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Highlights from February 8
Board of Trustees Meeting

Click Here to View February 8 Board Meeting Agenda

(Brockville) – Trustees with the Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) met on Wednesday, February 8th to discuss a number of topics including:

Annual Occupational Health and Safety Report: Health and Safety Specialist Dennis Koluk presented his Annual Occupational Health and Safety Report for 2015-2016. The report showed a slight increase in the total number of lost time and no lost time accidents within the board, rising to 129 from 118 the year before. Seventy nine of those accidents did not result in lost time from work. For the third consecutive year the board experienced a lower total incident frequency rate than similar-sized Ontario school boards. In addition, for the fifth straight year, the UCDSB’s lost time frequency rate remains below that of other Ontario school boards of similar size. 

The largest percentage of accidents were caused by slips, trips or falls. The board is addressing this by continuing to promote the use of Yak Trax – slip-on traction covers for boots and shoes for outdoor use by its employees as required – and continued workplace safety inspections focused on identifying and addressing potential slip, trip and fall hazards. 

The report also shows a 7.4 per cent increase in “struck by/against” accidents – such as a staff member being struck by a sports ball – and a 13 per cent increase in ergonomics-related injuries and strains. The board is addressing these concerns through workplace safety inspections to identify staff positioning or behaviours that may lead to injuries. UCDSB is also addressing potential safety concerns through continued commitment to Health and Safety Workplace inspections, updating or establishing relevant health and safety programs, and continued dedication to Technology Education Facilities program improvement.

Director’s Award of Merit: Director Stephen Sliwa provided an update to trustees on a new award, entitled the Director’s Award of Merit. The award, to be introduced as a pilot project this spring, seeks to recognize employees who bring the “best” of themselves to the workplace on a regular basis throughout the year, contributing to a positive, productive, and caring workplace in which employees support each other to achieve important goals for serving and supporting our students and schools. Through their efforts and actions, these employees inspire students and colleagues alike, by demonstrating the spirit of the UCDSB’s mission, vision, and values. The recipients of this new award would be entitled to short-term release from their duties (up to a maximum of two working days) to attend a conference or other opportunity to share or learn with others that will complement their current efforts. Nominations will be received by the Director’s Executive Council for review and consideration in April 2017, and awards will be presented during Education Week in May 2017. 

All UCDSB employees, current UCDSB students, and members of our schools’ parent communities may submit nominations. The award was created in response to findings from an IPSOS Reid climate survey, conducted by the Board in 2014, resulting in a recommendation from the Board of Trustees that the Director of Education establish a “district-wide process for recognizing staff for extraordinary efforts to contribute to the district and its students.”

Revisions to Safe Schools Policy: Trustees passed a motion revising the board’s Safe Schools Policy, updating their safe schools policy to align it with current recognized practices within our school district and provincial regulations. The revisions acknowledge the Student Mental Health Advisory Circle as the district’s current forum for discussing student well-being, behavior and safe/caring environments. The revisions acknowledge that the Police/School Board Protocol is to provide guidance and direction for the board when seeking participation of police forces to investigate school-related occurrences. They also recognize mitigating factors and progressive discipline requirements established by the province when schools deal with matters related to student conduct.

For more information, please call:

Stephen Sliwa
Director of Education
Upper Canada District School Board
(613) 342-0371 ext. 1234

Jeff McMillan
Upper Canada District School Board
(613) 340-5515

Posted February 14, 2017

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Contact Information
Director Stephen Sliwa
Brockville Board Office
Phone: (613) 342-0371 ext. 1234
Email: stephen.sliwa@ucdsb.on.ca