Board Meeting Highlights: Monday, October 30, 2023
With members of the public in attendance, including a class of students from Tupper Secondary School, the Vancouver School Board held its regularly scheduled public meeting on the evening of Monday, October 30, 2023. The Board received reports from the meetings of the personnel and the education plan committees, as well as the policy and governance committee which included several matters arising for the Board’s consideration.
Each Board meeting, the superintendent provides an update highlighting key events, activities and topics on the educational agenda. This month, superintendent McGregor began her presentation by acknowledging two recipients of the monthly superintendent’s tribute. The tribute showcases the contributions by members of school communities to the educational journeys of students. Brent Mansfield, teacher at Lord Robert’s Elementary School, was acknowledged for his advocacy efforts raising awareness about students’ nutritional needs as well as his ongoing work to enhance access to healthy foods for students and food literacy throughout the District. Additionally, Sara Richter, special education teacher at King George Secondary, also received the superintendent’s tribute for her work to advance inclusion of students with diverse learning needs. Superintendent McGregor then provided information about various staff learning and professional development initiatives, including the District’s Literacy Framework in addition to details about unveilings of carvings by Indigenous artists at several schools throughout the District.
Student Trustee Update
Student trustee Mia Lui shared information with the Board about activities underway by the Vancouver District Student Council (VDSC) including the elections of junior executive members. She also updated the Board about the VDSC’s ongoing work to expand representation in priority areas for the council including sustainability matters and to ensure the perspectives of Indigenous students are shared with the council. In addition, student trustee Lui noted recommendations by the VDSC regarding the implementation of reimagined SLO program, including the idea of introducing officers on social media and including details about them and their work supporting students in school newsletters. She concluded her update noting preparations for the annual Canley Cup – a fundraising initiative supporting the Greater Vancouver Food Bank.
The Board considered three matters arising from the policy and governance committee. It approved a motion directing the development of a facilities naming and renaming policy. A draft policy will be presented at an upcoming policy and governance committee meeting. The Board also approved revisions to Board Policy 8: Board committees to better align the finance and personal committees with current practices, as well as update the functions of the Education Plan Committee. In addition, the amended policy will see invitations extended to rightsholder representatives of each of the Host Nations: xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwxwú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation) and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh Nation) to attend standing committee meetings. The primary purpose of standing committees is to act in an advisory capacity to the Board and to support good governance and informed decision making by the Board. The final matter arising from the policy and governance committee was the consideration and approval of Appeal Policy and Procedures Bylaw to align with an update from the Ministry of Education and Child Care issued in November 2022. The bylaw was adopted and now the process will include an informal conflict resolution process to resolve disputes prior to a formal appeal to the Board.
Two notices of motion were provided to the Board by trustee members. Motions will be tabled at the next public meeting of the Board in November.
At each regular public meeting, the Board provides an opportunity to members of the community to submit questions regarding Board business and agenda items. The submission form is open from 12:00 p.m. the day of Board meeting and closes after the Board receives committee reports during its meeting. This month, one question was received, asking if an update about opportunities available through the provincial government’s BC Builds program. The chair noted that while she and staff have contacted the Ministry of Housing seeking information, there are no details currently available to provide more information.
Keep up to date with the District’s committee and Board meetings; see the calendar for meeting dates, agendas and livestream links. All recordings of meetings are housed on the District’s YouTube channel. Minutes of committee and Board meetings are also posted online.