In June, the Ministry of Education announced the finalists in the Premier's Awards for Accepting Schools. This annual awards program honours school communities that demonstrate outstanding leadership in creating strong and supportive school environments. This year, seven public schools have been named: Black River Public School in Sutton (York Region DSB), Chinguacousy Secondary School and Kingswood Drive Public School in Brampton (Peel DSB), Dundas Valley Secondary School (Hamilton Wentworth DSB), Eganville and District Public School (Renfrew County DSB), Guildwood Junior Public School in Scarborough (Toronto DSB) and Kirkland Lake District Composite School (District School Board Ontario North East). Also honoured were Collège catholique Mer Bleue in Orléans, Francis Libermann Catholic Secondary School in Scarborough and St. Mary Catholic Secondary School in Pickering.
For more information, visit http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/safeschools/award.html.
In May, the Renfrew District School Board announced that Peter Cudmore had received a 2016-17 Prime Minister's Award for Teaching Excellence. Cudmore teaches physics, science and robotics at Arnprior District High School. He was honoured for his work creating an interdisciplinary robotics course that partnered with local branches of the large manufacturing and tech firms GE, Ontario Power Generation and Hitachi. Through the course, he and his students built an augmented reality sandbox, one of only five in Canada, to be used by local elementary schools as a learning tool. He is described by the school's principal, Tom Havey, as an exemplary teacher whose dedication and curiosity are inspirational to his students.
For more information, contact Jonathan Laderoute, communications manager, Renfrew County District School Board, (613) 735-0151, ext. 2231, or mobile (613) 635-3528. @RCSB
In September, the Halton DSB released the final instalment in its three-part Beyond the Numbers math video project, created to support the Ministry of Education's new math strategy. The first video, Beyond the Numbers: Understanding the Renewed Math Strategy, released in April, gives an introductory overview of the math strategy. Beyond the Numbers: Inside Halton Elementary and Secondary Classrooms, released in June, is a set of two videos, one each for the elementary and secondary panels, that explain how math is taught at each level. The fourth video is a guide for parents and caretakers who are helping their children with learning math at home and features a number of helpful resources. It is scheduled for release in late September or early October.
The Ministry of Education's Renewed Math Strategy was launched in September 2016 to boost math achievement levels among Ontario students and to ensure that at least 75 percent of elementary students achieve a level 3 or higher on provincial math assessments.
To view the videos, visit https://www.hdsb.ca and click on Mathematics under the Learning and Resources tab.
In the first week of June, student leaders from across the Upper Canada DSB mounted an awareness campaign in their schools to promote inclusion. Students were engaged in discussions that aimed to focus their attention on how to genuinely accept students with intellectual challenges and include them in school and community life. They were asked to sign this pledge: "I pledge to include and accept all students in my classes, including those with disabilities, so we can all learn together."
This campaign was part of the wider work of Community Living Ontario (http://communitylivingontario.ca), a charity that supports people with intellectual challenges, and its student initiative Re:Action4Inclusion.
For more information, read "Students Deliver Inclusion Message to Peers in Brockville Area," https://www.insidebrockville.com/news-story/7390955-students-deliver-inclusion-message-to-peers-in-brockville-area/, June 25, 2017.