20 Nov. 2017
October Board Meeting Highlights
Media Release - October 12, 2017
Trustees met at Sioux Mountain Public School in Sioux Lookout on Tuesday, October 10, for a regular board meeting. Trustees held their board meeting following an opportunity for a firsthand look at the progress to date on the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board‘s new high school, Sioux North High School. Trustees were pleased with the progress and were informed that the walls have now been erected with roof work to begin within the week. Please click here to view a live stream of the construction.
The October Kids Come First presentation titled ‘Project Sunset – Sioux Mountain Public School’ was received by Trustees. Project Sunset Coordinator, Curtis Robb, and Sioux Mountain student, Kanaysah Kakegamic, shared their experiences in the program with Trustees. Project Sunset is an OPP-led initiative, designed to empower children and build skills like resiliency and self-awareness through a strengths-based, outdoors-focused experiential learning curriculum. Some of the hands-on activities students in the program participate in include dogsledding, rock climbing, canoeing, and camping. Kanaysah had plenty to say about the program, including that the program makes her feel safe and throughout the presentation, she referred to those involved as her family. Kanaysah plans to return to the program once she goes on to high school as a mentor for the younger students. Project Sunset is offered to students at KPDSB schools in Sioux Lookout, Dryden and Kenora.
Deanna Pacheco, Student Achievement Administrator, presented the Student Achievement report. The position of Student Achievement Administrator was put in place in February 2016 and works closely with central Student Achievement Special Assignment Teachers and school administration. Six KPDSB school were identified as the focus of the student achievement work for the 2017-2018 school year. The work includes school and classroom visits to talk about instruction and assessment, sharing resources and best practices, and support for both school administrators and staff based on school and classroom needs. The province’s renewed Math strategy is also an important component of this work and ultimately, the goal is to see students’ literacy and numeracy scores improve over time.
Superintendents Caryl Hron, Joan Kantola and Tania Sterling presented the 2017-2018 Board Continuous Improvement Plan for Student Achievement (BCIP) update. The 2017-2018 BCIP, along with individual School Improvement Plans, guides the work of our schools. Taking a grass roots approach to the plan, this year’s plan development includes increased analysis of school data with school administration, discussions around areas of student and teachers needs in each school, prioritization of centralized supports for schools, consultation with elementary and secondary administrators and central staff to identify priorities, and development of a draft BCIP for sharing with schools for feedback prior to presenting the BCIP to the Board of Trustees.
Kim Carlson, Facilities Manager, along with Chris Edie, Assistant Manager Facility Operations & Maintenance, and Steve Parker, Assistant Manager Facility Planning & Development, presented the 2017 Capital Projects report. Highlights of capital work included:
- Construction of Sioux North High School (Sioux Lookout)
- Child care space planning at Sioux Mountain Public School (Sioux Lookout), New Prospect and Open Roads Public Schools (Dryden)
- Roof replacements at Evergreen, King George and Keewatin Public Schools (Kenora)
- Parking lot improvements at Red Lake District High School
KPDSB appoints New Superintendents of Education, Human Resources
Media Release - February 14, 2017
Trustees of the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board are pleased to announce the appointment of Tania Sterling to Superintendent of Education with responsibility for Secondary Schools and Student Success effective August, 2017; and the appointment of Joan Kantola, currently Superintendent of Education, to the new position of Superintendent of Human Resources and Special Education effective April 1, 2017.
The appointments mark a further significant milestone in the Board’s restructuring of its administration and executive teams. Supported by the Efficacy work that has been underway for the past four years and taking place across the board and schools, these changes also secure strong succession planning for the future.
Dr. Sterling made the following comments about her new appointment “Over the past few years, I have developed strong relationships with staff and a deep understanding of the goals that lie ahead. I look forward to the challenges and opportunities offered by this new position with KPDSB.”
“I am very appreciative and humbled to be assuming my new role” said Joan Kantola with regards to her new appointment. “I have great respect for our current Human Resources staff and I look forward to working alongside the department to ensure we maintain the highest level of customer service for our entire system. I am looking forward to building a collaborative working relationship with Tania in her new role in our efforts to continue to put students first.”
Dave Penney, Board Chair, said “On behalf of the Board of Trustees, we are extremely pleased to welcome Tania, knowing that her qualifications will no doubt be a great asset and that she will help to strengthen what we know is already an incredibly strong executive leadership team here at the KPDSB. We look forward to working with Tania and Joan in their new appointments.”
Sean Monteith, Director of Education, added “With the appointment of Tania Sterling to our team and the experience that she brings with her; and the appointment of Joan to a new realm of responsibility, the KPDSB has taken the last major step towards its end-goal of a system-reorganization. Capitalizing on the new external expertise Tania brings, and supported by the reassignment of existing assets and experiences Joan, Caryl Hron, Dean Carrie, and Kathleen O’Flaherty possess, as Director of Education I could not be more pleased. This is tremendous for the KPDSB; there is simply a lot of gratification being felt today.”
Dr. Tania Sterling comes to the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board with over 22 years of instructional and educational leadership experience in Ontario. She has designed and facilitated face-to-face and online professional learning in K12, higher education, and corporate settings. In June 2013, Tania assumed the Vice President, Efficacy role at Pearson Canada to ensure its products and services had a measurable impact on learners. Her most rewarding system improvement work has involved collaborating with educators and leaders in K12 school districts in Northwestern Ontario and the Ministry of Education in Nunavut to support the unique needs of FNMI learners. In her free time, Tania enjoys cooking, yoga, and spending time outdoors. She and her husband Kevin keep busy schedules coordinating visits with their two sons Kurtis and Jack who are attending university, and cheering their daughter Julia on during her competitive dance season.
Joan Kantola has been the Superintendent of Education with the KPDSB since 2013 when she assumed responsibility for the Board’s Special Education and Elementary Schools’ Programming. Recently Joan successfully completed the Rotman School of Business Strategic Executive Human Resources Management Program, with the University of Toronto.
Joan and Tania will work alongside Caryl Hron Superintendent of Elementary Education, Early Learning and Instruction; Dean Carrie, Superintendent of Business; Kathleen O’Flaherty, Assistant Superintendent of Business; and Director of Education Sean Monteith.
KDPSB launches new Kindergarten Resource for Registration Week (January 30 to February 3)
We have launched a brand new online resource for families with children starting Kindergarten in the fall (children born in 2013 can start Kindergarten in the fall of 2017).
Our new website can be found at http://buddysystem.ca/
Families can visit the site for everything Kindergarten, including:
- Videos of parents and staff talking about our schools and programs
- Our Full-Day Kindergarten programs
- Dates and times for our schools’ Kindergarten Open Houses
- Specialized programming like our popular Hockey Canada Skills Academies and French Immersion programs
- A new online registration process families can complete from the comfort of their own home
- And so much more!
2017-2018 School Year Calendar Survey
The Regional School Year Calendar Committee is once again looking for input from families and staff around start/end dates for the 2017-2018 school year. Please click on the links above to fill out the quick survey.
The survey will be open until December 9, 2016. Should you have any questions, please contact Sheena Valley, Communications Officer, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
KPDSB celebrates excellence at Dryden High School, receives update on KPDSB/NAN partnership
Media Release - November 14, 2016
Trustees met at Dryden High School on Tuesday, November 8, for a regular board meeting.
The November “Students Come First” presentation titled ‘Skills for Life’ was received by Trustees. Dryden High School (DHS) teachers Paul and Dave Darling, accompanied by DHS students, shared a glimpse into technology programs offered at DHS. The classes offered through DHS’s technology department are vast, including transportation, communications, construction and manufacturing technology, computer sciences and robotics, dual credits (where students can earn both a high school and college credit) in welding and basic hand tools, and an integrated trades bundle credit program. Students at the presentation shared what the technology courses mean to them, telling Trustees that the hands on learning offered through the tech classes reduces stress, provides creative outlets, builds confidence, and increases engagement while providing an opportunity to explore new experiences and find out what they are interested in, all while having some fun during the school day.
A group of DHS staff also made a presentation to Trustees, titled ‘A Story of our Successful Graduates and Leaders of Tomorrow’. DHS teachers Jason Stevenson (Languages Department Head, English), Kurt Schmidt (Science Department Head, Physics, Outdoor Education), Blair Roberts (Senior Biology and Chemistry, Environmental Science), Nicole Moline (Senior English, Anthropology) and Joanna Ulisse-Caren (Senior Math - Calculus and Vectors, Advanced Functions, Data Management) shared some of the strategies they use in their classrooms as they work to prepare their students for their careers of choice. All agreed on the importance of challenging their students through inquiry based strategies to support them in becoming resilient, self-sufficient learners who can think critically and form out of the box solutions to any challenges they may face in the future.
Following the teachers presentation, videos of DHS alumni were shared where former students spoke about how their time at DHS prepared them for the careers and post secondary studies they have chosen. Trustees heard many of the students not only felt they were well prepared for their programs, but that they watched their classmates struggle and were grateful to the staff at DHS for going above and beyond to make sure they had the tools they needed to succeed. The students spoke about specific staff in the building who had impacts on them, often identifying more than one teacher or staff member, and extended their appreciation and thanks to their former teachers for their support, which often continued past graduation.
Michael Boos, KPDSB principal currently on secondment with Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN), presented the NAN/KPDSB partnership update. In 2013, discussions began between NAN and the KPDSB to look at new ways of support northern children. Through those discussions, a partnership was formed to develop and implement a pilot program to support Frist Nation schools within the NAN territory though leadership development, while working collaboratively to help design and promote strategies to equip First Nation students with the self-confidence and educational opportunities to be successful in reaching their education goals. Beginning steps of the pilot program include, but are not limited to, an assessment of what is needed, on the ground assistance based on community needs, support for teacher evaluations, retention strategies, transitions strategies, and principal mentorship. Participation by NAN communities is voluntary, with the following communities participating in the initial pilot program as of November 8, 2016: Fort Severn First Nation, North Spirit Lake First Nation, Webequie First Nation, Marten Falls First Nation, Long Lake #58 First Nation, and Mattagami First Nation. Each First Nation will work directly with Boos in developing a plan to meet their needs.