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Highlights from December 12 Board Meeting
Highlights from December 12 Board of Trustees Meeting
Posted on 12/14/2018
Superintendent Tim Mills retires

December 14, 2018 (Brockville, ON) – Trustees with the Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) met on Wednesday, December 12 to discuss several agenda items. 

Superintendent Tim Mills Recognized: Trustees honoured Superintendent Tim Mills for a 26-year career in education with the UCDSB and its predecessor districts. Mills is the superintendent for the Brockville and Cornwall Family of Schools, as well as two schools in the Tagwi Family of Schools. He will retire at the end of January 2019. 

Trustee David McDonald, a friend and colleague of Mills, praised him for his leadership, his mentorship, his caring attitude and his community involvement as an educator and administrator.

Mills thanked Trustees for the good wishes, as well as the teachers, support staff, and school administrators who supported him throughout his career. 

Special Education Advisory Committee Appointments Ratified: Trustees appointed eight new members to the Special Education Advisory Committee for the coming term. Agency representatives appointed to the committee are: Kevin Brisson, Autism Ontario; Jane Holski, Community Living North Grenville; MacArthur Millen, Parents for Children’s Mental Health, Brockville Chapter; Debbie Terrance, First Nations Representative; and Kimberley Wright, Brockville and District Association for Community Involvement. Members-at-large appointed to the committee are Michel LaBonte, Anne Presley, and Deborah Wood. The committee provides advice to the Board on Special Education programs and services, the UCDSB Special Education Plan, the Special Education budget, and any other matters affecting Special Education. 

December 2018 Capital Update to the Board: Superintendent Jeremy Hobbs updated trustees on the work of the design and construction group, capital projects from 2018, and the capital budget going forward. Hobbs said the group has overseen more than $130 million in capital improvements to board properties since the 2012-2013 school year. This figure does not include new school construction, which comprises approximately $45 million over that period. Hobbs said the group plans and monitors its projects extensively to ensure capital dollars are used efficiently, resulting in projects that are on time and on budget. Capital projects completed in 2018 ranged from installing new school entranceways to roof replacements, and included: Laggan Public School renovations, $1.5 million; South Edwardsburg Public School renovations, $1.8 million; Sweet’s Corners Elementary School roof replacement, $978,000; Rockland District High School renovations, $2.4 million; South Crosby Public School Memorial Shade Structure, $22,000, and Pineview Public School improvements, $175,000.

Hobbs said the combined capital budget available for all capital projects in 2018-2019 is approximately $135 million. Projects range from school renewal projects to plans for new schools such as the $15.9 million set aside for a new Brockville Public School (including daycare facilities and land purchase). Not all money will be spent in the next year due to time restraints, but the Ministry of Education allows the Board to carry over this capital funding into future years.

Hobbs also discussed several major capital projects including: a new Cornwall high school valued at $39.1 million (estimated completion in September 2023), the new Brockville Elementary School (estimated completion in September 2022); a $2.6 million addition to Roxmore Public School (estimated completion in September 2020), and a $6.6 million addition for North Grenville District High School (estimated completion in September 2021). 

2018-2019 Director of Education’s Work Plan Update: Director of Education Stephen Sliwa presented an update on the 2018-2019 Director of Education’s Work Plan. The plan sets out four broad goals: to increase the graduation rate by 2 per cent to 88 per cent in 2018-2019; increase the number of staff who agree they feel valued and experience good communication within the UCDSB to 50 per cent; increase the capacity of students to deal with stress, and connect with community stakeholders beyond policy requirements.

Sliwa said staff are working to reach the 2 per cent graduation rate increase through a number of avenues including: refocusing and adjusting the Student Success support model to increase graduation rates and sustain those rates; establishing Student Success Teams within the Family of Schools that represent the board’s greatest needs; and creating greater coordination of our resources to provide students with academic support.

The Board is helping more staff feel valued through actions such as Director’s Roundtable discussions with staff, and improved communications efforts.

Under the plan, staff are helping students deal with stress by continuing with the Board mental health strategy to help students cope and manage stress while at school, and providing training for staff regarding the Supporting Minds resources produced by the Ministry of Education. 

This year’s staff work plan also seeks to support the Board’s efforts to create deeper connections with our communities, through a range of actions such as pursuing educational partnerships with area businesses and community groups. 

You can view the complete agenda from the December 12 meeting here or watch the full recording for more details.

For media inquiries, please contact:

Stephen Sliwa 
Director of Education
Upper Canada District School Board
(613) 342-0371 ext.1188

John McAllister
Upper Canada District School Board
(613) 213-4094     


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