Behind Langley DPAC doors – Week ending Oct 13/2014….
Firstly, I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend.
This is the second week that I’ve written about what really goes on at a DPAC level and this is week two of our mission of ‘transparency’ for being the voice of the parents in our district.
This week, we sent out the BCCPAC and DPAC membership forms. These are very important to us as we use this contact information to keep in touch with you about things that matter in your schools.
We are hosting an open forum soon for the school trustee candidates and I hope that you will take the time to send us some questions that you would like answered at the forum. Maybe you would like to even attend?
The next Langley DPAC general meeting is Oct 23, 2014,. School Board Office at 7pm. We will post the agenda for this meeting seven days in advance of it’s occurrence.
On a positive note, we have recruited new members to the Langley DPAC and we now have quorum at our executive meetings. New blood is a wonderful thing sometimes to a new organization. We will announce new positions at the next general meeting.
The Ubuntu computer program is proving to be a HUGE success and we are already struggling just to keep up. I will be speaking of this at the next Langley DPAC General meeting as well.
The Rivermen are going into the first school next week and I’m also meeting with them as well next week to pursue other involvement with them helping the schools in various ways.
I’ve asked the Rivermen organization to come and speak at our General meeting. The players reading to our kids or playing hockey with them is going to be a wonderful thing.
This week, we are meeting with Ms. Hoffman, school superintendent and I still feel sometimes like it’s going into the principal’s office. (Not that I was ever there.
Over the last while, I have chatted with many of the DPAC reps as well as PAC presidents as well as parents of kids in this district. To all of you that sent us emails and chatted with us, I have to say a big THANK YOU for all of your comments and recommendations. This allows us to become better at what we are supposed to be doing and that is to be a voice for all of you.
We also have to say thanks to the PAC’s who invited us to speak at their General meetings in the next few months. Can we have a shameless invitation to come and sit and listen and offer advice if required at one of yours?
Over the last month or so, the Langley DPAC has put more effort into reaching out and the response has been amazing and humbling at the very same time.
Maybe this is a sign that we need to evolve and we have. I would hope so anyways.
‘The time has come the walrus said, to talk of many things’….
If you have a recommendation, we want to hear it. If you want to help us out in our endeavors, contact any of us. Please feel free.
The Langley DPAC is the voice of the parents and the executive behind closed doors is instructed to act in the best interests of the parents and that is one amazing decision to be a part of.
We have offered and solicited advice from members as well as transparently sharing stories that we think matter to you, our members.
This past week, we have seen our page views on our FB page increase by 38000% and no that is not a typo. We started off the week with less than 30 people being reached by our posts and we are over 2200 people being reached less than a week later. Page likes have increased by 5400% and that tells all of us that we are on the right path with what we need to do.
On that note, we now will be doing weekly posts updating our members on what is going on right now and what all of you can expect in the upcoming weeks from us at the Langley DPAC.
In no particular order, please note the following:
1. We are planning a public forum where we will be hosting the candidates for the school trustee positions and we will ask them questions. An email will be going out asking you for questions you would like asked and we will do our best to get them all answered if time permits. This is your chance to see and hear what the candidates are all about. More information to follow on this.
2. This week upcoming, we will be sending out the new DPAC membership registration forms to all PAC’s for our records. This information is vital to us being able to contact you in a timely manner. The BCCPAC membership forms will also be sent out if your PAC wants to be a part of BCCPAC. Please note that DPAC pays for the membership fees for your BCCPAC registration.
3. The Langley DPAC is revamping it’s website. We are going to be going from langleydpac.wordpress.com to langleydpac.ca. More details to follow on this.
4. Langley DPAC is also setting up a new email system with processes in place that will prevent the deletion of emails by any of the executive members. All emails sent to any member of the Langley DPAC will soon be sent to EVERY other member of the executive including president, secretary, VP1,VP2 and treasurer. This is being done to ensure total transparency of the executive members as well as ensuring that all correspondence is delivered and dealt with in a timely manner. All emails will also be archived in a central location so we are never in a position with missing correspondence whether intentional or accidental.
5. Langley DPAC is still looking for great photos of kids in our schools or at home for our website. Please take a few moments and send us your pictures.
6. As stated in an earlier post, information was sent out about the literacy/physical education program with the Langley Rivermen. Important details are with the email as an attachment. If you are interested, please contact me directly at email@example.com so that we can figure out a schedule.
Finally, thank you all once again for all of your input and if you’d like a member of DPAC to attend your monthly meetings or you have a question, please contact us directly.
Have a great night!
PAC presidents and principals:
Please check your inbox as I have just sent out details surrounding the literacy/physical education program being proposed by the Langley Rivermen who are interested in becoming involved in elementary schools within our district schools.
There is a literacy component involved as well as a physical education component.
If you do NOT receive an email invitation, kindly contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Lots of fun tonight at the season opening game of the Langley Rivermen. The team lost in the 2nd period of overtime but an amazing game none the less.
The Langley Rivermen are now working with the Langley DPAC in an initiative that encourages our elementary school students to read. Local players will be arriving at various schools in their hockey bus and in uniform and they will read to and be read by Langley students.
The hockey players will also be playing scrimmage hockey with the kids in school gyms to encourage physical education within the school district of Langley.
Langley DPAC received 1000 FREE hockey tickets to give out to schools in the district to attend the first game of the season. I recognized lots of the kids and PAC members as well.
I am so in love with Frasier, the team mascot. He was very engaging with the kids and was a huge hit with them as well.
Hope to see you guys at the next game as well.
School board meeting September 30, 2014
I attended the meeting tonight and in no particular order are highlights of what is going on at a board level within the school district.
650 Mac book Pro’s have now been leased and delivered to the school district. The 650 laptops delivered are part of a lease of which 800 were ordered initially. They should be delivered to teachers by the end of next week. Interesting as well to point out that Dell laptops will be provided to teachers as an alternative to those needing a windows based platform instead.
Last year, all wireless was completed in all secondary and middle schools.
This year, the school district will finish the infrastructure requirements and wireless internet access will be available in all elementary schools. All teachers will get their laptops and all classes will get their projectors. It should be noted that projectors might be portable until the district gets around to mounting them from the ceilings in the classrooms. The projectors were purchased instead of being leased and the mounting will take place within the classrooms during the 2014/2015 school year.
Ministry updates included a more personalized approach to learning which is so great to hear. Not every child learns the same way at everything. Teachers will have more flexibility in learning outcomes and core competencies and parents will be informed of their child’s progress more than 3-4 times a year at report card time.
Discussions and motions were passed that dealt with the late start of the school year due to the strike. It was decided that the semester initially set at Sept 2/14-Jan 23/15 would now be changed to Sept 22/14-Feb 6/15.
The second semester initially set for Jan 26/15-Jun 25/15 will now be changed to Feb 10/15-June 25/15. There will not be any layover going into a typical summer vacation from school for the kids.
The changes to the semesters for the year results in 81 teaching days in the first semester and 78 in the second semester.
Finally, enrollments in the choice school appears to be down based on initial numbers which have NOT been firmed up yet. (I will report end of month actual numbers.) It appears that middle and elementary schools have numbers that are about the same as last year as a whole and overall, it appears that total enrollment at this point in time, will be down. There were approximately 100 children whose parents decided to instead enroll them in a private school instead of a public one so far, according to the present numbers which are an initial estimate at best.
I finally do apologize if any of my notes are off by a few numbers. I did keep impeccable handwritten notes and next time, I will bring the laptop instead.
Please do comment on your thoughts on the meeting notes above. Do you find it informative and would you like to see updates such as this?
A quote was cited tonight and I close with it now.
“If we teach students as we taught yesterday’s, we rob them of tomorrow.” – John Dewy
The Langley family was riding 50k for ‘Ride for Refuge’ which is happening today in Langley and Surrey.
The ride had hoped to generate $25,000.00 in donations for various agencies but has already raised in excess of $64,000.00. Way to go!
This family was riding to support women in abusive situations within our district.
I love the dad’s costume.