By Betsy Kline,
Castlegar News contributor
The first item on the agenda at the board meeting of School District #20, Columbia-Kootenay on February 24 was a presentation by a delegation of the Rossland Secondary School Renaming Committee. The delegation led by Principal Karen Lavender explained the process that the committee had used in narrowing down the choices for the name that would reflect the new configuration as a K-9 school. They wanted a name that would represent the community, the fact that it is a public school, and also be familiar, realistic, connected and easy to say. After much public input the committee then narrowed the list down to three names to present to the board. The first two choices being equal in preference were Rossland Summit Public School and Rossland Summit School. The third choice was Rossland Public School.
The next presentation was from the District Self-Regulation Team led by Wendy Cutler. Self-regulation is defined as “The ability to adapt your alertness, emotions, thinking skills and social skills according to the needs of a situation or problem.” The district has taken an active approach to spreading teaching and training on this subject throughout schools in the district. They have integrated several curriculums helping teachers develop these skills with the students in their classrooms. The delegation reported that many positive changes are being seen in classrooms around the district.
The committee applied for and received a $10,000 grant from POPFASD, the Provincial Outreach Program for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. This money will be used to train teachers to implement the principals of self-regulation with their students who suffer from FASD.
After a third reading, the board unanimously passed the Amended Annual Budget Bylaw 2013-2014 in the amount of $42,537,345. The amendment reflected changes in both the forecasted revenues and expenses from the previous annual budget.
The board also unanimously passed a motion renaming Trail Middle School to Kootenay-Columbia Learning Centre – Trail Campus. The change takes place immediately. This was the first choice name suggested by the committee to rename the school.
The Policy Committee presented a Notice of Motion that the Board approve the revised Administrative Procedure 1.6.1 AP, Student Discipline and Suspension and eliminate the existing Administrative Procedure 1.6.2. This policy will now undergo a public consultation process. The policy will be available on the district web site and will be emailed to all teachers. Depending on the amount of input and suggested changes, this process should last between 30 and 60 days.
Superintendent of Schools Greg Luterbach reported that current enrolment numbers for the year are very similar to the September number. Kindergarten registration numbers for next year are also on par with a projected enrollment for 2014-2015 of 270 – 280 students.
The Board unanimously approved in principle, and at no cost to the Board, field trips for the JL Crowe Secondary School Golf Team to participate in two Golf Tournaments taking place in Washington State.
Secretary-Treasurer Jo-Ann Bursey gave an update on the budget process for the 2014-2015 school year. The preliminary budget shows a deficit of $729,540 largely due to a decrease in funding from the Ministry of Education and an increase in CUPE wages. The Board is compiling a “long list” of ideas to balance the budget. This list will be posted online March 7 along with a survey seeking public input.