School Board Governance
Last Fall, OPSBA participated in a ministry consultation that included five areas of discussion: Code of Conduct & Integrity Commissioners, Trustee Honoraria, Student Trustees, Electronic Meetings and Director of Education Qualifications. The attached memo outlines next steps for each of these topics, including Trustee Honoraria which was included in the Grants for Student Needs. There is to be an interim increase of $400 with the new base limit of $6,300. The ministry will be establishing a working group that includes OPSBA to discuss this further and we will continue to advocate for a more fair formula. A working group will also be created to develop minimum standards for a Code of Conduct policy and OPSBA is currently reviewing our 2012 template. It must be noted that many of the decisions and directions taken reflect our advocacy work. Click here for the OPSBA submission.
Legalization of Cannabis
A new memo provides an update and timelines for the Ministry of Education’s plans to support schools. OPSBA had been seeking information about the changes required for school policies and protocols as well as resources for students, parents and staff. $2.8 million has been allocated in the Education Program Other (EPO) grant to support training and specialize resources, including fact sheets for students and parents. OPSBA will follow up with the ministry about our continued involvement and the education-related impacts in the implementation of legalized cannabis.
Early Years and Child Care
On March 27, Premier Kathleen Wynne announced that full-day licensed child care will become free for preschool children from the age of two-and-a-half until they are eligible to start kindergarten, beginning in 2020. This memo includes additional information on the endeavour as well as more funding to support the child care sector. OPSBA is a member of the Minister’s Early Years Advisory Committee.