Highlights from the October meeting of the South East Cornerstone Public School Board:
*South East Cornerstone Teachers’ Association president Nathan Bromm shared a number of collaborative initiatives between the teachers' association and the division, and how those initiatives have yielded positive working relationships among teachers. He also recognized the work of the board, administration and teachers in ratifying the local contract, and the opportunities for teacher networking and support through orientation sessions and professional development.
*Multiple data sets and sources were presented to the board pertaining to the monitoring and integration of the school division's four-year plan.
-The first is the Cyber Stone Virtual School, which offers a full-time high school program, with all the required courses from Grades 10 to 12, as well as a variety of elective courses that allow students to complete a full high school program online. The creation of the virtual school was important for supporting smaller schools and accommodating family/work commitments, timetable conflicts and credit recovery.
-Also, occupational therapists Angie Phenix and Jeanette McNalty shared with the board how they support student success and achievement through the use of sensory rooms across the division. A sensory room is a space that houses sensory tools, which is important for self-regulation, and it provides an atmosphere for students to be able to do sensory, gross motor or heavy work activities.
Depending on the needs of each school, sensory rooms are tailored to ensure the right tools are provided for the students who require them. The sensory rooms are also adjusted depending on the needs of the student, with a variety of creative strategies employed to make the students’ experience as beneficial as possible.
Mcnalty said sensory rooms have proven to be more beneficial for students in the division who function more effectively outside of the classroom with some external sensory regulation.
The amount of visits by the student to the sensory room varies based on the level of external sensory regulation that is needed; visits are usually supervised and coordinated based on times which are least disruptive to the students’ schedule.
*The Board has received the Viable Schools Report for the 2013-2014 school year. Macoun School, Wapella School and Pangman School fell below the Ministry of Education's criteria. But the board has opted not to place any schools under review for this year, as it is currently reviewing attendance areas and transportation policies.
*The next meeting will be on Thursday, November 21. It will include the board's annual organizational meeting.