Trustees with the Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) met on Wednesday, April 24, to discuss several agenda items:
District-wide Timetabling: Acting Superintendent Susan Rutters updated trustees on an initiative – known as a district-wide timetable – that will see all high schools in the district following the same five-period timetable by the 2020-21 school year. Key to this strategy is having bell-times for all secondary school timetables throughout the school district harmonized (such as start-times and end times, as well as the scheduling of lunch breaks), so that the Board can coordinate access to a wider variety of secondary school credit courses for students in Grades 9 to 12.
The concept was first presented to the Board in January 2018. The plan’s next step is to provide the opportunity for students to eventually explore a wider range of our courses offered digitally through our e-learning platform (D2L)
Trustees were presented with the next phase of the District-Wide Timetable concept, which involves a program-pilot in the second semester of the 2019-20 school year at Gananoque Secondary School, North Dundas District High School, Almonte District High School and Seaway District High School. These schools will all have the same bell schedule and daily structure, and will test the “Asynchronous eLearning” course model that uses video conferencing and other eLearning tools to deliver programs, at a specific time, to students at all four schools. Currently, six UCDSB high schools use a five-period timetable, however they are not yet fully harmonized.
Financial Briefing on Board and Provincial Budget: Senior Business Consultant Roger Richard presented an overview of the school board’s current revised budget, along with highlights from the 2019-20 provincial budget. The report was made to prepare trustees for the next step in their budget discussions for 2019-2020 and to update the Board on the next steps in the process. Richard outlined that the provincial government has allocated $29.8 billion in its 2019-20 budget for the education sector. At a district level, the UCDSB 2018-19 revised budget outlines operational spending of $378.1 million, with $274.5 million set aside for instruction.