Regular Board Meeting Summary (22)

Regular Board Meeting Summary
Posted on 06/25/2020
Regular Board Meeting Summary

The High Prairie School Division Board of Trustees met on Wednesday, June 17, 2020, for their Organizational and Regular Board Meetings. Superintendent Laura Poloz began the organizational meeting by calling for nominations for Board Chair. Lorrie Shelp and Steve Adams were nominated for the position. Both candidates accepted the nomination. After a secret ballot vote, Steve Adams was elected as Board Chair and led the remainder of the Organizational Meeting. Karin Scholl was nominated and acclaimed as Vice Chair. Signing authority will continue to be held by Ward 2 trustees Joyce Dvornek and Adrian Wong. Trustees reviewed Board Policy 7 - Board Operations. Trustees then reviewed Board Policy 8 - Committees of the Board. The following committee appointments were made:


Board/Bus Drivers’ Liaison Committee

Ali Mouallem, Adrian Wong, and Lorrie Shelp (as alternate), the Superintendent, Secretary Treasurer, and the Director of Transportation.


Board/Teacher Liaison

Karin Scholl, Lynn Skrepnek, Ali Mouallem, the Superintendent, and the Secretary Treasurer.


Finance Committee

Committee of the Whole, The Superintendent, and the Secretary Treasurer.


Bus Drivers’ Salary Negotiations and Interpretation Committee

Karin Scholl, Steve Adams, Lorrie Shelp, Lynn Skrepnek (as alternate), the Superintendent, and the Secretary Treasurer. 


Representatives, Zone 1, ASBA

Karin Scholl and Adrian Wong (as alternate).


Planning and Priorities Committee

Committee of the Whole, the Superintendent.


Pupil Personnel Committee

Comprised of one Trustee and one Central Office person (as designated by the Superintendent).


Teachers’ Salary Negotiations and Interpretation Committee

Ali Mouallem, Karin Scholl, Lynn Skrepnek, and Joyce Dvornek (as alternate), the Superintendent, and the Secretary Treasurer.


Public School Boards’ Association Council

Lorrie Shelp, Joyce Dvornek (as alternate).


Trustee Professional Development Committee

Committee of the Whole, the Superintendent.


Board/First Nation, Métis, Inuit, Liaison Committee

One Trustee from each ward, the Superintendent, and the Secretary Treasurer.


Slave Lake Joint Use Committee

Ward 4 Trustees, Slave Lake Principals, the Superintendent, and the Secretary Treasurer.


High Prairie Joint Use Committee

Ward 2 Trustees, High Prairie Principals, the Superintendent, and the Secretary Treasurer.


Kinuso School/Community Library Board Joint Use Committee

Ward 3 Trustee(s), Kinuso Principal, the Superintendent, and the Secretary Treasurer.


Recognition of Employees Committee

Karin Scholl, Joyce Dvornek, and Lorrie Shelp (as alternate).


Council of School Councils (CoSC) Committee

The Board Chair or designate and the Superintendent or designate.


Chamber of Commerce (Smoky River, High Prairie, Slave Lake) Committee

Trustee from each ward that has a Chamber of Commerce.


Rural Caucus Committee

Lorrie Shelp and Karin Scholl (as alternate).


Advocacy Committee

Lorrie Shelp, Karin Scholl, Steve Adams, the Superintendent, and the Communication Officer.


Board meeting dates were set to be the 3rd Wednesday of each month with the organizational meeting on Wednesday, October 20, 2021.


Teachers' Employer Bargaining Association (TEBA)

Karin Scholl


The Long Service Awards date was postponed until the COVID-19 pandemic and public health measures allow for gatherings similar to previous Long Service Award celebrations. Scheduling dates for school reports to the Board was postponed until the August Board meeting.


Laura Poloz spoke on the planning that is taking place for a division-wide Skills Canada style competition for students. The Division intends to hold an event with specific competitions similar to those found at Skills Canada that will support and encourage more students in the Division to increase their knowledge and familiarity with the trades and prepare them for competition at the Skills Canada Alberta next year.


The Board discussed possible questions for a re-entry survey to division parents and guardians. Survey questions were also discussed with HPSD administrators to gather feedback from them on what questions would be beneficial to school re-entry in the fall. The division will send out a survey after August 1st when the Government of Alberta plans to give final re-entry details to all school authorities.


Director of Facilities Lionel Gagnon gave a presentation to the Board of Trustees on the previous and upcoming school year projects. Some noted highlights include that our division's expenses for total utilities continue to be below the provincial average in costs per square metre. These savings are also found in our groundskeeping, snow removal, and cleaning/janitorial. The majority of these savings have come from internal efficiencies within the Facilities Department and strategic procurement of goods and services to maximize savings. Director Gagnon also detailed the 2020-21 Infrastructure Maintenance and Renewal (IMR) projects. 


Director of Transportation Harry Davis also gave a presentation to the Board of Trustees on the work carried out by the Transportation Department over the past year and plans for the upcoming school year. The purchase of new buses and the decommissioning of others at the end of their lifespan, school bus driver training, orientation, and qualification, and an inventory review to right-size the quantity of on-hand parts is underway. 


Trustees then discussed a communications plan for the upcoming year. The focus was on further communication with local municipal counterparts and community engagement sessions in the coming years that will continue to promote community involvement in public education and strengthen relations with stakeholders.


The Trustees then reviewed the Public School Boards' Associaton of Alberta (PSBA) Transportation Review Task Force questionnaire. Responses to the questionnaire were developed with support from Division staff.


The Board of Trustees discussed the funding concerns affecting the Campus Saint-Jean. A motion was carried for administration to draft a letter to Conseil Scolaire Centre-Nord to offer our support for the post-secondary institution which significantly supports Francophone students in our province. Conseil Scolaire Centre-Nord had previously proposed a resolution at the ASBA Spring General Meeting to have funds reinstated to Campus Saint-Jean. The HPSD Board of Trustees felt that the final motion which was passed "...did not properly express the urgency or the impact this decision has on French Immersion and Francophone programs in our k-12 schools...".


Board Policy 11- Role of the Superintendent received second and third reading. Board Policy 12 - Appeals Regarding Student Matters and its Appendix received third reading. Board Policy 13 - Hearings on Teacher Transfers received third reading. Board Policy 15 - Recruitment and Selection of Personnel received first, second, and third readings.


The Board of Trustees approved the purchase of Dossier, a new electronic data system that will be an additional tool used by school staff. 


Trustees approved the 2020-21 Infrastructure Maintenance and Renewal (IMR) Plan.


The Finance Report was received and accepted.


A motion was carried to send a letter to the Alberta School Boards' Association (ASBA) about COVID-19, costs associated with it, and school re-entry. 


The Board approved the proposed advocacy points as presented by the ad hoc Advocacy Committee.


The Dual Credit program at HPSD was then discussed. 75 students enrolled in dual credit courses or programs in the 2019-20 school year. 77% of students have already completed their course/program successfully with another 19% on-track to complete their course/program. Although most dual credit courses and programs were not directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, some students chose to focus their work on their core subjects and withdrew from their dual credit course/program.


Lastly, Trustees discussed the Alberta School Boards Association's long service awards. No members of the Board of Trustees are eligible for long service awards this year. A motion was then carried to move into closed for the remainder of the meeting.

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