is available for presale for grade 6 and those leaving the school


- Chair's Update

  • Thanks to the administration for their support. We did several things we have never done before - information table and virtual events

  • Thanks to the teachers for all their hard work - gym at home virtually has been amazing to witness, for example.

  • Thanks to all the school council members who have contributed throughout the year - can’t wait to see what we can do next year when we can (hopefully) do more in person

  • Thanks to the parents and community


3. Virtual Pulse Survey Results

  • Survey sent to all virtual families. 41 responses - fairly even split with french/english. 37/41 will likely be returning in person

    • How do they stay up to date - Hebdo Regal Road weekly mostly, then facebook and personal relationships

    • School council events seemed to make the most impact in terms of positive feeling of connection to the school community.

    • Some people may not want to participate - they may have other things to do or they may not be interested in these events.


4. Principal & VP's Update

- Virtual Pulse Survey


- SIP/Equity

  • Plan for the school - will incorporate what has been discussed. May have a school council representative for those discussions. Will pick this up next year.

  • Purchase of resources for math and french

  • PD sessions for when teachers return


- Construction Update

  • East side of building is ahead of schedule - due to the school being closed. All windows on east side will be done by mid-July (about 1.5 months ahead of schedule). Also the entrance way around door 3 was taken apart and put back together (historic site so needs to be put back the same).

  • There was an issue with the structure that was discovered during the window replacement - it was fixed.

  • Window repair on the west side will begin next summer. Same thing - basement and all the way up the west side. Windows that need replacing will be replaced and others will be fixed as needed.

  • Barrier-free project - washroom walls are up, started work on the inside, plumbing almost done. Lift in front staircase - initially told the stairs weren’t going to be replaced, but now they have been replaced

  • Security - card access for teachers will be added. 4 swipe stations - teachers will have pass cards, so none of those doors will need to be unlocked. Hoping this will be done by start of school in September.

  • New bike rack also - can’t be at the front due to being a historical building - it will be around the side

  • Ramp update - not sure of the complete scope - but understanding is the wall at the bottom will be redone and not sure if it is being fixed all the way up - another project for another time to open up to the school. Fixing the wall completely is not part of this project.


- Staffing Update

  • 2 classrooms without a teacher for next year - LTO posts now for year-long positions, hopefully they will be staffed before September

  • Not all teacher information is returned yet - i.e. are some coming back - don’t know yet

  • Our school has been ready to post the vacancies but it has to come out through the board and goes through a process for hiring long term occasional teachers.

  • Uncertainty of virtual school - if numbers on the survey are correct there will be very few students staying in virtual school - but depending on where they are it will determine if classrooms need to be reorganized. Survey in August to get this information officially. Aug 23 - school will have this information, then school can determine if reorganization is needed.

  • Teachers have been selected for the POR positions (now to be called chairs) - these are in place for 3 years.


- End of Year Topics (Cleanout, Graduations, Device Returns)

  • June 28/29 will be for return of all devices and pick up of personal items. Teachers will be in touch to schedule. 2-3 families at a time. Masks to enter the building and stick to the schedule with the teachers. If you can’t make it at the prescribed time, speak to the teacher to make arrangements.


5. Other Business

  • None.


Meeting adjourned.



School Improvement Plan Discussion with Alexis Dawson

May 13, 2021

School Improvement Plan Discussion with Alexis Dawson

1. Land Acknowledgement

2. Welcome

3. Alexis Dawson - member of our community, Anti-racist advocate, School Equity and

Anti-racism consultant, Chair of Rawlinson School Council


First and foremost - a mom. 2 kids at Rawlinson, one in French one in English.

Anti-racism discussions have come to the forefront over the last year, particularly due to the

murder of George Floyd. White people became more interested in how to become more aware

and better allies.

Plan needs to capture the needs of the entire community. Today isn’t a full anti-racism

workshop. Being anti-racist is actually putting in the time, effort and personal work to be a

person who pro-actively seeks to dismantle a racist system. SIP is a set of actions that can help

to restore equity in the school and foster a more anti-racist school culture.

Survey results

● Diverse school population!

● 36 people responded

● Seemed to be a good cross-section

● 74% of respondents were French Immersion parents

○ These parents tend to have more access to be able to respond to this kind of

thing

○ Good to keep in mind - whose interests are we serving if these parents are the

most engaged


● 17% were virtual - good reflection of the way things are

● 74% of respondents were not on school council

● Most understand anti-racism and have conversations at home

● 40% strongly/somewhat agree that they and/or their children have been targets of racism

● 57% strongly/somewhat agree agree that racism is a problem at the school

○ Not much disagreement - either weren’t sure or thought there was a problem

● Most were neutral or don’t know what the school or TDSB are doing to prioritize equity

● 71% strongly/somewhat agree that the school council prioritizes equity.

Stats in the community

● LOI (learning opportunities index) - TDSB system to rank each school based on

measures of external challenges affecting student success.

● School with highest needs is ranked #1

● Highest # is the lowest need

● 473 elementary schools in TDSB

● Regal Road is 366 out of 473 (in 2009 it was 264)

● Schools that feed into Winona there is a variance from 72 (Carleton Village) & 79

(General Mercer JPS) to 420 (Hillcrest CS)


● As neighbourhoods gentrify the school generally increases on this scale

● Impact of gentrification - causes schools to lose resources but the need doesn’t go away

● Schools need to fundraise to compensate for this loss

● Consider sponsoring a school that is higher on the LOI

What is a School Improvement Plan

● Road map that sets out the changes a school needs to make to improve the level of

student achievement

● Mandated by the Ministry of Education

● It is a fluid document, gets updated and changed as things evolve over the school year

● There are measures attached that can hold a school accountable

● SIP process - 3 areas

○ Achievement

○ Equity

○ Wellbeing

● Will have actionable goals in each of these areas

● Includes a description of specific goals and the activities that will be done to achieve the

goals, responsibilities for the activities and goals, process for evaluating how effective

the school has been in achieving the goals

● Align with the guiding principles of equity

● Support each and every student through an equitable and inclusive learning culture

● Empowering everyone to share their voice

● Survey information informed:

○ Need to foster a more positive school climate

○ Need to work on restoring community trust in the school

○ Want everyone to feel that they can be safe and speak candidly

○ Want to build an antiracist school culture

■ Taking a more restorative approach

○ How to think about things differently where students can feel more involved in

their needs being addressed

○ How are the current events at the school inclusive, including events,

communications

○ Create measurable goals for the school

○ Great opportunity for school council to help parents understand their rights with

the parent concern protocol and how to report acts of discrimination

○ How to support student learning at home

○ What processes are available to me if I think my child is struggling

○ Covid response - how are we communicating the protocols, what processes are

in place to make caregivers comfortable with kids being in the school

○ Many people are apprehensive about their children’s social skills having been at

home

○ Top concern was children’s mental health

○ Falling behind in school was also a big concern


○ There is some apprehension about return to school - about returning to an

unwelcome or discriminatory environment


● Alexis notes that she was very impressed with how the admin responded to the survey

feedback. It was positive and thoughtful and self-reflective.

Mr. Morris’ comments

● Appreciates the information and states this is all very important to the school

● As a leader I am not alone and so ask that Wai-Kin to speak after to share his

perspective

● School community is quite diverse

● Have tried to work to bring community into the school (pandemic excluded)

● Much greater attendance at school council meetings in recent times

● Have always had an open door policy to hear concerns from students, staff and parents

and will continue to do that

● Data from the survey shows that we still have a lot of work to do and do things better

than we are doing now

● Felt hurt and shocked by the comments - the concern about racism at the school has not

been drawn to his attention before

● It is a wakeup call for the administrators to note that we have to do things differently and

make some necessary changes

● Changes will come - restorative practices, create an even greater open door policy... It is

a start of a lot of good things, more work on anti-racism and inclusivity.

● Hoping we can incorporate the suggestions into the school improvement plan

● From his perspective there is an acknowledgement that we need to do better and

although we have started that, we need to do better.

Mr. Chan’s comments

● All across the TDSB (and beyond) we are impacted by colonial structures

● All forms of discrimination, no one is immune to biases

● Especially in a school environment we need to take this very seriously

● Wants to acknowledge those who spoke their truth in the survey

● Has worked hard so that when students come to the office he has worked hard to ensure

the students feel welcome

● Has come to realize that equity is at the core

● Has gotten to know the community better over his time at Regal and knows that together

we can find ways to improve


Breakouts - 3 things to focus on for these sessions

1. Fostering a positive school climate

2. Building an antiracist school culture

3. COVID-response

Ask ourselves

1. Where do we want to go?


2. What do we need to learn?

3. What action do we take?


Notes from breakout room 1:

● One set of neighbourhood parents notes how often incidents of racism can be brushed

off and not addressed. One child was called the N word on several occasions and it was

kind of brushed away as kids not understanding, etc. Those kinds of incidents MUST be

addressed - there has to be action, learning has to be fostered from this kind of mistake.

Make sure that these things are addressed as they happen.

○ Toolkit of how this should be addressed with kids, how to ensure staff have the

knowledge/tools to properly address these issues in a way that fosters learning

and doesn’t create defensiveness.

○ Support staff to take action in these circumstances

○ How to make this measurable?

■ After an incident - ask all the people involved - both families - how do they

think the school handled this?

■ If it is effectively addressed at the moment - families might never really be

brought into it. Families probably only know when it escalates up to the

office - so this may not be a truly measurable thing.

■ Is there a way to count these incidents - maybe not due to privacy issues

- even at a statistical level (without details)?

■ What about a survey for the teachers - ask them what are they needing?

Have they been in positions where they needed something? Take that

information and then see if there are any workshops or whatever to

address these issues.

■ Workshops only work if they are followed up with actions - otherwise the

information can be forgotten. Maybe a peer community within the staff for

them to bounce ideas off.

■ Peer discussion amongst the staff - even with staff in other schools -

those who might have more direct experience - mentors or models on

some experiences and how they dealt with that incident. Scenarios and

practice by bouncing off each other.

■ Anonymous teacher survey would be the first step. See what the data

tells us and then implement a workshop or training accordingly.

■ Can we redo the survey to parents in another format and/or other

languages - this is a somewhat complex issue


● When admin says they have an open door policy - that’s great, but what about the fact

that some people feel comfortable and some don’t

○ Alexis - remember that every school has challenges and this is not unique to

Regal - should put that question back on the Admin - it isn’t something that we

can own as parents. It might not be something that will be actionable in and of

itself but can come from an improved school culture. School council should


provide parents with information about how to report concerns of discrimination

and also about the Parent concern protocol. Will share resources with the school

council. Information night on parent advocacy. Given the level of English as a

second language - need to communicate in these languages.


● Equity and anti-racism workshops at the school would be helpful to help white parents

understand. Create affinity spaces - space that people from a particular group can feel

comfortable in and are self-directed. Try to find a way of recruiting people into spaces

like this. Language focus probably needs to be big in this school. Through the student

and parent census the admin has access to detailed information about the community.

● Affinity spaces probably informally exist in the school - so how can we bring them in and

help them to feel heard.

● Parent class reps - is this helping? It isn’t alway equal across the classes.

○ Can we be more proactive about collecting emails and sharing the emails with

other parents - maybe if the teacher is advocating for collection and sharing of

these it might get a better response?


● Issue with French Immersion - it is only for the “cream of the crop” - people get pushed

out - this kind of exclusion always affects minorities first. Classroom management skills

would help - how to deal with incidents, especially young children - always being sent to

the office.

● Lunchrooms - much better eating in the classroom. This is an issue to encourage

positive culture - many children had issues with the lunchrooms and some children were

pathologized for it and others were not. The same issues were shared by multiple

families regarding this, but the way it was handled varied greatly.

Notes from breakout room 2:

There was a discussion on the need for a more inclusive culture in the school council. To Be

cognizant of whose voices are heard at the meetings. This can be done by rotating days of the

week and times of the meetings. Online meetings will also allow for equitable participation

(Many parents cannot attend in person meetings.)

How is school budgeting for delivering an anti-racism and Equity curriculum? Will they invite anti

racism coaches and check in regularly throughout the year. How to foster an inclusive and anti

racist community among school staff, teachers and parents.


Notes from breakout room 3:

Questions we wrestled with;

1. How do we move forward?

2. How do we make ourselves accountable?

3. How to reach new people/parents?

4. How do we build trust?

5. How do we avoid reproducing particular perspectives?

6. How does activism tie into student learning?

- Being committed to asking more questions.

- Committing to more parent council engagement, and follow-up surveys.

- Not forgetting the student voice and experience.

- New parents to the school can feel particularly disconnected "like tourists." This

is particularly true in these COVID days when no one is allowed in the school and

contact between parents, teachers and cohorts are highly restricted. Kindergarten

years with parent council are seen as a crucial time to support connections and

provide orientation. There is a need for support structures for parents new to the

school.

This could come in the form of shared documents, a Parent Buddy network as well

as encouragement of Orientation for Parent Link families. Outreach to different

linguistic communities. Seeking input from families about what kind of support they

would like from our Parent Council.

Buddies could draw from different communities and especially seek out

representation from/for BIPOC families, LGBTQ2S families, Indigenous families as

well as other linguistic communities who may not have the same comfort or ease

with English language emails and instructions.

We should also be careful NOT to overly rely on tech communication because it can

reinforce silos for families without DATA plans and tech hardware or skills. Some

communication needs to be from person to person, casual and informal if it is to

reach the widest audience.


- Mandate Anti-racist, Equity Curriculum for ALL grades, English and French

Immersion streams.

- Institute a Restorative Justice Practice or approach to addressing student,

teacher, parent and community issues. Admin, teacher, parent and student training

for engaging with Restorative approaches so that it is consistently modelled in our

school community.

- Don't forget BIG PICTURE activism, like communicating about how local School

Board Trustees, TDSB officials, MP's, MPP's, Provincial and Federal Government

policies are positively/negatively affecting student support, education funding,

curriculum, and other local issues. We acknowledge that your letter to the Premier

about how Doug Ford's botched COVID response exposed Ontario's own racist

barriers. We need to continue to engage in these kinds of political advocacy.

- Challenging white parents to do more by encouraging them to have more difficult

conversations. Your neighbours are having these conversations, are you?

- Developing a PARENT PROTOCOLS PLAN based on what Alexis Dawson was

talking about. Connected to this would be making sure that this information would

be consolidated or managed and updated so that no one would have to reinvent the

wheel. Maybe a sorted Parent Council Google Drive with info about FAQ's, month

by month reminders related to deadlines, instructions about how to access different

resources and support different students and families under different

circumstances. i.e. Free Language translation services or parents who are

comfortable translating for other families. All with the goal of improving

transparency. The TDSB and our ADMIN would have much of this information, and

it could be easily shared so that families have more than one option when it comes

to getting answers for their particular situation. This is a case where redundancy is

good.

- A Universal Code of Conduct and supports for families who are uncomfortable

with how school and classroom rules are being 'enforced'. Goal should be

TRANSPARENT, CONSISTENT EXPECTATIONS. The rules in the playground

should make sense in the classroom and translate seamlessly into public spaces,

classrooms and off school property (and even from teacher to teacher). 'Rules'

should apply equally to Parents, Office, Admin, Teachers and Students. BIPOC

families depend on consistent, transparent expectations even more than

non-racialized families. It's a precondition that all trust depends on.


Notes from breakout room 4:

Where do we want to

go?


Fostering Positive School Climate -

Racism prevalent in every way. English track - student

voice is quite important and to speak critically.

Normalise speaking out, to be able to connect, make it

interesting (eg., write a book about it, there is a purpose,

learn from it). So much more diversity economically,

ethnically in English stream. Because of that, a very

different experience in FI stream.

Not happening in FI (kids not sharing due to language

barriers potentially). Fear of speaking up, to feel safe to

speak up.

who’s selecting in FI (piece about economic mobility,

class stuff, folks who are privileging second language),

on whole welcoming environment, haven’t done a good

enough job in anti-black racist. In FDK, one racialised

child in class, felt like he was target for supports etc.,

but it felt really early on that was signalled in the

classroom, some elements of that at Regal. Deep work

to do this from every part of the curriculum. Want

teachers to have more and different capacities around

student discipline, dealing with trauma. We are doing

our best, but doing our best is not good enough.

Notion of unlearning - massive piece, work we’ve been

doing in our meetings with our superintendent with

other P/VPs, harsh look at our own selves, things we

have done in our own lives.


What do we need to

learn?


Shame - children feel that and are disengaged.

Strategies to deal with that - systems that are in place

where some teachers use shame as student discipline.

(Renee Brown).

every child learns uniquely and differently. Personalise

learning. Have a buddy/sister class - communicate with

kids they don’t know e.g., a grade 4 class at Rawlinson.

need to set tone right away in September - zero

shaming policy.

not shaming, anti-racism, Anti-black racism.

Meaningful learning, global competency based learning.

Equity/antiracism and classism (intersectionality)

sessions for school community - staff,

parents/guardians, students.

French Immersion side?

French - just a language. Child’s well being more

important.

COVID 19 - element of fragility, after a long time. Child

asked “what are the parents doing who’s both parents

are essential workers” (huge divide between those who

work from home and those who don’t).


What action do we take?

(think of systems of

measure)

● Qualitative,

quantitative


Restorative practices training for our community:

student, staff, parents

7 sacred teachings

Announcements

Resources to staff and parents

School council meetings

Hearing from students

Climate surveys whole school community engaging

missing voices (translation, social worker)

Continue work with our social worker

Equity/antiracism and classism (intersectionality)

sessions for school community

Clubs

Events should be about building and rebuilding

community (who do these events serve, who do they

attract, why)

SEPA - student voice


Notes from breakout room 5:

Where do we want to go:

● Community built on trust and open communication

● Mutual respect

● Transparency

● Communication - more and better

What action do we take?

● Ongoing 3rd party surveys to determine baseline of problems needing to be solved

● Shorter surveys, simple language

● Incentive to complete surveys (gift cards in the community)

● Newsletter: look at relevance, timing (Friday evening is not ideal), more sight line into

school

● Prioritize translation of and access to Hebdo/parent information

● More interactive parent engagement beyond just newsletter

● Parents need to champion inclusivity as well - not just rely on admin and teachers

● How do we get the perspective of students? Use drawing/art to express for younger

kids?

● Bring back teacher librarians to support collection of anti-racist and equity texts

● Teacher feedback:


● With introduction of Wai-Kin, constantly speaking of community-building,

anti-racism, trying to make part of meetings every month (training)

● Message to teachers and students that it is a long journey, isn’t something to

talk about once and solve once.

● Bring anti-racism into all teaching, not just didactic approach

● Have TDSB coaches, but they’re not able to be prescriptive with teachers who

aren’t responsive

● Teachers share good resources they’ve found - who holds them accountable to

bring in to their classroom?


● Welcome kit for new parents - expectations for new parents, including where to reach

out for support, info about roles & responsibilities of admin, council, etc.

● Reps from council/class parents to reach out to new parents & connect

● Ambassadors for the school to ensure nobody feels left out


What do need to learn?

● What is the experience like for someone who isn’t like me?

● A lot to be learned from Covid-times in terms of school council meeting turnout and

information sharing

● What resources are available to teachers (curriculum resources and supplemental

resources)

School Council Meeting Minutes for March 24 2021

March 24th, 2021

Agenda:

1) Land Acknowledgement

2) Principal & VP Update


a. Health & Safety update

b. Outdoor Learning update

c. Feedback on Davenport Ramp

d. Parent Concern Protocol

e. Staffing

3) Fundraising Update

4) Yearbook Update

5) Equity Committee Update

6) Other Business


Principal & VP Update

Health & Safety update

● Supplies at school - one of the wipes provided have to be replaced, the product didn’t

have a batch #. Will be rectified. School still has plenty without these.

● Did receive newer masks for students and staff have medical masks and shields.

● HEPA filters are in place - arrived on the 15th. Still 3 classes without - prep providers.

Request has been made to TDSB facilities for a few more to make up these.

● CO2 testing - not something that is monitored usually, but if there was a particular

concern, i.e. headaches, fumes, smell of gas etc. then we would monitor. There is no

history of issues in the building. Another reason not to do testing is there are a lot of

variables, windows open, # kids in the class that day, is the door open etc. hard to get an

accurate reading.

● Windows and Construction - things are carrying on, will go on over April Break and

summer. Windows, accessible washroom and front of the school entrance for

accessibility, including a lift and automatic door openers. Will try to do a lot of work over

the April break. Daycare will be open, so will ask that they stay out of the east courtyard,

so the daycare will avoid that area, but can still use the kindergarten playground.

● Question about new masks - are they available for all sizes? Have seen a lot of kids

coming from the kindergarten classes still with the small ones.

○ Answer: both are fine, they are just using up what is remaining

○ Response: can’t we use the new 3-layer ones due to the benefits and the fact

that there is a 3rd wave.

○ Answer: Teachers can get them from the office.

● Question: What is the policy for teachers wearing masks in the yard

○ Answer: the same rules as everyone else

○ Response: Can this be reinforced with the staff, as some have been seen not

wearing them properly.


○ Answer: yes, and also we are encouraging everyone to leave at the end of

school.

Outdoor Learning update

● Now with the nice weather, the message is to get outside!

● Will be strongly encouraged that all classes get out at least once or twice more than their

phys.ed classes.

● Question: Eating outside?

○ Answer: classes still need to be separated and so only half can be outside at a

time, so they would have to sit inside the other half of lunch if they ate outside.

● Patrick: Outdoor learning continues where left off before lockdown. Almost all prep is

outdoors but more and more are coming out with their regular teacher as well, and

spaces outside are being subdivided to accommodate as much as possible. A specialist

will come to the school to help advise on outdoor learning. Garden will be set up - at

least started by Earth Day, with milk crates and soil for growing vegetables and flowers.

Each class will have space to grow. A parent has donated sapling trees we can start in

containers and then give out to community for those who know of a good place to plant a

tree. Hopefully, we can also spread out into the community, just need to ensure

supervision ratios.

● Question/comment: Available tires to donate for kids to sit on

○ Answer: a couple more would be great, but we don’t need more than that.

Feedback on Davenport Ramp

● Last year there was a meeting with facilities leaders and they looked at the ramp - put a

fence at the bottom after to completely block as it is in very rough shape. Recently

received an email central facilities team asking the Principal if we are opening it up

and/or what are we going to do about it. So asking for feedback around whether we are

opening it up. Can’t say yes we can do it or not, but can speak to them about whether

the community wants it open or not. There will need to be many other discussions about

HOW it will be done. Issues around safety, does the gate open at the top to let people

in? Can we safely open it and would we have to close it in the winter time? Additional

costs and labour for caretaking will be a lot. Also, if open all the time, how does this

affect safety with this kind of access to the school.

● Feedback: Big safety concern walking up Dufferin from Davenport - this is a big safety

concern and it is very scary walking up that strip with little kids, so really hoping we can

explore opening this up.

● Feedback: same comment regarding the safety of Dufferin going up the hill. It is very

unsafe going up Dufferin from Davenport. But appreciate the issues with caretaking.

What is to stop people walking through the yard - but would rather take this risk than the

risks of walking up Dufferin.

● Feedback: support opening it up. Have tried to get a guard rail for Dufferin. Tried to get

that even when they did the sidewalk they didn’t reply or both to put in the guard rail.

Can’t rely on the city to fix Dufferin.

● Feedback: This has come up many times over the years. Always told it was cost

prohibitive. The community would really like it to open.


● Teacher’s perspective: Valuable space that could be used as garden or to explore a

more wild area. Not for recess, but with a class would be valuable. We could work with

Regal Heights association to cut back some trees and to clear out the non-native

species. Could be a partnership with the community to restore it.

● Feedback: Can/should we fundraise for this - it is likely going to be very expensive.

○ Hopeful maybe it can be done without this

● Feedback: It would facilitate little kids as discussed, but also for the older kids - Dufferin

strip is hazardous and would give some of the older kids better safety/ability to walk on

their own.

Parent Concern Protocol

● Where to go to get answers or what to do if you see something or that you want to get

done.

○ Parent concern protocol

■ 1st point of contact is the child’s teacher - email/phone call. Message

them to check in - sometimes there are misunderstandings, getting some

clarity might resolve the issue.

■ If you get a response that you are unsatisfied with then you can go to the

Principal or VP and please cc the teacher

■ You can go to the Superintendent after that, but usually it should be

resolved by this point.


Graduation

● Starting conversation tomorrow about what this will look like and what we can do - will be

virtual. More updates to come in April. Will include students in the virtual school.

Staffing

● We are just starting the staffing process. Seniority information has been

gathered/distributed and we have received the final enrollment numbers. 551, which is

15 students down from last year. This doesn’t necessarily mean we are losing any

teachers as these 15 are likely spread over the whole school. Should receive the

allocation next week and then the staffing committee meets and sets up what the

classes can look like. Some of this is dictated by the number of teachers we are given in

each category (i.e. # teachers for 1-3, then have to make the numbers work in those

grades). Primaries are capped at 20, kindergarten capped at 29. Planning is for a full

in-person start in September.

● Consider all the possible models - everyone has a say, but ultimately the final decision

lies with the Principal. Last few years it has gone very smoothly and there has been a

good general consensus.

● Why so many split grades - largely dependent on the number of students/teachers in

each level (primary/junior) and also sometimes it is beneficial to have more classes of

the same grade to be able to split certain kids up, to lighten the load on teachers in some

grades.

● Question: Likelihood of teacher-librarian being returned?

○ Answer: hope so, have heard that they aren’t going to take this away if we are

back to our full load.


● Superintendent reviews the model and approves. Then the Principal/VP determine

where to place teachers. Teachers will have the opportunity to go through 2 rounds of

job opportunities. We may need to hire. After that teachers can also request a transfer if

they really want a change and they would be moved to a different school within their

learning network.

● Although you can’t request a particular teacher you can let the admin know if there are

particular wants/needs in terms of the type of classroom/learning style etc. and if these

can be accommodated they will be.

● Teachers will work together to place students into their next year’s classes.

Updates from the VP

● Earth Hour events will be delayed to Monday (rain date Tuesday) due to poor weather

expected on Friday.

● Please be vigilant about masks during unsupervised play outside of school hours.

● Anti-discrimination/Anti-racisim - have been doing some training and are looking at

policies around special education and Kindergarten to try to improve the cultural

relevance etc.

Fundraising Update

● Hopefully everyone is aware of the direct drive going on now.

● Progress to date: Already 1⁄4 of the way to our goal already due to some generous and

fast out of the gate families.

● Please share: You don’t have to have a student in school to make a donation - share

with grandparents or other community members - they will get a tax receipt, just need to

make an account and anyone can donate.

Yearbook Update

● Past yearbook - mostly distributed, only the ~30-40 that belong to graduates or virtual

families. So far it hasn’t been suitable to distribute in a mass go.

● Will book appointments for those remaining for week of April 6-9 after school each day

that week.

● This year’s yearbook - school photos are unknown at this time and we might not know

until late in the year, so we have decided that we will plan for 2 versions - one with

school photos and one without, and also we will not distribute them until the fall.

● We will make sure to have a section in this yearbook devoted to virtual students,

advocacy, classroom content.

● Class reps will connect with the teachers and ask each class to curate their own content.

● Will have the cover contest.

Equity Committee Update

● New this year

● Thanks to all who have participated in this committee and to the admin for meeting with

us.

● Will be bringing in Alexis Dawson who is an active member of the community with

expertise in advocacy and equity - in particular anti-black racism.

● Will replace the school council meeting in May with a presentation from Alexis Dawson.

To help integrate an awareness of anti-black racism and oppression.


● Additionally, Equity book drive - we applied for the PRO Grant to put books into each

classroom. Grade appropriate books to each classroom that have equity focus.

● The Principal - Is there a way to get the students voice heard in terms of what books

they would like to see. What kind of books do they think would represent them? Is there

a way to survey the students? The school will do this for some funds they have for the

library.

● We haven’t figured out the process yet, so will definitely think of incorporating this.

● Want to encourage all parents to reach out and communicate and/or participate as much

as they can - with no requirement or expectation for a full commitment in the committee.

● Question: Is Alexis helping with the SIP? Is she helping School Council with their

budget? What is she helping us work towards?

○ Answer: There was an intake conversation, have discussed several things.

School Improvement Plan will be the primary focus.

● Question: Is there a future plan around anti-indigenous racism?

○ Answer: There are many future areas to work on - we have to start somewhere

and this has been selected as a starting point.


● Want to think of this committee further than this one year - the more people we can get

on board to address other topics the better and they can be incorporated into the longer

term plan.

● Building equity at a school is more than just planning individual events for any particular

day, it is more important to look at the school as a whole and incorporate these ideas

into all the areas possible.

Other Business

● Asymptomatic testing hub at Oakwood - concerns were shared with School Trustee.

There are also limitations to how they collected the data - “Toronto Region” is reported

on not TDSB, for example.

● TPH hasn’t shared the results from our hub except that there were 291 on that night and

maybe another 80 to do as spill over the next week.

● We would have received information on any positive case if in our school and we didn’t

receive any notice of this, so that is all we know for sure.

● Yes, we have done well so far but this isn’t over and we have to stay on top of it!

School Council Meeting Minutes for February 24 2021

February 24 2021

Agenda:

1. Land Declaration

2. Principal & VP Update

3. Fundraising Announcement

4. Events Update

5. Yearbook Update

6. Open Discussion on Return to In-School Learning

7. Update on Community Events

8. Other Business

Principal & VP update

Principal

● busy 2 weeks - glad to be back in the building. Students are happy to be back. Staff too. Getting back into the routines quickly. Some of the new routines, eg. masks outdoors as well as in - has gone well, everyone has done well with this. Wet masks - please send extra masks and also office has ‘endless’ supply so will and do hand out as necessary.

○ Masks outdoors - very good compliance. Also Parents have been very compliant for the most part, working to get this to 100%.

○ Meeting tomorrow with the public health nurse - will discuss entry/exit. Exits are getting packed at end of day - so will see if other doors can also be used since there is no one entering at that time. Hesitate to change the routines, but if public health thinks it is ok, then will consider.

○ Vehicles outside the school sometimes blocking (parent comment) - response: mostly the congestion is from parents picking up and dropping off. Please drop and go. Will ensure that staff doing supervision wear their vests so they are more obvious and parents feel comfortable dropping and going.

● HEPA filters - most recent update - first few weeks of march board is trying to make sure every occupied classroom will have a HEPA filter in it. Hoping this goes forward. Once this done, if there are any classrooms without, then we could consider fundraising. Principal’s personal opinion - the government or board should pay for these. They are ~$700 so the ask is a lot. Will know more in the upcoming weeks - there should be no need to fundraise, will keep updated.

● Construction:

○ Getting started on the B9 room for windows and the east side of the building, ground level. Exit 2 windows will be replaced next, probably summer.

○ Accessibility project - accessible washroom main floor and lift at front steps, with ramp outside. Automatic door openers and one more accessible water

fountain/bottle refill station also.

○ We now have water bottle fillers on each floor. Maybe we should fundraise for Regal Road waterbottles?

○ Door 3 - and staircase being redone - in summer. Possibility that the main door, door 2 and door 3 might need to be closed for the summer. It might mean a move for the daycare - not 100% certain yet. Will try to give as much notice as possible.

● Staffing - Process starts for next year. Received timelines today - goes from now till end of May. Look at things like staffing model, projected enrollment for next year, vacancies, etc. Beginning of May there will be a message so parents can send an email to request a particular type of class - NOT specific teachers. More information to come at future meetings.

● Asked about survey results from last year - stress of principals, teachers… Principal acknowledges that this is probably true for everyone, parents, other workers etc. Vice-Principal

● HEPA filters - add - it is only one tool that is used and as a school we will focus on the other things - screening, enhanced cleaning, open windows etc.

● It is great that most families are sending the health forms signed in the morning - if they aren’t then it is a bottleneck and decreases class time

● There are 2 pink days - April - the International Day of Pink. Today started in BC. April Pink Day is really more than just anti-bullying but is about homophobia and transphobia. ● Staffing - if you know anyone moving to the neighbourhood or will young kids who will start school - it is important they register early so the numbers are as accurate as possible to decrease reorganization in September.

Principal

● Registration board-wide for FI is down ~20%. May impact registration for next year.

Fundraising Announcement

● We will be launching a couple of fundraisers in the next couple of weeks ● Fundscrip - online sale of gift cards/ electronic gift cards. We will send information out soon that will include an invitation code to use to select Regal Road as the recipient. A small % of each card purchased is donated back to us. You an use credit cards to pay for the cards but if you do the donation is reduced to pay the credit card fees, so please consider taking a little extra time to set up one of the other payment options - either paying for the cards as a bill payment in your online banking or setting up to do electronic fund transfer for payment - there are instructions on the site when you make the purchase.

● Direct drive - we will soon send out messaging asking for donations to support virtual learning in the classroom - specifically virtual events and field trips for each class to participate in. Our goal for this initiative is $5000 and if you do the math, just $11 per student would allow us to achieve this goal, of course not everyone can or will donate, so please consider if you can contribute more.

Next Virtual Event

● Stay-cation Trivia - all ages Trivia Night! When: Non-March Break week, Time: TBD ○ Meet briefly after this meeting to plan and pick a date

○ Maybe an entry fee to make it a fundraiser… undecided. Pay what you can? Other ideas?

Yearbooks

● About to start distribution - but it is more challenging this year. Will deliver the majority to the classrooms - all in person learners. For virtual students and last years graduates - can’t distribute at this time due to the stay at home order. When lifted, with better weather, will do this outdoors. Hopefully soon.

Open Discussion on Return to In-School Learning

● Windows - some classrooms have windows that only work a little, some don’t work, etc. Is there an expectation that all the classes will have windows that open? ○ Response - part of the construction is for this, the problem is some of the windows that were replaced more recently are the ones that are problematic. There is a process for this - the information on what needs to be replaced is sent to the board, gets slotted for when it can be done - all across the board.

○ The expectation is that if the teachers can open the windows they should be doing that. Classrooms with windows that don’t work have HEPA filters. Others that are having difficulty have been told to speak to the caretakers.

○ Question as to whether CO2 or CO are monitored - Principal has asked for that information and will let us know.

● Screening form changed at back to school - seems to be some inconsistency with how teachers were handling this - kids without form go to Principal or VP to be screened. Is there a consistent process for all the teachers?

○ Teachers get the same message - either the QR code or the signed form - doesn’t have to be the one with all the questions. Just needs to be the dated and signed section.

○ Also, covid attestation for return to school is required. If you are ill - have symptoms, you must be tested or else isolate for 10 days. TDSB website has a decision guide, will add to the weekly update.

● Any insight on the TDSB masks - why they haven’t been changed from the double layer. TPH recommends Level 1 medical masks are needed for the adults and children can wear cloth masks.

● Parent comment: There is a big difference in the quality of masks and there is a lot of evidence that this does matter - so parents are just concerned that the quality of the TDSB provided masks are not sufficient.

○ Response: TPH has cleared the type of masks that are being distributed ● Parent comment: Thanks to VP for visiting the classrooms to meet the kids. ● Parent comment: Question about how much outdoor time the kids are getting. Seems to

be somewhat teacher dependent. Can we please encourage teachers to have more outside time.

○ Response: this is encouraged and will keep doing that.

● Parent question: how are we doing with physical distancing in the classroom?

○ Response: Not a school in the system can do this properly - not enough teachers and not enough space. So, we are doing everything we can and reminding students, but in classrooms - most are a metre apart.

● Also note - we are exploring outdoor school photos when the weather improves. ● Question: Lunchroom supervision

Response:

○ Supervisors are always in the kindergarten rooms, either ECE or lunch supervisors

○ Other classes the supervisors are split into 2 groups as are all the classes - some eat first and go out second/vice versa.

○ When eating classes are putting on videos to keep the kids occupied so they don’t walk around

○ Supervisors walk between 2-3 classrooms - spend maybe 2-3 minutes per room and then move to the next, keep rotating

○ Some schools have even less - our ratio is not bad

○ Sometimes the classroom teacher is in the room, but they are encouraged to not be there so they aren’t in the class while all the kids are unmasked.

○ Kids are encouraged to put their masks back on right after they finish eating ○ Parent comment: hearing a lot of stories from kids, if there isn’t an adult in the room and they are finished eating - they aren’t putting on their masks and some kids feel anxious and are trying to police this

○ Response: will send a message to the teachers to have a conversation about this, and also if parents can have this discussion at home. Hopefully that message will be consistent and the kids will follow.

Update on Community Events - Adam

● Council is working on several equity initiatives - but also noticed there are some great virtual events coming up (all tomorrow)

https://www.tdsb.on.ca/News/Article-Details/ArtMID/474/ArticleID/1591/Stronger-t han-Hate

https://sites.google.com/tdsb.on.ca/csws/parent-academy?authuser=0 ○ Dewson event will be shared via Instagram

Other Business

● Parent comment: Class photos?

○ Response: Yes, we are hoping to do outdoor photos. This has been given the go ahead from TDSB. When? Will wait for better weather. Want to be able to do them outside and to include everyone, including virtual students somehow (after school?). Also, have discussed an abbreviated yearbook - but can we get the photos on time? Can the photo company deliver the photos before the end of the year? Looking into it.

● Virtual school parent comment: No council for virtual school - no advocacy. The kids are struggling with missing their friends and seeing everyone go back to school. Maybe can we do something like sending postcards? Or an email? Some kind of

communication/connection for the virtual kids from the in-school kids.

● Yearbook - proposed theme: We are all in this together. Hoping we can get more student participation this year.




School Council Meeting Minutes for January 21 2021

January 21, 2021

Agenda:

1. Land Declaration & Intros

2. Budget 2020/2021

3. Principal’s Update

4. Introduction from our new VP, Wai-Kin Chan

5. Open Discussion on Remote Learning

6. Yearbook & School Photos Discussion

7. Other Business

Minutes:

Budget 2020/2021

● Ended last year in a good cash position ~$20k - did not have Spring Fair and some other initiatives we would have spent money on. Also, raised money for pizza that we did not buy

● Spring - direct drive will happen

● If we return to school we hope we can do an outdoor dance-a-thon sometime in the spring

● 2 school Yearbooks in budget this year

● Carry over the pizza money and if possible will do a pizza party for each class later in the year

● Teacher resources - non-curriculum items for classroom

● Added outdoor budget this year to help encourage outdoor learning

● One scientist in the school per class

● Field trip budget for virtual trips

● Classroom equity library initiative - new this year

○ School library has a good collection, want classrooms to also reflect the diversity

Principal’s Update

● For new FI kindergarten families - the process has begun

● Construction

○ Still waiting for window project to start, probably won’t start till after we are in the building, unless things change and the workers can be in the building but school not yet back

○ Will mean moving B9 to room 6

○ Painting in gym done - looks fantastic. Gym and hallway behind the gym and the snack program kitchen.

○ Accessibility project - discussed last year - new accessible washroom main floor and a ramp or lift at the front door and automatic door openers for library, main door and office.

■ Will now happen (was on hold) - not sure of timeline, will share when known.

○ Next phase after, possibility of elevator in building. Timing not known - more in the future.

● Optional attendance for grade 6 - moving to a school other than Winona - need to submit a form - get it from the school you want to attend and Mr. Morris signs - can be electronic via the office admin.

● No other information with regards to date of return - earliest is Feb 10 (FYI - Feb 12th is a PA day for interviews and then Monday the 15th is Family Day)

● Has received lots of emails - please do reach out if you need anything - teachers, Mr. Morris and Wai-Kin all available

○ Has been hearing each day getting better and better

○ Message to staff and parents - do what you can. There are guidelines from the ministry - teachers should be following, but how exactly they do it is up to them. ○ If parents/kids need a break - do that. Parents know their children best, take care of yourselves.

Q&A - accessibility

● Gender neutral washrooms

○ there are several

● Question about video announcements going forward to allow for visual accessibility to replace just the loud speaker announcements. This occurs at some other schools. Can we do this at RR?

○ Will explore and Michael will discuss with the staff how that might look. ○ Some staff have expressed opinion that there isn’t a perfect time for

announcements - if recorded then could also be varied time-wise for each class. Q&A - online learning

● JK parent - child finding work not super useful - can parents take the child out freely for a day, a week? How do we navigate this without negative impacts

○ Absences are absences for whatever reason - illness or just need a break. ○ Contact the teacher and school and they will be marked absent with a reason ○ There is an opportunity (email around Jan 8th from the board) - about asking for

an exemption from the amount of time the students are doing synchronous learning.

○ You know your child best - do what is best for them.

Introduction from our new VP, Wai-Kin Chan

● Has received a lot of warm emails and greetings - looking forward to being a part of our community

● Background - started as secondary, then taught french immersion in Waterloo, was TDSB resource teacher after, then a learning coach - helping teachers examine how they teach and how they address the needs of their students. Most recently - digital tools to remove barriers to access for students and develop 20th century students ● Passionate about digital technology and how that can remove barriers to learning.

Open Discussion on Remote Learning

● For every success story there are also challenges

● Opening up for discussion - comments/questions/suggestions

From the floor:

● Question - how are people dealing with teachers not sticking to the schedule - how are people empowering their children to keep themselves occupied?

○ Suggestion - list that the kids can choose from - sometimes works, sometimes not - some active things and some not.

○ Mr. Morris - keep in mind flexibility and understanding of what is synchronous learning: this is when the teacher is online, usually in front of class and with camera on, but doesn’t mean that they are talking the entire time. Teachers might assign a task and work with a smaller group or just be available. This is part of what synchronous learning is. The difficulty can be - technical issues - we need to be flexible about this too.

○ Another comment - encourage children to be independent with the work that is assigned but sometimes there isn’t more work - so having a list available, workbooks that are fun (mazes, dot-to-dot), sometimes there is lots of TV or video games for too long.

○ Another tip - visual timer can be helpful when they have breaks

● Comment - Challenge in focusing on work when there is “synchronous” time - the teacher can be heard speaking to each student, whereas in the classroom the teacher would be walking around. 2 things have helped: sometimes just go offline at a point in the afternoon, or - today, the teacher opened a second meeting for specific students to go into the other link - so only they were hearing each other - the original meet was quiet.

● Comment - one teacher did ask for feedback from parents - maybe this could be given out more widely. Breakout rooms would be so useful. Also, if there could be a time specified for when the parent is needed (for the kindy kids) this would also be helpful if that could be done.

● Comment - fully virtual family - grade 6 and grade 9 - taking every Friday off - this is ok.

● Comment - building on the parental survey - we should also check in with the kids - what is making them feel good and what is making them feel bad in all this. There are specific things that are not working for my child and some things he is thriving in. Beyond scheduling and getting the parents time to work - we need to also ask the kids what’s working.

● Comment - work with your kids on how to use the google meet

● Comment - some teachers are discouraging social interaction between the kids during the google meets - feedback is there is so much “learning” but the kids need the conversation and fun time with their peers. That social interaction piece is missing from this.

● Comment - another fully virtual family - still a struggle - comment on the teacher wanting parent involvement - the teacher might not want to bother the parents - offer. About the social interaction point - this parent has started a homework club - they do the work and then get to play prodigy after that. We could set this up per class if we want.

● Comment - silliness is missing for sure… can we have some kind of spirit day? ○ Mr. Morris - this is doable

○ Some teachers have done some of this (Ms. Ryan’s class had PJ day and pet expo day, for example)

● Comment - joint class activities are good - mindfulness, yoga…

● Question - can we help the teachers in some way? (With technical issues) ○ Mr. Morris suggests to reach out directly to the teacher, they may or may not take you up on it.

● Wai-Kin comment: not everyone has 2 devices (teachers) - the school board can’t provide a second device to all teachers.

Yearbook & School Photos Discussion

● We appreciate everyone’s patience with last year’s yearbook

● They are in the office at school but we can’t get them out until at least the stay-at-home order is lifted.

● What will this year’s yearbook look like?

○ We will do:

■ Parent survey

■ Student survey

○ Brainstorming on ideas for what we can do - might not be traditional but we can probably come up with some creative ideas.

● We will keep you posted on the yearbook.

Other Business - opening the floor up

● Comment - Remember this is a staff that didn’t choose to teach virtually - they wanted to be in school. Although it works for some people - this wasn’t what this staff chose. And it is a totally different job to do virtual rather than in person.



School Council Meeting Minutes for November 26 2020

November 26, 2020

Agenda:

- Xavier Debrah-Grant Presentation & Q&A

- Principal/VP's Update

- School Council Updates

- Other Items/Questions

Minutes:

Xavier Debrah-Grant (Toronto Public Health COVID-19 School Liason)

School council nurse presentation

● Each nurse 20-30 schools. Provide outreach, education and COVID-19 prevention services.

● Feedback and advice for teachers

● +ve case - this nurse works with the TPH to determine contacts

● Teach your child how covid spreads and what they can do to prevent. ○ Indirect eg. passing a pencil - handwashing

○ Direct contact eg. people touching each other - physical distance

○ Droplets eg. from sneezing, coughing, talking - wear face mask

● Current guidelines - “Yes” to 1 symptom - stay home for 24 hours, if symptoms improved can return.

● Daily screening at home is best.

● Physical distancing at school - reinforce by showing what 6 feet is like. Reassure it is ok to ask politely for others to give you space and that some space is better than none. Maintain as much distance as possible. Think of ways they can connect with friends without getting too close. Find ways that are fun to greet each other.

● Face masks - best is 3-layer, make sure it is being worn correctly. Also, how it is put on and taken off is important. Make sure hands are clean before putting it on and take it off from the ear loops, not touching the face part, and then wash hands right away. Don’t wear the mask on the chin and make sure it fits correctly. If the mask is not used correctly it can be more of a danger.

● What happens in a school when there is a case of covid?

○ Parents report to principal

○ Nurse fills out a form for outbreak determination

○ Identity of the case will not be revealed

○ Want to determine all close contacts

○ How many people in the family?

○ Do all the kids go to the same school?

○ Did other family members get tested?

○ Did the positive case have symptoms, if so when?

○ Close contact =

■ within 2 meters of distance for more than 15 minutes,

■ someone in your class, school bus or in after school cohort,

■ someone you had close physical contact with (i.e. hug),

■ a person who accidentally coughed/sneezed while in close proximity. ○ When did symptoms start - that day and 2 days prior is when the virus is actively being spread. If the child was not in class in this period then risk is low. ○ If close contact - all are sent home

○ Principal can dismiss a cohort immediately if they choose.

○ CDI (communicable disease investigator) has access to lab results and collects all the information, also the principal will provide information to the CDI - once all is gathered then close contacts are determined. Those close contacts would get letters that they should stay at home.

○ For close contacts - all members of the household should stay home and self isolate.

○ Cohort can be dismissed if there is a covid positive test result - then everyone isolates.

○ If siblings in other cohorts are at home - but they did not have close contact with a positive covid person - these children do not have to stay at home.

○ Once there is contact - get a test - if negative, still must isolate, but other members of the household can return to work. If the test is positive, notify the school and TPH will follow up with further instructions.

● If child has symptoms - no known close contact:

○ Positive test - must stay home for 10 days from symptom onset, household members and close contacts have to stay home and isolate for 17 days (this is new, up from 14 days)

○ Negative test - child can return to school after 24 hours if their symptoms are improved.

● Safe return to school/attestation form

○ May be required. Good practice to fill this in to assure everyone that the child is ok.

● Outbreak

○ Defined as 2 or more positive cases in a school within a 14-day period, with at least one infection traced back to the school environment (can include transportation to and from)

○ Outbreak can be declared for class/cohort/school

● Self-isolation at home

○ Avoid contact with others

○ No visitors unless essential care provider

○ Stay away from seniors and those with chronic medical conditions ○ Stay in separate rooms from others and use separate washroom from others (or sanitize after each use)

○ Keep at least 2 feet from others at all times

○ All family members should wear masks

● Download and use the COVID alert app

● Regal Road site visit - school has followed all public health recommendations

Questions

● 3-layer masks - the TDSB provided mask for kids is not 3-layers, is this ok? ○ One layer is better than no mask

○ Physical distancing is best

● Provincial government announcement for asymptomatic testing - what is defined as hotspot? All of Toronto?

○ If there is a case in any school - now TPH will provide testing in the class or cohort

● Is the asymptomatic test the rapid test

○ Not yet approved

● Masks off outside while playing and at pick up/drop off - is this safe? ○ Open air larger space ok, but if not distanced then masks should be worn. ● Guidelines around coming back to school after winter break?

○ Nurses are getting a briefing in the coming days around this

○ Cases will still be reported to the school nurses and same follow up will happen ● Xavier will check if the ppt presentation can be shared with us - this has been shared and a link will be available on our website also.

Principal/VP update

● Construction

○ Some windows will be replaced, not sure when starting, tomorrow to measure. ○ Everyone who comes in wears appropriate PPE and does health check ● Phase II construction

○ West side windows will be done too - pre-meeting is Wednesday of next week ○ Actual construction won’t happen for a while yet

● School budget has been completed and will be shared with school council ● Michael will keep eye/ear out about whether the masks to give away to kids will be changed. School has a good stockpile - could give medical masks to kids if needed or requested.

● Some teachers not wearing masks properly - this will (and is) being addressed with the staff

● Pick up/drop off - hopefully parents can drop kids and go, not hang around. At the end of the day - students asked to leave and not stay around and play. It is partly a security issue, no supervision. Also, once the day is over asking them to leave and not to go and play with other kids that are not in their cohort.

● Volunteers - needed, especially for walking excursions - hoping that they meet outside school and not inside.

● Considering starting some virtual learning extracurricular activities - hour of code. There are parameters around this given by the board that will be followed.

● Volunteers on the walks - need to have had the volunteer police check. If you need to renew your declaration - can call Michael/Cathy to have that done.

● Staffing note - new office administrator. Jennifer Robinson (previous morning secretary) is now the main OA, full-time. Looking to secure a new morning secretary.

● Phys Ed. is in full-day curriculum, not as a separate class. But should not be too fuzzy - not just “free time”

School council updates

● Secretary position - Natalie Stickle

● Halloween virtual bash - success!

● Next virtual event on December 17th (Winter Festival D’Hiver)

○ All new fun activities for this event

○ Will have a 5 minute joke time at the start while people join

○ Will have a handout to send home - not Bingo but a hint of a craft

■ Craft will be done together during the event

○ Need 10 student volunteers - need one family tradition volunteer still… ○ Theme is “Gathering”

○ There will be a dance party segment

● Committees this year (anyone can be involved, please get in touch): ○ Events

○ Advocacy

○ Traffic

○ Outdoor learning

○ Diversity/Inclusion

● Next meeting in January

● Sub-committees might meet but not a full council meeting.



School Council Meeting Minutes for October 21 2020

October 21, 2020

School Council Minutes – Abridged/Condensed

Agenda:

  1. Welcome Remarks

  2. Principal & Vice Principal's Update

  3. 2019-2020 School Council Financials

  4. Current & Upcoming Initiatives

  5. Motion to update Regal Road School Council Bylaws

  6. Election of new School Council members

  7. 2020/2021 Meeting Dates

  8. Other Business / Questions

[Recitation of Land Acknowledgement]

[Housekeeping]


  1. Welcome Remarks (Adam Miller, Co-Chair)

  • For now meetings and events will be virtual using Zoom, which can host up to 300 people and includes dial in

  • We have access to interpretation services. If you or someone you know would benefit from interpretation services, please let us know.


  1. Principal & Vice Principal's Update (Michael Morris, Principal)

  • Interesting start to the year;

  • We have had zero cases of COVID in the school. Will be informing everyone when, and if, it does happen.

  • Met with a Toronto Public Health (TPH) nurse who came to assess our school, he noted that we set high expectations in our school in terms of entrance and exit and flow of traffic. They were impressed with steps we took to create safe environment for our students, teachers and staff.

  • Thank you to parents for reminding kids to wear a mask, and for everyone who comes to our building and wears a mask inside and out. Guidelines have been changing minute-by-minute, but everything passed on to our community has been followed well.

  • Ask parents to reinforce with their kids:

    • If you cannot be 6 ft apart, the goal is to wear a mask (and even if you are 6 ft apart).

    • Reminding kids to remain in their cohort. People are getting COVID fatigue – the kids want to join each other and it’s hard for them to understand that they have to stay with their own class.

  • Have been challenged in staffing occasional teacher support. We’re not getting all of our jobs filled every day. It’s a system-wide challenge. Working with staffing officers to ensure spots are getting filled.

    • Impact at the school level is that teachers are missing prep time during the day, which not only hurts programming, but has to be paid back to them at some point. Working on figuring that out.

  • TDSB has communicated that November reorganization will not happen.

    • February will be the next possible date – cut off will be end of January.

  • Update on Devices:

    • Working at replacing iPads that were distributed when we first went into lockdown in March.

    • TDSB redistributed 112 of our iPads in March for at-home-learning. They have not been returned yet and we may not get them back.

    • 75 new ones have been ordered for in-school use, have received 5. Chromebooks are on backorder – 3000 have been backordered for the TDSB and they are not set to arrive until December.

  • Some teachers have requested kids bring in their own Chromebooks, if able. That is being encouraged, however schools are experiencing Board-wide technical difficulties with wifi and firewalls. Admin will look into tech support options, but the TDSB’s IT group is working around the clock.

  • Ventilation update:

    • Windows are opened regularly, caretakers are assisting teachers whose windows are hard to open. Windows will be opened throughout the winter months, so make sure kids are dressed appropriately with layers.

    • Building air circulation is running for 2 hours before and after school every day; filters are changed regularly.

    • There has been some confusion about whether or not school councils can fundraise for air purifiers, but the latest on that is that the Ministry of Education has said no. School Council will continue to advocate on this issue and requests parents do the same.


  1. 2019-2020 School Council Financials (Tallulah Hershorn, Treasurer)

  • Last year was not typical in terms of fundraising or expenses due to events not being able to run.

  • A lot of things we support in terms of enrichment (field trips, visitors, etc) cannot happen this term and may not happen all year. School Council will be looking to what events we can run in a virtual environment and what enrichment opportunities we can support. Looking into how best to support outdoor learning.

  • School Council wants to focus on engagement to ensure our school community feels solidified with everything going on.

  • If you have questions on last year’s financials, get in touch.


  1. Current & Upcoming Initiatives (Adam Miller; Jaelyn Galbraith-Fusco; Nicole Dole)

  • First ever virtual event, the “Halloween Virtual Bash,” will be held next Thursday October 29 at 7pm on Zoom (storytelling, bingo, dance lesson). All in-person and virtual learning families are welcome.

  • Annual update of the School Statement of Needs (SSON) will be undertaken by the new Council following this meeting.

  • Outdoor education update (Jaelyn Galbraith-Fusco)

    • Goal was to support teachers in preparing for the safety considerations needed this year.

    • Overwhelming response from the school and Regal Heights community.

    • First step was to connect with teachers and school administration. Mr Murtaugh is acting spokesperson for teachers. Parents helped with building shelters and making/procuring additional items (whiteboards, signage, seating). (Photos shared during meeting – will be posted on social media)

    • School Council has purchased disposable ponchos that will be available to students on rainy days.

    • With the colder weather coming, Council is looking at options for clothing drives/outdoor gear libraries.

    • Thank you to everyone for supporting this initiative and doing so much to help our kids spend as much time as possible outside.

  • Yearbook update (Nicole Dole):

    • This week, the yearbook for 2019-2020 will be up for purchase on School Cash Online. It will be $20 and will be up for sale for two weeks. Once the order is finalized, it will take 5 weeks to print.

    • There weren’t as many events to document, but the yearbook contains class pictures as well as photos submitted by parents.


  1. Motion to update Regal Road School Council Bylaws (Adam Miller)

  • School Council by-laws currently cap parent members at a maximum of 10. Motion to increase the maximum to 18 parent members to improve representation and engagement.

  • Members of the 2019-2020 School Council unanimously voted via chat to approve the motion to amend the by-laws.


  1. Election of new School Council members (Adam Miller)

  • 17 parents have submitted self-nomination forms to participate on the 2020-2021 School Council, and there is no competition for any of the Executive positions. With the newly approved maximum of 18 parent members, elections are not necessary as everyone can be acclaimed.

  • New & Returning School Council members are as follows:

    • Adam Miller (Chair)

    • Al Kratina

    • Alice MacLachlan

    • Ben J. Abbey

    • Chris Muir

    • Jaelyn Galbraith

    • Jessica Eylon

    • Julia Tuer

    • Katrina Lagace

    • Lesley Bunbury

    • Linor Gerchak

    • Natalie Stickle

    • Nicole Dole

    • Rebecca Cohn Alles

    • Sabrina Young

    • Shanna Lino

    • Tallulah Hershorn (Treasurer)


  • Reminder that everyone can attend meetings; members are those who may vote on issues such as how to spend money or on other initiatives.

  • New members introduced themselves on camera.

  • A total of 4 teachers have expressed interest in participating as teacher members (Mme Gaal, Mr Stickle, Mme De Medeiros and Ms Kingman). The Chair will explore the procedural elements required to accommodate.


  1. 2020/2021 Meeting Dates (Adam Miller)

  • Monthly meeting dates were displayed on the screen for reference, and will be communicated to the entire school community.

  • Meetings will take place on Zoom until further notice.

  • Meeting dates are as follows (subject to change):

    • Thursday November 19, 2020

    • Wednesday December 16, 2020

    • Thursday January 21, 2021

    • Thursday February 18, 2021

    • Wednesday March 24, 2021

    • Thursday April 22, 2021

    • Wednesday May 26, 2021

    • Thursday June 17, 2021


  1. Other Business / Questions

  • Recommendation provided by a parent/caregiver to provide a summary of critical updates at the beginning of every newsletter so urgent information and key details are not missed.

  • Concern expressed about some adults waiting around the doors with no mask or improperly worn masks. Question about enforcement of mask policies on school property.

    • Admin has struggled with this and continues to remind the school community of the guidelines and rationale. Caregivers encouraged, if comfortable, to address this directly and respectfully with peers.

  • Question about whether there will there be any sort of virtual curriculum night?

    • Teachers working on firming up online platforms (Google Classroom and/or Brightspace) first. Goal is for teachers to communicate with caregivers directly via these forums, sharing information that would typically be shared on curriculum night.

  • Question about whether there will be school/class photos this year?

    • Superintendent indicated yesterday that photos are okay if they’re done outside. Admin will be discussing options and feasibility with teachers and photographer.

    • Efforts will be made to include virtual students in photography sessions, if held.

  • Question about whether teachers are preparing virtual platforms in case schools are closed or classrooms are required to fully isolate?

    • Platforms will be up and running by the end of next week.

  • Question about whether Scientists in the School are offering outdoor programming this year, and whether we can look into outdoor enrichment programs (i.e., High Park Nature Centre)?

    • As of now, Scientists in the School has been cancelled for this year. Admin and teachers are looking into alternatives and assessing options.

  • A variety of road and traffic safety issues were discussed.

    • Admin requests support from school community in addressing concerns with peers (parking, etc). Admin will send out reminders as well, and may contact parking enforcement if it cannot be resolved. Admin will look into whether anything can be done about the current schedule for garbage pickup on Regal Road (often timed with drop off/pick up).

    • School Council was involved with Councillor Bailão’s office last year, requesting traffic assessments and procedural support. This will continue to be a priority for Council and anyone else who’d like to be involved is welcome to join that committee. More information will be shared once committees are up and running.

    • In meeting with Regal Heights Residents Association regarding outdoor learning options, received feedback that there is frustration with behaviour of school community in the immediate area around the school.

    • Sidewalk safety on Dufferin was discussed. Confirmation that it is unlikely the path leading down from the school to Davenport Rd can be repaired/reopened.

    • Benefit of sidewalk widening that occurred in summer along Dufferin is that school’s snow clearing tractor can more effectively clear snow through the winter, which will help.

    • Councillor Bailão’s office is looking into whether a guardrail can be installed now that the sidewalk is wider.

  • Question about experience with new bell times?

    • Going well; there seems to be fewer people coming in late. Hard to judge given that attendance is being done outside and there is more time for students to join lines. Noticeable impact in office traffic in the mornings.


No other business. Meeting adjourned.

2019-2020 School Year

School Council Meeting Minutes for June 22 2020

June 22, 2020

Co-chair Adam Miller (AM):

Thank you for attending our virtual school council meeting. It’s an opportunity to catch up, reflect on the strange year and look ahead to next year. We’re requesting that the meeting not be recorded, minutes will be shared after the fact.

Despite all the issues, there were definitely highlights of the school year.

  • Very grateful to get to continue some of our events despite work to rule and covid (Halloween movie night, winter social, welcome bbq)

  • Pleased with success of eco swap & shop, which we hope to do again next yaer

  • Introduced hot lunch program, which was popular with parents and kids

  • Happy to host Ana Bailao for discussion of traffic safety

  • Introduced pay-it-forward initiative for pizza lunch

    • Will speak to pizza lunch later

  • Sincere thanks to school council members, volunteers, Mr. Morris, Ms. Chumfong, wonderful teacher staff and caretaking staff, without whom none of this is possible.

One of our biggest disappointments was cancellation of spring fair. We're hoping to do a fall fair, but we can’t say what the fall will hold. It’s unlikely. Hoping we can have a bigger and better spring fair in 2021.

We welcome involvement from parents – let us know if you’d like to get involved.

These are the initiatives that couldn’t go ahead as planned:

  • Pizza:

    • Decided to roll over unused pizza lunch money to next year

    • Non-returning students (ie grade 6) may request refund – please email school council email address with child’s name, room number and e-transfer info

  • Dance-a-thon:

    • A little more difficult, due to tax receipts

    • Hoping parents perceive this as a straight-up fundraising initiative

    • Looking at what kind of events we might be able to run next year

    • Looking at how we can creatively apply this fundraising money to fall initiatives (ie grade 6 homecoming) if that is possible.

Principal Michael Morris (MM)

Thank you to school council and volunteers for events, communications, etc.

Thank you to all who have been working with their kids – entire staff, school and community has worked hard to stay in touch and do the best we possibly can in a time when we were experimenting with things we haven’t done before.

Graduations and celebrations are happening within classrooms as virtual meetings. Principal and Vice Principal will join the celebrations.

  • Check with your kids and teachers to see what’s planned.

June 26 is the last day of school – initially dubbed as PA day, which has been moved to beginning of next year (one is first week of September before school starts)

  • Day begins with staff meeting, but then teachers will be online with kids to say goodbye and complete any last minute stuff

September 8 is first day of school

  • New bell times (9:15 – 3:45) – changes due to bussing schedules (cost savings)

  • We don’t know what September will bring.

  • Minister has thrown out a couple of options to the Boards, asking Boards to be ready on the 3 options in August.

  • At that point, Board will give schools latitude to figure out what works best – what parameters

  • Anything to be decided on at the local school level will be done in discussion with the school council

  • Encourage everyone to fill out TDSB survey to give feedback about what they would like to see, if possible.

Wishing everyone an enjoyable summer

Staffing for next year is almost complete

  • Down one teacher as of last Wednesday (Ms. London-Smith promoted to VP of Swansea)

  • Her position is available and has been posted. Will be an LTO position, with interviews in 3rd week of August, with someone in place for start of school year.

Question: Is JK/SK start times 9:15-3:45 as well?

  • Not sure if time-tabling approach (every other day) will result in shorter days, etc.

  • If expectation is that teachesr are with students from start to end of day, would need to consider breaks

  • JK/SK would start at 9:15 and end at 3:30

Lost and Found being made available outside of school on Wednesday between 9 and 3.

Survey hasn’t gone out to incoming JK students – Mr. Morris will direct school secretary to send out a communication to incoming students with information

AM: Thank you. We’d like to provide a budget update.

Treasurer Tallulah Hershorn (TH): A lot of our budget initiatives are a spend money to make money situation. We’re in a good position in terms of incoming fundraising. We’re in a good position next year. We have to be creative about what types of events we can run. Support the school and support building the community when maybe we can’t physically gather the community.

I don’t have printouts of the budget, but you can find me in the Facebook group, or email the School Council email address, and I’ll send you a pdf. The moral of the story is, all things considered, we’re ready to hit the ground running in September to do what we can.

AM: Just to add, people understand that some things, like field trips and extracurriculars, aren’t going to happen. We didn’t spend money on Scientist in the School, so hopefully that will benefit us in the new year.

Co-chair Nicole Dole (ND): The yearbook is still happening. There will be option to purchase in early September, and it will be printed and delivered mid-October. There weren’t many events, so we’re rather desperate for photography. Parents, please. Please. Email photos to yearbookregalroad@gmail.com or the School Council email. Looking for pictures for evens, or last year’s spring fair. Halloween, lating drumming, any sort of anything. Please send pictures. We need pictures. We’re still doing a contest for the over. We’ve gotten a bunch of submissions for that. We can’t do the standard grad thing this year for obvious reasons. Kids can send their own pictures, and we’ll figure something out that’s memorable. There are bunch of photos that I’ve seen on the Facebook page that I’ll contact people about, to see if we can use them. Things like Mr. Murtaugh as the Roadrunner. The yearbook with be $20, and they’ll pay with School Cash online.

AM: Maybe we can make a post about it on the Regal Road Facebook page. We could maybe get people to add photos from home, the art they put in their windows during lockdown, poems, drawings, etc… This is a unique year. Maybe it’ll be something we can look back on.

Siva: At Ascot, we are waiting for additional information to come from the Board. The staff of Ascot have been on CERB, waiting to hear from community partners for additional funding going forward. There was a questionnaire a couple of weeks ago for interest in the summer time. Enrolment numbers are really low. Is it worth us going forward? We’re crunching the numbers. Not even close to being ready to open at the moment. We need more info from the Board.

MM: Caretakers have already started on some of their summer cleaning. They’ve been working hard, but they might be able to slow down since Ascot’s not in there.

Siva: We’re not opening for the next couple of weeks, that’s certain. And we thank everyone for their patience, by the way.

Q: Is Ascot accepting applications for new kids?

Siva: There’s a hold, but contact Carol for more information.

AM: There was a fallen Canadian soldier who was an RR alumn.

MM: I can speak to it a little bit. Sub-Lieutenant Abbigail Cowbrough, one of the soldiers who died on the helicopter crash in Greece. She was a Regal Road student a bit more than 10 years ago. Right from JK to grade 6. There’s a memorial, on the east side of the flag pole. We’re looking at planting a tree there. A lot of moving parts when it comes to planting a tree on TDSB property. We’re working with Highway of Heroes, they will do the planting, once we do the locating. We have to do locates on TDSB property, DSB has to do the digging, then Highway of Heroes will set up a ceremony with Abigail’s mother, end of august early sept, that will depend on when our locates are done, and when we can work with the Highway of Heroes to get that plan.

Sofia: Question about the survey. Just received the survey on Friday, I think we all did. Filled it out, received the minster’s response this morning. Are we to assume the letter we received is the way it’s going, or are they going to look at the survey results? Will it change based on the results, or was it just to make us feel better? Just submitted the survey, and the answers are already given.

MM: the survey is from the TDSB, the ministry has given three different options. The TDSB has to decide which one to do in Sept. TDSB is looking at the survey to decide which one will suit our school board the best.

Once the survey comes out, there’s decision to be made at a board level, reaching out into the community.

S: I’m going to be a parent who doesn’t feel comfortable sending a kid back in September, I’ll be relying on School Councillors for extracurriculars if you want to stay connected even if they’re staying home.

AM: how do we keep connected even when apart. Think of ideas over the summer, work with us as challenging as this year will be for school council, this year will present unique opportunities, we thought we could nothing, then we thought maybe we could, but it was too late. Hopefully by the fall, we’ll be able to do more.

MM: Come September, it will depend on where we’re at, and what the government is accepting. If we can only do 10 people or less, or can the community come together on the field, or a whole class as an evening thing, we’re not 100 percent sure,

Q: Will things be separated by last name so siblings stay together?

MM: It’s a nightmare, we’re looking at the logins of where those students are placed and how we can work it out, especially siblings. Try to make it easy, but it depends on the model.

Q: Is there any sense of timeline?

MM: By August 1st, we’ll have a sense of what at the tentative plan is for September, we have till August the 4th to decide what to do. That’s when I switch the computer on again. We will certainly send that information as soon as we possibly can.

Q: class placement?

MM: the report cards will have room number your child is going to, and on the last day we’ll send out the newsletter, and then you’ll know what teacher is what room. Last day of school on the 26th. Thank you everyone, and enjoy your summer.

School Council Meeting Minutes for March 12 2020

March 12, 2020

Greeting and land acknowledgement

Co-chair Adam Miller (AM): There’s a lot to talk about. A lot on everyone’s mind. We’re going to start with talking about the coronavirus, of course. Last night, the news changed in a big way.

Principal Michael Morris (MM): I don’t know much aside from what we all just heard. We received a note at 3:45 that basically said we’re taking our lead from public health. Until we hear anything else from them, we are a go. Everything styas the same. Caretakers are upped, high touch areas are cleaned during the day. Normally, they’re providing extra cleaning supplies to the classrooms, as well. Then, we hear from the media that we’re closed for two weeks after March Break.

We’re still waiting to hear what that means. There are a billion question for the TDSB, what I can see right now, we have March Break, and then two weeks that we are not in schools. That’s all I can give you for that.

Q: Does that include janitorial staff, are the boilers still running?

MM: My assumption is that it means it will be shut down.

Q: What about for next week? March break programming for next week, is that still on?

MM: As for now, next week is March Break, then it’s the two weeks of quarantine, based on travel. People going away on March break, we want them quarantined. Nothing is fully confirmed. We hope to get more information tomorrow.

Q: Is the TDSB planning any additional measure, like providing hand sanitizer to students.

MM: Signs and hand sanitizer will be handed out to all classrooms; the signs will be put up over March break.

Treasurer Tallulah Hershorn: My five-year-old taught me how to properly wash my hands yesterday. I want that on the record.

Q: What about the strike:

MM: It’s all up in the air, I’ll be honest. The phase 7 which is where they’re at right now, basically was that would have been that after march break, the following weeks might be rotating strikes again, but nothing’s confirmed, no dates or anything. The other piece to that is, if you’re listening to the news, one of the unions said that they have agreed to a tentative deal. It’s not ratified, and that doesn’t mean that the other unions will follow suit, but it’s a positive step.

How the shutdown will affect the government position, we’ll have to see. Will the union continue with phase 7 after these three weeks? Maybe, unless there’s negotiation while everything is shut down.

That’s pretty much it. All the rest of the stuff for the strike, the sanctions are the same as they have been, due to the progressions. I don’t know. I’m not being disingenuous when I say that: my wife is a teacher, and she doesn’t know. It might be rotating strikes. We’re hoping that’s not the case. Q: does Regal lose any local 79 city staff.

MM: I don’t know.

The last piece in this is that we’re starting our staffing process. There are so many intricate parts in this whole, now we have those two seeks off, whereas on the week we return, we were supposed to receive our numbers. We’re not to going to get them because we’re not going to be there. Everything gets delayed.

Here’s how the process works. It started off a few weeks ago. Teachers were given forms, data verification, they get all their forms, they verify. The key thing for the board is how many years they have been teaching for. It gives them a security number, which is important. Today we received our seniority list. We‘re blessed with two lists, one is French, one is English. Each track has a different seniority. The list matters when we are staffing our schools. We look at those lists, and when we finally get our final number from the board, we look at the list of the number of teachers we get, we look at our numbers, we say we’re keeping all our teachers, or the bottom three have to go. French and English.

The numbers are supposed to come out two weeks from now. What that does is it gives us our allotment of teaching staff for the year. We as a group, teachers and admin, get together, and once up with our staffing model, and that’s the model of what our school would look like next year. Basically, the classes, how many grade 1, 2, 3, 4 those are based on projected enrollment for next year. We’ve already received those numbers. The numbers are 563, which is pretty much right bang on to where we are next year. We will have to wait until we get our final numbers, and that is a full time student number. And then we look at those numbers in the different grades, and then we decide what classes we need to staff, we show that to student council, they’ll get the model of what the school is going to look like. They will not get the model of who is teaching what. After we finish our model, the next step is that. We decide who is going to teach what. We have a process for that, the teachers have a choice, to a point, and I say that because the TDSB owes them a job: it does not owe them the job that they have this year, the job that they really really, really want. It’s just a job. It doesn’t even guarantee the school.

Once we have our number, those teachers on our list who are not surplused—and note that surplused teachers are still guaranteed a position in the Board—gets a position in our building. But just that: a position in our building. Even if they really want to teach kindergarten, they may be teaching grade three, based on qualifications and needs in the building, and what we feel is in the best interests of the students. I mean Cathy and I—and I really mean, me, and I only say that that at the end of the day, I do have the final say.

In my 13 years as an admin, I’ve seen this work. 95 percent of the teachers get one of their three choices. So, it works out well, usually. And then, from there, we go into a strange phase of job postings, so we may have surplus teachers, so other schools may need teachers. So they post their positions. So, anyone in the board who is a surplus teacher, they will earn an interview, and they get a position, somewhere. And then, if someone leaves, here, then we would post on the second round, and would try to hire someone else. And then there is another part, where there if is a teacher who doesn’t want to work here, they can ask for a teacher-requested transfer. They just get placed in one of the schools that has an opening. After that, and after all that is said and done, which will take us to roughly the middle of May, even later. Second round interviews get interrupted by the May 24 weekend, two days after that all postings are closed. After that we, sort of finalize who’s there, and we do our class list. And that’s pretty much the end of staffing, and then class lists, parents will get a letter asking as to the type of teacher they’re are looking for, with no guarantees, and certainly no guarantees of particular teachers, because someone may want a particular teacher who is on a leave. There is no opportunity to pick a particular teacher but certain information on the type of teacher they are looking for. That process goes into usually around mid-June. And then parents get notices on the report card, as to the room, and the newsletter comes out with all the names attached on to the room.

Q: Will we still have EQAO or will it be cancelled?

A: Not sure. First thoughts I had when I heard that we were going to gone for another two weeks, what is that cut-off date. Part of the sanctions means that no one has been doing any work specifically around EQAO. It also means that admins have not been inputting data, which students are exiting, which students need accommodation. May 27th is the date, I think, please don’t quote me. I don’t know what the cut-off date is going to be. Don’t quite me on that May 27th date, Al. May 27th is the day they actually start, supposed to start EQAO

AM: A question we may have, let’s say two seeks because of coronal virus, two weeks because of strikes. Will we extend the school year?

MM: That came up. It’s an interesting piece because I’m wondering if that would have be written into the new collective agreement, and I say that because the number of school days is based on the collective agreement. And if they get a new one, would they get into the new one that this year needs to be extended for the next couple of days. Is it a paid two weeks or not? That’s interesting. Staff doesn’t know.

Q: Follow up questions. What about the Grade 6 Graduation, and graduation picture day?

MM: Picture day will be postponed. The grad date is still set, in terms of we still have a permit at Oakwood. The ceremony will happen if we’re allowed. In terms of the awards, they may look as little different this year. And putting it together really, it’s not a massive undertaking. It’s something that I know the staff will put together.

Q: Has the date been announced? MM: Sometime in June.

AM: Some of you were at our last meeting with Ana Bailao and Stephanie Donaldson. We had a discussion, that’s continued on Facebook. Our co-chair Nicole has the lead on that, and she has some updates.

Co-chair Nicole Dole (ND): One of the things we asked for, turns out most of them are not options. Which... is not a surprise. But, we were able to get the speed limit sign moved so it’s actually visible. And they’ve decided to make 80 schools this year into school zones, and real is number 21 of 30 in Ward 9. I’ve asked if that means Regal Road is the school zone, or if that includes Dufferin as well, but I haven’t received an answer.

In the 2020 school year, we hope to have approval for zebra markings on the crosswalks, maybe even in the summer. I’m trying to make sure they’re doing all three crossings, not just two. I’ve asked to put the “NEW” marking on the speed limit signs in the area.

There’s an option to have more speed limit signs put up. Someone in Councillor Bailao’s office put in a request for Dufferin, northbound and southbound. I’ll put a link on the webpage so people can file their own requests. I’ve asked what’s going to be done to get people to understand that the limit is now 40, not 50. I haven’t had a response yet.

I’ve requested that the retaining wall be pushed back on Dufferin to widen the sidewalk, but that’s apparently too expensive. I’ve followed up about the new idea about guard rails, but haven’t received a response.

On the North East corner of Davenport and Dufferin, there’s a slope of rocks where there are 9 pieces of rebar sticking out. It seems like there’s a fairly high chance of it impaling someone. It’s very slippery, and kids are always sliding toward the intersection. I asked if they could add to the retaining wall to protect that area, and they said that’s a bit thing to ask. They’ll see about it, thanks for the suggestion, and all that.

I’ve also asked about the crossing guard at Rosemount, but again, no response.

MM: The response we got for that was rather depressing. We’re on the list to discuss the crossing guard at the new light, however that discussion won’t come up within the year.

Q: The crossing guard at Salem and Dufferin, there are four different guards there. Are they in training, or are they just four differing guards rotating?

TH: There are major growing pains for the city absorbing the crossing guards from the police. Due to the state of traffic, it’s hard to get people to stand in the middle of it.

Q: They put their lives in danger! People drive right through. TH: Parents, do what you can. Make noise.

Q: What’s the status of the lights at Rosemount and Oakwood?

ND: The week after our meeting, there was an attempt to have a traffic management meeting. There were three or four people from Regal, 20 people from Rosemount, and they just fought the entire time. The older residents don’t want more traffic on their street, which they for some reason believe will come from having a traffic light. On the other hand, parents don’t want their kids hit by cars. Councillor Bailao doesn’t know where she stands, but she’ll make a decision soon. It’s been approved for two years now. No update.

Q: It would be good to have a crossing guard there.

ND: There’s a new traffic light coming at Dovercourt and Davenport. Same residents did not want a traffic light there. I’ve also asked that there be more traffic enforcement in the area. There is some, but they’ve spent no time on Dufferin. I’ve followed up on that. No response.

Parent: The problem is that their mandate is to keep traffic flowing. They don’t want to slow down the traffic on Dufferin. Their job is keep things moving, not to give people tickets on the road.

AM: Thanks, Nicole. We’ve tried our best to keep planning for events and fundraisers, even when work-to-rule and strike action was in our way, but not we’re having to deal with the virus, as well.

We do have some good news about pizza lunch. The pizza lunch campaign turned out really well. Every one was very generous. Collecting forms and payment was harder, and Ms. Chumfung and Stephanie Ayers were a big part of that. There are still forms outstanding, but we’ll do our best.

Next pizza lunch falls between those two weeks the schools are closed. We’re moving it to the end of the year. Depending on the situation in April, the job action and the coronavirus, that might impact our ability to handle pizza. We might offer a refund, or let people transfer the money over to council. Thanks to everyone.

We’ve postponed the Danceathon. It’s something we can move easily to the end of the school year, but we might need to be offering refunds.

Sabrina is leading the charge on the book sale on April 23. It’s probably safe to say that we might not be able to do that on the 23rd, but that’s easy to move.

Sabrina: The bulk of the work is sorting.

AM: April is a month to avoid. April 23 was Book Day, but that’s where we are.

Q: any chance track and field might get cancelled?

MM: Sure. Yeah. If strike action continues, then yeah. Staff are gutted, but they know what they’re fighting for is really important. I’m just hoping it gets settled before we have to cancel the year.

ND: We have the adult dance, Old School, on May 8th. It’s a new event, in the gym, with alcohol, two DJs from the school, Evalishes and House of Hot Breath. We’re still in the planning stages, looking into food trucks and other fun things that make people want to be here. But because of everyone being so close, we might need to put it off to next year. It should be fun, though.

AM: If all these events are being moved, cancelled, with planning and deposits, it might be better just to call it off completely.

ND: Silent auction was going to be part of it. We might make it online, or make it part of the spring fair. If there is a spring fair.

TH: It was always going to be partially online, but in-person is a big draw. It’s also a good opportunity to deal with the businesses that are suffering from virus.

ND: Production for this year’s yearbook is underway. We’re looking for photos of events, send us photos, last year’s spring fair. Send them to us. Please.

MM: Question from our teachers. Is it possible to have a pay it forward for the yearbooks as well. ND: Yes. We will be raising the price to $20 instead.

AM: We want a spring fair, but we have to be practical. COVID019, teacher’s strike, we have a go/no go date. Our biggest vendor is the bouncy cancels. They need a certain amount of notice, two to two-and-a-half weeks.

TH: We need to be really mindful as to what we’re agreeing to with the deposits, and not using money on a question mark. And potentially, having it as a fall fair if we can’t.

AM: Stop stealing my bullet points. (moment of grim silence) If it’s cancelled, we’re looking at a fall fair. We’re open to that. We’re looking at another BBQ, with a chili cook-off. We’re looking at ways to make it more eco friendly, no balloon animals, prices are junk food instead of junk prizes.

We’ve been given a great template to work with from past years, and we’re not looking to make any dramatic changes. We might have an on-site magician, or a Disney character wandering around, provided it’s not too creepy or disruptive. The people we are booking with need to know that we may need our money back, or at least a credit.

TH: We’re looking at increasing the amount of things people can do for free. Tattoos, face painting. We’re expecting longer lines because of that, so let us know if you know anyone who can help. We want to be as equitable as possible. Not everyone can spend $50 on a bunch of food.

ND: We’re hoping this year to start the playground redone. Senior playground. Richard Christie, the TDSB sustainability manager, came to look at the yard. We initially thought we were in good shape. But the play structure is 17 years old, they try to make it last 20 – 30 years, in three years we can start that process, some concrete, some landscaping, maybe accessible which could be wishful thinking. Nothing we can do for now, we have to wait, because our needs aren’t high enough, and there’s a huge backlog.

Instead of doing a direct drive, we’re looking at log climbing structure, or planters, anything that gives the kids something to do, instead of injuring themselves playing monkey bar tag. Still looking at ways to address the lunchroom situation.

New idea: soundproofing to see if that will help with the rooms. Also considering opening up to other ideas of what we could do, and using a direct drive to improve that. What can we do to make the kids more comfortable there? We’ve got our own ideas, but we’re soliciting others.

MM: A parent approached me. Soundproofing is something that he does for a living. Sabrina. Egg carton drive!

ND: Great! It’s flammable, and perfect for egg allergies.

Sabrina: Just don’t lick it.

Q: I heard of a TDSB school where they keep kids in their class for lunch. They have recess first, then everyone eats in their class. They have supervisors rotating around the classrooms, and they’re able to watch everyone. Makes a world of difference.

Vice-Principal Chumfong: They did that at a school I worked at in Halton, but I never liked it. It was an accident waiting to happen. Most times, there isn’t an adult in the classroom with the kids. I was always so concerned.

TH: Could be a bullying issue.

MM: It would mean one lunch supervisor per floor. Not sure that makes sense. A: What’s the ratio of supervisors to students?

MM: 1 to 100.

A: How many classrooms on each floor?

MM: About 10.

A: how do you make sure those classrooms are cleaned? Maybe if recess is after? Is that what they do at McMurrich? Can we look into that?

ND: I’ll connect with school council there.

A: Can we hire private contractors or rely on volunteers?

MM: No.

In other school news, we’re doing some work on the front door, and the ceiling above it, some painting. It was supposed to happen Wednesday, but I don’t know if that’s going on.

Also, we’ve been considering some trained adult volunteers as crossing guards. As well, we’re looking at a kiss and ride area near the west doors. It might be something we could look into if there are people who are interested in it.

ND: Is there supervision after dismissal?

MM: We do supervision 10 minutes before, and 10 minutes after in some areas. Keep in mind that we’re changing our bell times to 15 minutes later. I hope that will cut down on our lates.

Q: For parents who have fixed working hours, how is that going to work? MM: I’ve only had one email about it.

MEETING ADJOURNED.

School Council Meeting Minutes for January 13 2020

January 13, 2020

School Council minutes – Abridged/Condensed

Opening remarks from Council co-chair Adam Miller:

Good evening everyone, and thank you for attending our first School Council meeting of 2020. We have a lot to discuss tonight and some special guests to introduce, but before we do that I’d like to invite our Secretary to recite the Land Acknowledgement.

[Recitation of Land Acknowledgement]

I’m Adam Miller, and this is Nicole Dole. We’re the co-chairs of the Regal Road School Council. We are truly honoured and grateful to welcome two very special guests to our meeting tonight. Please join me in welcoming our Deputy Mayor and Councillor for Ward 9, Ana Bailão. Also joining us tonight is our TDSB School Trustee for Ward 9, Stephanie Donaldson. Thank you both for being here.

Also joining us, as always, are our Principal Michael Morris and our Vice Principal Cathy Chumfong. Thanks to both of you as well.

Tonight, we’d like to discuss road and pedestrian safety around our school and in our community. Dufferin Street is notorious for speeding and cars running red lights. Parking enforcement has been an issue around the school, and it seems like almost every month we are hearing terrifying stories about children being hit by vehicles on nearby streets. Just this past December, there were two pedestrian accidents involving children in a single day. Obviously, road safety is everyone’s concern and everyone’s responsibility - and city improvements alone won’t solve every problem. But we’re happy to have Councillor Bailão and Trustee Donaldson here today so we can get a better understanding of what’s being planned, what can be done, and what we can do to help keep our kids and our community safe.

I’ll be this evening’s moderator and help keep us on topic. I’ll ask that everyone please try to keep your questions and comments focused on road safety. If there are other topics you’d like to explore with Councillor Bailão or Trustee Donaldson, perhaps we can invite them back at a later date.

I’d also like to thank everyone for coming tonight. We have been posting extensively on social media about the meeting, and it’s wonderful to see such a response.

Councillor Bailão, we understand there was a traffic study commissioned for the area. Can you update us as to the status of the study?

(Please note that Councillor Bailão and Trustee Donaldson’s remarks are abridged and condensed.)

Councillor Bailão (CB):

  • Currently forming a Traffic Management Committee (TMC) for the area

  • Holistic approach to addressing traffic complaints and concerns

  • TMC’s look at remedies that benefit larger areas.

  • Often, addressing a traffic issue on one street will simply push the problem to a nearby street.

  • A TMC can make sure solutions don’t simply cause problems somewhere else.

  • TMCs are made up of community members, and city representatives working together to find solutions.

  • No one knows the traffic issue in a community better than the people who live there, so they can help us propose and investigate solutions.

  • TMCs usually begin with an initial meeting to choose the co-chairs and identify the problems.

  • A list of concerns that have previously been brought forward is presented.

  • The current proposed TMC covers the area from Winona to Dufferin, and Davenport to Regal Heights.

  • There are a number of traffic concerns on these streets, from cycling and pedestrian safety to traffic volume.

  • Multiple potential solutions will be examined, whether it be better cycling infrastructure or new traffic lights, etc…

  • Once there are concrete proposals and solutions, they are reported to community council, and then get these initiatives approved by the city.

  • They tend to go in phases, which helps simpler or easier projects get approved first.

  • More involved initiatives can be worked on over a longer period. For example, bump pads to reduce speeding involve road construction.

  • There was a TMC for the Wallace area, and it resulted in staggered parking on the streets, which effectively slows down traffic in the area.

  • Some traffic initiatives in the area have already been completed. For example, we recently reduced speed to 40 km/h on Dufferin.

  • Regal Road PS has been identified as a community safety zone from Regal Road to Brandon, which means increased fines for any traffic infractions in the area.

  • Being identified as safety zones may help to get enforcement cameras in the area.

  • There are two speed enforcement cameras been allocated in the ward already – those locations have been set – but for future camera locations, they will be looking at community safety zones.

  • The first meeting for the TMC will be Monday, the 20th, in this room. We’re looking for volunteers. These committees are the most successful when we have residents engaged.

Council co-chair Nicole Dole (ND): Has a full traffic study been done on the area?

CB:

  • A full study has not been done.

  • Smaller studies have been completely, such as on Dufferin Street, and in the Rosemount Oakwood area—this has resulted in the new traffic lights.

  • The new TMC will be able to look at the whole neighbourhood, without going piecemeal, street by street.

Council co-chair Adam Miller (AM): Are there any other improvements coming to the area?

CB:

  • We have asked for a radar speedometer to be placed around Regal Road. There are four that rotate through the ward. Dufferin Street near Regal Road has been added to the list.

ND: When those speedometers are added, is the road painted with the speed limit?

CB:

  • No. These particular speedometers are temporary, and rotate around the ward.

  • Regal Road is also on the list for a permanent radar speedometer, however.

Q: Does the Traffic Management Committee take into account drop-off and pick-up times at the school when considering traffic patterns?

CB:

  • That’s why it’s so important to have parent and community volunteers as part of the TMC, so they can bring that up.

Q: One of the bigger problems we have is during pick-up and drop-offs, when parents are pulling up on sidewalks. What can be done about something like that?

CB:

  • Possible solutions include: altering parking patterns, reducing speed, or a designated and supervised pick-up and drop-off area.

Q: At the start of the year, parents lose their minds dropping their kids off. They park everywhere, they don’t know what to do. Would it be possible to increase parking enforcement at the beginning of the year, to set the standard for the rest of the year? It would require regular attention to maintain safe driving around the school, but having parking/traffic enforcement more present at the beginning of the year would certainly help.

CB:

  • We have asked parking enforcement to maintain a presence, but that doesn’t always seem to be effective.

  • Parents can be aggressive toward parking enforcement, and often behaviours don’t change.

  • Parents engaging with other parents can be more successful, such as flyering.

Q: I’ve tried engaging directly with parents. Usually, it’s the same five people who are the issue. Speaking with them doesn’t seem to work.

CB:

  • Ticketing can also be ineffective.

  • Parents get a ticket, they just do it again the next day.

Q: Is there a plan to lower the speed limit on the side streets near the school? Many of them are still marked at 40 km/h, and they feed off of main streets, while the side-streets around other nearby schools are 30 km/h.

CB:

  • The speed limits have already been reduced to 30 km/h on all side streets near the schools. It’s been approved by council.

  • Signage will be up shortly, though I’m not sure of the timeline at the moment.

ND: I’d like to draw your attention to one of the signs for the new speed limit on Dufferin—the sign is almost completely blocked by a utility pole. (Presents Councillor Bailão with photo of the blocked sign)

CB:

  • Unfortunately, this is not the first time something like this has happened.

  • City staff will ensure this is fixed, and does not happen again.

Q: While it’s great that the speed limit on Dufferin has been reduced to 40 km/h, many drivers who have used this street for years used to the 50 km/h limit—they may not be aware that the limit has changed, and they’re not accustomed to checking the signs. Is there any chance of getting new signage with brighter colours, special signs indicating that the limit has changed, etc… We need these types of signs every block. If you’ve been up and down the street your whole life, you’re not going to notice it otherwise. It’s the only way to change behaviour.

CB:

  • We will be coordinating with police to enforce strategically at certain points so people are aware of the change, and aware that the change will be enforced.

  • Ideally, there will be a few speed cameras at several points along Dufferin.

  • In the interim, we’ll be working with police to improve enforcement—especially in community safety areas where the fines are bigger.

  • There is a timeline for this but not on-hand

AM: We recently learned of a pilot program involving automated speed enforcement cameras. We believe with the amount of speeding going on at Dufferin & Davenport that this would be highly beneficial to our area. We’d like to invite Andrew Wiefer up to present this petition.

Andrew Wiefer: I just wanted to start off by saying that I’ve dealt with Councillor Bailão in other situations, and she’s always been great. So, I thought it would be helpful to give her this petition asking for speed enforcement cameras in our area. We’ve got 391 signatures, mostly from Toronto. I’ll give you the hard copy. There’s an online version that’s more accessible. I will send you the link.

CB:

  • Thank you. The decision makers that place the cameras say all their choices are data-driven, and not affected by petitions.

  • It still may help at some point to get us considered for these cameras.

  • The placement of the first two cameras for our ward has already been determined, but this may help for future cameras.

ND: The placement of the new speed limit signs on Dufferin is concerning. Every time a main street turns on to another main streets, there should be a speed limit sign that’s clearly visible. Before the newest sign—the one that’s blocked by the utility pole—there were only two signs between Dupont and St. Clair—and nothing at the actual intersections themselves. Signage is not effective—it’s not even in a place where people who think to look for speed limit signs. They seem randomly placed, and people turning on to major streets can’t see the signs. There’s also a disparity in the number of signs. There are twice as many speed limit signs going north as they are going south.

CB:

  • We will look into that.

  • May be a hold-over from when the speed limit was 50 km/h.

Q: I’m glad that enforcement is being brought up. I’ve been a school bus driver for several years, and I can tell you, enforcement makes a big difference. People ignore signs, they break the law… enforcement is critical. I’d say, at every red light, there’s an average of two cars that run through. How do we get the level of enforcement up? Can we get more red light cameras, for instance? Can we go ward by ward and just saturate the intersections?

CB:

  • There has been a recent drop in ticketing/traffic enforcement by the Toronto Police Services (TPS), acknowledged by the Chief of Police.

  • However, recently Toronto Police Services have asked for more money for traffic enforcement, so the situation will likely improve.

  • We are adding police staff to traffic enforcement.

  • We’ve gotten authorization from the province for red light cameras. Two will be placed in our ward, and those locations have already been decided. But they’re looking for more to roll out. We’re going to be leading on technology.

  • We are trying to approach policing differently.

  • For example, perhaps police aren’t required for things like crossing guards, noise complaints, administrative tasks.

  • Other, well-trained professionals can handle these things while police focus on other areas.

  • Perhaps there are elements of traffic and parking enforcement that can be shifted to dedicated, non-police professionals, or technological solutions, such as red light cameras.

Q: Have you thought of contracting out traffic enforcement?

CB:

  • We have asked the province for authorization for traffic wardens, who are specially trained for traffic and parking issues.

  • But this takes time. For example, these red light cameras were approved by the previous government, and we just got them now.

Q: 2 years ago, I contacted the trustee at the time, looking for a guardrail along the northeast side of Dufferin from Davenport. That stretch of sidewalk gets a lot of foot traffic, and becomes very congested with strollers, bikes, and pedestrians. Several schools also reached out. An accessibility study was done, and a guard rail there would not meet accessibility guidelines. We looked at some alternative options, such as widening the sidewalk, but these are all big projects.

There was also a meeting with the principal of Regal Road at the time, about opening up the switchback that leads to the school from Davenport, to reduce foot traffic on Dufferin. However, the principal expressed safety concerns, so that idea was abandoned. Would it be possible to re-open the discussion?

CB:

  • How long as the switchback been closed?

Principal Michael Morris (MM): Quite some time. It’s in a bad state of disrepair. However, recently, in some of the work that we’re looking at doing at the Regal Road playground, we’ve had some people come by and take a look at it. It’s fenced off at the moment, so no one gets hurt. We’ve had a conversation about fixing the switchback. Once the retaining wall is fixed—and that’s a different story—we may discuss it further. I have concerns about opening up another way for people to access the school yard, particularly through the back. But that’s a discussion we can have. We can look at how it worked when it was open, and we can consider opening it up in the future, once the pathway is a little safer than it is now.

Q: Is there a timeline for this?

MM: I just had a conversation today with the facilities team leader. He’s going to check and see whether or not it’s going to be done. It’s a huge cost to the Board, so they will deal with it when and if they can.

Q: The retaining wall on Davenport is done, yes?

MM: Yes, but it needs to continue going up the switchback.

Treasurer Tallulah Hershorn (TH): For the retaining wall on Dufferin Street, there was planned maintenance that was supposed to be completed at end of August/early September, but it was put on hold due to parent concerns. Would it be possible to widen the sidewalk at the same time as the retaining wall is repaired? That would allow the guardrail to meet accessibility requirements.

MM: The situation also gets worse in the winter, when it’s difficult to clear the streets with the system and equipment that we have. Part of the problem is that the sidewalk isn’t wide enough, and the cleaner can’t make it past the turn.

TH: Since the wall is scheduled to be repaired, is widening the sidewalk something we can look into?

Q: To build on that, my child just started JK at Regal Road. This is my first meeting. To me, the highest priority for designing safety is that guard rail. The other proposals—red light cameras, speed cameras, that’s all great—but someone doing the speed limit and going through an intersection legally can still kill someone if a kid falls off the sidewalk.

If a guardrail isn’t compliant with accessibility regulations, then the sidewalk itself can’t be compliant. So obviously, that will have to be changed. Accessibility regulations, they’re incredibly important. But is there a temporary safety exemption we could use to get a guard rail in there. Is there a short term solution? To me, this is the highest priority piece.

CB:

  • We will explore to see if there’s anything that can be done.

  • The sidewalk is likely the right width to meet accessibility requirements—that’s why adding a guardrail would make it non-compliant.

  • Dufferin is being looked at as a dedicated bus route, so here are going to be a lot of conversations about that stretch of the street.

  • There may be a possibility for a pilot project that uses a guardrail that doesn’t cut into the sidewalk—but cuts into the street instead.

  • This would not reduce the width of the sidewalk so it could stay compliant.

Q: I’ll add for flavour when we’re talking about Dufferin. When there’s an ice storm, the buses can’t go up the hill. We know it’s the worst—and it’s not going to get better, with all the development near the Galleria. I live south of the school, and I’m hoping that this TMC we’re talking about will consider the population boom that’s coming, not only how that affects traffic, but public transit, cycling, pedestrians. I hope that’s all being considered.

CB:

  • Developers are always required to do their own traffic management appraisals as part of the approval process.

  • This is why they had to make new streets for the Galleria development, and why the TTC’s making a loop and building bus bays. So, there are a number of different ways, because that was part of the approval process.

  • When the developers were applying for approval for the construction at Bloor and Dufferin, they had to take into account the new traffic management plan at Galleria.

Q: Has anyone talked to Toronto Hydro? The sidewalks are already narrow, and all those unused utility poles are making it worse. As well as hiding speed limit signs, of course. On Davenport, it’s unbelievable that these poles are in the middle of the sidewalk. Can we bury those?

Q: Is it Hydro’s responsibility to remove old poles? There are old poles that have been there as long as I’ve lived here. The one that’s blocking the speed limit sign on Dufferin, for example, that has nothing on it. No actual utility equipment.

CB:

  • The issue, according to Hydro, is that other utilities may be using these poles.

  • Hydro may be waiting for Rogers to take their cables out and bury them, for example.

TH: The main issue is that with this block of Dufferin, and our school on the hill, there’s really no way to get to the school from the south without walking up that part of Dufferin. The rest of the layout makes it very difficult to get north to the school.

CB:

  • Thank you for bringing that up. That’s a great point.

  • There was a similar situation with a school on Gladstone. We were able to get a traffic management study there.

  • With all the foot traffic, the traffic management study should take into account all the pedestrian patterns and consider all the people crossing at the various crosswalks.

  • One of the new community safety areas is from Regal to Brandon, which encompasses a lot of area used by the whole community—not just Regal.

  • Hopefully, the TMC will get input from all the schools in the area.

Q: Can we get the link to the petition for the speed cameras sent out? I think it will make a difference. The more voices we have, the better. For many years they’ve done traffic counts and surveys on Oakwood, and every study said there’s no need for a traffic light, and now we have one.

CB:

  • The link is in the newsletter

  • The traffic report did say that there was a traffic light needed. But the community stopped it. There were complaints from residents.

MM: There was a lot of pushback against the light.

Q: See? People do have a voice!

Q: Let’s think of the parallel of speed bumps. There were certain tests or requirements put in place by community councils, but the city could overrule them. So when it comes to enforcement cameras or guard rails, whenever those tests aren’t passed or standards aren’t met—standards that are set by the bureaucracy—can they be overruled by you, Councillor Bailão, or the city?

CB:

  • The decision about camera placement was data driven. It did not go before council.

  • We will have to work to get additional cameras where we want them. We’ll have to work with city staff to try and create a business case.

  • Sooner or later, someone on city council is going to try and get around the data procedure and set a new precedent.

  • Changing the parameters to move away from data will be tough, because we’re always saying we need to do more data-driven decisions.

Q: So… if we’re trying to get the data to suggest that we need traffic cameras… do you need us all to drive faster?

CB: NO.

Q: Do police calls drive data? If we call in more frequently to complain about speeding or parking?

CB:

  • Absolutely. Complaining to the police helps. That’s part of what drives the data.

Q: This can all be done online, as well.

Q: Do those speed cameras with the flashing lights collect data?

CB:

  • No, unfortunately.

Q: I’ve noticed that lights are being put in at Dovercourt, but there are still no lights at Geary.

CB:

  • The previous councillor left no files behind.

  • A request to look at the street has been put it.

Q: Geary, where it crosses Dufferin, isn’t straight. Is there going to be any work done to realign it?

CB:

  • We are not aware of any work planned to realign the street. But there will be an investigation.

Q: when will the Rosemount lights be turned on?

CB:

  • Any moment now.

  • Coordination is required between Hydro and police, which may have caused delays.

Q: Thank you for putting that in. We’ve been told for that they never would because they were close to other traffic lights. And you’ve done it. Could the light at Auburn be moved a block South? Would it be safer?

CB:

  • A conversation on the west of Dufferin will have to happen.

  • We might need to create another working group on that area. I need to get scheduling and public information on that side.

Q: So this new TMC is only on the east side of Dufferin?

CB:

  • Yes. What’s done on this side of Dufferin affects the West side less.

  • If w put a light on Rosemont, it won’t have an impact on the other side of Dufferin.

  • There is a great deal of work that needs to be done north of Dupont. Nothing has been done there for years.

Q: Two things. If you want to get a light at Geary and Dufferin, bring the Mayor and stand on that corner, at any given time, at 4:30 in the morning, 6 pm, there madness, people turn down Dufferin, speeding… the only way we got the lights at Dovercourt and Geary was bringing Mayor Tory to that corner and have him watch the daily accidents. The problem is that for some of these accidents, the police did not bother showing up, because it wasn’t worth a report to them, and a lot of them involved cyclists, pedestrians.

CB:

  • There will likely be enough evidence when the study is done. The report will likely come back recommending the light.

  • If it comes back negative, we’ll do a petition.

  • If we spend $150 000, then it needs to be justified to council, but it will be done.

Trustee Donaldson (TD):

  • Thank you for inviting me.

  • What’s in the scope of the traffic management committee?

  • Would the guardrail pilot be a part of it? I want to be involved in that.

CB:

  • If it helps being part of the TMC, we’ll do it.0

  • If we have to do it outside of the TMC, we’ll explore with city staff the most effective way to get it done.

  • If that doesn’t work, we’ll approach an architectural firm in the area that is very innovative. They will likely be able to propose a solution.

Q: Are we going to have a crossing guard at Rosemount and Dufferin?

CB:

  • We have not asked for that.

  • It needs to come from the school, with support from the Councillor and the community. We will circulate a link to put in a request from the guard, which requires support from the school.

  • Once that is completed and accepted, a crossing guard will be there for September.

Q: What effect with the dedicated bus lane on Dufferin have?

CB:

  • That has yet to be determined.

  • From the five routes they have explained, Dufferin will be the toughest one, because it has a large amount of residential buildings facing Dufferin. It will have to be an interesting design.

  • They’re currently considering whether it will be dedicated all the time, 24/7, or broken up throughout the day. Those conversations need to start. They would like to see the effects of the opening of the Eglinton LRT, because that will affect traveling patterns quite a bit.

Q: Has the bus route been approved?

CB:

  • It was just approved to continue looking at five routes—and Dufferin is one of them. We’ve been doing quite a number of things, for example there are more automated signals coming to Dufferin, but we need to start more planning.

  • With all the new residential unite coming all up and down Dufferin, we need to start looking at some drastic initiatives to alleviate traffic and deal with the strain on public transit.

ND: Could we put markings on the road in front of Regal? Zebra markings at the crosswalks, for example, at Westmount going onto Regal. Just to make it clear that you can’t park there. Also, if there’s a way to paint on the curb and on the road in the bus parking area, so people know they can’t park there. Nice and bright. I like colours.

CB:

That should be easy to do.

TH: On the Dufferin bus point, can we increase the service on Davenport and Dupont to alleviate congestion. I live on Davenport, and the bus comes every 20 minutes during rush hour. It’s unreliable. Both routes.

CB:

  • I’m not sure if they’re looking at that.

  • There are three routes that I am hearing about: Lansdowne, Dupont and Davenport, which require more reliable services.

  • These are priorities.

  • We have a little bit more money because we’ve increased the city building fund.

  • I think it will come, because there’s a ton of development coming along Dupont, some on it on our side so I think that will increase the service.

  • Will not happen in the next year or two, but it is likely coming.

TH: What are the best ways to get heard and dive that data, so we can get that increased service quickly?

CB:

  • On Dufferin, when they told me the express route was going to be done in 2019 or 2020, I pushed, I canvassed, I went door to door, and got it done faster.

  • Rest assured I’ll do the same here. I’ll find the right time to push, and rally the community.

AM: Trustee Donaldson, as our school trustee, are there any things we should look to do, like petitions, or connecting to other schools in the ward…

TD:

  • I think this is a great plan. Thanks to Ana.

  • Nothing else we could be doing.

  • I will say that I am happy to be a champion of everything that is being done here, and work with Ana.

MM: Every day I look out my window and I dread that morning traffic, drop off and parking routine. The steps that we’re going to be taking, that Councilor Bailão will be taking, they’re great. I love the idea of that management committee, we’re happy to house that here whenever you want. Thanks for coming here, as I know you have busy schedules. I want a push to the community saying, folks, you’re the ones driving on the street, spread the word drive safe, take care, and mind what’s going on in the community.

CB:

  • I look forward to continuing to work with everybody.

  • This isn’t going to be easy or quick. It’s not going to happen in a couple of months. We have a meeting, then it goes to community council, this is a year-long process.

  • It can be challenging, can get heated, but it usually works out for the best, after these things are implemented, we’ll see improvements.

  • We just have to listen to the people who live here. They go through this every day, and they know the patterns better than anyone.

AM presents letter, and delivers closing remarks:

What an excellent discussion. Thank you everyone for participating. Councilor Bailão and Trustee Donaldson, we appreciate you being here tonight and would like to conclude with some specific asks we feel would make the neighbourhood safer.

We would like to see the completion of the traffic study for our area. We hope the petition for the speed enforcement camera results in Dufferin and Davenport being selected - but if not, we think the intersection would still benefit from speed radar and red light cameras. Perhaps we could also explore other enhancements, like no right turns on red and left hand turn advance lights coming from all directions.

We would also like the construction on the retaining wall on Davenport to include widening the sidewalk and adding a guard rail.

On Regal Road specifically we would like to see stricter parking enforcement during drop-off and pick-up times, particularly cars that illegally park on the northbound side of Regal Road. It would also be helpful to see clearer markings on roads.

We’ve summarized all these requests in a letter we will be giving both Councilor Bailão and Trustee Donaldson. If it’s okay with you, we will follow up in six weeks for an update.

Thank you again. At this time we’d like to continue with our council meeting with an update from our principal, Mr. Michael Morris.

MM: Happy New Year. We came back, started back right where we left off. School is doing quite well. There was some construction over the holidays, working on the plates in the walls, and they look good. We will eventually be putting in our new windows in some of the areas that do need to be replaced.

The construction took some time. The washrooms were closed off for three and four days, but they’re back to normal. Next construction will be in front of the building. The downspout of the doorway, east of the door is draining water into the building. We have to fix that, and repair the damage that’s been done. What I’ve been told is that the water is going into the boiler room. Students don’t go in there already, but they’ll make sure it’s closed off. They’ll be doing their work below level as much as they can. Anything they do around the door will be after 6:30 at night, so no kids around. We don’t have to worry. They will adhere to guidelines for noise. It should be completed over the next few weeks. It was going to be a summer thing, but they can do it cheaper now, with no summer hours. That will be done in a few weeks. There will be an update in the newsletter.

As of today, teachers have started phase three of work to rule campaign. Does anyone have any questions about the new phase? There will be no assemblies except to supervise students. For example, the kick-off assembly for the Dance-a-Thon, we can do that, still. No extracurriculars outside of school. Lunchtime is good, as is recess, but there will be nothing held after or before school. Teachers will not participate in any field trips, and anything that had been planned has been cancelled. They will also not be at work more than 30 minutes before school, or 15 minutes after. So it might be tough to meet teachers.

I have also been told that as of Friday, if there are no further negotiations, they will begin rotating strikes. I have no idea when that will happen. They don’t slip me a note. When we find out, you’ll find out. Other than that, when you walk around the building, it’s business as usual, students are in class, learning, and then at recess.

Q: will the new windows allow ventilation?

MM: I hope so.

Q: after school sports affected by the work to rule?

MM: There will be no after school sports.

TH: Will Ascot be open for the strike?

A: If janitorial services are still occurring, yes, but only before and after care. There will be no care during regular school hours.

Q: Will janitorial staff still be here?

MM: Yes. As will admin. Office administration, ECEs, they’ll all be in the building, because they’re not on strike so they need to be here.

Q: School open houses have all been cancelled. We have deadlines for alternative schools, etc…. have there been any discussions with the superintendent about moving these deadlines?

MM: There’s talk of rescheduling the deadlines. Check the websites.

Q: One of the questions the students had was about dropping off the applications. They were going to drop them off at the open houses, but now they have to go do it themselves.

MM: Yes, that may be the case.

AM: As we close, we’d like to plug the January 23 eco swamp and shop, Value Village-style romp in this room, where will be selling lightly used clothing, toys and games. Come with cash and credit cards. It’s pay what you can.

Q: Where do leftovers go to?

AM: Local charities. We’ll publicize that when we have them chosen.

TH: For example, Tiny Toy Co—while not a charity—is an organization that repurposes smaller toys. We don’t want to do a one big value village thing, so we’re looking at how to put this to the best use.

AM: January 31 is the last pizza lunch that people have paid for. It’s tough to circulate these forms with work to rule, so we’re pushing school cash online. Pay it forward is being introduced, so everyone can get pizza if they want it.

The Dance-a-Thon is in February. We’re looking to make the event more eco-friendly, so we’re sending less tchotchkes to landfills.

Q: Does school council have money to pay for stuff? The Mosaic, off to the side of the office needs to be fixed. It has duct tape and Plexiglas holding it together. Parents paid for the mosaic with a cookie sale, though school council did chip in a little bit for the additional mosaic

AM: We can look at it. Thank you for coming, everyone. Please check out our website for the maps and handouts we prepared for our traffic meeting.

School Council Meeting Minutes for November 12 2019

11-12-19

Welcome and thank you for attending. It’s cold and nobody has snow tires, so we much appreciate everyone making it out tonight.

School Council Budget

The School Council budget for 2019/2020 has been submitted. There was some back and forth about how to accommodate certain projects that are new this year. TDSB school budgets are leaner than before, and the council will try to help when possible, but we do have to focus on our core mandate, including focusing on equitable access to school programs for all people in the community.

One of the major changes to our budget this year is the removal of the QSP magazine fundraiser. Instead, we hope to implement a direct drive fundraising initiative, though details—including what project the direct drive will be targeted towards—have yet to be determined. It may potentially be tied to the spring fair, but nothing has been decided yet. Council would like the direct drive to be tied to a very specific fundraising goal, so that parents can see the results.

Council is also exploring the possibility of a multi-year playground improvement project, one that refurbishes and rebuilds the current facilities while balancing safety and aesthetics—there have been several injuries on the “big kids” playground in recent years. Several other schools have undertaken similar projects, many on quite a large scale. Council has spoken with Alexis Dawson (School Council co-chair at Rawlinson) about partnering with local developers and businesses in our catchment as potential sponsors, including the developers of the Galleria project.

Though the Galleria is not in our catchment, one of the buildings that will be part of the future development is on the north side of Dupont, and therefore in our area.

Principal Morris is planning a meeting with Richard Christie, a facilities expert with the TDSB who specializes in playgrounds, with an eye towards green initiatives/eco schools. His approval is required for any upgrades on Board property. He will provide an assessment form, and will help guide us through the process. Christie has an immense wealth of knowledge not only on the facilities themselves—he is known for his innovative and unconventional playground and facilities designs and approaches—but where to find funding. He will be by to examine the field and the playground as soon as the snow melts.

This year will be focused on exploration of options. Work would, theoretically, begin next school year.

Parent comment: We need to find out the life-cycle of our current playground. When are they required to be replaced?

Q: do we have a record of how many children have been injured on the playground?

A: The TDSB would have that information. Principal Morris states that he is aware of five children who have broken limbs on the playground since his arrival at the school two years ago.

Q: Will the playground be accessible to the community outside of school hours?

A: Yes. The playground is not locked. However, use of the sports field requires a permit.

Council has also changed the way council funding is allocated to teachers. In the past, council provided money per class, but now that has been opened up to allow teachers who don’t have classrooms—such as phys ed, or special ed—can access those funds.

Upcoming events

The council plans to continue with the events held in previous years, while adding a few new ones. We are adding a toy and clothing swap in January, so people can purge unneeded items. Those who bring in clothes or toys will receive vouchers to swap, and people will also have the option to buy items.

An adult dance fundraising event is also being added. It will be held at Regal Road. Currently, it is scheduled for March 26th , but Mr. Morris suggests moving it to Friday, because the staff required for the event do not live in the catchment and would otherwise have to come to work early the next morning.

A used book fair is also being added on April 23rd —International Book Day, with a similar structure to the toy and clothing swap. Parts of the fair may be held outside, weather permitting.

Themes for pizza/spirit days have been decided. For example, November’s spirit day will be “retro” themed, and May will be “green” themed. Forms for the 2020 pizza lunches have not gone home yet.

Council is also beginning to solicit volunteers to join the committees for various events. Sign-up sheets are present at the meeting, and will be posted at the school. Some of these committees have already started—such as spring fair and the silent auction—as these need extended prep time.

One of the committees will be focused on road safety.

Every committee will be headed by a School Council member, to ensure accountability. But the committees are open to parents, friends, family, and community members. Anyone willing to join is encouraged to sign up, or get in touch with council.

Equity meeting

Council co-chairs attended a ward 9 equity meeting hosted by Stephanie Donaldson, which included fellow council chairs from throughout ward 9, as well as other parent representatives. Adam and Nicole noted how interesting it was to see how perspectives of equity and inclusion can differ from school to school. But everyone agreed on the importance of inclusion, safe spaces, reducing financial, language, and disability barriers. This will be the first of many meetings to discuss pooling resources, sharing research, learning resources and best practices, inviting guest speakers, etc… The biggest topic of discussion was cuts to education which, while it impacts everyone, impacts some groups more than others. It was great to hear the school trustee prioritize these issues. As Adam and Nicole continue to learn more at these meetings, they will share at future council gatherings.

Updates from Principal Morris.

The school is still standing. This is good news.

Construction updates: Two or possibly three lifts will be brought onto school property to bring workers to the top of the building, where there will be evaluating the state of the stonework. They are being proactive in looking for issues; if any are found, a plan will be set for repairs. The lifts will arrive over the next few weeks. All appropriate safety precautions will be taken. Work will be completed while students are in class, and workers will take breaks during recess and lunch periods. The lifts will be fenced off, but parents are encouraged to remind their children to stay away from the equipment. This information will be included in the weekly newsletter.

Currently, a group of grade six students are at the Island School for the week. Principal Morris will be visiting the Island School tomorrow, along with a few students who are not attending the trip. The Island School excursion ends Thursday. Mr. Morris has been to several outdoor education facilities, including Albion Kills and Kearney, and they are fantastic programs. The students love them, they learn a great deal, they experience the outdoors and an extended bonding experience with their fellow classmates. For many students, it’s their first time away from home, which is interesting for both students and parents. However, due to budget cuts, these programs are suffering, and the cost per student is going up. This year, it was $150 per students, when in previous years it has been around $75.

Q: The students who didn’t attend, was it due to financial constraints? Or did the parents not want them to go?

A: Some parents didn’t want their children to attend, some students didn’t want to attend, and some were not able to attend due to financial reasons, though the school did help pay for some students to go. School Council is adding a line item in the budget to be able to contribute to field trips in these types of situations, along with the school.

Q: Is there a way parents can contribute financially to field trips, to help all students attend?

A: Council is exploring a way for parents who are able to “pay it forward” and pay a little bit extra for field trips, pizza lunches, etc…, with the surplus going into a pool that teachers in any class can draw from. School Cash Online currently has a donate button, but those funds go directly to the school.

Regal Road Budget

There is a shortfall this year, due to cuts. Last year, Regal Road’s budgets was $105 000; this year, it is $96 000. This is a significant difference, especially considering that there are several “Thou Shalt” line items dictated by the board. For example, there is approximately $5000 allocated for technology (which can be added to—Mr. Morris has increased that item by $3000), which has to go toward technology. Certain costs are fixed, such as office supplies.

School Council received a small amount ($729, which goes toward insurance, child care during meetings, and tables for the spring fair, traditionally). Furniture and equipment needs to be replaced frequently.

Mr. Morris has added a principal’s discretionary fund, which will be used for classroom supplies or field trips that fall outside of the classroom budget.

Money is put aside for professional development, textbooks and learning materials, math manipulatives, French Immersion support and initiatives, instructional supplies (papers and pencils in the classroom, for example). The instructional supply budget will now be allocated per student, rather than per teacher, to account for different class sizes.

Other line items in the school budget include library, maintenance, phys ed, referee fees, special education, music/instruments.

The budget for music has been increased, as this year more students will have access to steel pans, strings, and band, with full classes being taught these instruments, rather than withdrawing selected students from regular classes. An eco-school initiative line item has also been added this year.

Any parent with questions or concerns about the budget is welcome to speak with Mr. Morris.

School testing results

Vice Principal Chumfong: The scores for the Canadian Cognitive Abilities (CCAT 7) test have come back. This is the test to determine if grade three students may be eligible for the TDSB gifted program. If a student reaches the appropriate benchmark on the test (98th percentile), they can move forward for further evaluation on the Gifted Rating Scale. Their teachers will fill out a 100 question evaluation of the student. Depending on that score, there will be a school support team meeting to determine if the student should move forward, and finally a one-on-one meeting between the student and a psychologist (psychiatrist?) for a psychological assessment. If all parties agree that the student is a good fit for the program, then the child can move into the gifted stream. This year, four students achieved the required score on the CCAT 7 test to move to the next stage. Also, if parents feel that something may have been missed on the CCAT 7 test, they can bring their child forward at any time for further evaluation on the Gifted Rating Scale.

Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) test results have been sent out for grade three and six students who wrote the test last year. They were mailed out three weeks ago. If they haven’t arrived, please let us know. It takes about six weeks to resend the results. Scores were similar to last year. Our students did fairly well in reading, writing and math. Grade threes are doing well. Grade sixes had slightly lower than last year. We are looking at the results, and examining what can be done to improve math scores, including professional development for the school.

Principal Morris is putting a group together including Vice Principal Chumfong and several teachers (as well as a Position of Responsibility teacher) to formulate a plan to improve scores. Some of the teachers already have some excellent suggestions. That said, with the upcoming possibility of strike or work-to-rule action after November 25th, roll-out of this plan may be affected.

Q: What would withdrawal of services/work to rule entail?

A: It could mean a variety of things. Teachers will still be in the school to teach, but there would be no teacher-run extracurriculars, such as sports or clubs. Teachers may not, for example, being able to hand out newsletters, or administer the EQAO testing. Report cards may look different, perhaps including grades but not comments.

Mr. Morris reiterates the administration’s full support of the teachers and the teacher’s union during this difficult period.

Q: Is the CCAT 7 test used to determine learning disabilities as well?

A: It can reveal learning disabilities, but it is generally focused on finding students who may be a good fit for the gifted program. Usually, we rely on parents and teachers bringing concerns about learning disabilities forward.

Q: How is gifted defined?

A: For the TDSB, it is defined as having a score in the 98th percentile on the Gifted Ratings Scale. Other school boards may set the threshold at the 96th or 97th percentile.

Q: Is there any update on the accessibility washroom?

A: There is no update. Plans have gone out to tender, but no contract has been awarded.

Road Safety

Road safety is a primary concern for parents and the school. There are frequent issues, in particular, at the intersection of Dufferin and Davenport. Council has been in contact with Councillor Ana Bailao to get a traffic survey in the area. There is no update on this as of yet, but we are continuing to look for ways to assess and improve the area. As an example, there are new traffic lights that are being put in place at Rosemount and Dufferin. We are considering inviting Councillor Bailao or a representative from her office to attend a School Council meeting to discuss road safety.

A parent notes that there is another parent, Andrew (not present at the meeting), who was instrumental in having both speedbumps and the new lights at Rosemount put in place. It is suggested that Andrew be invited to the next meeting to share his thoughts on how best to advance these initiatives.

Parent comment: We shouldn’t underestimate the impact of the wards doubling in size. This is definitely affecting response times, and the ability of councillors to address these types of issues.

Parent comment: We need to figure out what the most effective way is to improve safety around the school. Is it working with children and parents to change driving/pedestrian habits around the school, or is it advancing infrastructure projects? Likely, the answer is both.

Council comment: We had a road safety assembly last year at the school.

Principal Morris notes that parents frequently make comments to him about traffic and parking around the school, but he is limited with what he can do. He notes that he contacted parking enforcement, but it took hours for them to respond. There is only so much that the administration is able to do.

Parent comment: Some schools have implemented some innovative solutions. There is a school in the Keele area that closed the entire street around the school. Some other schools around the world have used gates or retractable concrete posts to reduce traffic during school hours. These are extreme solutions, but perhaps they can be considered.

Parent comment: Speed ripples, clear parking signage and road paint, and fencing to protect children can all be very effective ways to improve safety.

Parent comment: Kiss-and-ride areas can also help, though this would require significant road work outside the school.

Parent comment: There are two key components to the road safety issue: traffic on the Dufferin corridor (including the Dufferin and Davenport intersection), and the drop-off area in front of the school. Which do we want to be squeakiest about? A traffic study of the entire area would provide information about both.

Q: When will Councillor Bailao get back to us?

A: We’re not sure. We have sent several emails.

Council suggestion: Call her every day. That’s how we got the crossing guard replaced last year.

Q: Last year, there were some issues with the crossing guards, but this year the situation seems to have improved. Is there a reason for this?

A: Crossing guards used to be administered by the police, but now responsibility has shifted to the city. There have been some issues during the transition, but it seems to have stabilized. Any concerns can be brought directly to Councillor Bailao.

General questions

Q: How did last year’s Spring Fair compared to previous years, in terms of financials?

A: It was about the same. It usually nets between five and six thousand dollars, but it costs quite a bit to put on, so any profit is positive. The meeting concludes with a reminder that spots are still available for Family Photo night, and encouragement for parents and community members to sign up for committees to help run events and initiatives.

School Council Meeting Minutes for October 03 2019

10-03-19

The October 3, 2019 meeting opens with a warm welcome to all parent and community members in attendance, and all new members.

The current School Council Executive is introduced:

Natalie Stickle – Outgoing co-chair

Stephanie Ayers – Outgoing co-chair

Jess Eylon – Outgoing treasurer

Nicole Dole – Outgoing secretary

Stephanie, Natalie, and Jess will remain members of the School Council, and will be advising the new executive during the transition.

School administration and Council are deeply gratefully to Stephanie and Natalie for their hard work, dedication, drive and determination over the years. They will be deeply missed as co-chairs.

An open invitation is extend to other parents and community members who would like to join School Council.

The new executive is proposed:

Nicole Dole – Incoming co-chair

Adam Miller – Incoming co-chair

Tallulah Hershorn – Treasurer

Al Kratina – Secretary

With no objections, the new executive is acclaimed.

School Council financials

Main issue for the upcoming school year is that there is less money in the School Council account than normal. There was a large capital expenditure on technology last year, which has significantly reduced this year’s cushion.

Several spending categories may require review.

Standard categories include:

Teacher resources – Generally $200 per class, normally spent on activities, books, additional Scientist in the School sessions.

School Council usually pays for one Scientist in the School activity per class.

School Council also normally subsidizes field trips at $15 per student.

If the spending is the same as last year, we will be in very difficult position at the start of the following year, likely with no cushion in the budget. Either spending will have to be reduced, or revenue will have to be significantly raised.

The School Council budget will have to be in by October 31st, when it will be sent to Principal Morris. Stephanie and Natalie have offered to help the incoming executive with setting the budget.

Administration update

Introduction of Principal Michael Morris and Vice-Principal Cathy Chumfong.

Welcome to all attendees. It’s great to see so many people here, and hopefully this will continue throughout the year.

Principal Morris thanks Stephanie and Natalie for their work as co-chairs over the years, and for their commitment to help the new School Council executive during the transition process. Principal Morris also expresses his gratitude to parent volunteers for their help so far this year with pizza lunch and the Curriculum Night BBQ.

Updates on accessibility

Regal Road will be renovated to improve accessibility. The project will be in two phases. The first phase will included an accessible washroom on the first floor, ramps at the front doors (or a set of doors yet to be determined), and automatic doors at the front entrance, as well as several other doors within the building. The second phase will include an elevator. Blueprints have been provided for the washroom, which Principal Morris is approving. Anyone with any thoughts about the blueprints is welcome to provide feedback.

Newsletter

A weekly newsletter is sent by email every Friday, and a printed newsletter is sent home every month. Vice-Principal Chumfong handles the weekly newsletter, while Principal Morris handles the monthly newsletter. The Student Council is welcome to submit material for inclusion in either newsletter.

Q: Are the accessibility renovations led by the TDSB?

A: No. It is through a federal program to make certain buildings more accessible. Both the federal and provincial governments have programs to enhance accessibility.

Q: What is the timeline for the washroom construction? How will disruption be mitigated? As the washroom will be constructed on the first floor, near the kindergarten rooms, what measures are taken to ensure safety? Will workers be required to pass a police check?

A: There is no timeline yet for construction, but it will be shared when available. When work like this is tendered, bidders are required to adhere to health and safety guidelines. Workers in TDSB buildings are required by contract to complete a police check. The construction area will

be hoarded off for safety purposes. If possible, work will be done after hours or, if financially feasible, during the summer to minimize disruption. It shouldn’t affect any of the classes.

Q: Will parents still be able to enter during the front doors during ramp construction?

A: Parents may be asked to enter through the side doors, in which case buzzers and security measures will be installed on the alternate entrance.

Q: Will the playground be made accessible?

A: Technically the playground is accessible. There is a gate from the parking lot, and one going out on the street from the playfield, though these gates are kept locked for safety purposes.

Additional construction

Another new construction project was approved last week. Windows will be replaced throughout the building (half were replaced a few years ago). Due to the age of the building, the structure of the school will have to be examined before the new windows can be installed. Workers will check inside the walls and determine if the steel beams and their plates need to be replaced. The work is currently scheduled for November, but Principal Morris has requested that the date be moved to the December break, when there are less people in the school. This will be a four or five day process, with the area hoarded off for safety reasons, and to protect the rest of the school from the dust created during the work (Principal Morris notes that this is not an asbestos issue).

Areas affected will be the boys’ and girls’ washrooms in the basement, and the kindergarten class in the basement. It has yet to be determined where the class will be moved. This will also affect the Ascot daycare held in the basement. When more details are available, they will be shared.

CUPE strike action: RR admin does not know what will happen. If there is a strike, the TDSB will be shutting down. Teachers and admin will still be working in the building, but students will not. 18 000 TDSB workers would be on strike.

Closing down TDSB schools was not a decision that was made lightly. But these CUPE employees are incredibly important to the school. It is a health and safety issue. Negotiations between CUPE and the government will restart Friday at 4:30; a decision whether to strike is expected to be made by Sunday.

CUPE has asked parents not to volunteer or cross picket lines.

Principal Morris stresses that CUPE workers are essential, and they are valued members of Regal Road (and the TDSB in general).

Q: Will Ascot daycare be open at Regal Road during the strike?

A (from parent who sits on Ascot board): No, unfortunately. With no one to clean the school or operate its boilers, Ascot would could not run their program in compliance of their health and safety requirements, and therefore cannot stay open during the strike. Ascot management will send a memo by email tomorrow (Friday, October 4).

Q: Is there a cut-off time for closing the school? If there is no word on a potential strike, when will the TDSB decide whether or not to close schools on Monday?

A: Unknown. Usually, it would be midnight on Sunday. Principal Morris will check with his superintendent.

Q: My daughter is in grade one. She came home yesterday, concerned about the lunch room situation. She says it’s dirty and noisy, and she hasn’t been eating her lunch. What can be done to improve this?

A: This is an ongoing issue. It takes time for grade ones to get used to the lunch room situation. Stephanie will be staring a monthly program where she helps acclimate RR students to upcoming changes. For example, she will be taking kindergarten classes for lunches in the lunch room to help them get used to it, or taking grade six students to Wynona High School to show them around.

Recent changes have been made to try and improve the lunch room situation, including staggering lunch times, so half the students eat lunch in the lunch rooms while the other half plays outside, and then switches halfway through the period.

It can help to provide plenty of easily snackable items that you know your child will enjoy to help encourage them to eat during lunch time. Encourage them to eat some of their food outside during their play period, as well (Principal Morris stresses that no food with wrappers should be taken outside, to help prevent litter, but food in reusable containers like Tupperware is fine).

A number of clubs also run at lunchtime, which can provide an opportunity for students to find a quieter environment to eat.

Principal Morris adds that lunchroom expectations will be posted in all lunch rooms to remind students. As well, a chart showing progress toward the “Golden Lunchbox” award—given to the class who demonstrates best behaviour in the lunchroom over the course of the year—will be posted in lunchrooms, adding extra positive reinforcement for good behaviour (also they win like a pizza lunch or something, which should help).

Also, extra supervision has been added. For the first 10 minutes of lunch, an additional teacher will monitor the two lunch rooms, as well as the last 10 minutes.

Parents can help by ensuring students understand lunchroom rules and expectations.

Q: How long do the kids get to eat during lunch?

A: Approximately 25 minutes in the lunchroom.

Eco schools update

We are continuing to get to the next level with our eco schools program. For example, we are continuning to push “boomerang lunches”, where students bring home all the waste wrapping, etc, from their lunches, to help draw attention to unnecessary packaging and waste.

Also, Mr. Murtaugh is asking for parent volunteers to help with the Eco Club.

Q: Is there a list of current clubs at RR?

A: No. Because the clubs are all teacher-run, and vary from year to year.

Principal Morris notes that should teachers go to work-to-rule, clubs may be cancelled.

Q: Can parent volunteers run clubs?

A: Not during the school day. Clubs during the school day require teacher supervision, and replacing teachers with a parent volunteer would be a violation of work-to-rule. After school hours, it is possible for parents to run clubs, but this may require permitting.

Additional resources

Jess recommends the upcoming People for Education conference on Nov 2. People for Education is a public think thank that researches public education in Ontario. The conference is an excellent opportunity for educators and parents to demystify the education system, and talk about important issues such as diversity and mental health. It can be essential in helping parents learn how to navigate the system when there is an issue.

For parents interested in learning more about school councils, the TDSB has excellent resources, including presentations with videos and slides. They also have tools and information on school policies, how to talk to teachers, what principals and superintendents can help with, etc…

The meeting concludes.

Thank you, Natalie and Stephanie for your time, care, and concern as co-chairs of the Regal Road School Council. You have set the highest possible standard.

2018-2019 School Year

School Council Meeting Minutes for June 11 2019

06-11-19

Codezilla presentation from Sheri Allain.

Codezilla is an educational program that teaches kids about coding and how computers work with use of Scratch program and tech toys. Sheri is the founder and the mom of two school aged children. Classes are offered within the school in class, over lunch period and off-site weekend workshops and summer camp. Learning to code helps children become involved with computers rather than being passive users. Classes can be used from JK to grade 6.

Finances -

Full update for the spring fair not available yet. Cash deposited but not all collected from Silent Auction. So far $10,000+, $760 in Square transactions, half from Silent Auction. School Cash not added in yet. Silent Auction - $1700 so far. Still more items to be sold once the winner is moved down the line for items not picked up. Projected earning was at $15000, seems to be on track. $1700 from School Cash wristbands. Expenditures for Spring Fair $7620.79

Over budget for field trips so no more for this year. Field trips for next year, can no longer fund from the start of the year as there are less carry over funds from previous years. Some teachers don’t spend, some teachers spend too much, spending needs more monitoring. Start next year with Scientist in the school? Voted on by the population of the school. Vote at first meeting next year. Continue to the second meeting. Let teachers know that there are less funds for next year? End of year meeting on the 28th and can be told then. $400 from the school is consumables, cannot be used for field trip or Scientist in the School. Should School Council consider Direct Drive starting next year to raise funds?

Regal has a small budget to help with field trips. Regal also has to address overspending from teachers. In the budget to buy some coding items for next year. Next year, extracurricular can’t be guaranteed. Don’t know for next year if teachers will be on strike, work to rule, etc. School will definitely start before teachers are in a legal position to strike.

For Direct Drive, can there be levels for donation? Certain prizes for larger donations?

Work to rule was 4 years ago, fundraising was done in work to rule years but nothing was used. Allowed School Council to carry a larger amount of funds.

Good atmosphere to do Direct Drive because parents are aware of the TDSB cuts. Will Direct Drive affect other fundraising? No, because pizza lunch and Dance-a-thon are still appealing.

Over summer, think of what it is that we want to direct money towards. Mention that we’re going to be losing something without the funds.

At the last ward forum, at Rawlinson, money was put towards playground. Planning for playground, how to advertise to get interest from parents. Get a catch phrase, promote it.

Fundraise to fix the field, put in a track? Other schools can’t complete here for track and field due to the state of the grass.

This summer, drainage expert to redo drainage and reseed. Artificial turf by goal areas? Corner of yard will get proper jump pit. Turfed in soccer areas in other schools, fundraise to do that here?

Do another lunch to help fundraise? Add Subway to list of fundraising lunches? Pita Pit is an option, located at Stockyards. Subway is easier than pizza because everything comes labeled rather than all pizza arriving at the same time and having to be portioned out. For pizza, children who can’t afford pizza still are given pizza but the same can’t be extended to other lunches like Subway and Pita Pit. Check the logistics to see if it’s as easy as it sounds. Bring one in to be every other week, pizza and subway. 6” or 12” as well as a few options (veggie, tuna, turkey etc)

Next year fundraising suggestion: Nickel Wars. Each class gets a jar of nickels, then classes can sabotage one another by putting in different coins. Fundraiser raised $1000 for a school of 400 students.

Eco schools. Certified as silver this year, try to get gold or platinum next year. Working on getting 3 or 4 water bottle filling stations. Currently in a waiting/holding pattern due to station not being tall enough for certain water bottles. Basin wasn’t large enough to catch all the water.

Hot Lunch proposed for starting in September next year. Three options from the TDSB approved vendors: Kid’s Kitchen, Rose Reisman and Lunch Lady. Kid’s Kitchen has the smallest menu, questionable recycling and requires volunteers so is dismissed from consideration. Between Lunch Lady and Rose Reisman, Rose Reisman has healthier food and uses compostable containers as well as recyclable. Rose Reisman will also collect and return all of the recyclable material. Rose Reisman gives back the most amount of money to School Council for fundraising. Only concern is that Rose Reisman requires at least 40 orders per week as opposed to Lunch Lady having no minimum order.

Voted on Rose Reisman starting in September, voted yes by School Council

Have Hot Lunch on Monday, is Tuesday an option for holidays?

What about people who don’t have online access? Are there forms to have in the office.

Ask question about weekly fluctuation, what happens if certain weeks are low?

Daily milk fundraiser? What about soy milk packages? Milk as snack program? Not done due to logistics.

From Mr. Morris:

Next year, 32 teachers instead of 34. Larger numbers in junior grades. 32 teachers does not mean 32 classes.

Music 1 full, one half music/media/integrated arts.

Letter goes home on the 28th with list of teachers and new classes.

Won’t know about potential for reorganization next year. Only 4 days notice given to Mr. Morris in case of reorganization. Next year, if numbers seem off, can announce earlier if there seems to be a risk. Less likely for junior grades to deal with reorganization. For list on 28th, still not sure about teachers affected by central funding. If teachers choose to leave for another school, then surplus teachers have the potential to be called back. Regal has a half vacancy.

August 31st is when TDSB teachers’ contract is up. Have to give 6 weeks of notice for strike, so if strike/work to rule happens, it will be mid October. It seems like parents will be more supportive of the situation as it’s well known what is happening to the TDSB due to the cuts.

PRO Grant is happening next Tuesday. Flyer going home.

Suggestion: Information for first meeting next year, 10 things to expect about work to rule.

School Council Meeting Minutes for April 23 2019

04-23-19

Staffing Update from Mr. Morris

Allotment was 31.5 teaching staff which is down 2.5 from last year. Last year assumption for number of students was 604, this year the projection is 583. Because of the budget, Regal has only received part of allotment from phase 1. Phase 2 should have been in today, which covers an allotment for special education, ESL (English as a Second Language), and vice principals. Phase 1 was just teachers. Not sure what the allotment for VP is yet. All central staff are back on the available teaching list, not sure what’s happening with central principals. Phase 2 now due to arrive by 29th of April. It will then be known if there is any more ESL, any more spec ed. Not yet with EAs (educational assistants) or SAs. Due to late timing of the budget. Tentative assignments have been handed out at Regal but everything might have to be redone. Finalized after reorganization at the end of September. Currently there is a surplus of 4 teachers.

Central people in central roles, 2 people from Regal are currently in that position. Last year there were 34 teachers, this year 31.5 teachers. Any vacancies in the board, teachers can then apply. First part of June, class placements are done after better idea of numbers.

Spring Fair

Working on online potluck sign up to simplify bringing dishes.

Baskets this year, different themes. Requests for class baskets and food on 2nd week of May. Square readers for using credit cards and debit might be borrowed from another school. This year there are 200 donated sunglasses for prizes. Group coordinator has all information for face painting and tattoos. Volunteers needed for games, a teacher has offered her two daughters to help. Tips for volunteers from Jess. Grades 5/6 can work for 30 minutes, teenagers can work longer but might disappear. Adults should always be backup.

Next Spring Fair meeting for Wednesday May 1st at Treasurer’s house.

Silent auction website, School Council has voted to pay $100usd for no ads on website.

Bouncy castle for little kids, there will be a height restriction on who can jump.

3 ticket sales booths, all fixed location, no roaming sales.

Earth Rangers and James Funny Hat. Still checking on their availability. Projected schedule, 5-6pm James Funny Hat, 6-7pm dance party.

Popcorn to be purchased from Kernals, picked up by Co Chair.

Treasurer will take care of ordering donuts.

Themed posters leading up to Spring Fair need to be organized. Colouring sheets to be made for Junior Kindergarten and Senior Kindergarten classes.

Budget Update

Semi annual report, Co Chair has fixed all of the budget so that future reports are automatically filled in online.

QSP - no longer happening

Dance a thon - less money earned

Welcome BBQ - surprise success

Halloween movie night - more earned than expected

All money will be spent by the end of the year, no surplus carried forward.

Next year, look into fundraising that doesn’t require a lot of money upfront.

For next year, look into someone other than Proffesor Jamz to cut down on costs.

Stephanie K - tapping presentation - rescheduled

Lunch program

Concerns about added cost to parents, pressure on parents who can’t afford. Kids who don’t get lunches, if meals are mixed up, cause big issues in the office. 10 years of experience from Mr Morris. Don’t do lunch program due to inequity issues? Talk to Carlton about their program. Different budgets for different schools. At Carlton, are the students subsidized? Start with one day a week. “Make your Mondays Easier”, “Messless Mondays”. Do a survey to gauge interest? For the chosen vendor, Is any perentage donated back to the school? Don’t choose vendor Real Food for Real Kids - not for fussy kids, you don’t get to pick the food. At Pauline, it only worked for one term for Real Food for Real Kids.

Lunch Lady is expensive but does give back to the school. The parent is dealing directly with the company so it’s on the parents to make sure that everything is properly ordered.

Math and Science Night. Funded by PRO Grant.

$160 for one night for 25 kids. Fun workshops. 4-7 age group or 4-12 age group. Parents allowed to attend. Do a session after school and a session in the evening. Snacks provided.

Catch me if you can - mystery, finger prints, forensic science. Ages 7-12

Colour me curious - colour and gravity defying effects. Ages 4-12

Make people register? Have first come first serve?

Grant has given $1000 to spend. Can run multiple sessions.

Do it early in May, use it to promote spring fair.

Everything is free.

School Council Meeting Minutes for March 19 2019

03-19-19

School Council meeting for March 19 2019 is to focus on the Spring Fair

Date for the Spring Fair: May 30 2019, 5pm-8pm. Rain date is June 6.

Game: Musical Cakes - there are 10 numbers on the ground, people move around until music stops, then have to stand on a number. The person running the game then draws a number from 1-10 to see who the winner is. The winner gets a whole cake.. $2 to play, 10 players per game. Game can be played for as many rounds as there are cakes. Request will go out to families for contribution of cake or pies. Ways to keep cakes cool? Last year the cakes melted a bit from being in the heat. For numbers on ground, there needs to be a way to keep them down. Last year they were paper and blew away. Consider using plywood, then they can be reused next year. Aiming for 10-15 cakes to be donated, a sign up for donations can be made beforehand.

Mini donuts to be done again this year. 4 donuts for $1, served in popcorn bag.

Cotton candy. Order less this year or a better way to transport it. Last year it was difficult to bring all of the cotton candy from the warehouse to the school.

Caramel corn and popcorn to be sold again.

Candy bags to be sold again.

Games - There will be less games this year. The school owns its plinko game. Higher stakes game, more expensive than other games - 10 for $5. Last year had free toys and prizes that were donated. Also gave away water bottles and lanyards. Win a prize depending on where the plinko disc lands.

Other games will be rented. Ideally one or two people will be running a game for the entire fair. This year it would be preferable for parents or high school students to run the games. Grade 5 and 6s can’t work for long and get bored too quickly.

Other games: Shock Wave - difficult game, exciting for older kids. Also the game Crazy Cans.

Prizes will be candy. What needs to be ordered this year? Water bottles etc. Stuffed animals are more exciting. To be ordered: beack balls, slinkys, sunglasses, stars, mood pencils. Can also consider buying through Amazon who sells bulk emoji keychains.

Bake Sale - last year it was raising funds for Me to We rather than for Regal Road. Some of the local businesses that donated to the school were not happy that funds were then being raised for organizations other than Regal Road. In the future, fundraising bake sale will be done at a different/separate event. This year there will be no bake sale at the Spring Fair, instead all baked goods go to Musical Cakes.

Ice cream truck coming this year. Do we get a portion of the funds? There should be a cut of the money given to the school. Gelato maybe this year? La Paloma has been donating for previous years. Maybe they can come in instead of an ice cream truck? Also Futura Granita or Bar Ape?

Chili contest - issues with heating chili, not enough people bringing a way to heat the chili. Need to put a reminder that slow cookers are necessary to keep hot. How to get enough electricity out to that table.

Classes made crafts for sale but no one bought them. That will be cancelled for this year.

BBQ - Burgers and hotdogs. Buns from Scarborough again? They were a big success at Orientation Night. Buns were donated previous years. Some veggie dogs will be there. Boiled ahead of time to speed up? Grilled first and put in a chafing dish. Boil all hotdogs beforehand to save time, done last year successfully. Rent a burner this year to speed up process.

International food table. Each class is given an ingredient. Last year Bharti made Indian food. Again this year? What portions of her earnings went to Regal? System of tickets so that everything is purchased the same way. More than one colour of tickets? Different colour this year? People are saving tickets from previous years. Tickets are branded to say Regal Road. Tickets are $1000 to purchase. New distributor for less money?

Green table - table of plants for sale. Not to be done again this year due to lack of interest.

Class baskets - done again this year.

Silent auction - Problems from last year, bidding online vs in person. Online bids need to be updated onto the charts in person. No proxy bids this year to avoid complication but still keep online option. For volunteers, we need a games coordinator. For volunteers, have a more specific list of which volunteers are needed. For day of silent auction, two people who stay from start to finish. A catalogue should be made beforehand so that people running the silent auction know exactly what there is.

For next year when the mom running local business donations isn’t here, a new person/people are needed to find donations. A letter from Regal is given to businesses that donate. Did Big Slice donate last year? They might host the graduation lunch this year. Mr Morris will take this task on. Spreadsheet needs to be made of all the businesses that have previously donated. Some businesses have an online system for donations (M&M, Roots, MLSC, AGO, Wonderland).

Last year, some baskets were never picked up. Try to collect from who bought them last year? If money can’t be collected, reuse the baskets.

Table for sparkle tattoos and face painting again this year. Henna was skipped due to concerns of some kids having a bad reaction to the henna dye.

Water truck - City of Toronto water truck used to come for people to fill their water bottles. They’ve now changed the rules, the event has to be at least 4 hours. Just stick with selling water bottles.

List of jobs

  • Face painting (supplies are provided)

  • People to run BBQ

  • Person to run International Food table

  • Person to run games

  • Person to raise donations

Lead person for face painting to be the coordinator for the different people working, for both sparkle tattoos and face painting.

Jobs should all go in weekly school report, this has been approved by Mr. Morris.

Bouncy castles - A castle this year just for the little kids? Castles need to be set up earlier as they weren’t ready on time last year. Bouncer for the older kids? Do age requirements for certain bouncy castles? Adventure Mania provides the bouncy castles.

Animal show inside? Downstairs in the basement hallway. Only here for an hour. Show done by Animal Ambassadors.

Edge imaging did a photo booth, to be done again this year.

James Funny Hat - play in the outdoor classroom? There needs to be a way to provide electricity

A Square for payments. A small device that attaches to a phone or tablet that allows payment from debit or credit card. Used by downloading a free app on the phone/tablet. Free for one Square, the company then takes 2.65% of the proceeds. If you buy one of the tap devices, only 10 cents for debit purchases. $60 for the hardware. Can more than one Square be linked to a single account? Takes 50 cents per $20.

How many ticket stations? 3 or 4 last year. The school school acquire 1 free Square and 2 taps. Reduce down to 2 ticket stations. Test the TDSB wifi to make sure it works outside. Mobile hotspot as backup? Can text receipt from purchase right away. Can sign for credit card purchases. Find out what the purchase name will show up as on credit card statement.

Why is the Spring Fair held on a Thursday? More people show up on Thursday than Friday.

Check with Wallace Espresso about having a coffee station.

Next meeting April 2 @ 7:30 at DeSoto’s to discuss Spring Fair.

School Council Meeting Minutes for February 20 2019

02-20-19

Dance-a-thon is on February 27 2019

For fundraising, money can be sent online through School Cash Online through donation, annotated to Dance-a-thon. Funds can also be sent online through Professor Jamz’s website. Cost for Professor Jamz is $890 so donations go towards his fees and extra funds beyond his cost are given to school. If funds raised are over $8000, Professor Jamz gets a higher fee. Funds raised during the Dance-a-thon from glow sticks are independent or Professor Jamz.

School Yearbook for 2018/2019 - The parent who previously put together the yearbook is stepping down. A new person is needed to help put together this year’s book. A new vendor is being considered for production. Previous years were done by Bright Pics but this year Edge Imaging is a new option. Edge imaging is less expensive, but the book won’t be as high quality. Last year School Council covered the $1000 financial loss on yearbooks. Every grade 6 gets a yearbook regardless their ability to buy. Bright Pics is still being considered. Their price has increased so losses are greater. More advertisers are needed for the yearbook. The help needed involves taking photographs on spirit days, Spring Fair, Dance-a-thon and other school events. A parent has stepped forward to take photographs of the various school teams and clubs. Edge Imaging has recently donated two banners to the school. Samples will be provided for Edge Imaging’s different options for the yearbook. This year’s aim is to have larger photos which also means less photos. Grade 6s can enter a competition for the cover art. Competition takes place near the end of the year, likely in May. Runners up get their art displayed as inside and back cover. All entries are featured in a collage.

Pizza Lunch for April 26 is being rescheduled due to falling on Passover. New date for Pizza will now be May 3rd. Mr Morris will include a notification in the monthly newsletter. Teachers will remind students closer to the date. School Council will have some pizzas ordered on April 26 in case any students show up without a lunch.

Update from Principal Mr Morris -

Administration are starting to look at staffing, which gears up after march break. Seniority list is made before march break, staffing numbers are done after march break which leads to the staffing model being set up. After teachers receive their new assignments they can decide if they want to stay at the school or leave for a new school. This lasts until May 24th, give or take a few days. More information can be made available once there are staffing models. The school will have an idea of what classes will be like but not which teachers are attached to the classes, that will not be updated until the end of the year. Projected number of students for 2019/2020 is 581 which is just over the current student population. Status quo stays the same but the model might change in how it breaks down per grade. The hope is to have the same amount of teachers. Last year the projected number of students was 604 which allowed for an extra teacher to be hired but then the actual number was lower so the teacher had to be let go. At the start of the school year, the school lost and gained a teacher last year.

As the board moves more towards inclusion, the TDSB will start phasing out the Home School Program (HSP) for grades 5 and 6 so that students with special education needs can stay in their classroom rather than spending 50% of the day in a HSP room. Identification, Placement, and Review Committee (IPRC) determines what support is needed for the student. HSP will no longer be offered for grades 1-4. It’s been a few years since there was an HSP for those grades. There will be withdrawal support up to 49% of the day from special education resource, but not from dedicated HSP. Basically it means more inclusion for the students. They will still be getting support. May change numbers for support.

Some work being done on the school. The fields will receive work over the summer, so no permits will be given for evening use. The last permit is for the Spring Fair. The school can use the fields during the day but no evening activities. For the field - the hope is to move goalposts by 1.5 metres with artificial turf placed in penalty box area on both ends. Also looking to redo drainage, possibly including a sprinkler system. Resodding will be done for whole field. There will be a follow up question to make sure that the field isn’t off limits for a year after the sod is placed. For the front entrance, looking on the left hand side, there’s a pipe coming down for water than is causing concrete damage due to a leak. It may be repaired over the summer.

Question - The front doors are said to be too heavy. Could a request be put in for it to be done at the same time? Answer - Probably not.

Question - Will the school be made accessible? Answer - No. Only the basement is accessible. There will never be an elevator in the school. In previous schools, classrooms would have to be moved to make accommodation to add in an elevator. There isn’t the funding to update Regal.

Question - At the ward council meeting, there was talk about the school improvement plan. Answer - This work is just maintenance. Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) determines what can be improved academically. The school improvement plan addresses well being, achievement and equity. Update to follow on what we are doing next session. EQAO has gone from being run by a volunteer being paid $4000 to a permanent position being paid $140 000 yearly salary.

Crossing guard update, after meeting with Joe there is now a crossing guard at each corner nearby the school and there extras to step in if a crossing guard calls in sick. There is a new guard at Dufferin St. and Davenport Rd. School Council co-chairs met with Ana Bailao with other residents about dangerous crossing areas. New traffic calming signage has been added to the area. Dufferin St south of bloor to have a speed reduction to 40 kph. Because our school doesn’t front onto Dufferin, our signage requirements are not the same. Ana Bailao is going to bring in traffic calming measures on Dufferin St. to stretch from St. Mary of the Angels Catholic School south of Davenport Rd up to a school near Rogers Rd. Signs with flashing lights, monitors that display driving speed. There were questions about guardrails being installed, another meeting to come. For the crossing guard, Co-chairs had to call every day to Ana to finally get a guard placed at Dufferin St. and Davenport Rd. This area will be changing from 40 kph to 30 kph in residential areas now that Ana Bailao has taken over the ward. New traffic light being installed at Rosemount Rd on St. Clair.

Question - For the guard rails, what about clearing snow? Plow can barely fit on the sidewalk now. The school might need new snow removal abilities.

Question - Could the sidewalk on Dufferin St on the east side be widened? Since the area is not accessible, could that issue be withdrawn for guardrail installation?

Question - Requesting a traffic study, could new paint lines be made on Regal Rd. out front of the school? Could the school install a Kiss and Ride area?

Other updates - Kindergarten registration for new junior kindergarten students now open. Regal’s new Office Administrator (OA) has been injured in a bicycle accident, will be away until March break. More of kindergarten registration is now online, the only thing missing is proof of residency, birth certificate and immunization schedule. Those documents need to be brought into the school. Letters have been sent from TDSB to request immunization updates for some students. If information is not provided about students’ receiving immunizations, the student will be suspended.

School Council budget - the current numbers don’t include the cost of the new computers. Some money should be added in to the chart from pizza lunch funds.

Question - For the Scientist in the School, are funds for each teacher? Yes, the funds can only be used for science related activities. Classes that don’t do Scientist in the School have done other activities such as going to the Science Centre.

The OA is going through all of the budget and updating everything to be more accurate. QSP fundraiser - $2500 raised so far. PRO grant has been awarded to Regal - needs to be spent on STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). Scientist in the school is a great program, loved by the kids. Last year Arts Express did a great job working with the school, could be used again. They are local to the area. Not a lot of time to plan as grants were late to come in. Topics? Go on Arts Express website to check suggestions based on grade levels. Some are less involved than others. School Council will call to check for availability and dates. Also on STEM, Dot and Dash coding will be brought into a kindergarten class.

Spring fair - For game entertainment, there will be a reduction in games. A game that was a great success last year had students win a whole cake. That game can be done again this year. Some games are to be rented. There is also a Plinko board, and there will once again be a silent auction. Issue with last year’s silent auction, lots of items weren’t picked up.

Question - Last year there was an error with two different people winning the same item. Answer - Bids are done in class and online, there needs to be a dedicated person to run it. Bids were entered on both sites, confusing who won what.

Fundraising - New idea: Wine Survivor. It’s a no cost fundraiser - buy a bottle of wine to enter and also $20. Name picked each week, that person is kicked out, like the TV show Survivor. Winner and two of the runners up get percentages of the wine. All of funds go to the school.

Question - Need a liquor license? Answer - No, as no wine is served and bottles aren’t open.

Question - What schools have done it? Answer - Humewood Public School.

Question - Done with something other than wine? What about a Krispy Kreme fundraiser? Or samosas?

Question - For spring fair, can the school get a square for taking credit cards on phones or tablets? Answer - Yes. Maybe multiples? 2 or 3.

Lunch for teachers event was held on November 23, School Council made and served chili to the teachers. Now doing breakfast for teachers on March 5th. It will be a pancake breakfast. Need extra griddles, so that there can be different griddles for different dietary needs.

Meeting draws to a close.

School Council Meeting Minutes for November 20 2018

11-20-18

Meeting opens with Treasurer covering recent fundraising:

Movie night - funds broke even.

QSP - pending results of fundraiser.

Spirit wear - online store reopens November 22.

Mabel’s labels - new fundraising option, open all year.

Family photo - first time at Regal, all funds go to the school.

Pizza lunches - half of funds raised for the school year.

Halloween costume fundraiser - $358 raised for the school.

Curriculum night BBQ - $1000 raised, plans to do it again next year.

$17,500 on tablets & chromebooks for FreshGrade.

Money spent on learning resources will be receiving a detailed breakdown.

Mr Morris speaks - Progress reports out & interviews finished.

Remind people to keep eye on Regal Road weekly email and newsletters, collect more emails if not receiving letters. Section for School Council to be added to weekly email, opening line of communication.

Note about staffing, Clarisse, the former Office Administrator (OA) has left Regal. Replacement OA to be hired soon.

Parent question - does Senior Kindergarten have parent interviews? Answer - Classroom observation is offered rather than an interview.

Parent question - Should report cards be signed and returned? Answer - Yes. This way it is documented that a parent has received the report card. A second copy should come home after original is returned.

Vice Principal Chumfong comments on EQAO ( Education Quality and Accountability Office) test results - Grade 6 level. Reading and writing scores are slightly down but above board average and provincial average. Math results are struggling but above provincial. There’s work to be done to improve.

Parent question - Does data properly reflect for grade 6s that have never done testing before due to work to rule 3 years ago? Answer - Yes, could have impact.

Parent question - Do French Immersion students participate in EQAO? Answer - French Immersion students only participate in Math results in grade 3. French Immersion students participate in English section in Grade 6 as they take an English class then.

Parent question - Are there 71 students in grade 3 who participate in the testing? Answer - yes, there were 71 grade 3 students who were part of the test.

Grade 3s are struggling with reading and writing. Regal Road school was much smaller in 2013-2014 (the year with highest EQAO scores). School was then in the last wave of the move towards full day kindergarten. That year the School Board began a major push for improving reading and writing which might have benefitted the 62 students that year. Years previous to 2013-2014 had similar scores to years 2015+.

Reasoning for why Grade 3 results are lower. Support for struggling students starts in grade 3 and can affect testing. The government had wants more up to date methods for teaching, hence why they do the testing since they can’t control individual teachers.

EQAO has talked about changing the process of testing but that might be cancelled after the new Premier of Ontario was elected.

Acronyms connected with EQAO testing:

CCAT - Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test. Screening for grade 3s. Identify at-risk and gifted students.

IPRC - Identification, Placement, and Review Committee. Decides if child is exceptional and decides on placement, whether in a special class, or requires modifications for a learning disability.

IEP - Individual Education Plan

SST - School Support Team

Parent question - For CCAT testing, only a certain number of booklets in the class, not enough to go around to all students. Answer - School asked for more booklets but they weren’t provided. Next year should be better. Testing had to be rotated due to booklet shortage. Shortage shouldn’t have affected students as testing was timed.

Winter social - Formerly Festival of Lights. Music performance and potluck get together, eat beforehand as it’s more of a snack than a meal. This year there will be no changes to the format but there is the option for change next year. For next year, considering making it all desserts rather than dishes. For this year, hallway layout can be changed. Needs to be kept as zero cost so that no family feels they can’t attend. It’s a time to be together rather than raise funds. Entertainment will stay in Ms AC’s music room on the main floor. There isn’t enough food for everyone so this year food will not be available until 7pm. Watch your kids to make sure they don’t take too much, everyone should only approach food tables once.

Parent question - Can food be eaten in the gym? Doesn’t have to be in the gym but there should be a place to sit. Possibility of using tickets to prevent people from taking too many servings of feed? Answer - There will be no seating in the gym as there was too much of a mess left behind from movie night. There needs to be more pressure to clean before leaving.

Parent question - Can the food tables be kept in the two hallway wings? Answer - Possibly. Next year, give more indication in letter home for what families should expect. Don’t say anything about dinner, instead light refreshments. State that seating is minimal. Upstairs can be locked so that kids don’t mill around. Change wording to say finger foods. Food can be upstairs, file to the basement, tables in basement hallway. Cordon off as best as possible.

Parent question - There’s never enough space to see the music performance. How can there be more space? Can steel pans be moved? Half on the stage? Moved the the gym? How many performances can there be? Formerly empty the room? Answer - This subject will be put on agenda for spring meeting to redo next year.

Mr Morris - Technology purchases, council voted to spend $17,500 on tablets and chromebooks plus tech tubs for safe device storage. New technology will be teaching tools and for pilot project FreshGrade to use for digital portfolios and communication with parents. Spread across all grades but in 6 classes for pilot project. Every classroom now has more technology due to surplus funds from last year.

Teacher speaks - Frustrated that money is being put into technology rather than buying new sports equipment, fixing drinking fountains and fixing washrooms. Money should be put towards the children getting more exercise rather than technology.

Parent question - How many hours a week will students use the technology? Answer - That’s up to the teachers. There is a rolling cart with chromebooks that would be brought to classrooms when requested, for research purposes, that aren’t part of the FreshGrade pilot project. Can be used every few days. There is also a computer lab in library. We’re behind in technology compared to other schools. Other schools are already teaching coding. There is also Project Giveback about social justice. A way of using technology and create an app.

Parent question - Do the same projects have to be done over multiple years? Projects should be per grade, not to be repeated each year. The impact of the project is reduced once kids have done it the first time. Answer - That is difficult to control due to split classes. Can adapt and create new challenges for kids who’ve had to do it more than once.

Parent question - Is money best spent on technology? Kids are doing worse each year on testing. Last year money was spent on chromebooks but kids did worse rather than better. People are relying more on tutors.

Eco Schools - Regal is trying to fund a water bottle fountain. $3000 for new fountain. Water bottles are not allowed to be filled at school as they can only be filled in the washroom and it isn’t sanitary.

Parent question - Can there be a lunchroom reevaluation for basement? The possibility of renovating the basement to make it more usable? Answer - Not possible in our school. The school is too old and there isn’t enough money for such an extensive renovation.

Parent question - Is there sponsorship from vendors for water bottle filling stations? Answer - Yes, one can be added, hopefully another added years later. We can’t as a school try to purchase without going through an approved vendor.

Approach gym teachers to see what is wanted/needed for the gym. The Spirit Wear money is for gym teachers and they can use it as they please.

Teacher for room 17 has requested School Council funds for new canvases. The class will paint a new mural to replace an older torn mural. Murals are no longer painted directly on walls in case art needs to be taken down. School council votes in favour of supplying funds for canvases.

Parent question - Should art be redone more often rather than worry about canvases vs walls? Answer - Murals have to be removable.

Parent question - School Council meetings are under attended. Could there be a pub night fundraiser to gain new people to attend? Get people more interested in coming to meetings? Answer - Yes, this will be considered.

School Council Meeting Minutes for October 16 2018

10-16-18

School Council co-chair Stephanie Ayers begins the meeting by introducing herself, other School Council members follow suit.

Ms London Smith, teacher for room 13, presents Growth Mindset.

It is an approach that helps children use positive language to embrace growth and development rather than having a fixed mindset that discourages them from trying. Being smart is something you achieve through learning, not something you start with. Students are encouraged to use the idea of “..yet”. They might not have the skills they want in the moment, but it’s achievable through work and time. Students are guided to speak to themselves in positive terms and speak to their peers in the same way. Whiteboards are being added to classroom doors so that teachers can write encouraging messages to their students.

Principal Morris introduces FreshGrade, a new pilot program.

An app to help teachers and students document their work and projects through digital media. Parents are able to download the app so that they can view their child’s portfolio. Similar to platforms Seesaw and Google Classroom. FreshGrade is being brought in through the TDSB and is intended to make it easier for teachers to add in student information and work. The data is private and belongs to the TDSB. It offers more transparency to what happens in the classroom. 13 other schools in the region are also taking part in the FreshGrade pilot program. With the use of funds provided by School Council, the school will purchase Microsoft Galaxy tablets and Chromebooks so that the technology is available to students and teachers in the class. Six teachers at Regal Road have volunteered to be part of the pilot program, stretching from kindergarten to grade 6.

Parents are invited to ask questions.

Parent question: how is data stored? Mr Morris: Information is stored in the Cloud. Data is kept in each student’s portfolio, starting with JK until grade 12.

Parent question: where is digital work kept while in the process of being done? Is it in FreshGrade? Mr Morris: Work can be done on a number of platforms, such as Google Classroom, but final project is uploaded to FreshGrade.

Parent question: how can teachers afford the time to use the app on top of all their other work? Mr Morris: Teachers can choose how often they want to interact via the app. Whether it’s daily, weekly or monthly.

Parent question: how does this relate to social media? Mr Morris: FreshGrade is not related to social media, it’s through Trillium Web Elementary Achievement. The information is stored by Trillium.

Parent question: it feels like this is an invasion of privacy into the student’s life, taking away their choice to share or withhold information from their parents. The app offers too much control of parents over their children. Parents can use the platform to spy on their children, especially as it spans from JK to grade 12. A child should not learn to feel that it’s normal to have their lives viewed without consent. Mr Morris: Portfolio is not updated and accessed every day.

Parent question: how will teachers approach consent with use of photographs, both of students and group work. Mr Morris: FreshGrade is not used for monitoring and not used for discipline. It is used to assess students’ progress.

Parent question: how has TDSB paid for FreshGrade. Mr Morris: TDSB has paid for licensing.

Parent question: can parents opt out? Mr Morris: Yes, but the future is technology. Constructive use of the platform teaches how to use technology.

Parent question: will it be communicated to the parents and students before the pilot project begins? Can parents speak to the teacher before it begins? Mr Morris: Yes, the project could start next week but can’t commence until technology has been purchased. There’s not enough technology to grow at this point.

Parent question: what technology is required? Mr Morris: Chromebooks and Microsoft Galaxy tablets.

Parent question: before new technology is purchased for the students, it should be ensured that all teachers have working computers in their classrooms. Mr Morris: There was a surplus of $10,000 last year that is being put towards teachers classrooms.

This ends the questions related to FreshGrade.

Mr Morris addresses parents: watch for weekly blasts and emails. There are lots of extracurricular activities for the students, such a girls basketball, meatless mondays, finger knitting. October 24th is outdoor play, information will follow from Mr Murtaugh. The school is looking for donations of outdoor equipment so that students have more to play with at recess.

Vice Principal Chumfong addresses parents: are parents receiving weekly emails from her email address? Parent question: why do emails require downloading a file rather than being able to view the email? Ms Chumfong: TDSB is using a new platform. She will check if there is a way to change how emails are viewable.

Stephanie Ayers opens conversation about QSP fundraising drive. It is being done again this year because the drive brings in $5000 to the school and requires little effort from School Council to run.

Parent question: can it be replaced by other fundraising? QSP has the students focusing too much on prizes. Reply: School Council can seek new fundraising methods next year.

Parent question: Can School Council start doing a direct drive? Reply: if parents are asked to donate funds to a direct drive, then it makes it difficult for the school to do other fundraising activities as it asks too much of parents. With a direct drive, the school might have to give up the Spring Fair and Dance-a-thon. Regal Road is a 50/50 school where half the families are not in a place to donate money to the school. There are families who can’t afford to participate.

Stephanie Ayers: the school’s approach to QSP is to make it more about literacy and less about prizes. Students can contribute tongue twisters with a chance to read them over morning announcements. Students found reading are given badges. Everyone at the school receives a prize regardless of taking place in the fundraiser.

This ends the questions related to QSP.

Other announcements: Family photo night takes place on Tuesday November 20th. For $10, families can register online to come in to have a portrait taken. The next School Council meeting also happens on November 20th.

Winter Social celebration is scheduled for December 6th.

Parent question: is there anything that can be done about the crossing guard situation? The crossing guards are there one day then absent for days in a row, the person working as crossing guard keeps changing and seem nervous to be working in that position. Parents are worried for their children’s safety. Mr Morris: Toronto Police liaison Const. Skelhorne will be coming into the school, subject will be brought up with them.

Parent discussion: after upcoming election, Ana Bailao should be approached about Regal Road’s road safety. Previous discussion with Marit Stiles suggested that a traffic study could be helpful.

Parent question: EQAO results have come in. Reply: to be discussed next meeting.

The meeting draws to a close.

School Council Meeting Minutes for September 17 2018

09-17-18

Executive and Administrative Attendees: Natalie Stickle, Stephanie Ayers, Jessica Eylon, and Principal Michael Morris.

1. Welcome

-Current council members introduced themselves

2. Update from the Administration – Michael Morris

-Special thanks to all school staff, especially caretakers

-Updates on summer construction: roof is almost finished; air conditioning is installed in gym, so library and gym are now cooling centres for school; just finished painting over the weekend; still waiting for field work and maybe some trees; updated hydro done because of new boiler system and because of AC

-Room B3 was redone and now we have a new classroom there, this is as a result of the PART process where we saw our growing numbers and saw we needed a new classroom; just waiting for a few cabinets that should be there mid-October; any remaining work will be done while there are no students in the school

-Just spoke to council co-chairs about a bit of reorganization – we were projected at 604 students and we have 579, so we are down a classroom and have to look at it and see what we have to do in terms of reorganizing staff and students to accommodate actual numbers

-A parent asked what reorganization means: Mr. Morris hasn’t given the full information to his staff yet but will update the chairs as they proceed (update: an email went out to all parents with details on Thursday, September 20)

2. School Council Positions

-Ideally we have a chair and or co-chairs, a secretary and a treasurer, plus general members, we can have up to 15 members total, as per by-laws

-Natalie asked if anyone had questions about positions

-Council received some nomination forms, mostly for general members, it appears some nomination forms were not received so Secretary Jessica Eylon and additional parent also self-nominated

-One parent self-nominated for co-chair, but there is a recommendation in the by-laws that a chair or co-chair must have sat on Council for at least one year previous to becoming chair/co-chair, so the parent is not eligible this year as she is new

-A parent asked how often the meetings are held: the monthly meetings are just the main meetings, sometimes the Council would get together before these Regal Road Parent Council – September 17, 2018

meetings and discuss and Spring fair has a few more meetings, maybe 3 additional in March-May

-We only need an election if there is more than one person running for an elected spot and since no one nominated themselves for Secretary or Treasurer, there is no election (update: Jessica Eylon will stay on as Secretary)

Positions Acclaimed

Co-Chairs: Stephanie Ayers and Natalie Stickle

Secretary: Jessica Eylon

Treasurer: TDB

General Members: Al Kratina, Nicole Dole, Niki Fotinos, Xiunelly Aguilar, Nathalia Marques, Adam Miller, Tallulah Hershorn

-This meeting is held by the previous year’s Council and the next meeting is the new Council, so the Chairs will chat with the new Council members and set the agenda for the next meeting

-Co-chairs explained what Council does as per attached agenda: Council will set up committees, we learned from last year that although people signed up for the arts committee, there wasn’t a lot of parental input, so one of the Council members will oversee the arts committee this year

4. Committees

-For Eco-schools Club, Stephanie has an idea for a teacher to participate and so does Mr. Morris – they will talk about it together

-Council noted that if you want to volunteer in the school and sit on the Council, you need a volunteer vulnerable sectors police check and the Council will cover the $20 cost if needed, anyone supervising students needs to have a check on file in the school office (ie. Chaperoning trips or volunteering in class or at sport events)

-If you already have had one done, you need to update it each school year with a declaration form, so all parents are invited to come into the Office and speak to Jennifer, Abi, Clarisse or Mr. Morris and do an offense declaration through the admin computers; if you are a TDSB employee, you probably already have a police check and can bring it to the office

-field trip in a week’s time, do all volunteers need police cheques, so teachers should ask for people that do and then we would ask another teacher to come if needed Regal Road Parent Council – September 17, 2018

-A parent mentioned that they have never seen it on a form for volunteering, but Mr. Morris said it’s on the materials going out this year (and other parents agreed they had seen it on forms last year)

-This requirement has always been policy but wasn’t strictly enforced previously, until last year when it was widely communicated to be necessary – the plan is to continue to enforce it this year

-Note that is the VSS for volunteers, not employees, and Council provided forms at the meeting and all parents were strongly encouraged to come to the Office to get the appropriate form rather than trying to request the check online (note is NOT the same as a criminal record check or background check)

-If you have had it done at a different school, the principal can have it transferred to here

-A parent explained that the police like to do one check for each specific need, rather than everyone just getting a blanket check that they can apply to any situation or institution and another parent explained that you need the form from the specific place that needs the record check – all to emphasize that parents should come to Office for form rather than applying online

-In addition to committees, there are events we need help with as listed in the attached agenda

-Spring Fair, largest event every May

-Pizza Lunch – Co-chair Stephanie will continue to be the key pizza person until 2020-21; needs someone to come in and run it after that – requires 1.5 hours day-of and 1 hour week before; this year with Mr. Morris’ permission she will get grade 6 to help run it as well

-Secretary noted that any parent that comes to volunteer can likely fit it in on a lunch break if you work full time – if you can take 1 hour 20 min lunch – you don't have to do anything to prep before hand – and you don't need a police check because you are not supervising the students – pizza day is the last Friday of every month

-Lunch Committee – hot lunch program has been in discussion for some years, reviewing it again this year

-Fundraising committee – organize fundraising efforts during the year and for following year

-Art committee, as discussed above

-Equity committee – brought forward by parent, will also be teacher involvement, new to Council, no mandate yet Regal Road Parent Council – September 17, 2018

-Family Photo Night is a new event this year: families will pay $10 and Edge imaging will take professional photos of your family and the Council will get all the money and families have a week to order prints on line (at additional cost, those proceeds going to Edge itself)

-Festival of Lights – discussion from parents who ask that the event be renamed because Diwali and Hanukkah and Kwanzaa are all called festival of lights – discussion between Winter Solstice and Winter Social and vote taken, and event will now be called the Winter Social

-Parent asked if there ever been a suggestion to separate the performances from the eating event – specifically can we separate because it’s had to eat and watch performances – Can performances be in the gym? Maybe instruments cannot be moved - Does the AC work in winter? No, thermostat is centrally controlled but we could open door – further planning by committee will take these recommendations into consideration

-Halloween Costume Sale: first fundraising event this year, Allison Norman suggested it last year – doesn’t raise a bunch of money but it’s fun and it’s about recycling – sale is set and there will be bins in the foyer for costumes in the coming weeks and we need volunteers to help sort and price, also need volunteers to be there the day of the sale to help handle sales and money – the event will be 3:30pm t 6:00pm because it’s easier at pick up time because people have time and money

-New event is teacher appreciation pancake breakfast – set for March 6

-Fall BBQ with Curriculum Night is planned – Thursday, September 27 – from 5-6pm and then teacher presentations will be at 6pm and 6:30pm

-There may be order forms for the BBQ or it will be pay as your order day-of – there will be veggie dogs

-The Council and Mr. Morris offered a description of curriculum night: there will be another note that comes home about it, but Mr. Morris said there will be two presentations in each class – 6pm and 6:30pm and teachers will do spiel about what they are doing in terms of curriculum - they recognize that some parents have to do (at least) two rooms so they will do the same presentation twice - it’s all about what they are going to do this year, and Mr. Morris asked that parents please try and refrain from asking how your individual child is doing – kids are welcome to attend

-There will be an opportunity to talk about how your child is doing during parent teacher conferences in November

-A discussion took place about another possible even this year, a skate exchange – one parent volunteered to help do it – some parents thought November would be best or but one parent said January – possible winter jacket exchange as well, whatever is left over we could donate to a group that provides Regal Road Parent Council – September 17, 2018

skates to under-privileged kids – maybe November 20 for family photo night and sporting equipment exchange

-Also possible bike exchange – recommendation that a swap committee form – some parents interested

-This is in addition to the clothing bag exchange that is done by teachers but we can donate the leftover exchange stuff to that initiative as well

-Halloween Movie Night will be Thursday, October 18 – this is a break-even event – a parent asked that there be more quiet so movie can actually be seen (very challenging given number of people and acoustics in gym)

-One parent asked about parentlink (the old Council communication system): it was a old fan out system where a rep passed the email messages from the teachers and Council to parents in individual classes, it didn’t work because people didn’t sign up to be the class reps and there was very uneven distribution of information – two years ago, Council decided to use Mailchimp because when you’re emailing you can just email to a list, but some people had an issue using Mailchimp, so we will now ONLY be using School Connects which uses the school parent contact list – note that Council emails with come from Clarisse/school office

-Some parents asked about classroom communication technology for teachers and parents to communicate like Google Classroom – Council explained this is separate from their communication and Mr. Morris said there was a form for parents in certain classes regarding teachers using other classroom-setting media because there had to be specific permissions about who owns the rights at the end, also looking at a Fresh Grade in a pilot project with six classrooms

5. Meeting Dates

October 16

November 20

February 20

April 23

June 11

-Meeting dates are posted on the calendar on the Council website: http://www.regalroadschoolcouncil.org/home/school-calendar

6. Financial Report

-Proposed budget based off of previous years’ finances

-Note that the past few years, we have been in the negative so we need to either raise more funds or tone down our spending this year (the former is preferred)

-Last year, the Council took the magazine drive away, there had been some (not more than five) parent complaints, but we have decided we would rather have Regal Road Parent Council – September 17, 2018

the additional $5,000 in our budget, even though some parents have not been supportive of the fundraising method – one of the issues was that QSP was not TDSB approved, but now it is – other issues were with the prize incentives, so there will be changes this year, such as no advertising for the prize incentives this year – the kids will know about the prizes but it will only be the top prizes and everyone, regardless of sales, will get a small prize based on literacy – going to be an overall literacy focus on the prizes as well, rather than toys

-One parent explained that without prizes there might not be a lot of sales this year so we may not actually raise the $5,000 – we will see how it goes

-One parent asked if we could be specific about where the money is going to go in the school – Co-chairs are working on a flyer with Mr. Morris

-Also, each teacher gets funding for something they need for their class – a parent asked if there could be a report on what the teachers asked for and what they spend the money on – Council explained that the funds go through the office and they are reimbursed by the office – Mr. Morris said they could report on it

-Funding also goes to Scientists in the Classroom for every class

-A parent asked about artists in the classroom – Mrs. AC handles bookings but this year Council will provide more oversight - Stephanie said there wasn’t a lot of consultation last year and then the teachers signed up for what they want to do, so as stated above, we want the arts committee to have more oversight and this year we want to know about it before it’s all decided

-A parent asked if anyone reaches out to faculties of local universities, but it was explained there are lots of rules about what kind of performances are run – all have to be verified by the TDSB – usually universities who have outreach programs are already known

-TDSB has a partnerships and is always looking for new partnerships – have to make sure they have proper insurance and they have police checks

-Inner City Angels was proposed by teacher – might not cost anything – teacher recommended them and they did a great job

-Mr. Murtaugh announced the September Sept 28 Terry Fox Event – more community involvement – contact Stephanie to get involved

7. Other Business

-Secretary made a distinction between the official Council Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/regalroadschoolcouncil/) and the Regal Road Public School Parent Network, which is an informal private group unrelated to the Council, of which some Council members may participate in, but is not an official Council page Regal Road Parent Council – September 17, 2018

-One parent was concerned about details of events being posted on social media, especially class events as a teacher asked that details not be posted, this parent was also asking about school rules related to social media –Council will be aware of this and careful of official Facebook page, but we can’t necessarily control what is posted to the parent network page – overall, teachers wishes on the matter should be respected

Council Contact Information

regalroadsc@gmail.com

www.regalroadschoolcouncil.org

Facebook @regalroadschoolcouncil

Twitter @RegalRoadSchool

2017-2018 School Year

School Council Meeting Minutes for June 21 2018

06-21-18

Attendees: Natalie Sickle, Stephanie Ayers, Jessica Eylon, Principal Michael Morris and Vice-Principal Cathy Chumfong

1. Spring Fair Update

-This year’s revenues were approx. $15,075.35 from Fair (not including the silent auction)

-The budget is missing the yearbook expenses, but they will be added soon

-Last year’s fair brought in about $24,000 in total and after expenses there was a net revenue of about $12,300; This year the Fair and silent auction brought in about $19,000 and there were $8,000 in expenses, for a net revenue of $11,000

2. Next Year’s Fundraising

-We had a discussion about direct drive – aim is to start it in September and if it doesn’t work out then we will do something else for fundraising later in the year

-Idea for direct donation is to choose a target item or items – Jessica brought up monkey bars, but they are not a safe choice – another idea is cart for activities for recess – we can ask Mr. Khalsa and try to provide support for one of his ideas, perhaps something to get the girls more involved in sport at recess

-Also discussion about having some house leagues in addition to the advanced competitive teams – this is a conversation that Mr. Morris is having with Mr. Khalsa and Mr. Murtaugh

-Agreement that it would be good to have buy-in from other teachers to help with house league and other lunch activities

-A parent asked Cathy to list the available activities in the newsletter

-Next year, Stephanie is going coordinate a spirit day every month, ie. Funny hat day

-Other possible items for fundraising goal:

 reading program (two teachers have ideas about this)

 book club idea

 laptop cart, 30 laptops

 Fresh Grade – like SeeSaw, a database for teachers that gets all their students and parents online and it acts like a portfolio for each student and the class and teachers can go online and take pictures and they can communicate with home, can also be used for assessments and evaluation – some of this already in place for some classes but next piece is we need the hardware to use for it, Mr. Morris reported we currently have 6 teachers involved and we will need to get iPads for the younger sets and class sets for the groups that are using it

 laptops for our teachers – discussion about how many classes do not have projector, how many don’t have laptops – lay out a plan for the school for the year that includes technology but also a focus on reading

(Note: we don’t want to take away from our class trips and other annual funded items)

3. Admin Update

-Almost done staffing, still full day kindergarten to staff as of the meeting date and one LTO for a 1/2 FI class because we have a teacher coming back in January

-There will be construction over the summer – hydro upgrade over entire school (one week), our roof is being redone (2 weeks, weather dependent) – note that it is not liquid asphalt but a different method – work either starting July 3 or July 9; AC unit above gym starting July 3 – will turn gym into cooling centre; new trees planted beside the blue climbers and some work on field to build in some drainage; basement room B3 will be a classroom – deadline for all work is August 17 – if there is a delay, Mr. Morris will be communicating to parents

-On June 20, the PART for Regal Road was approved so it will be going forward

-Mr. Morris reported that the climbers were checked out and they are fine for next year

-The annual volunteer tea was well attended the other day

-Discussion about acknowledging a “caregiver day” in place of Mothers or Fathers day

-Grade 6 graduation is June 27

-Admin offered a big thank you to the council for their work this year

4. Parent Reaching Out Grant

-Council has submitted an application for funding for a math and science evening for parents and kids together – something like Scientists in the School or the UofT Engineering program

5. First Meeting in September

-Council needs a succession plan

-Need to set curriculum night

-Need to have officers elected 30 days into the year

School Council Meeting Minutes for April 18 2018

04-18-18

Executive in Attendance: Jessica Eylon, Natalie Stickle, Sharm Patel and Stephanie Ayers

1. Administrative Report – Principal Michael Morris

-Announced musical for primary grades – Rats – no dates yet

-Lots of sports teams are practicing and competing this time of year

-New meatless Monday cooking group has started

-Field trips going on through to the end of the year

-Scientists in the School happened this week and a resident artist has been here

-There are lots of community meetings this week – PART on Monday, French Immersion Pathway on Tuesday, Council tonight and Ward Forum tomorrow night (with Shelley Laskin and Marit Stiles)

-Mr. Morris then presented slides (not public) regarding allocation to give an understanding of what admin goes through with regards of staffing for next year, starts with Board giving projected enrolment numbers for next year, ie. 76 JKs, 79 SKs (inc. 57 FI), 67 GR1s, etc.

-Staffing allocation then based on those projections for next year, so next year the Board gave us 34 full-time-equivalents (FTE) for hiring teachers, given to us with clear guidelines in terms of what our staffing model needs to look like

-The model currently includes: 4 English Full Day Kindergartens (FDK), 2 FI SK, 6 classes for grade 1-3 English and FI, noting that grades 1-3 have to be capped at 20 students, plus there are two grade 3-4 combined classes with 23 students in each, and finally 3 classes each for FI and English grades 4-6

-There staff allocated for additional support for grades 4-8 in the Board’s allocation and this can be a support or resource teacher; brief explanation about how schools are numbered starting at 1 based on socioeconomic need with 1 the lowest end and in most need, and since we are 334, we get no additional funding for any extra staff

-Allocation includes 4.95 FTE for resource teachers, ie. SP 0.5, HSP and SPECED 1.5, 0.5 ESL, 0.5 Library, etc. (no specifics given in terms of who will be hired)

-After Board allocated staff, the admin and staff team got together and put together models to see what they want it to look like next year, then the Principal allocates the teachers to classrooms, depending on vacancies, and there are three rounds when teachers are allowed to look for other jobs if they want go outside the school Jessica Eylon – Secretary Regal Road Parent Council – April, 2018

-In the model Mr. Morris showed for next year, it was noted that one FDK English class may have only 15 students because there is not enough ECEs allocated to even out the students across all the classes (only 3 ECEs allotted and we have 4 classes)

-All teachers are now aware of their posting for next year and Mr. Morris thinks about 90% got one of their first three choices that they requested, but he will not share the teachers’ assignments with parents at this point

-Next piece is to assign kids to classes and in terms of class placements, the process is to sit with staff and discuss placements based on different reasons, like balancing gender, balancing achievement, considerations of childrens’ relationships with each other (positive or negative), etc. Special note: If there is any realignment it takes place at the end of September and that will only be because of numbers (rarely happens).

-EQAO tests will take place the last week of May and first week of June – Mr. Morris reminded parents that it’s a valuable piece of data but it is only ONE piece of data – when we look at the student overall as a whole child, test score is only one piece; the scorsd can be used to help guide teaching next year (the data is unpacked here by staff in October), but it’s a snapshot of a couple of days of testing, in other words, if you are judging your school on the EQAO scores, you might not want to do that since it’s just one piece of data

-Council Chair noted that our grade 6s have never taken an EQAO test because teachers were on work-to-rule when they were in grade 3

-Parent asked 2.0 staff allocated to special education – what are the two types of special education teachers? Mr. Morris said they are not really different, but the 0.5 HSP serves junior students only; same parent also asked about split classes – is there an effort to place students so they are not always in the lower or higher grade? Mr. Morris said it depends on discussions with staff when placing students and that the combined grades allow them to separate students that need separating

-Parent asked if there is a change to music or gym staffing? Mr. Morris noted that the Co-chairs can share further details about the resource teachers at another time – it is separate from the staffing model

-Parent asked about the FI 3-4 split class in terms of introducing English for the grade 4s in that class - Chair said that the teacher teaches grade 4s while grade 3s do something different

-Parent asked how it was decided to have two straight grade 3 classes? Mr. Morris explained that it’s based on numbers and how they have to split up classes to make the cap of 20; he noted they could have had all combined classes, but this was the model chosen – it also depends on what staff are looking for and they all choose the model that everyone would like Jessica Eylon – Secretary Regal Road Parent Council – April, 2018

2. Lunch Room Issues

-Following up regarding Toronto Star article, Chair gave background on ongoing lunch issues: last year the Council formed a lunch committee because all 400 students in grades 1-6 ate at the same time; Chair visited another school and saw how they piggybacked lunches and that’s the system we put in place this year - two lunches with half students in each – worked hard on that change last year and this year the noise seems to be the issue

-Chair read all the Facebook posts before the meeting and therefore proposed a new committee be formed to recommend proposed changes going forward

-Chairs provided some key information: We cannot have students supervising and also, since the teachers are unionized and so are lunch room supervisors, and the teachers are firmly behind collective agreements, parent supervisors would not be allowed in this unionized environment because of the appearance that they take unionized jobs

-One parent was upset in general about teachers at the school - doesn’t think they are putting in full effort and commented that it would be better if less were staying (in reference to Mr. Morris’ comment that 90% were given their preferred placement)

-Parent commented that point of article was not to make changes at local level but to push at a higher level for change – we can discuss things that might work, but we should look at the bigger picture – what can happen, who can make changes

-Chair returned to list of things that cannot be changed and what actually can be done: Cannot change union issues, but can put committee together to do something; teachers have gotten together to put a plan in place – they have guidelines and they are going over with them with the kids in their classes, we have to go to the kids to help them solve the problem, and let the teachers join in; recently, on Friday, everyone was eating inside and it was calmer than usual even with all 400 students eating together for indoor lunch, so there has already been some improvement

-Chair reported she has talked to kids and that we have to give the admin and school a chance to make a difference first before we can go higher anyway – also the Chair noted that there is an issue with garbage, as well as an issue with disrespect to supervisors, advises that parents come to the meeting tomorrow night to talk to ward leaders

-One parent commented that we do need more money

-Parent highlighted funding issue for public schools – that we are putting in 25% more funding, but what are the kids getting in return? Where is the money being allocated? Jessica Eylon – Secretary Regal Road Parent Council – April, 2018

-Parent noted that we have an archaic funding formula and the number of supervisors for 100 kids is not working, but also noted we can’t put the weight on the Council to come up with solutions

-Chair agreed that we can’t change funding but we can come up with solution for our school

-Parent indicated that local changes hadn’t had an effect in the past 30 years

-Other parent indicated that is has also been an issue across the province for 30 years

-One parent asked what teachers think: Chair reported that last year the teachers were angry because the lunch change was change they didn’t want to deal with it – but the Chair persisted and got the teachers on board by being loud enough

-Mr. Morris added that the teachers have been out getting petitions signed to change the funding formula as well, they are also on board with admin to look at things that we can change like walking our students down to the lunch room and possibly flipping the primary and junior for next year and giving more recess time at beginning and end of lunch; he also noted that he and VP are downstairs at lunch when they are in the building; looking at positive awards for students; see that majority of noise coming from primaries, so looking at an award for table of the month, etc; he noted that in 11 years as an administrator, this is the best lunch room he’s seen

-A parent asked for process for lunch clarified: teachers go out at beginning of lunch then supervisors take over for lunch room, then more teachers outside after each lunch

-A parent asked about noise reduction or sound protection? Is this possible?

-Chair explained that if we did it ourselves, it would be about $1000, but any changes have to be done through TDSB, so process would take more than a year and a plan would have to be submitted to the Board and it would be a lot more money than $1000 – Mr. Morris commented it could come from school budget but Council clarified that doing so would take away funding from other things

-Parent asked for fundraising rules: we could fundraise for this because it is an addition not an improvement – Mr. Morris said if we are having other work done anyway, perhaps we could add this on; he said through the PART process, part of the issue is that we are running out of space but we have one class downstairs, B5, and it was retrofitted 2 years ago; classrooms have to be about 750 sq ft and we have lunch room 3 that is not used as our lunchroom and he has asked that part of the boundary change process include the renovation of this room to bring it up to speed as a classroom (ie a music room); so if we are doing that work can we throw in part of that as noise cancelling tiles – no guarantees that this would be possible, but he would try Jessica Eylon – Secretary Regal Road Parent Council – April, 2018

-A parent asked about supervision issues – We can’t we use Council funds to hire additional people but can’t we have parent volunteers? In essence, you would be doing the job of a lunch room supervisor – Executive explained difference between scheduled work and intermittent volunteers (ie. For class trips)

-We currently have 4 supervisors – 2 with primary and 2 with junior – our numbers are at limits in terms of ratio - up to 120 students per supervisor – based on archaic formula when kids went home for lunch

-A parent asked the question: why can’t we hire more supervisors? Board funding based is on ratios; Fix Our Schools (non-profit group) had idea from other school, suggested kids eating outside – not sure of logistics of supervision, in this example, they found kids could eat with their friends, take their time, etc.

-Mr. Morris noted that the only con is the job to clean the field unless we had students ready for boomerang lunches – part of the lunch room issue, including from input from students, is regarding the mess and is for students to take responsibility for themselves – can they be responsible enough to clean up after themselves and not go where they are not supposed to be – Mr. Morris believes it's a discussion that parents and teachers may have with students at the beginning of year but everyone should take time to do it throughout the year – SK teachers could help students transition

-One parent though transition was a good idea, have grade 1s in the first week go over the lunch room and what they do and where they sit, etc., reminders on the wall, etc.; boomerang or litterless lunches – try to connect to Ecoschools program

-Chair reported that we were a platinum school for Ecoschools and we used to not have garbage cans in the lunch rooms to encourage boomerang lunches

-Chair also reported that kids have gone outside at pizza day and they do well

-A parent commented that Ms AC had bins for recycling, etc, and green bins, but for some reason we don’t have them anymore – Council can work on that this year with kids from the eco club because they used to sort garbage as well

-A parent talked about kids taking about what they can do – involving kids around leadership – is there a way to pull in the older grades to help the younger ones to help model lunch room behavior?

-Also discussed the use of the gym as a lunchroom – it’s not a bad option and it’s been considered for pizza lunches, but then we are taking away our lunch time sports in the gym

-Mr. Morris is in discussion with gym teachers and looking forward to next year, seeing if we can change focus to house leagues to offer opportunities to our younger students to allow then to have time in the gym at lunch Jessica Eylon – Secretary Regal Road Parent Council – April, 2018

-A parent asked how does that would impact lunch and it was explained that the students would eat in lunch and then do activity thus removing some kids from the lunch rooms

-Mr. Morris reported that we also have a number of things at lunch – about 30-40 go to library and read at lunch time, other kids go to music rooms, kindergarten teachers eat with kids, and these all take kids out of the lunch room – all on teachers’ volunteer time – kids start lunch programs themselves

-So, plan is to start a committee to see what we can do here locally, while at the same time lobbying for change to the people who can affect change (ie. ward meeting)

-A parent pitched Fix Our Schools and encouraged parents to sign up for their mailing list so they can distribute information

3. Danceathon Update

-Chair explained that kids dance during their period, some of the teachers found it a distraction for little kids – going to work on it for next year to improve it for next year for little ones

-Made $5,900 (or $4000 – revenue under review); DJ already booked elsewhere for date of Spring Fair so looking into other options

4. Budget

-Numbers will change slightly if there is difference in revenue for Dance-a-thon

-We will make less money this year than usual, but we knew that because we did not do QSP

-We are not doing raffle this year: why? We have to license it and it is so much extra work and time and we have to pay for things specifically out of the raffle account and the reporting is very tricky and we have to use the money for only what we allocated it for, so our money isn’t locked to one thing – Council decided we would rather be down $3000 and find another fundraising avenue, we also had to spend $1000 to sell the amount of tickets than we did – we made more money on silent auction last year and was easier and so all donations will go to the silent auction

-Discussion about fund allocation

-Next year we will also have a direct drive fundraising initiative

5. Spring Fair – May 31 and rain date is June 6

-We had some meetings and some things we are doing differently: no cotton candy made but we are selling it (prepackaged cotton candy) and have it as part of a carnival food cart, no prize table (prizes based on game), class baskets for Jessica Eylon – Secretary Regal Road Parent Council – April, 2018

silent auction, international food table is something we hope to build up this year – each class with be asked for specific items and given standard pan sizes, kids crafts (ie. Kindergarten kids are making crafts to sell at fair such as painted pots or kids can pay to paint a pot at the Fair), chili competition, recipe sharing was another idea, but it would be too work intensive

-Council open to any ideas to inspire people to bring food, cake game is another idea (NB: following the time, a parent shared information about the historical term “cake-walk” and due to this negative historical connotation, we have changed name of event to musical cake game)

-One parent worried that parents won’t have time to prepare food – Council explained that we previously scrapped the idea of an international food table and we were going to have food trucks but we would not make any money and it was challenging logistically

-A teacher asked if there was a committee for the Fair – there is

-Council explained that we are primarily using Mailchimp and NOT parent-link to communicate

-Parent suggested we could bring in local businesses to participate and have tables at the fair – Council encourages parents to let us know if you can coordinate this type of participation with local businesses

-Meeting is Tues April 24 at DeSotos 7pm

6. Yearbook

-One parent – Catherine - does the yearbook – she needs help – and there is a list of people needed to help

-Need a photographer to come in and take pictures – if you know a photographer that could take pictures of our clubs, that would be great

-Spread word to parents that are not here and an email will go out to parents – there are posters as well

-If you have photos, you can share them via email

7. Accommodation Reviews

-Co-chairs Natalie and Stephanie are the Council reps on PART, public meeting on Monday

-All of the information is online and if you are in the school now, it doesn’t affect you, unless you have a baby that is coming in after your older child leaves

-Not a huge change but will alleviate some of the population pressure in the school in the future Jessica Eylon – Secretary Regal Road Parent Council – April, 2018

-Students will go with their cohort from here to Winona

-Slides on TDSB website, the meeting was positive on Monday

http://www.tdsb.on.ca/About-Us/Strategy-Planning/Accommodation-Reviews

-You can email feedback before meeting next Tuesday when we have to say that it’s time to move on with the plan

-A parent commented that looking at Regal Road, it looks like we are still in deficit, so how is that being addressed?

-The Chairs noted that it was going to initially not grandparent siblings and it would have made a bigger impact, but through their predictions, looking at 2027, there would be 700+ students here and that cannot happen – could also mean program changes, ie not having music in classroom, etc are needed in the future – one parent did not have issue with losing large music room

-Other change is the pathway change for FI, come 2020, instead of going from Regal Road from Winona to Harbord, they will go from Winona to Oakwood

-The other change is a board-wide French review process, starting May 1, with May 1 and May 3 meetings, review of all French learning in TDSB – http://www.tdsb.on.ca/Community/Public-Consultations/French-Review

-Secretary asked if the number projections take into account people who will leave in anticipation of the boundary changes – these are unknown

8. Memorial Hockey Stick Donation

-Following tragic accident, we are going to collect hockey sticks line them up in front of school and the donate them to a foundation that helps kids in need – parents asked how was the accident discussed with the younger grades – Mr. Morris said we did a jersey day and some teachers spoke about it and he knows in one of the classes they got into an in depth discussion led by the students – Chair encouraged parents to ask child’s teacher

-Donate sticks to where the clothing drive was

9. PRO Grant – April 30 6-8pm

-Arts Express will come to do a workshop for parents to tackle anxiety and stress through arts and mindfulness

School Council Meeting Minutes for February 8 2018

02-08-18

Executive: Jessica Eylon, Natalie Stickle, Sharm Patel (regrets from Stephanie Ayers)

1. Michael Morris – Introduction and Welcome

-gave a bit of background and welcomed all parents to reach out to meet him and to create a partnership

2. Visit from Marit Stiles

-Marit welcomed Mr. Morris

-She explained this was an unplanned visit today but she wanted to touch upon planning, space planning for the future and the increase in school population

-Overview: board is aware of the population pressure on the school and it’s an issue that comes up with all her meetings with superintendent and board, it’s still premature to say that we are heading into a process yet, but we are close to starting something preliminary – the solution for this type of situation is boundary changes (the only other option is program changing and that would not be preferred); so there are preliminary meetings with other schools that might be affected with shifts, then a look at overall landscape, then the board would come forward with a recommendation and there would be a meeting where school councils have representatives from each of the schools that are affected, there is one public meeting and then after there is a vote from the board and principals --- -Marit wants us to know that she is aware that the pressure is being felt right now but there doesn’t seem to be any other solutions here (ie. finding more space within the school), so if the process seems like it’s taking too long, we could get someone to come and speak to the parents about how it all works

-Mr. Morris announced he would communicate whenever he has information or updates and he will work to get the word out

-Marit commented that for current students it is very unusual to move kids from their current school to a new school when boundaries change, so it would be unlikely and she will push hard so that all the students here and (hopefully) siblings will be grandfathered, but the longer the space issue goes on, the worse it will become and the risk of having to move current students will increase

-She knows it will be difficult because there are community expectations about attending specific schools

-There wouldn’t be a new school, but there are schools that have room, but they have to project into the future too and the TDSB planners work with the city planners Jessica Eylon – Secretary Regal Road Parent Council – March 21, 2018

-For example, there may be schools like Carleton Village and General Mercer with space now, but even a school like Carleton Village now has French Immersion and so their room will become limited in the future

-Parent asked if there will be parental committee? Marit said parent council reps sit on the committee, so approx. one person from each school will be involved

-Parent asked if the boundaries are related to the city adding councils? Marit said no, this is about changing the school’s boundaries, but trustee boundaries have been redrawn as well, but that’s separate

-Parent asked about immediate space crunch, is there the option to move grade 6 out of the school? It depends on how fast the process can get going – 90% capacity is not the worst status in city, some are at 145% capacity, but we can’t go that big because we can’t have portables; right now we are 587 students (down 9 from beginning of year), but JK registration starts next week; it was noted that because we will grandfather certain groups, the change in population won’t be immediate, but it could mean smaller incoming JK classes

-Marit said 90% capacity is about where the province wants a school population and there is usually not pressure to change boundaries until we are at a higher capacity, but issue here is that when there is a blip increase in popoulation there is no means of pu