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Board Meeting Highlights - May 31, 2016

May 31, 2016 - The Board of Trustees is pleased to share with all education stakeholders the highlights of our recent Board meeting held on Tuesday, May 31, 2016. The adopted minutes will be available on our website following the next Regular Board meeting.

  • The Board received as information the new Administrative Procedure 159 - Treaty 6 Acknowledgement.  The Division values the historical significance and contributions of the Aboriginal Peoples and their cultures and understands the important role that the Aboriginal community plays today and in the future.  And as such, the Division recognizes the importance of honouring and acknowledging Treaty 6 territory as we work towards strengthening relations and building bridges with our neighbouring Aboriginal communities.  The Division will honour this committment by flying the Treaty 6 flag at Parkland School Division's Centre for Education in Stony Plain.  Schools will begin their own journey when it comes to learning more about Treaty 6 as well as a deeper understanding about the Truth & Reconciliation Commission of Canada. Schools are also participating in their own activities including, but not limited to, the Aboriginal Day Celebrations in Stony Plain on June 17, 2016. Resources are also being developed to help students understand the significance of the National Apology.
  • The Board approved the monthly financial report for the period ending April 30, 2016. Just over 67.7% of revenues have been collected for the year compared to 66.3% of expenses paid out to date resulting in total year-to-date revenues less expenses at $1.7 million dollars.
  • The Board welcomed a delegation from Graminia School.  Grade 9 students Franzi Basler, Natalie Boytchenko, Grace Futoransky and Gracie Safranovich delivered a presentation on their 'Graminia Gardens' sub-division designed by Grade 9 students.  The project-based learning opportunity posed the question to students: "How can we as home builders design, build, wire and market a “sustainable energy” community that fits the design requirements?"  
  • The Board approved the Preliminary Budget Assumptions for the 2016-2017 school year.  The School Act (Section 147) specifies that school boards are responsible to develop an annual budget no later than May 31 for the fiscal year beginning the following September 1.   As part of the annual budget cycle, school jurisdictions prepare budgets in the spring then update the budget in the fall based on the September 30 enrolments and any new developments since the spring. The two key areas covered include:
    • New School: Enrolments and expenditures have been estimated for Prescott Learning Centre.  The risk is that actual amounts are different than estimates.  The school can adjust spending in other areas for differences between actual and estimated expenditures.
    • Operating Reserves: It is assumed that Operating Reserves will increase by $14,000 as a result of schools repaying $64,000 in prior year deficits offset by a deficit of $50,000 in maintenance du to the carbon tax.  This results in an estimated A.S.O. to expense ratio of 2.69%.  The associated budget risk is that accumulated operating reserves are not sufficient to meet operational needs.
  • The Board received as information the Draft Three Year Education Plan (Year Two).  School authority planning and results reporting are integral parts of school authority accountability and an essential component of the Assurance Model.  Strategies and outcomes in the second year of the plan reflect strategic insights and information gained through assurance and accountability processes and from a wide variety of stakeholders.
  • The Board received as information the Technology Services Department Report for the 2015-2016 school year.  The department continued with a formal strategic technology plan for implementing the Alberta Learning and Technology Policy Framework (LTPF). The work to acheive the goals laid out in this plan is underway and will continue into 2018.  Highlights include:
    • The Network Infrastructure Refresh Project was completed resulting in a bandwidth increase at all Parkland School Division schools to 100 MB per second.
    • Parkland School Division transitioned to Gmail during the 2015-16 school year.  This has streamlined educational technology instructional processes and reduced internal maintenance overhead and costs moving to a cloud based service.
    • The successful transition to the student information system PowerSchool was also a major achievement.  As a result, Parkland School Division is fully compliant with the Provincial Approach to Student Information.  (PASI)
    • Parkland School Division also joined a Shared Services Firewall Cooperative Group with Chinook's Edge School Division, Wildrose School Division, Canadian Rockies School Division and Northern Gateway School Division.  The shared firewall is hosted inthe University of Calgary Datacentre by the Division's Internet Service Provider - Cybera.

    Next Regular Board meeting will be held on Tuesday, June 14, 2016 at 6:30pm, Centre for Education