Reminder – PAC Meeting Wednesday Night

In the computer room next to the school library, meeting starts at 6:45pm/7:00pm, childcare is provided.

http://www.heatherparkpac.info/2010/12/parent-advisory-council-meeting-agenda-dec-8-2010/

Around the Schools, December 7, 2010

École Heather Park Elementary’s Leadership students have organized a food drive to collect non-perishable food items for the Salvation Army food bank.  In the hopes of increasing donations and supporting such a valuable and much needed cause, we have also challenged Kelly Road’s student council to see which school can bring in the most food (per capita) between Dec. 1st and Dec. 14th.

The Big Bad Wolf recently visited Mr. Franz’s & Mrs. Parker’s gr.4/5 classroom.  As an introduction to Reader’s Theatre, Mr. Fleck, Mr. Watt and Ms. Weisgarber read a very animated retelling of “The Three Little Pigs” to an appreciative and enthusiastic audience.

To celebrate the end of Term 1 four gr.6-7 classes enjoyed a field trip to the Aquatic Centre where a splashingly good time was enjoyed by all!  The remaining gr.6-7 classes enjoyed a very informal dance at lunch—where loud music and excess energy was the norm!

Tasty treats abound as the two English Kindergarten classes, with the supporting hands of their Big Buddies, are creating gingerbread houses this week.

Mrs. McLachlan and several parent volunteers have organized and started running activities for primary students at recess and lunch every day.  The Leadership Kids are a huge part of helping make these activities a success as well. These activities as well as other clubs will be continued in the New Year.

A reminder: Report Cards go home on December 15th.

Thanks.

Nadine Trifunovich Allen                        &               Dan Watt

Counsellor-Resource Teacher                                     Vice Principal

Parent Advisory Council Meeting Agenda – Dec. 8, 2010

Parent Advisory Council Meeting Agenda
Dec. 8, 2010 6:45 pm – 7:00 pm (Social Time)
7:00 pm to 8:30 pm (Meeting)
Computer Room – École Heather Park Elementary School

i)    Call to Order followed by Introductions/Welcome (3 min)
ii)    Approval of Minutes from last meeting (2 min)
iii)    Present the agenda (2 min)
iv)    Administrative Matters (5 min.)
•    Issues or ideas that can’t be addressed when identified will be “parked” and addressed as soon as possible
•    Executive met on November 10th immediately after the last meeting to action all items; met November 23rd to address ongoing issues; met again on December 1st to set the agenda for this meeting.  Will meet immediately following today’s meeting to action all items from today’s meeting.
•    Minutes were posted on the PAC website and the draft agenda for this meeting was posted on the website on Monday December 6th
v)    Teacher Liaison – Intro (3 min)
vi)    Status of finances and banking matters– Leeann (5 min)
vii)    Funding requests – (5 min)
•    Funding for Christmas Event
•    Website expenses
viii)    Principal’s Forum – Q & A (10 min)
ix)    Report from sub groups (5 min each – including questions/votes)
•    Food
•    Dances & Activities
•    Fundraising
•    Playground
•    Recess
•    Safety and Traffic – present proposed traffic solution
x)    Progress on Key Unresolved Issues (5 min)
•    Playground request
•    Recess/Supervision
•    Safety
xi)    Address “parked” issues as time permits – defer to next meeting if not (5 min)
xii)    Next meeting January 12, 2011 at 7:00 pm.
xiii)    Meeting Adjournment

O Canada — Tuesday, Dec 7

Tomorrow will be the first day we play “O Canada” at Heather Park.  We are asking parents to stand in silence while the anthem is being played if they are in the building.

See bilingual lyrics attached.

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PAC Meeting December 8th

Next PAC meeting is Wednesday, December 8th, in the computer room next to the library.  The meeting starts at 7pm, social time starts at 6:45pm.

We encourage everyone to come, and try to welcome everyone individually. You don’t need to have attended before, and you don’t need to volunteer for anything in particular.

Childcare will be available, and an agenda will be posted by Monday.

Prince George Citizen Article on Playgrounds

Parents approve playground move

A strong majority of Austin Road and Springwood parents have no problems with moving playgrounds from those closed schools to Heather Park elementary school.

A survey of 30 homes — 19 around Austin Road and 11 around Springwood — was conducted in October and 77 per cent of respondents “definitely support” the idea, while 13 per cent “somewhat support” the idea.

Despite becoming home to about 740 kindergarten to Grade 7 students this school year, Heather Park, which was a middle school last year, has only one playground while each of Austin Road and Springwood remains home to two.  [Note: as of September 30th, Heather Park had 693 students in total, not 740]

[Former] Austin Road parent Sarah Holland supports moving a playground from that school to Heather Park.

“At the moment, only children in kindergarten, Grade 1 and Grade 2 are allowed to play on the Heather Park play structure and we have 220 K-2 students as of Sept. 30,” she said. “That’s a lot of kids to fit on one small play structure.”

[Former] Springwood parent Allison McCray has a similar view.

“When Springwood was closing it was general consensus, I would feel comfortable saying, that the parents wished the playground to go with the kids, it was theirs,” said McCray.

Three of the respondents were opposed or strongly opposed, all from the Springwood area.

Two respondents used the school site daily and one never used the school site but noted kids still play there and maintained the school district should buy two new playgrounds.

Fifty per cent of the respondents never use the closed sites, 13 per cent use them daily, 27 per cent weekly and 10 per cent less often than weekly.

School district policy dictates that structures at a closed school remain in place for at least one year before they’re moved.

Over the summer, the school district made the unusual move of purchasing playgrounds for Heather Park and Lac des Bois at a cost of $38,000 each.

Funds for playgrounds are typically raised by parent advisory councils but because no such organizations were yet in place at either school, trustees voted to put the cost on the school district’s tab.

The school district is looking at the possibility of using “in-house” resources to move playgrounds from Austin Road and Heather Park after receiving a quote of $38,000 from the original maker and installer to do the work — $21,000 for Austin Road and $17,000 for Springwood.

The survey was carried out by three volunteers on Oct. 24.

Full Playground Survey Report in PDF format

Policy 5119 – Revisions to School Catchment Areas and Student Transfers

At its public meeting on October 26, 2010, the Board of Education reviewed proposed changes to this policy and approved a motion to distribute them to reference groups for input.

Click here to see the draft policy and information about providing input.

The deadline for providing input is January 6, 2011.

December 1: The school district has posted a FAQ on their website about the proposed revisions, the Board’s process, and the error they made in implementing changes to the policy in 2008:  Click here for more information.

This will be discussed at the next PAC meeting, but in brief, this policy governs how catchment applies to schools for kindergarten registration and student transfers. This policy sets the criteria for how priority is given to students when there is no room in a school, class, or program for a student attempting to register or transfer. Note that the catchment for the English program at Heather Park is the neighborhood, while the catchment for French and hockey is district-wide.

Students registering in Kindergarten, English program:

“Students, including those in Kindergarten, are entitled to attend the school serving the geographical catchment area in which they live, except as limited by available space or by actions taken in accordance with the provisions of this policy. ” Continue reading