Monday, January 26

SPRING FLING 2015

Save the Date!  Thursday, May 28 from 4 to 8p.m.

Our Annual SPRING FLING is the PAC’s largest fundraiser at Dickens. All students, at both the Main & Annex, benefit from the funds raised at this event.

Request for Volunteers:


Key Leaders for Specific Areas: We need leaders for specific areas to help with planning and organization. If you are interested and able to volunteer, contact Andy Mitchell (our Spring Fling Manager) for more info at: amitchell@telus.net

Silent Auction Volunteers.  Take on as little/as much work as you are able. Contact Andy Mitchell at amitchell@telus.net if you can help out or would like more info about these volunteer positions:

Silent Auction Central Coordinators: This position can be filled by one person, or a team of two people. The person(s) would oversee general organization and management, including recruiting volunteers and assigning tasks.

Silent Auction Volunteers are also needed for the following tasks:
  • Donations:  As many volunteers as possible to solicit local businesses for donations, gathering and storing donations,  preparing bid sheets and donations for auction. (approx. 2 hours per person January/February).
  • Classroom Baskets:  1 volunteer from the Annex and 2 Volunteers from the Main School. Prepare notices to go home asking parents for donations, gathering donations, preparing donations in baskets for the auction.
  • Onsite at Event:  8 volunteers to organize the tables and support the auction during the FLING.
  • Distribution Coordinators: 4 volunteers for the week after SPRING FLING, as parents pick up sold items, before/after school.


Request for Hand-crafted Donations:


The “Made It” table is here again this year! Last year this entrepreneurial table and its goods brought in over $1,200 which is fantastic! This is an early reminder that we are looking to the community for hand-crafted goodies and great artistic ideas. So start knitting, sewing, crafting, pottery, jewellery-making, or whatever you do! We welcome anything home-made. For more info, contact Kerryn Williams ("Made It" Coordinator) at kerrynwilliams@hotmail.com

Thank You!

Reminder: Creating Successful Students


Join us on Wednesday for a workshop with UBC educational specialist, Kari Marken:



Saturday, January 24

PAC Update re: Enrollment and Space Issues


Our parent community remains very concerned about possible changes being proposed for Charles Dickens (Main and Annex) to solve enrollment pressures.

Thank you to all parents/guardians who helped move us forward over this past week. It’s been very stressful for all involved - much has transpired in a short time. Thanks also to everyone who attended the meeting on Tuesday at the school and/or the VSB Committee II meeting on Wednesday.

In addition to the email letter update provided on January 22 from the school, we wanted to share more information with you:

You will likely have noticed from your own conversations this week that not all parents necessarily agree with each others’ perspectives; each and every parent is looking for answers on how this issue will affect them and will advocate for what they believe is best for their family.

At this time, the PAC Exec is aware and understands there are parents who do not agree with our recent communications or the petition we circulated on Wednesday morning, or the position we took at the VSB meeting. Emotions are running high among parents/guardians and staff at both sites. It is crucial though that we all understand the facts, issues and outcomes.

The PAC represents and supports several parent/guardian groups at both the Main & Annex. It will not serve us well as a community to be divisive; this may hurt our ability to advocate strongly to the VSB for the best possible long-term sustainable solutions.

There are many groupings within the context of the enrollment and space issues, and of course there are also the teachers who are another group. We’ve noted these groupings below, and included a few facts which were shared at Tuesday’s meeting:

1.    Parents of in-catchment children at both sites (over 600 students)
These numbers fluctuate annually due to non-school factors. There is usually an attrition of +/- 10% of Kindergarten registrations before the new school year begins. There is historically +/-10% attrition at the 5th grade as children move to special programs such as French immersion.


2.   Parents of out-of-catchment children at the Main (90 students)
For many years, enrollment in Vancouver had been falling. This means schools would take all student registrations regardless of location. As noted in the letter from both the school and the PAC earlier, there are many factors which have resulted in the enrollment issue now facing us. The VSB considers students in enrolling classes in and secure. Of the 90 students, 71 are in the intermediate grades and by the start of 2016/17 school year, almost all will have moved into high school.


3.    Parents of in-catchment children who are enrolled for Kindergarten (GrK) for September 2015 (currently at 47 applications)
With the Enrollment Management Plan, all schools have a capped sustainable number of GrK students they can accept. Current registration closes on Jan 31. The number of registrations received to-date for the 2015/16 school year are within Dickens’ sustainable range. The 17 children from the Annex moving over to the Main has no affect on any GrK registrations.


4.    Parents of children in the ELAC class (14 students, half are in-catchment)
For the VSB, this is a District class and follows a unique set of criteria and policies. They have stated for 2015/2016 ELAC will remain as it is. They have also stated that by 2016/17, 11 of the students will have moved to high school, with only 3 remaining (who are all in-catchment students). New students will be admitted during this intervening time but they are being informed of the current issues at hand.


5.    Parents of out-of-catchment children at the Main, with a sibling(s) who may or may not get into Dickens and/or who may have already been turned down last September
They fall into the lottery for registrations, behind in-catchment children, even though they have a child(ren) at the Main.


6.    Parents of out-of-catchment children at the Annex now grandfathered into the Main (40 students)
Please note that any Annex out-of-catchment children transferring to the Main over the next three years does not affect the number of in-catchment GrK students that can be accepted (GrK registrations are capped for sustainability – see 3. above). And per the Committee II Report, “It should be noted that staff and some parents have expressed significant concern about the possibility of having to adjust the multi-age model currently in place at Dickens Elementary. Fear has been expressed that allowing the out-of-catchment Annex students into Dickens Elementary will somehow destroy the school’s ability to organize in a multi-age format.  That is not accurate.”


7.    Parents who live in-catchment with children due to come to Dickens in September and/or beyond
The number of students is unknown.


Tuesday’s Emergency Parent Meeting at Dickens

We had over 85 parents/guardians present, representing both sites. The tone was positive – people listened generously and there was a sense of community. By the end, parents were better informed and were offering to act quickly given the PAC was only invited that day, to present to the VSB the following day.

A small group from both the Main & Annex created a petition for parents/guardians to sign on Wednesday morning and posted a letter to the PAC Blog for parents to send to VSB Trustees - this was the true Dickens spirit at work! The Trustees informed us that they received several letters. While we also gathered over 200 signatures at both sites, we had no need to bring this forward to the VSB during Wednesday’s meeting.

The other outcome of the meeting was the idea to create a PAC led sub-committee of parents/guardians who are interested in helping to do the “heavy lifting” with us to get ready for our presentation to the VSB’s Committee at a future date (hoping for an appointment in April*). Parents can help with tasks, brainstorming etc. during the day or evening - the more brains the better! Some parents have already volunteered to work on this committee. If you'd like to join the PAC led sub-committee, please email dickens.pac@gmail.com


Wednesday’s VSB Committee II Meeting

The PAC Chairs met with VSB senior staff on Monday, and were informed Tuesday that the PAC Exec was added to the Committee II agenda for Wednesday to make a presentation.

This was to be the PAC presentation, separate from the Annex OOC group. Our position for this meeting was to get the VSB to split the two decisions (Annex grandfather distinct from space/enrollment issues) as we had not been given sufficient time for parent consultation. We were successful in the request for splitting and delaying, and the Annex parents were also successful. Per the letter from Anna Maria today, our parent community now has the time needed for consultation, dialogue and the ability to suggest sustainable solutions. 

*We are awaiting a date from the VSB on which we will be asked to present - we have asked for a time in April due to the March spring break.

We strongly encourage you to read the following documents (click on the links) and become more familiar with the facts:

·      PAC Chairs presentation to Committee II - http://goo.gl/w5oaeK

·      Annex Parents’ presentation by Maggie Milne to Committee II - http://goo.gl/uQAFVj

·      Parents’ support for the Annex delegation by Christy Thomas to Committee II - http://goo.gl/c2SWk8

·      Committee I Minutes - http://goo.gl/GAtSqu

·      Committee II Report* (still to be revised) - http://goo.gl/FAJqNf


Next Steps

As decisions on space and enrollment issues have been deferred, no decisions have been made to date, other than the Annex grandfathering. So the five proposals in the Committee II Report* are still on the table, and are all up for discussion.  

While the impact of space and enrollment issues will not be immediately felt, not until 2016/17 or the school year after, the VSB is conscious that time is needed for consultation and that adequate time is required to put any decision(s) into action.

As we obtain more information within the next week or so, we will update you on that and the next steps for our sub-committee. If you wish to volunteer for the PAC led sub-committee in the interim, please email dickens.pac@gmail.com


Wednesday, January 21

Send letters to the VSB today! re: Enrolment Pressures

As you heard on Friday (Jan 16) and in the follow-up correspondence from the PAC (Jan 18), there is a Committee II meeting at the VSB (1580 West Broadway) today: Wednesday, January 21 at 5p.m. to discuss and make recommendations about "enrolment pressures" at Dickens. The meeting has been changed to the Boardroom to accommodate more people - Please come, if you can!

The VSB needs to hear from Dickens parents! Parents were at the Main & Annex this morning to collect signatures on a petition. 

Please also send an email to the trustees today before the meeting, to voice your concerns: A sample letter (similar to the requests on the petition) can be seen at this link: http://goo.gl/1411el

Feel free to edit this sample letter as you wish and sign your name. 

Emails should be sent to the VSB Trustees:

christopher.richardson@vsb.bc.ca

and, if you wish, cc to Anna Maria (Dickens Principal) at aniccolimu@vsb.bc.ca

Many thanks!
Dickens PAC


Sunday, January 18

IMPORTANT MESSAGE - Response to school letter

PARENTS & GUARDIANS - READ AND TAKE ACTION NOW!
PAC Follow-up to School Letter sent on Friday, January 16 2015

Our parent community is very concerned about possible changes being proposed for Charles Dickens (Main and Annex) to solve the enrollment pressures we continue to face.

Over the past years, enrollment at both the Annex and Main has steadily increased resulting in the challenges we are facing at this time. As a result, the VSB implemented a measure called the Enrollment Management Plan that essentially monitors our enrollment closely. Additionally, it changed the status of our Annex students from continuing cross-catchment to new applicants. However, this measure fails to address the unique relationship an annex has to its mother school. 

The interpretation of policy, practiced at Dickens for over 30 years, allows children enrolled in the Annex, including those who are cross-boundary, to transition over to the Main when they complete Grade 3. This was changed by the VSB last fall without consultation of the affected families. 

It should be noted that the restriction of the Dickens cross-boundary children transferring to the Main will not alleviate the stresses of increasing overall enrollment at Dickens and does not affect the number of in-catchment Kindergartens that can be accepted (it is capped for sustainability).

Your PAC supports ALL Dickens students and parents/guardians. 

Our goal is to ensure that all students are accommodated and not impacted by our space challenges and that Dickens families support each other while we advocate to find a solution together. It is our belief that the existing Dickens cross-boundary students attending the Annex should now be grandfathered in at the Main. Promises made to these families should be honored and the children should not be made to pay for poor planning on the part of the Ministry and the VSB.

It is important to note that no decisions have yet been made by the District or the VSB at this time. 

The enrollment crisis we continue to experience is symptomatic of bigger issues: 

We are experiencing chronic underfunding by the Ministry, and there is a city agenda to zone specific areas for densification without any provision for infrastructure to accommodate such rapid growth. The population in this neighbourhood is projected to continue to grow. As directed by the Ministry of Education policy, the VSB can only plan based on data reflecting current population numbers. Clearly this is short-sighted and damaging to the cohesiveness of any community and is the real problem that needs to be addressed! 

The PAC is now seeking clarification from the VSB and the Administration about the potential changes to multi-age classes as well as the possible changes to physical space at both schools. We will communicate our findings to parents via the PAC Blog and Parent Class Rep email communications.

It is our understanding that multi-age is not at risk at Dickens but that the high student enrollment may be accommodated by splitting age groups differently than they are today: e.g. shift Grade 4’s out of the 2/3/4 class groupings so that 30 rather than 24 kids can fill an enrolling class. Dickens parents feel very strongly that our multi-age groupings should not be threatened in any way and we want to be very sure that there is no threat in the proposal!

Reduction of library/open space:

We also feel that reducing library/open space to create extra classrooms is not a good solution in schools that have no other useable teaching or meeting spaces for larger groups of students. Staff and students utilize the library/open space at both the Main and Annex daily to meet, study, and learn. 

We are calling on all Dickens parents to mobilize quickly as any of the proposed changes will affect our entire community. There is much more at stake here than a group of students moving over from the Annex!

WHAT CAN YOU DO?
  1. Please take time to send an email to the VSB Trustees now and express your support for a sustainable and appropriate solution for our growing enrollment – the more we send the better: Email joy.alexander@vsb.bc.ca (Liaison Trustee) and copy banderson@vsb.bc.ca (the assistant to our Director)                                                                  
  2. Attend our emergency PAC-hosted parent meeting on Tuesday January 20 at 6:30pm at the Main School. During this meeting we will try to gather more feedback and respond with information we have. Childminding will be provided.                                                                                         
  3. Attend the VSB Committee II meeting on Wednesday January 21 at 5:00pm. The more we show our support, the stronger our voice is collectively.
  • Committee II Meeting - Planning and Facilities Committee, Room 120 of the Vancouver School Board Education Centre, 1580 West Broadway, Vancouver, BC

Thank you,
Dickens PAC 


Friday, January 16

City Wide Advocacy Workshop

Save this date to advocate for our children: Thursday, January 29

Vancouver DPAC is hosting a City Wide Advocacy Workshop at 6:30 pm at the VSB at West Broadway and Fir. 

The key-note speaker is Adrienne Montani from First Call, with a mission to mobilize British Columbians to work together to ensure our children and youth have the rights, opportunities and resources to reach their full potential. 
The group's campaigns and actions are based on the belief that all children and youth in BC should have first call on society's resources. 

Breakout sessions will be led by DPAC Vice-Chairs Farah Shroff and Diana Day and Marlene Rodgers from Public Education Now http://ppen.ca/


Childminding, free underground parking and healthy snacks will be provided. 


Tuesday, January 13

Creating Successful Students

The Learning Brain

Highly renowned researcher, neuroscientist, and Lord Nelson parent, Dr. Lara Boyd, will discuss how children's brains change with learning and development.  She will present recent data showing brain plasticity in children and conclude with some practical tips for maximizing learning and brain plasticity.  

Monday, 26 January 2015 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
The Gym at Lord Nelson Elementary
2235 Kitchener Street, VancouverBC

Reserve your ticket online today at www.thelearningbrain.eventbrite.ca for only $5. 
Space is limited so act quickly!

If tickets remain on the day of the event, they will be available at the door for $7.Laura has asked that all proceeds of the evening be donated to Lord Nelson's technology fund.


Monday, January 12

November 20, 2014 PAC Exec Meeting


Present
Andrea Sinclair                        Chair Main
Rossanna Caritey                      Chair at Annex
Kelly Maxwell                          Treasurer
Nicole Nozick                           Co-Secretary (took Minutes)
Lara Penno                              Co-Secretary
Hayley Baines                          Member at Large
Deb Copeland                          Member at Large
Helene deMonye                      Member at Large
Tami Friesen                            Member at Large
Leone Hall                               Member at Large
Ania Jakobs                             Member at Large
Sharon Mishler                         Member at Large
Andy Mitchell                           Member at Large
Judith Steedman                      Member at Large
Christy Thomas                        Member at Large

Regrets
Scott Urquhart                         Member at Large
Sunya Lai Thom                       Member at Large
Naomi Lazarus                         Member at Large
Rochelle Tucker                       Member at Large
Anna Maria NiccoliMullett        Principal CD Main
Nik Chiu                                  Vice Principal CD Main
Lisa Nucich                              Vice Principal CD Annex


1.      Welcome
2.      Agenda for tonight’s meeting approved ( 1st /  2nd / Passed)
3.      Minutes approved from Exec Meeting Oct 15, 2014 ( 1st / . 2nd / Passed)

Treasurer’s motions:

In our Approved Budget in June, general funds allocations to disbursements were

490 students at $22 per student = $10,780
150 students at $22 per student = $3,300

(plus any carryforwards.)

Motion: To fund the pumpkin patch event from playground funds instead of from gaming funds, as was initially approved.


Actual enrollment numbers (confirmed last week with admins) are 470 and 138.
I move to revise the general funds allocation to
470 students at $23 per student = $10,810
138 students at $23 per student = $3,174.

As well, June approved budget was $6,300 allocated to field trip fund under Gaming Funds, $10 per child.

I move to adjust this amount to reflect actual numbers of students, therefore 4,700 and 1,380 = $6,080 from this year’s gaming funds (which are supplemented with carryforwards).

Motion: For contingency
-A decision was made to allocate $600 from Main and $176 from contingency to offset shortfalls.
Motion: To spend disbursements according to spreadsheets
-After extensive review, all funding requests were considered and allocated based on general agreement amongst the PAC.
-Gaming and General disbursements were considered separately, as well as the Dickens Main school and the Annex.
-Please review the Dickens Disbursement Requests Decision for 2014-2015 for a complete breakdown of all allocations and general comments.



October 15, 2014 PAC Exec Meeting

Present
Andrea Sinclair                                Chair Main (Chaired)
Rosanna Caritey                              Chair at Annex
Kelly Maxwell                                   Treasurer
Rochelle Tucker                              Member at Large (Acting Secretary)
Deb Copeland                                  Member at Large
Christy Thomas                               Member at Large
Leone Hall                                         Member at Large
Andy Mitchell                                   Member at Large
Tami Friesen                                     Member at Large
Ania Jakobs                                       Member at Large
Scott Urquhart                                 Member at Large
Helene deMonye                            Member at Large
Judith Steedman                             Member at Large

Anna Maria Niccili‐Mullett         Principal Main
Lisa Nucich                                        Vice Principal Annex

Regrets
Sunya Lai Thom                               Member at Large (Resigning from PAC)
Lara Penno                                        Co-Secretary
Nicole Nozick                                   Co-Secretary
Hayley Baines                                   Member at Large
Naomi Lazarus                                 Member at Large
Sharon Mishler                                 Member at Large

Nik Chiu                                              Vice Principal Main

1.       Welcome

2.      Agenda for tonight’s meeting approved (Christy 1st / Scott 2nd / Passed)

3.       Minutes approved from Exec Meeting October 1, 2014 (Kelly 1st / Christy 2nd / Passed)

4.      Andrea S. Note: Sunya Lai Thom is unable to commit to PAC this year; too many alternative commitments. She has stepped down from PAC Executive.

5.       Administrative Update Highlights - Anna Maria
1.       Staffing Update - Paul Nichols on a leave until December; welcoming Gord Robertson who started as of Tuesday; specialty in choral singing (also has awareness of instruments).
2.      New technologies - in addition to PAC technology fund; and looking at priorities as a school - Dickens is part of Elementary hardware equity initiative (20 schools part of the pilot); 20 iPad minis; 2 Macbook Airs; Apple TV and LCD projector - for next 3 years on pilot loan; tower of minis have arrived; teacher training will follow shortly; funded by partnership with agency through the VSB; at the end of three years infrastructure to be returned; technology is coming to the Main; teams of staff will do workshops; pilot follows on pilot from last year that had other schools participating; Dickens selected on the basis of a needs assessment that took place last year; own initiatives will move forward as well but our initiatives may be tweaked as a result of our participation in the pilot.

Question for Admin. re: distribution of the technology across classrooms. Private donors in past years had donated computers to classrooms. Karim teams up with Tami to enable other students to use the computers. VSB has more flexibility now regarding use of different types of technology. Challenge is with equity. Anything provided by VSB (anything in terms of learning resources) can be accessed but requires teacher initiative/teacher autonomy. All kids have opportunity to use resources in the library.

3.       Internet ‘in house’ blocks are in place for internet safety.
4.      We have rescheduled our September Pro D Day for Fri. May 29.

Annex Admin Update - Lisa
1.       Thanks to PAC / Christy for pulling out t-shirts for cross country club.
Large turnout at cross-country meet.
2.      ‘VP for the Day’ last Thursday was a success (Sophia).
3.       Goal setting conferences are next week.
4.      Three SFU students will arrive next week for training (Marnie, Jackie and Irene).

6.      Treasurer Update
Any funds that are carried forward will remain in their school designations. Kelly to discuss with Viv (clarifying if there are outstanding receipts). Kelly will have Viv contact people with unspent commitments from 2013-2014;
44.17 to the Annex; 2845 to the Main; unspent funds will roll back into the total funds available for 2014-2015 and teachers will be asked to reapply for funding.
We still have to hear from BC Gaming about funding for this year.
We received a $20 donation to the Holiday Hamper fund.
Spring Fling actual changed; now 18,509. Goal for 2014-2015 will be 20,000!
Cheque for babysitting has gone to Viv for PAC meeting babysitters.

Kelly provided bank statements for people to inspect at the meeting. Suggestion for a financial committee to oversee money to insure transparency. We will revisit this at a future meeting.

Motion moved by Kelly and seconded by Dec, passed by all for $5000 from general funds to the Main; $1500 of general funds to the Annex. PIN money at Main and Annex as follows:
MAIN
21 divisions X $200 each = 4200.00
Plus the library 1 x $200 = 200.00
Plus 2 x prep teachers + 4 x resource teachers = 600.00
Total main pin money: $5000.00

ANNEX
6 divisions X $200 each = 1200.00
Plus the library 1 x $200 = 200.00
Plus 1 x resource teachers = 100.00
Total annex pin money: $1500.00

PIN administered through office. Teachers collect receipts and are reimbursed.

Teachers will be informed tomorrow at the staff meeting by Anna Maria. This will be separate from the application process. There was discussion about whether this should be a line item on the budget. Decided against.

Question re: communication between teachers and the PAC?
The current process is that during staff advisory committee meetings (teacher led with administration as guests), Anna Maria shares health and safety updates and PAC updates where she shares salient items and then there are discussion items for q and a. Meetings are held weekly.
PAC chairs will also come to meetings. Last year, due to Anna Maria’s absence in the fall, there were some miscommunications. Parents are also encouraged to talk to the teachers if concerns arise. Agendas are full as time constraints real/crammed agendas.

There was some discussion about whether a teacher rep to the PAC/point person to talk to (to enable teachers to talk with us); to facilitate communication. Teachers are invited to the general meetings as well.

7.               Disbursements
Form was distributed for discussion by Andrea S.
We disburse money based upon requests. We have updated the online form and created a FAQ document for the teachers. For the disbursement process this year, we are following these. Goal is to give the online link and FAQ sheet to the teachers by Friday. This will give the teachers 4 weeks to submit before our Nov. meeting.
Teachers can also count on $10/child for field trips from BC Gaming money. The teachers do not have to plan those events at this point in time. Parents and/or teachers can apply to the PAC for disbursement funds. PAC members to provide feedback to Andrea S on forms.

There are complexities attached to creating clubs (space, volunteering/criminal record checks, etc.). If parents are interested, staff must be informed about the initiative first. There are currently 5 parent led initiatives at the Main, who have all gone through the process in previous years.
At the Annex, significant space challenges. Also challenges regarding custodian.

Question: Can Annex kids join clubs at Dickens Main? Yes, grade dependent. Kids from the Annex participate in chess club.

8.      Project Leads
We will lump PAC General ‘chair’ responsibilities with speaker responsibilities.
Scott will do refreshments at EXEC meetings.
Rochelle will do sports day table and work with Helene to help organize speakers.
Christy will do hampers with Lara
Christy will do refreshments for Nov. general meeting; we will rotate for refreshments for other general meetings.
People who did not attend EXEC today will be asked to volunteer; we will ask parent reps from last year to see if someone wants to be the organizer.

9.      Greenway
Andy has quotes from two farms and we will go with farm in Delta - 650 pumpkins and apples price $1134; propose Tues Oct 28. Will include 630 kids. Celebration of the Greenway/Return during the school day.
Motion that we have a Pumpkin Patch for the kids with a budget of approximately $1400
Seconded by Christy Thomas.
Money to come from leftover gaming money leftover from 2013-2014.
Anna Maria and Lisa will discuss issues with teachers.

Discussion of what to do with $10,000 from playground funds tabled to December 10 meeting.

10.   Staff Appreciation Lunch - Friday April 24th/2015.
Will be held in Gym at the Annex for the day / Green area as weather permits.
Deb & Nicole organizing.

11.   Educational Funding
There is parent interest in lobbying for proper funding in all schools. Significant issue for children with special needs/assistance. Naomi expressed interest. We need to find parents with experience in lobbying to join in these efforts. Suggestion to form a committee.
Support for BC Students - Facebook initiative. Current membership of 19,000.
Christy will let parents know of interest via parent emails and school newsletter.

12.   BCCPAC magazine is out and is available in the box.
Andrea S. spoke to DPAC rep - both BCCPAC and DPAC are advocacy groups; get small funding from govt, both have had cuts; anyone can stand to be elected to DPACS. There are currently three positions open on the DPAC but there are people on leave because they are running for civil elections. They meet twice monthly. They hold an AGM (where general elections happen). There are 5 committees (listed on VSB website) and as DPAC members can sit as non-voting members can sit on various committees. If there is interest in pushing an agenda forward, get a parent on DPAC. Suggestion was made for this information to be communicated via blog/newsletter.
No money comes from DPAC any longer.
Less information about BCCPAC.
Andrea S suggested that we pay the $75 for BCCPAC membership.
She will investigate this further to find out who is getting money.
Decision tabled to next meeting.

13.    Lice
Is there interest in sponsoring a lice screening at the school? Darlene does screenings and has packages available. $3 for per child or $8 per child (3 X year). We are unable to do consistent head checking. Tricky now with school privacy regulations to have lice checking at school. Discussion. We will move this issue to a speaker event instead.

14.   Other business
Deb raised questions regarding ONLINE calendar for both schools. Lisa and Anna Maria will follow up.

Rochelle to follow up with Naomi regarding fundraising from strike cheques.


Crossing guard on Kingsway. Requires training by VPD. 


October 1, 2014 PAC Exec Meeting


Present
Andrea Sinclair                                Chair Main
Rossanna Caritey                            Chair at Annex
Kelly Maxwell                                   Treasurer
Nicole Nozick                                   Co-Secretary (took Minutes)
Lara Penno                                        Co-Secretary
Hayley Baines                                   Member at Large
Deb Copeland                                  Member at Large
Helene deMonye                            Member at Large
Tami Friesen                                     Member at Large
Leone Hall                                         Member at Large
Ania Jakobs                                       Member at Large
Naomi Lazarus                                 Member at Large
Sharon Mishler                                 Member at Large
Andy Mitchell                                   Member at Large
Lara Penno                                        Co-Secretary
Judith Steedman                             Member at Large
Christy Thomas                               Member at Large

Anna Maria Niccili‐Mullett         Principal CD Main
Nik Chiu                                              Vice Principal CD Main
Lisa Nucich                                        Vice Principal CD Annex

Regrets
Scott Urquhart                                 Member at Large
Sunya Lai Thom                                Member at Large

1.       Welcome
2.      Agenda for tonight’s meeting approved (Kelly 1st / Christy 2nd / Passed)
3.       Minutes approved from Exec Meeting June 4, 2014 (Christy 1st / Andy M. 2nd / Passed)
4.      Voted in six new Members at Large (Andrea S. 1st / Andy 2nd / Passed)

5.    Admin Update

Anna-Maria - Dickens Main
Warm welcome to Nik Chiu, new VP Dickens Main. Nik was previously had a teaching position at Queen Elizabeth Elementary.

Return to school has been welcoming and smooth. Classes have been set for both schools. Main - 480 students, 21 Divisions (up from 20 from 2013), Annex 140 students, 6 Divisions.

Cross-country running teams are in place. Gr. 2-7. Students who have shown interest have been contacted. Meets take place at Trout Lake.

Memorial plans - as a legacy piece, memory bench to be mounted onsite by VSB, two plaques with the names of the students will be placed on the bench. A community memorial with the school will be planned. 

MOTION to give $200 donation to Chou family in honour of Heidi. (Kelly 1st / Christy 2nd / Passed)

Facilities - all rooms are currently being used for teaching. Discussion under way at VSB level re new music program to be Guitars.

ProD days between Annex and Main all ProD days have been synchronized except for one. The date has not yet been determined.

Re teaching days lost due to VSB strike - AM’s understanding is that the school calendar will stand as published at the end of last year & the school curriculum will be modified to catch up on lost days.

School photos - Oct 15, 2014 (Main) Oct 6, 2014 (Annex).

Hot lunch program - two (pre-paid) lunches were missed in June. Main will make up these missed lunches on Tues Oct 14 and Oct 17.

New teachers: two new enrolling teachers Kloe Ash-Andersen (5/6/7), Dominque Deslauriers (5/6), new custodian Joe Yukick 

Lisa - Dickens Annex
Thank you to the parent community - staff felt extremely supported. Follow up to the flood - thanks to quick community response very little loss. School has new lino floors and paint. Terry Fox Run took place. Cross county is in place.  Two new teachers coming in (mat leave replacements). Total number at Main 140.

6. Greenway Painting Party Update - Andy M
The City financed the Greenway project entirely. As a result, of the $15 000 allocated, $10 000 is remaining ($5 000 was used for drainage). This money was raised to be used for a community type event/purpose only. Andy suggested using some of the $$ for a community Pumpkin Patch party. Group was enthusiastic about the idea. Discussion followed re what else the funds can be used for. Tabled for the next meeting.

7. Treasurer Update – Kelly M
Review of Financials & where they stand to date.  A small amount of allocated money has not been spent. That will be discussed at the large Disbursement Exec mtg Oct 15.
BCCPAC / DPAC discussion - what is the role of both, why are we paying members, do we want to remain, what’s it all about. Andrea S is working on getting more concrete information and responses from DPAC. Discussion tabled.
MOTION: that the signing officers are Kelly Maxwell, Andrea Sinclair, Andy Mitchell, Sharon Mischler (Kelly 1st / Andy M. 2nd / Passed)

8. Funding for teachers, PIN money and discussion - Kelly/Andrea S with Rossanna
Background info provided by Andrea S. PIN money given to each teacher at both schools to offset out-of-pocket purchases made by teachers for classroom supplies. Some discussion re fund-raising options/desire for teachers eg. giving teachers a $500 donation would be taxed, however a gift certificate would not. Discussion re PAC to lead a fund-raising drive for teachers/staff of both schools. Decision that an independent PAC Exec committee would be created to discuss further and lead. 
Kelly will provide info at next meeting re PIN money. Anna-Maria will count teachers.
Cmt: Rossanna, Naomi, Kelly, Christy, Nicole to work on this together.

9. EXEC Project leads - Andrea S
Refer to attached document, listing the different projects, Andrea will send more information

10. Staff Appreciation Lunch 2014/2015 - Deb/Nicole
Lunch has been re-scheduled for spring 2015. Deb and Nicole to co-ord. date options in late April with Annex/Main. April works well - warm enough for outdoor event, far enough ahead of Spring Fling to not impact fund-raising and volunteers.

11. Spring Fling 2014 Debrief Update - Andy M
Debrief didn’t take place. Tabled for another meeting.

12. Advocating for Education Funding - Christy
Tabled.
Christy has spoken with the Math Lady
MOTION: Carol Fullerton (the Math Lady) booked to address General PAC meeting in November (Christy 1st / Andrea 2nd / Passed)

13. School Clubs update - Andrea

14. Other business
Upcoming meetings
- Next PAC Executive Meeting is scheduled for October 15, 2014
- Next PAC General Meeting is scheduled for October 29, 2014