Monday, February 25, 2008

Minutes of Meeting - January 10, 2008

Nashwaaksis Middle School
PSSC Committee Meeting
January 10, 2008

Members Present

Mitch Claybourn – Chair
Lori MacMullen – Secretary
Karen MacLean
Lisa Rousseau
Tina Brewer
Deanna Stewart-McGarry
Heather Touchie-Blakely – Teacher Rep
Tracy Allen
Theresa Pyke

Members Absent

Susan Knorr

Ex-Officio Members:

Alan Atkins – Principal
Glenda Saint – School Performance Coach

DEC Representative:

Bill Corby (Regrets)


Jeff Whipple
Vicki Patterson
Susan MacKenzie
Colleen Thomson

7:00 – 7:05 Welcome and Introductions

7:05 – 8:30 Action Items from Previous Meeting

Developing and delivering a safe computing program based on the information from the district and the other programs.

Jeff provided an update on the initiative currently underway at Leo Hayes being developed by students for students. The plan is to have this presentation given to students.

Due to the rescheduling of the Discipline Information Session for parents in late January, Jeff has recommended that we schedule the parent information session for third week of February. Mitch also suggested that we video the session for posting on the site.

Web Site – Lisa is working on a new look and feel for the web site. Jeff is also now monitoring the number of hits to the web site – currently we are averaging 300 hits per day.

Parent – Teacher Communications: In response to previous discussions surrounding communications between teachers and parents with respect to student progress, Glenda provided stats collected from teachers over a 7 week period showing a variety of methods by which parents communicate with teachers. This information has also been provided to district office. This information will also be collected during the time before and after the second interview period.

Discussion ensued around the use of this information going forward as well as the usefulness of the mid-term report used at NMS.

Tell Them From Me (TTFM) Results: 230 students out of 825 participated in the first round of the survey with 1/3 being surveyed in February and the remaining later in the year.

Glenda provided a overview of some elements of the data collected during this session as a comparative to NMS last year (whole of year), a replica school and to other middle schools in taking the survey. It was noted that the survey is given in English.

In the various areas that were reviewed, including school climate, effective learning time, student advocacy, disciplinary climate and teachers' expectations for success, NMS scored above the replica school and scored above or on par with other participating Canadian schools.

Other areas reviewed included student wellness with NMS students scoring higher on self-esteem and lower on depression than the replica school and other Canadian schools. Anxiety problems and bullying were above the replica school but on par with other Canadian schools. In the student engagement cluster, NMS had a lower rate of participation in school sports while participation in clubs was within the range of other Canadian schools.

ACTION ITEM: Jeff will post the report to the blog where parents can download and review the results.

School Improvement Plan

Mitch provided an overview of the process by which the SIP was developed including the number of meetings, who participated, how the review committees (internal & external) were used, etc.

Alan reviewed the SIP with the objective of the discussion on the SIP was to provide the PSSC with the opportunity to comment on and add to the SIP, the priorities and the action items.

Discussion Items Included:

• Will there be an interim report for the winter term? Yes.

• Will the information provided be focused for the various grade levels, especially for the parents of the Grade 6 students? Yes

• Minutes of the PSSC meetings need to be posted for the year. Alan/Lori to coordinate this with Jeff.

• Alan explained that the delay in presenting the results of the SIP related to the wording and expectations surrounding the delivery of the Second Step Program – a curricular based anti-violence program with the intention to incorporate the content into the subject specific curriculum. Although teachers support the concept and subject, there are difficulties in integrating the content into the subject areas therefore the SIP was changed to reflect a review of Second Step as opposed to implying it would be fully adopted at NMS.

• Lisa provided comment with respect to the SIP and its presentation as being very easy to follow, easy to understand and follow. Alan indicated that this was due to the work of the committee in reviewing, refining and simplifying the material.

• Student handbook has been redeveloped and refined to a one page summary that will be used to provide a consistent set of guidelines/rules for all members of the NMS community. This summary will be provided to parents and students as part of the handbook.

• Are the assessment results from Grade 9/High School shared with NMS in order to feed into the plans for curriculum development? Yes.

• In the document "Kids Come First" there is a specific reference to inclusive education and the requirement to include a reference to inclusive education in the school improvement plan. Will there be a reference made in the NMS School Improvement Plan to inclusive education?

• In response to the Kid's Come First strategy, it was agreed that there be a reference to inclusive education in the NMS SIP

• Action: Alan to follow up with Karen Goodsoe-Daigle with respect to including a reference to this item.