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Highlights from the March 29 Board of Trustees Meeting
Highlights from the March 29 Board of Trustees Meeting
Posted on 03/31/2023

Full details on presentations, reports, and discussions can be found in the agenda.  

March 31, 2023 – Trustees with the Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) met on Wednesday, March 29, 2023. Some of the items discussed in the public session are as follows. 


Preliminary Budget Outlook 

Executive Superintendent of Business Services Jeremy Hobbs provided Trustees with a preliminary outlook for the 2023-2024 budget.   

Hobbs explained that the Grants for Student Needs (GSN) information had not yet been released at the time of the report, however the projections for 2023-2024 estimate a balanced budget based on projected compliance revenues of $407.3 million and offsetting expenses of the same amount.   

The projection is subject to change based on GSN info. Also, several risks could impact the budget projections, primarily the outcome of collective bargaining, potential education funding changes, and future economic and labour market conditions. 

Hobbs explained that the GSN and related documents are expected to be released by the Ministry of Education in late March or early April. A draft budget will be presented to Trustees in June. 


Safe Schools Update 

Superintendent of Schools Deanna Perry presented an update regarding student discipline data.   

Perry shared with Trustees that the UCDSB is committed to the ongoing education and training of its employees as it relates to administrative practices for addressing student discipline and skill sets for support students and the school setting as it relates to our Board’s Code of Conduct. Some pro-active measures to support students and enhance safe schools include focusing on character development and reinforcing code of conduct, responsive environments that focus on social and emotional learning, mental health and well-being and strategies to support pro-social behaviour, and professional development related to the science of behaviour and dysregulation.

Next steps include ongoing professional development for all staff including the Leading and Learning Council Working Group – inquiry to understand suspensions and determine supports necessary for alternatives to suspension, leading mentally healthy schools reflection tools, and collecting data to fully understand areas of strength and challenge. Perry explained that the data would come from suspensions and surveys, including the We All Belong Student survey. 


French as a Second Language Programming Update 

Superintendent of Schools Deanna Perry apprised the Board of French as a Second Language (FSL) programming at the UCDSB, based on the April 13, 2022 resolution to review the delivery of the programming.

The UCDSB offers Core French programming and French Immersion programming that begins in Junior Kindergarten. Some elementary schools offer core programming only, some offer only French Immersion programming and some offer both programming options (dual track). When compared to other English districts, the UCDSB has high enrolment in French Immersion in Junior Kindergarten. The UCDSB also has many schools that offer French Immersion Programming when compared to the provincial average.

Perry noted that the UCDSB framework plan is focused on professional development, alignment of the work of both French and English teachers with the Board Improvement and Equity Plan, with an emphasis on the science of reading, comprehension, decoding and real-world learning experiences.

French Immersion enrolment has increased from 36 per cent in 2011-2012 to 51 per cent in 2022-2023 and there is a higher demand for French Immersion programming in the Eastern part of the district.  

For staffing and recruiting, the UCDSB has enough qualified FSL teachers for the open positions, but several factors are leading to some schools having difficulty filling French positions. Perry said that recruitment and retention of French qualified teachers is a long-standing challenge throughout the province and that the UCDSB is actively recruiting French-qualified teachers using several different strategies, including attending job fairs where FSL teacher candidates are enrolled. UCDSB also engages in grant-funded positions, professional development for staff through the New Teacher Induction Program, partnerships, and engaging champion teachers. 


For media inquiries, please contact:   

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

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