From your Catholic School Trustees
-News letter. October 2021 TT.docx
News letter.November 2021 TT.docx
Thomas Thomas-Trustee Ward 5
Our DPCDSB Mission: Disciples of Christ, nurturing mind, body and soul to the fullness of life.
Our DPCDSB Vision: Changing the world through Catholic education.
As our Catholic school communities journey back to school, we are guided by this year’s theme for our Catholic Education Week April 30 – May 5, 2023: We are Many, We are One.
The Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board (DPCDSB) continues to be rooted in our Catholic doctrine and inspired by the life, mission, and teachings of Jesus Christ. Our personal relationship with Christ calls us to become more like Him. We begin the new 2022-2023 school year with the virtue of FAITH, which calls us to walk together, as we learn and grow, deepening our faith together.
DPCDSB is one of the largest and most diverse school boards in Ontario. We serve approximately 74,000 students and employ over 11,000 staff throughout the regions of Mississauga, Brampton, Caledon, and Dufferin County. DPCDSB has grown from 23 founding Catholic schools to 151 schools (125 elementary and 26 secondary) in over fifty years. We work closely and in partnership with 46 churches and missions. We are blessed to have the collaboration of our priests, clergy, and Catholic church communities together with our students, families, and staff to enrich Catholic education and nurture the faith development of our children.
Our DPCDSB Board of Trustees, and staff at all levels of the organization, have been working diligently to prepare for the reopening of schools to support a return to learning for our students. DPCDSB is committed to providing and sustaining safe, caring, inclusive, and healthy Catholic school communities, in which every student can succeed.
Your DPCDSB Trustees in Mississauga Ward 5 and Mississauga Wards 6 and 11
We are so pleased that you have chosen a Catholic education for your child(ren). As our children are graduates of DPCDSB, we know the value and importance of a quality Catholic education for our families and for yours.
DPCDSB is overseen by a board of 11 elected Catholic School Trustees. As your DPCDSB Catholic School Trustees, we work collaboratively with our com¬munities to shape a vision for the board that is reflective of the input of parents, students, and community members. Two student trustee representatives are elected by their peers and sit with the board in a non-voting capacity. Your Catholic Trustees play a key leadership role in setting the strategic direction for our school board and supporting efforts to enhance academic achievement and the well-being of students. Together, we develop and shape board policy, promote and protect Catholic education, oversee the approval of the corporate capital and operating budgets, as well as contribute to the development of our Multi-Year Strategic Plan (MYSP).
As your representatives at the Board of Trustees’ table, knowing our school communities is crucial to our involvement in the decision-making processes. All trustees work collaboratively with staff, to ensure concerns from parents/guardians, students and our schools are addressed.
Budget Update – On June 21, 2022, the Board of Trustees approved the proposed Budget for the 2022-2023 year, conditional on the Minister’s approval of our Financial Recovery Plan.
The budget includes the Ministry’s investment in the COVID-19 Learning Recovery Funding (LRF). This time-limited funding for one year only allows school boards to address learning recovery, the implementation of the first year of de-streamed math, supports for special education and maintaining enhanced cleaning standards and to provide an option for remote learning, based on local demand. The needs across the entire system have been captured in the utilization plan for use of the COVID-19 LRF approved by the Board of Trustees. Detailed information was shared at the June 1 Administration and Finance Committee meeting and the June 21 regular Board meeting.
Ventilation Update – DPCDSB adheres to all requirements regarding ventilation and air quality from the Ministry of Education and local public health units to ensure the health and safety of students and staff in our schools. Significant improvements have been made by DPCDSB to ventilation and filtration through the implementation of various measures across all our schools. This includes improvements to existing ventilation systems, deployment of standalone HEPA filter units, and upgrades to school ventilation infrastructure. DPCDSB will continue to review ongoing opportunities for investments for upgrades based on available funding from the Ministry of Education.
The Ministry of Education requires all school boards, including DPCDSB, to publicly post standardized ventilation measures report for the 2022-2023 school year as an update to the information originally posted in August 2021.Updated school-level information for all open and operating K-12 schools is available on DPCDSB’s public website and has been posted since August 26, 2022.
Enrolment Update – School enrolment as at March 31, 2022, was reported at 43,593 elementary students and 29,978 secondary students, for a total enrolment of 73,571. This represents an enrolment decrease of 2,089 elementary students (-4.6 %) and a decrease of 352 secondary students (-1.2 %) since March 31, 2021. The overall board-wide enrolment decreased by 2,441 students (-3.2 %) from a year ago. Projected enrolment for 2022-2023 is 71,542.
Special Education – Most special education supports, and resources are supplied centrally, however schools continue to use their own budget allocation to support additional special education resources locally. As always, when schools have budget concerns, they address these with their respective Family of Schools Superintendent. It is important for parents/guardians to share concerns regarding your child(ren) and their experiences at school with their principal. This information is then shared with the respective Family of Schools Superintendent and Special Education Consultant. We are blessed in DPCDSB to have Educational Resource Workers (ERW) and additional support services at the schools as well as Special Education Resource Teachers, Child and Youth Workers and Social Workers to assist with the needs of our students.
Class Size and Combined Classes - Every year, parents ask about class size and combined classes. Here is what we can share to date. Your DPCDSB Trustees and our Catholic Trustees Association have lobbied the government for smaller class sizes. We do have talented, professional, and dedicated teachers and DECE’s who are working hard every day to support student achievement. Class size is funded and regulated by the Ministry of Education.
It is important to note that the legislation regarding class organization compels school boards to organize and reorganize classes based on numbers that are taken on the school board’s “count day”. For DPCDSB, we have identified to the Ministry of Education that our “count day” will be Thursday, Sept. 8, 2022. Should enrolments increase or decreases after the count day, schools are not required to reorganize any further. For example, although a class may be hard capped at 20 students in a primary grade on the count date, if there is a registration and admission on any day following the count day, the class will be reported to the Ministry in subsequent reporting cycles as having 21 students. In situations where significant enrolment changes occur, the staff works directly with the school to resolve.
School Bus Amber Light System – Currently, all school buses in Ontario have eight red flashing lights. Ontario was the only location in North America that had not converted school buses to the flashing “amber” light system. The flashing amber lights mean that the school bus is slowing down and is about to stop to pick up or drop off students.
The Government of Ontario passed legislation to introduce the flashing amber light system on all school buses effective September 1, 2022. School bus operators have worked to convert all buses to the flashing amber light system over the summer. Student Transportation of Peel Region (STOPR) and DPCDSB schools will be sending out public awareness communications about this change. The Ministry of Transportation has also launched a province-wide awareness campaign.
Catholic School Councils – Catholic School Council (CSC) meetings share important information about updates, issues, and changes at your local school. We love hearing about the great things happening in our schools. We encourage you to attend your council meetings and put your name forward to be a voting member of your council. We will continue to update our school communities on the current board information that is important to you, by way of our monthly newsletters. All schools are advised to provide their updated meeting minutes and agenda items on their own school websites to ensure all members of the school communities can stay informed.
Secondary E-Learning Credits – The Ministry of Education, through PPM 167, has mandated a secondary graduation requirement that students must earn two (2) eLearning credits. One eLearning credit has been recognized as earned for specific students as a result of the pandemic. This requirement applies to every student who entered Grade 9 in the 2020-2021 school year and thereafter. Parents/guardians may choose to “opt out” their child from the mandatory eLearning courses. Students will receive an opt-out form from their secondary school, every year, starting when they are in Grade 9 next year which will be included as an annual course selection process for all Catholic secondary students. Parents/guardians can contact their child’s secondary school for more information.
Tutoring – DPCDSB will continue to provide tutoring supports to our students with qualified teachers in programs during and after school, in an effort to make up for learning interruptions caused by the pandemic. Parents and students can expect to receive more information from their local schools. The programs will support students who are struggling academically, or who have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. Our board is working with a number of community partners to enhance these tutoring opportunities for students and will continue and expand community relationships to support student opportunities in the Fall. The programs offered by DPCDSB in the spring and summer were very well attended and will be adapted and refined to provide additional opportunities for our students in the upcoming months.
Right to Read – On February 28, 2022, The Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) released its report on the Right to Read. The report made 157 recommendations to the Ministry of Education and school boards to address issues in learning achievement among students, including those facing reading disabilities and other barriers to reading success. The report makes recommendations including the implementation of mandatory screening of all Kindergarten to Grade 2 students. The Ontario Catholic Schools Trustees Association (OCSTA) supports the overall direction of the OHRC Right to Read Inquiry Report and school boards, including DPCDSB, will continue to carefully review the recommendations and develop action plans over time. Learn more: https://www.ohrc.on.ca/en/right-read-public-inquiry-on-reading-disabilities
Meetings of the Board of Trustees and Committees of the Board - Throughout the pandemic, our Board of Trustees held Board and Committee meetings virtually. These meetings via the online platforms have been well attended and offer an opportunity for our school communities and external stakeholders to connect remotely at their convenience.
Our meetings are regularly scheduled on Tuesdays at 7:00 p.m. (unless otherwise noted). Board meetings are conducted live at the Catholic Education, 40 Matheson Boulevard West, Mississauga. Members of the public are welcome to attend all open (public) meetings. Committee meetings take place virtually over Zoom. All parents/guardians are invited to stay updated and informed online. Meeting schedules, agendas and minutes are also available online.
Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns you may have. May God bless our students, families, and staff of the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board today, and always.
Take care and God bless.
Trustee – Mississauga Ward-5
Mobile: 416-845-8225/ 905-601-345