January 14, 2015
Student Services Report: Red Deer Public believes students need to learn in the most enabling environment and has a number of initiatives to support this.
Learning Assistance Teams in each school play a key role that supports families, teachers and administrators in meeting the diverse needs of students. Regional Collaborative Services Delivery also provides a multi-disciplinary team supporting all levels of programming. Other services supported through Student Services include:
- Student Services Structure: roles and responsibilities have been restructured in order to better serve our schools. Student services staff meet with schools to support providing universal, targeted and specialized supports to meet the learning needs of students within schools.
- Supports for Students Committee: the committee is reviewing existing supports and engaged in active research on best practices to meet student needs. The committee is actively working with the community to enhance wraparound services to best meet student needs.
- Early Learning: The district provides 13 prekindergarten programs in 8 elementary schools to 177 children. The Board also partners with the community providing programming for children with severe needs. Prekindergarten classrooms include a rich blend of children identified with mild moderate or severe delays, English language learners, community children’s who are typically developing as well as children supported through the Bright Start program.
- Resiliency Project: this program supports the mental well-being of students in grades 6 to 12. 5400 students were screened this fall which identified 163 students at medium or high suicidal risk. It also identifies the top 10% of students experiencing difficulty in the areas of depression, anxiety, self-esteem, drug and alcohol abuse, and quality of life. Resiliency coaches are coordinating supports through online intervention as well as direct services.
- Family Oriented Programming: provides developmentally appropriate support for prekindergarten and kindergarten children and their families. Programming occurs outside regular class time and engages families with supports and strategies related to a child’s individual support plan.
- District programs: 122 students are served through congregated programs including Pathways, Foundations, Journeys and Parkland School.
Celebrating diversity – through all these programs, Students Services celebrates the unique abilities and needs of each student we serve.
Quarterly Financial Statements: Revenues and expenditures in the first quarter of the year are in line with budget expectations. Individual school budgets have been reviewed and school principals have indicated they will be drawing down from their school reserves. As a result we anticipate the district deficit for the year can be expected to be between $1.6 and $1.8 million. Total operating reserves for the district including school generated funds were $3.9 million. The projected deficit is expected to reduce this figure to between $1.0 and $1.3 million.
Three-Year Education Plan Preliminary Discussions: As the board prepares for its annual planning retreat in February, the Board reviewed the current three year district education plan and began considering modifications for the next edition of the education plan that support the priorities of Literacy, Equity and High School Completion and Transitions.
Education Act Regulations: The Government of Alberta has released 16 regulations related to the new Education Act and has invited public feedback. Each of the regulations were reviewed and trustees who will be providing feedback by the January 31, 2015 deadline.
- Ministers of Education and Infrastructure: Highlighting the province’s commitment to school capital projects and establishment of a Ministerial Oversight Committee to expedite and move these projects forward.
- Three Australian exchange teachers have joined the district in January at Fairview, Westpark Middle and Lindsay Thurber Schools
- EVRAZ a steel fabricator with a facility located to in our community is sponsoring a number of Family Literacy programs in the district through the Foundation for Red Deer Public School
- The Lindsay Thurber Jazz Concert was exceptional
- Cathy Peacocke has joined the Board of the Alberta School Boards Association as the Zone 4 Director
- Mountview hosted their Winter Literacy Day
- Dr. Chris Wells, Director of Programs & Services, Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services AT THE University of Alberta, spoke to trustees, administrators and teachers on Gay Straight Alliance. This was a joint initiative of the district and our Alberta Teachers Association Local 60.