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Highlights from the February 8 Board of Trustees Meeting
Highlights from the February 8 Board of Trustees Meeting
Posted on 02/09/2023

Full details on presentations, reports, and discussions can be found in the agenda or reviewed in the recorded broadcast. Video segments are linked in the subhead for each item below.

February 9, 2023 – Trustees with the Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) met on Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2023. Some of the items discussed in the public session are as follows.  

Director of Education Ron Ferguson presented to the Board the winter term’s Red Apple Award Recipients. This award is given by Director Ferguson to individuals that stand out for their deeply-rooted dedication to our school board’s top priority – our students. Their day-to-day impact on those around them branches far and wide, planting seeds of inspiration for us all.  

The recipients are as follows: 

Carla Bangma, Kindergarten Teacher at Front of Yonge Elementary School 

Carla Bangma has been working hard and embracing the right to read. She’s been ensuring that students in her class are acquiring the reading skills that they need to be successful. Carla has also shown dedication to sharing with staff what she has learned. 


Giselle Paquette, Teacher at Vankleek Hill Collegiate Institute 

Giselle Paquette is an arts and culture secondary teacher who teaches French, music, theatre, literature and food. Giselle has been instrumental in having students present and provide live entertainment for the annual retirement celebrations. Everyone who knows Giselle speaks highly of her and her passion for French, arts and culture and for her unwavering support of student learning. 


Rose MacCulloch, Kindergarten Teacher at Williamstown Public School 

Rose MacCulloch has embraced real-world learning in her classroom. With growing walls, she helps teach students where food comes from, how to grow it, and about sharing. Rose also helps teach new teachers about real-world learning and how to get students engaged from the start of their schooling career. 


Executive Superintendent of Business Jeremy Hobbs, Manager of Communications and Relationship Management April Scott-Clarke, and Manager of Information Technology Services Jim Guerin presented to the Board of Trustees the proposed new logo for the UCDSB.  

Since February 2022, UCDSB has worked with staff, trustees, Parent Involvement Committee, and the Student Senate to develop and refine the new branding for the district.  

The refreshed logo adds excitement to our mission and visually represents what is at the heart of our organization.  

Scott-Clarke explained that there will be a low-waste strategy for changing the logos on physical materials. Existing materials with the old logo will remain in use until supplies run out.  

The new logo received unanimous support from Trustees and came into effect immediately. 


Executive Superintendent of Business Services Jeremy Hobbs presented to Trustees the second financial forecast for the 2022-2023 school year. The forecast is based on to-date funding and enrolment information.

This report projects revenues of $410.1M and expenses of $409.6M. For compliance purposes, the projected in-year surplus is $500,000. These updated figures also include additional in-year revenues of $1M from other non-Grants for Student Needs provincial grants released since the first financial forecast. These additional revenues are offset by corresponding expenses. This forecast includes supports identified in the original budget at the same or enhanced level. Some of these are learning recovery, special education, Indigenous education, and mental health supports.

On June 1, 2022, Trustees approved the Board’s 2022-2023 budget, which projected revenues of $399M and expenses of $398.8M. During the first financial forecast on Oct. 26, Hobbs shared a revised projected revenue of $406.8M and expenses of $406M.

Hobbs noted that looking ahead, it is anticipated that the conclusion of COVID-19 funding in 2022-2023 as well as potential changes to several other funding sources may prompt a tightening financial environment for 2023-2024 and beyond.  

Hobbs outlined that several uncertainties have the potential to impact the district’s 2022-2023 financials, including the current economic climate with inflationary pressures, rising interest rates, labour and supply chain shortages.  

The third and final financial forecast will be presented to Trustees in April/May 2023. 


Director’s Work Plan Updates 

Superintendent of Student Wellness and Special Education Jennifer Perry gave a Director’s Work Plan update related to the expansion of the Power Up 2 program.  

These programs in schools are led by a Special Education Teacher and are designed to adapt to individual student strengths and needs to help support them to achieve student success. Students receive targeted instruction and support in literacy, numeracy, social-emotional learning and self-regulation. Our local Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario (ETFO) partners were an advocate for this expansion and we worked with them to develop it.

As of Feb. 1, 18.6 Special Education Teachers have been added to 19 schools across the district. Perry shared that this allocation has resulted in the creation of 19 new Power Up 2 Programs and brings the total to 30.

UCDSB’s Power Up 2 programs serve about 250 K-8 students with an average of eight students per program.  

Executive Superintendent Eric Hardie presented to Trustees new and enhanced learning opportunities that are being introduced. This directly correlates with the Director’s Work Plan goal of improving student success to attain and maintain a 90 per cent graduation rate. By developing a student success toolbox focusing on prior learning assessment, paid co-op, Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program, Dual Credit and Specialist High Skills Major.

Hardie noted that this also includes moving away from booklets and into a model focused on eLearning Courses and customized learning. Using technology will provide more flexibility and accommodations for adults with learning needs and provide daytime and early evening support online. This will create more flexibility, especially for students who work full-time. The expansion of Prior Learning and Assessment Recognition to help adults earn up to 26 courses, and then support for the final four connected to their pathway and interests.  

Hardie concluded that TR Leger student learning will be enhanced through this process and the quality of flexible learning will grow.  

For media inquiries, please contact:   

April Scott-Clarke   Manager of Communications   Upper Canada District School Board   [email protected] 

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