Across the Boards - ET Spring 2016

​Kawartha Pine Ridge DSB Elementary School Wins Award

The Kawartha Pine Ridge DSB announced in September that Murray Centennial Public School in Trenton was awarded first place in the 2015 Gale/Library Media Connection Magazine TEAMS Award competition. Led by teacher-librarian Mary Walker Hope and teachers Kim Mills Mellor, Brandy Dingman, Erin Honeywell and Lisa Laver, the school's grade 1 classes created an interactive gallery walk at the school that incorporated the social science curriculum and student artwork with 3D technology elements that showcased the local community.

The award program is sponsored by Cengage Learning and Gale, a global provider of library research tools for libraries and businesses. All winners received a cash award and products from Cengage Learning. Murray Centennial Public School was the sole Canadian winner in this year's competition. The project video can be viewed at https://animoto.com/play/oxbB76A2iy0pXKSCU2zyjw.

For more information, contact Mary Ellen French, principal, Murray Centennial Public School, (613) 392-9238.

Waterloo Region DSB Supports Adult Literacy

On September 8, Premier Kathleen Wynne marked International Literacy Day by announcing this year's winner of the Council of the Federation Literacy Award for Ontario. The award was presented to Brenda Krys, a volunteer since 2008 with Essential Skills Upgrading, a literacy program for adult learners at the Waterloo Region DSB. Krys, who has a certificate in adult literacy education and is working on a bachelor's degree in adult education, has helped adult learners improve their literacy skills, enabling them to be more productive in their lives and in their communities.

The Council of the Federation Literacy Awards were launched in 2004 to highlight the importance of literacy in society and are awarded annually by each Canadian province and territory.

For more information, visit http://news.ontario.ca/tcu/en/2015/09/ontarios-2015-council-of-the-federation-literacy-award-winner.html.

Annual Day of Dignity at Grand Erie DSB

In September, a group of students and teachers from secondary schools across the board met for the annual Social Changemakers Day of Dignity Student Conference. The event allows student leaders to explore the ideas of dignity and inclusiveness, and to develop inclusive practices for their own schools and communities. The group will meet again later this spring to compare notes on progress. A video of this year's event is available at www.youtube.com/watch?v=4xYTt9Fv4kQ. The conference is sponsored by the board and Harmony Movement, an organization that presents equity programs to the education and social service sectors.

For more information, visit www.granderie.ca and search for "Changemakers".

Be Safe App Adds New Partners

In September, two more Ontario regions joined the Be Safe app project that was launched in 2014 by the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health and community partners in London. Youth in the Durham DSB and the Sudbury-Manitoulin Service Collaborative who are coping with mental wellness and addiction issues now have this free smartphone resource equipped with local emergency contacts for use in crisis situations. The app can be downloaded onto iOS and Android devices from the website http://www.mindyourmind.ca/, which also contains a range of very useful interactive resources in English and French. The creators stress that the Be Safe app is best used in conjunction with professional services, not as a replacement.

For more information, http://ow.ly/UcuwS.

2015 Nobel Laureate Visits Renfrew County DSB

In October, Dr. Arthur McDonald, one of two recipients of the Nobel Prize in Physics for 2015, gave an address to students at Mackenzie Community School in Deep River. A former resident of the community, McDonald worked in the area in the 1970s and 1980s and has family living there, including two granddaughters who attend the school.

McDonald was recognized by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences for his research on solar neutrinos, subatomic particles that pass invisibly through matter. His work, along with that of Dr. Takaaki Kajita of Japan, with whom he shared the prize, has revealed that these elementary particles change their state and therefore have mass. McDonald's experiments were conducted at the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory, a laboratory located in a converted mine 2 kilometers underground. He and his team continue to work on the neutrino project. 

For more information, contact Jonathan Laderoute, communications, Renfrew County District School Board, (613) 735-0151, or visit www.snolab.ca/.