On September 17, 2019, at the Standing Committee Meeting of the North Vancouver Board of Education, the Learning Services team then presented a recap on what was accomplished last school year (2018/19 school year).
It has now been five years since implementation of the new curriculum begun. The shift in curriculum has been a major systemic change. It has been a move from a content focus to a skills focus. The North Vancouver School District has done a lot. Whether it is assessment and reporting, planning, or student self-assessment of the core competencies – significant change has taken place. The work to support the new curriculum has been transformative. Professional development, collaboration and the Curriculum Hub have all been paramount to supporting new curriculum implementation.
Cheakamus Centre is undertaking strategic planning right now. They have five goals:
The work done at Cheakamus Centre is an extension of the core components of students' educational experiences. It is a rich curriculum experience. The programs also offer great Social Emotional Learning teachings, Indigenous education, and support students with diverse and complex needs. This past year, addition to student programs, several staff professional learning events were also hosted. The Youth Leadership program is incredibly popular; 204 secondary school counsellors took part for a total of 4,284 volunteer hours.
During the 2018/19 school year, the following work was done:
- Align StrongStarts and ECE programs with ELF, and initiate partnerships with CapU ECE and UBC Nursing Students.
- Reinvigorate the Kindergarten Network and establish professional development to support alignment with new curriculum and pedagogy.
- Provide Kindergarten Transition Support to schools and vulnerable sectors.
- Begin to revise school district curricular programs (Firm Foundations, Inspirations, Our Turn to Talk).
- Work with early learning partner groups (ELN, CapU ECE, C4K, Childcare Planning, Pedagogy of Play SSA Project).
The following work was undertaken:
- Updated Literacy Centre resources and succession plan.
- Workshops to support modernizing balanced literacy programs.
- First POPEY workshop and sharing of provincial resources.
- Looked at assessments being used and gaps in the assessment calendar –Assessment Committee formed, research completed and assessment selected.
- Efficiencies created in Library Services (electronic cataloguing and removing outdated resources).
The following work was accomplished:
- Official launch of physical literacy in the North Vancouver School District.
- Conference co-hosted with West Vancouver Schools, Vancouver Coastal Health and North Vancouver School District. More than 200 of our teachers and education assistants attended.
- More than 40 hours of workshops – three full-day, three dinner and dialogue events and seven afterschool sessions.
- Grants: Books, workshops and resources.
- "Train the teachers" is the heart of this initiative.
Indigenous education in the North Vancouver School District is universal – it is for all students. All staff throughout the entire school district are also involved. We are now moving towards involving parents more. Community awareness of Indigenous history, culture, ways of knowing and modern contributions to society is greatly increasing. As a result of this universal approach, graduation rates of students of Indigenous ancestry have improved. These graduation rates are higher than they have ever been.
Specialty academies must meet learning outcomes that are in addition to the learning outcomes that a standard educational program must meet, and must reflect an emphasis on a particular sport, activity or subject area. In the North Vancouver School District, there are 10 academies comprising of 20 classes and 532 students. Here is the detailed breakdown:
The new academy coming to our school district is rowing, and there are many other expressions of interest.
Artists for Kids
This past school year, the various district arts festivals continued – music, dance, drama and visual arts. These displays of student work are exceptional. The professional art collection owned by Artists for Kids is an incredible learning tool. It connects well with the curriculum and to the big ideas of the new curriculum. Artists for Kids programming not only teachers students visual arts. It teachers social emotional learning, supports diversity and provides career connections.
There are three priority areas that the inclusive education team is working on: consistency of practice, home-school partnerships, and modernizing curriculum, instruction and assessment. To support these areas, Learning Support Teachers have been a focus in terms of defining their role, providing training, and collaboration. IEP planning has changed greatly; it is now student centred with student strengths emphasized. Implementing the new curriculum and providing work experience have also been an important areas of focus. There is now a move towards trauma informed practice and Ukeru, which is replacing Non-Violent Crisis Intervention.
Social Emotional Learning and Mental Health
Social Emotional Learning (SEL) perfectly aligns with the First People's Principals of Learning. Here is a diagram that demonstrates our SEL/Mental Health approach:
Here are some highlights from the 2018/19 school year:
- BCSSA Conference
- NVSD SEL Video
- SEL and Mental Health Committee Report
- Administrator professional development
- Mental Health Conference
- SEL/Mental Health has become a school district priority
- NVSD is taking the lead in this area
Second Step is now being brought into 12 elementary schools within each Family of Schools.