Westwood Elementary Public School (minutes of school Council meeting on Wednesday 18th February 2015):
WESTWOOD PUBLIC SCHOOL
SCHOOL COUNCIL MINUTES
Wednesday 18th February 2015
In the Staff-room
Present: Shelly Frist (Chair-person), Mrs. Welch (Teacher Representative), Jennifer Smith –Balkissoon (Parent Member), Salam Alswadi (Parent Member), Mubeen Mughal (Parent Member)
Absent: Mr. Bartolos (School Principal), Sean McCarthy, (Secretary), Christina McCarthy (Co-Chair-Person).
The meeting commenced at 7.10 pm
All who were present approved the agenda, and the previous minutes.
Mr. Mughal agreed to assist Shelly in taking down the minutes of the meeting.
1. We heard about the inter-active dancing group activities and which now has 20 children participating, though originally it was to have been for 8 children.
2. We are in the midst of the SPELL-A-THON, and the monies collected will be used for technology and school supplies.
3. Money collected from the French Café sale will go towards Health Action Team (HAT) and (We Care) which is a local initiative to provide for clean drinking water in Africa, and these are fund-raising, and awareness generation efforts. The Children will have a Tooney-toss into a bucket, and children can give ideas every month .
4. There will be a checkers tournament taking place next week.
5. There will also be a scholars program for EQAO preparedness for 10 children. It is schedules for every Tuesday and Thursday starting tomorrow, till the end of May.
6. The school now has a DE-FIBRILLATOR outside the Gym for Strokes and Heart-Attacks, and other emergencies. It has a real-time video on managing and dealing with children who are having heart-trouble.
7. The school has applied for an Indigo grant with a lot of help from Mrs. Welch and Ms. Ruttan (Leveled Literacy Initiative Instructor), which is to be used towards books for the class-rooms and library.
8. The proceeds from the PITA-PIT purchase orders ($150) will be added to the $800 from the coffee money.
9. Pita orders have to be streamlined to avoid mix-up of the orders, also there are some students who complained that they did not get the pitas they ordered, though Mrs. Welch pointed out that some are just making it up. Jennifer and Mubeen asked why the teachers could not make a list or table of the PITA orders when the students brought-in the money, and Mrs. Welch said the teachers are very busy and already have a lot to do.
10. Some classes did not even get the forms in good time , and so the system needs to be better and perhaps the forms need to be distributed once a month so all orders can be taken in a timely manner.
11. Also some students did not get forms for the SPELL-A-THON activity to collect money. Again the suggestion by Jennifer was that the forms go out monthly, in advance.
12. Jennifer also suggested that the class teachers have a check-list for the Pita-Pit orders. Shelly suggested that 1.5 weeks be allowed for the request forms.
13. Jennifer gave an update on the NUTRITION PROGRAMME which she takes care of. In it, volunteers fill buckets with healthy snacks for children , organized in food-groups. Urbina runs a Chocolate-milk day every Friday. Mrs. Welch said that Mrs. Bartolos suggested to have an after-school meeting for how to utilize the carried over monies (perhaps veggie trays) , and that the children can also make suggestions, and that Mrs. Morris can come and give ideas on the finances. There is a lack of volunteers in this program as now there are only Two, and 2 part-time mums, and One co-op student who have volunteered to help. There is available cereal which the children like to have in plastic bowls.
14. The teacher staffing changes will take place in Mar/Apr.
15. There is a Parents Reaching Out (PRO) grant of $1,000 to get parents to volunteer , but there are guidelines on how to use the grant money. A suggestion from Jennifer is that the event be connected to a Multi-cultural night or have a chef come in and show foods from different countries, or have an author come in an introduce a book in the library, or a childrens entertainer come and entertain with interaction. Mrs. Welch said that Mrs. Bartolos has suggested that parents come in for a Math Night.
16. There are now guidelines on how to identify and deal with children who have bumps and CONCUSSIONS, and it outlines and spells out who is to do what in the school (and at home) when a child has sustained Concussion or injury to the Head.
17. The Next meeting remains at May 20th 7.00pm, as previously scheduled.
18. Meeting adjoured at around 8.10 pm.
I have also copied below some guidelines for school council meetings for you to glance through if you like:
In my opinion, a reasoning and responsible member of the public ought to conclude that the minutes generated, published, and broadcast by the school board are not a true and fair view of the actual meeting that took place, and the actual minutes recorded by one of the school council representatives representing the students, and parents, and public, and community because the minutes approved and published by the school board appear to be edited, censored, incomplete, and omitting key facts about important issues raised, and time spent discussing sensitive issues, and matters, and so in my opinion seems to be censorship by the agents of the authoritarian regime and showing lack of regard for responsibility, accountability, transparency, and also failing to show respect for the children, the parents of the children, the community, the public by producing minutes that are one-sided, incomplete, biased, and as a consequence demonstrate and display conduct that only betrays the trust of the public and the community and reliable and responsible stakeholders.
(Hamilton, Ontario, CANADA)