Message from Jennifer Story – School Trustee

Ward 15 newsletter header
Dear Friends and Neighbours,
As we approach the winter break, I would like to wish you and your family a safe and happy holiday season. I hope that you take some time to relax and enjoy the break with family, friends and loved ones. Please note that the last day of school is December 18, 2015 and school resumes again on January 4, 2016. I hope you have a wonderful start to the new year!
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Board Update
TDSB Chair and Vice-Chair
At the TDSB’s Organizational Board meeting on December 1, Trustee Robin Pilkey was acclaimed Chair of the Board and Trustee Jennifer Arp was elected to the position of Vice Chair. Chair Pilkey, who was acclaimed Chair in August 2015, was first elected as Trustee for Ward 7 (Parkdale-High Park) in the fall of 2014. Jennifer Arp, who was also first elected in the fall of 2014, is Trustee for Ward 8 (Eglinton-Lawrence).
Committees and Meeting Schedule
For detailed results of committee elections, as well as the schedule and agendas, please visit
I will be serving on the following committees:
• Program and School Services Committee
• Planning and Priorities Committee
• Early Years Advisory Committee
• Inner City Advisory Committee
• Budget Committee
• House Committee
• City-School Boards Strategy Workgroup
• Integrity Commissioner Selection Committee
• City-School Boards Advisory Committee (External to the Board)
John Malloy Named TDSB Interim Director
Board of Trustees has appointed Dr. John Malloy the Interim Director of Education effective January 4, 2016. John is currently Assistant Deputy Minister of Education and Chief Student Achievement Officer with the Ontario Ministry of Education. Prior to joining the Ministry, John served for 5.5 years as the  Director of Education for the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board. For more about John Malloy, click here.
Hall Report 
The Hall Report was released last week, making 20 recommendations for change at the TDSB, including breaking up or reorganizing the Board.  Trustees and Senior Staff had already made significant improvements to the Board’s governance, accountability and transparency, such as the creation of a new Integrity Commissioner position and a new Whistleblower policy. But there is still more work to be done. Click here to read the full report and here for the Trustees submission to the Governance Advisory Report Panel.
Parent Participation in VP Interviews
Each year, the TDSB interviews teacher candidates for VP positions. PIAC has arranged to have parents participate on the interview teams for teachers applying to get promoted to the VP list. Annual training sessions prepare parent volunteers to participate on the interview teams.
This is an important way for parents to have a voice in who will be administrators in our schools.
This year, the training session will be held February 9 at board offices (5050 Yonge St.). The interview sessions will be late February, or early March. Please see the attached document which will provide you with information about the upcoming vice-principal interviews. If you would like to participate, please complete the Expression of Interest Form (Download the Form PDF) and submit as indicated:
If you would like more detailed information about the Principal/Vice-Principal selection process, please click here for the TDSB Operational Procedure PR705, specifically Section 5 (page 8) which details information about the interview process.
Must-Know Winter Tips for Parents and Students
Severe Weather
From time to time it is necessary to cancel student transportation, classes and/or programs due to severe weather. On rare occasions, severe weather makes it necessary to close schools, administrative offices or sites.
With approximately 250,000 students in our schools and sites each day, any decision to cancel buses, classes and/or programs or to close sites can have a significant impact on thousands of families across Toronto. This decision is not taken lightly. When schools remain open on days with inclement weather, parents/guardians make the final decision on whether to send their children to school and they can keep children home from school if they so choose. For more information on our severe weather policy, please
In the event that transportation is cancelled or schools are closed, local media will be informed before the beginning of the school day. Tune to local media for the latest information, visit or check

Traffic Safety Tips: Help Make this a Safe Winter Season

As winter approaches, we know that severe weather may be just around the corner. While traffic safety is an important matter all year long, this is a particularly good time to review what we can do to keep students safe.
Students need to be aware and alert at all times, on any road, and even in the most routine circumstances. This applies to both students and drivers. Road conditions can be challenging in the winter months so drivers must take extra care on the roads and in parking lots, especially in areas where children might be present.
School staff periodically review street and traffic safety with students. Parents can help reinforce these safety messages with children at home. Below are some tips that might be helpful to review.
• Stop, look and listen for traffic
• Only cross at corners and crosswalks
• Make eye contact with drivers
• Walk on the right side of the crosswalk
• Wear appropriate footwear to reduce the chances of slipping
• Never run into the street
• Obey crossing signals
• Cross only if clear
• Walk on sidewalks
• Where there are no sidewalks, walk as far away from traffic as possible, facing traffic
The safety of our students is always a top priority. Let’s work together to make the winter season safe.
TDSB Ready for Newcomer Students
The TDSB is always ready to receive newcomer students and is preparing for the influx of Syrian refugees. Schools  provide English as a Second Language programs and wrap-around support for new families. In our Family of Schools,Greenwood Secondary School takes in continuous enrolment of students from other countries. Click here to watch Superintendent Mike Gallagher’s appearance on CTV: ‘Nobody gets lost’: Schools ready to welcome influx of Syrian refugee children. For more information about the tdsbCARES: Refugee Crisis Appeal, clickhere.
Upcoming Days of Significance

December 2015
7‐14 Hanukkah  (Judaism)
10 Human Rights Day (UN)
18 International Migrants Day (UN)
22 Solstice – Yule/Litha (Wicca/Pagan)
25 Christmas (Christianity) (Public holiday)
26 Kwanzaa (African Canadian/African American)
26 Boxing Day (Public holiday)
January 2016 
1 Gantan‐sai (Shinto)
1 New Year’s Day (Public holiday)
5 Twelfth Night (Christianity)
6 Epiphany/Dia de los Reyes (Christianity)
6 Feast of the Theophany (Orthodox Christianity)
7 Feast of the Nativity (Orthodox Christianity)
17 World Religion Day  (Baha’i)
19 Martin Luther King Jr. Day (USA)
18‐22 No Name‐Calling Week
24‐27 Mahayana New Year (Buddhist)
27 International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust (UN)
Ward 15 Schools Making News!
Grade 6 students at Wilkinson Junior Public School found a way to take part in the Paris Climate Conference – via Skype! They connected with Toronto-Danforth MPP Peter Tabuns, in Paris for the historic negotiations, for a Question & Answer session on the conference. What an amazing opportunity for the students!
This year, Cosburn Middle School, along with Earl Haig Secondary School and City View Alternative School, won The Director’s Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) Award. The $1000 award goes to three student-led groups that have demonstrated a committed effort in helping create a school climate that is safer and more positive for students and staff of all sexual orientations and gender identities. Way to go, Cosburn!
City Adult Learning Centre
Did you know that one of the five TDSB adult education schools is in Ward 15 at Broadview and Danforth? City Adult Learning Centre students recently took part in first ever TDSB adult high school soccer tournament. Read the Toronto Star article about the inspiring students, the school and the program here.
Is your school making news? Send me an email and I will try to share your story!
Special Education Parent Forum
Trustee Jennifer Story is hosting a Special Education Parent Forum on Thursday January 14, 2016 from 6 pm to 9 pm at Monarch Park Collegiate Institute, 1 Hanson St (Coxwell and Danforth).
5:30-6:00 pm Meet and Greet
6:00-6:40 pm Special Education and the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth
6:50-7:30 pm ABCs of IEPs and IPRCs: Decoding the Jargon
7:40-8:20 pm Advocating for Your Child: A Parent’s Perspective
8:30-9:00 pm Q&A Session
More information about the topics, speakers and venue will be posted
Please join us! Light refreshments and child-minding will be provided free of charge. Interpretation services upon request.
Please RSVP by Monday January 11, 2016.
Ward 15 Council Meetings
Next Meeting
Mon Jan 25 , 7-9 pm at Pape Avenue Public School, 220 Langley Avenue. Special focus on Teaching & Learning plus Trustee, Superintendent and Committee Reports.
Last Meeting
Thurs Dec 3 at Westwood Middle School. Special focus on School-Based Communicaitons.
Remaining meetings are:
• Monday March 21, 2016
• Thursday April 21, 2016
• Monday May 30, 2016
Dates may change. Child-minding provided. Interpretation upon request. All are welcome!
Meeting Details, Agendas, Minutes, Presentations, and Handouts are posted as available. Please for the most up-to-date info.
Toronto-Danforth Pupil Accommodation Review Committee 
The Toronto-Danforth Pupil Accommodation Review Committee (PARC) is considering the recommendations put forth by TDSB staff regarding 10 local high schools. They are looking at a wide range of factors and options, such as modifying attendance boundaries and program changes, to find the best long-term solutions for our students and the community.
During this process, the Board welcomes the engagement, participation and input of parents and the community. Public deputations were held on December 7 at Danforth CTI. Click here to see the presentation from that meeting.
The final public meeting will be March 9. More information about that meeting and Toronto-Danforth Pupil Accommodation Review can be found hereSelect a Review > Pupil Accommodation Reviews > 2015 Toronto-Danforth Review

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