Early Learning Strategy
Tammy Bush, Early Years Lead provided a report on the accomplishments of the Early Years Program over the course of the 2017/18 School Year. Bush spoke about the following initiatives:
Through a partnership with the Lake of the Woods District Hospital and St. Thomas Aquinas High School students created an art installation in the maternity ward based on Debra Frasier's book titled On the Day You Were Born. The intention is to provide families an opportunity to take a memory picture in front of the mural as well as a copy of the book to celebrate the birth of a baby.
The $403,000 Child Care expansion at Pope John Paul II School was a collaboration with the Ministry of Education, the Kenora District Services Board and the Association of Community Living to create 15 new toddler spaces in the program.
Kenora Catholic implemented the new MyKenoraCatholic.ca online registration site to offer families a seamless and easy process to register their child for school, without ever leaving their home.
The board teamed up with other school boards in the region to offer a Regional Kindergarten Registration Week, February 26thto March 2, 2018. During this week school boards across Northwestern Ontario hosted Open House Events and activities to support families with registering their child for school for September 2018. The school boards involved in the Regional Kindergarten Registration Week 2018 are the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board, Conseil scholaire de district Catholique des Aurores boréales, the Kenora Catholic District School Board, the Rainy River District School Board and the Northwest Catholic District School Board.
In April Kenora Catholic hosted the Early Years Arts Festival, which was a new event for the board. The event offered an unstructured opportunity for 3 – 6-year-olds to explore a host of arts-based opportunities. The event was a success for the board with lots of positive feedback from families.
École Ste-Marguerite Bourgeoys
Principal, Nicole Kurtz along with Grade 4 teacher Megan Baker and students Lillia, Addison, Rylie and Julia provided a presentation on the various initiatives happening at École Ste-Marguerite Bourgeoys.
Kurtz spoke about the school's new Learning Commons space. The library was recently transformed into a learning commons environment to create a community hub for the whole school. The school is working with David Jakes Design to support the school with rethinking the space and creating a bigger vision for how it's used in the school.
Kurtz and Baker spoke about the Teacher Leadership Learning Project where a team of educators, including Megan Baker, worked on setting up specific centers to connect curriculum to technology. As a result of the project, the team created modules of planned activities and resources for Kindergarten, Primary and Junior Teachers to connect technology to curriculum. Teachers can sign out the modules and continue the learning in their classrooms.
Megan Baker and her students provided the Trustees with a hands-on opportunity to explore the CoSpaces Project. It's a space designed by students that incorporates the 'Leader in Me' with 21st Century Skills. The Grade 4 students designed and coded all the behaviors and movements in the animation. You can see their creation here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ltb1yeWZVRw&feature=youtu.be
Baker also spoke about the Digital Binder she created that ties report card look-fors to the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People process. Ideas have been created for every grade level.
French Immersion K - 12 Program
Nicole Kurtz, Principal of École Ste-Marguerite Bourgeoys and Michelle Sawa, Principal of St. Thomas Aquinas High School provided a presentation on Kenora Catholic's K - 12 French Immersion Program. The principals spoke about the differences between the Extended French Program vs. the French Immersion Program. The team explained the five stages of French Immersion from Kindergarten, Grades 1 - 2, Grades 3 - 5, Grades 6 - 8 and Grades 9 - 12. Students must complete 10 French Immersion Credits between Grades 9 - 12 to receive their French Immersion Certificate at graduation. By graduation from St. Thomas Aquinas High School students are able to continue their French Immersion education in college or university and participate in conversational French language.
Artist in Residence Program
Kirsten Dexter, Artist in Residence Lead for the Board, provided a report on the Artist in Residence Program. The program is a partnership with the Ontario Arts Council that fosters connections between schools, classroom teachers and local artists and their art forms.
This year, Kenora Catholic partnered with 11 artists and 25 classrooms in dance, visual arts and drama. Teachers were encouraged to consider projects that focused on faith. An example of a faith-based project was Teacher, Angie Shura's Grade 6 class at École Ste-Marguerite Bourgeoys. The class partnered with Betty Wires of Midnight Loon Glass to create a legacy installation piece designed around a cross to gift to their school.
Dexter shared that the board is very excited to partner with TryLight Theatre to offer drama for the first time as an option to teachers. Teacher, Kara Orr's Grade 8 class at St. Thomas Aquinas High School worked on characterization while Grade 5 teacher Hilary Aiken from École Ste-Marguerite Bourgeoys created a short play based on David and Goliath that they presented to their school. Both classes were able to visit and tour TryLight Theatre.
Many of the artists involved in the Artist in Residence Program partnered with the board to offer the Early Years Arts Festival at the beginning of April as well as the Third Annual Family Art Jamboree at the end of April.
REPORTSCatholic Student Trustee 2018 Catholic Education Week Christian Service Activity
Matthew Favreau, Student Trustee presented about St. Thomas Aquinas High School's participation in the 2018 Catholic Education Week Christian Service Activity. The activity for 2018, encourages students to address the need in both our own country and internationally for improved access to clean water. The Christian Service Activity is in collaboration with WE, a movement that brings people together and gives them the tools to change the world. Students at the high school will be raising money for the province-wide initiative through a Walk for Water, and the Environmental Sciences Class will be showing the importance of water to draw awareness to the initiative. Leadership Announcements
Phyllis Eikre, Director of Education, announced three leadership changes
in preparation for the 2018/2019 school year. Michelle Sawa, Principal at St. Thomas Aquinas High School, has secured the Assistant to the Director position. Victoria Swejda, Principal at Pope John Paul II School, will be moving into the Principal position at St. Thomas Aquinas High School. Tammy Bush, Vice Principal at Pope John Paul II School will assume the Principal position at Pope John Paul II School. The leadership changes will be effective September 2018 at the start of the new school year. Student Trustee Report
Student Trustee Matthew Favreau provided a report on the notable accomplishments, humanitarian activities and events happening at St. Thomas Aquinas High School during April. You can watch Matthew's video presentation here: Special Education Advisory Committee Report
Trustee Anne Sweeney reported that the March 21st SEAC meeting that was hosted at St. Louis School. The committee received a presentation from Marnie Buffett, Learning Resource Teacher, who talked about the school's initiative to support the whole child, emotionally, socially, spiritually and academically.
Chris Moorley, Special Education Coordinator provided a report on the New Teacher Induction Program. Moorley also reported that there will be teachers from each elementary school trained on the Empower Reading Program in the fall of 2018. The program will be expanding to all elementary schools at Kenora Catholic.
Cafeteria Contract at St. Thomas Aquinas High School
The Trustees approved a motion to extend the Cafeteria Contract with the Greek Monster Café at St. Thomas Aquinas High School from September 1, 2019 to June 30, 2024.
Kenora Catholic Community Clean-Up Day
Trina Henley, Executive Assistant to the Director and Communications Officer shared that on April 20th, Kenora Catholic students are heading out into neighborhoods around their schools to do some spring cleaning for Earth Day 2018
. Students and staff will be picking up litter. The board is teaming up with Sierra Construction and Northern Waste and Hauling and the City of Kenora. 2018 Community Consultations
Phyllis Eikre presented that the Board is hosting Community Consultation Events
on May 2nd in Red Lake and May 3rd in Kenora. At the event participants can talk to their Catholic School Trustees, Director of Education, Principals and System Leaders about a wide range of topics from community partnership opportunities, capacity planning, education programs and services and capital and budget planning. 2018 Catholic Education Week
Phyllis Eikre shared that Catholic Education Week is May 5th to May 12th
and all Kenora Catholic Schools will be hosting various events and activities in their schools. Families and the community are welcome to attend. May 15th Board Meeting at St. John School
Frank Bastone, Board Chair identified that the May 15th Board Meeting will be hosted at St. John School in Red Lake with video conferencing available from the Catholic Education Center in Kenora. Next Board Meeting
The next Board Meeting of the Kenora Catholic District School Board is scheduled for Tuesday, May 15th at 7:00 p.m. at St. John School in Red Lake with Video Conferencing available at the Catholic Education Center in Kenora. Everyone is welcome to attend.