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Spotlight: Board Meeting Highlights - Dec 15

The Boardroom Spotlight provides a summary of what took place at each Board meeting. This issue covers the following topics:

  • Governor General Award Winner: ASHS teacher Caroline Pignat 
  • Board Innovation Plan for Student Achievement and Well-Being 2015-2016 (BIPSAW) 
  • Consultation to begin for proposed elementary attendance boundary - CFB Rockcliffe Redevelopment 
  • Refugee support 
  • Vice-Principal appointments and assignments 
  • Preschool Retrofit Program - expenditure completion report 
  • Policies and Procedures - Revised, rescinded and new

Governor General Award Winner:
ASHS teacher Caroline Pignat

All Saints High School teacher Caroline Pignat is a two-time winner of the Governor General's Literary Award for Children's Literature for "The Gospel Truth" and "Greener Grass". Ms. Pignat shared with the Board her experiences as a teacher and author. She encourages youth all over the city and country to reflect on their own journey and connect to themselves and their faith through the writer's craft, learning empathy along the way.

Award winner Caroline Pignat (right) seated next to Their Excellencies the Right Honourable David Johnston and Mrs. Sharon Johnston at the ceremony for the 2015 Governor General Literary Awards.

Board Innovation Plan for Student Achievement and Well-Being 2015-2016 (BIPSAW)

The Board's Innovation Plan for Student Achievement and Well-Being (BIPSAW) is based on the 2015-2016 Board Priorities established for the school year. The focus this year is on innovation and well-being as key components of the plan. 

The BIPSAW was developed by interdepartmental teams led by Superintendents of Schools and organized around specific goals. Guiding the plan was a needs assessment informed from a variety of sources, including the School Innovations Plans, District Processes, EQAO results, anecdotal evidence, school self assessments and student achievement data. Based on this data, evidence-based improvement strategies have been put in place. The plan's goals are as follows: 

  • Goal 1: Community , Culture and Caring, led by Superintendent Steve McCabe 
  • Goal 2: Literacy, led by Superintendent Manon Seguin 
  • Goal 3: Numeracy, led by Superintendent Simone Oliver 
  • Goal 4: Pathways (and Transitions), led by Superintendent Mary Donaghy 

The BIPSAW is a living document and will be monitored on an ongoing basis to ensure constant improvement.

Refugee Support

Since September 2015, our Board has been involved in a variety of initiatives to support refugees: 

STAFF - The collection from Christian Community Day resulted in contributions of just over $5,000 each to the Catholic Centre for Immigrants and the Catholic Near East Welfare Association. 

SCHOOLS - Several of our schools have been supporting their local parishes and other Catholic organizations that are sponsoring refugee families. Our Lady of Fatima School has worked with their parish and is supporting a family that has arrived in Ottawa. St. Francis Xavier High School students and staff made a $2,000 donation to Development and Peace to support refugee families, an amount matched by the government. Students and staff at Sacred Heart High School are raising funds to support sponsorship efforts at two parishes. St. Peter High School held a dress down day and made a donation to the Catholic Centre for Immigrants. All proceeds from a school dance at St. Patrick's Intermediate School were donated to support refugee families. 

DECEMBER 14 - There was a Board-wide refugee support fundraiser with proceeds donated to local parishes supporting refugees and also to Catholic organizations providing a variety of supports to families. 

DECEMBER 17 - There was an evening hosted by OCSB and CSPA, a Refugee Support Information Night for parishes and other private sponsors. The focus of the evening was to provide information to sponsors on how to register students in the Board and on ESL supports available to students and adult learners at the Board's Family Welcome Centre for Newcomers. Other partners, such as the Archdiocese and Refugee 613, provided additional information. 

UPCOMING - In January, each school will receive an information package on how best to support and welcome refugees into our school communities. In February, at the Catholic Learning Leaders' meeting, staff will receive supplementary resources, and Principals will share practices and experiences with their colleagues. A request for additional funds to support translation, mental health, and other settlement needs has been forwarded to the Ministry of Education.

Consultation to begin for proposed elementary attendance boundary - CFB Rockcliffe Redevelopment

The Board has authorized administration to conduct consultation through the Catholic School Councils at Our Lady of Mount Carmel and Thomas D'Arcy McGee Schools on the proposed CFB Rockcliffe attendance boundary. Any agreed upon changes to the elementary school boundaries will only affect future students from this new development area and the high school boundary to Lester B. Pearson High School will not be impacted. 

For complete details and maps please see pages 59-64 of the December 15, 2015 Board Agenda.

Preschool Retrofit Program - expenditure completion report

In April of 2012, the provincial government provided $1,895,200 to the Board to convert existing childcare centres to pre-school spaces because, with the advent of Full Day Kindergarten, areas that had been designated for school-age children during the day were no longer required. The Board undertook conversions at: 

  • Holy Trinity High School 
  • Our Lady of Peace 
  • St. Andrew 
  • St. Emily 
  • St. Francis of Assisi 
  • St. George 
  • St. James 
  • St. Jerome 
  • St. Stephen 
  • St. Theresa 

The Ottawa Catholic Child Care Corporation contributed $50,000 in capital costs to aid in completing the final three projects in summer of 2015. The total cost of these projects is $1,979,101, including some school-related expenditures from facilities renewal undertaking in conjunction with the re-purposing projects.

Vice-Principal appointments and assignments

The Board announced the appointment of Kimberly Hutchinson as Vice-Principal at St. Elizabeth School, effective January 4, 2016. Kimberly is currently a teacher at St. Elizabeth School. 

Jennifer Peppler has been appointed Vice-Principal at Sacred Heart High School and Craig Skinner has been appointed Vice-Principal at St. Stephen School. These appointments are effective February 2, 2016. 

The following three vice-principals are being transferred: 

  • Margarita Ziroldo to Assumption, effective January 4, 2016 
  • Mary Kelly to Mother Teresa High School, effective February 2, 2016, and 
  • Mike Raso to St. Francis Xavier High school, effective February 2, 2016. 

All appointments and transfers were received at the Board meeting of December 15, 2015.

Policies and Procedures - Revised, rescinded and new

The Board approved new, revised, and rescinded policies to reflect legislative changes and revised Ministry of Education guidelines. 


  • Administering Medication 
  • Complaints 


  • Facility Partnership 
  • School Accommodation Review 


  • Community Planning and Facility Partnerships 
  • Pupil Accommodation Review 

For complete details go to pages 35-55 of the December 15, 2015 Board Agenda.


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