Happy 65th birthday to the PEI Home and School Federation. The federation formed on January 29th, 1953, with over 100 delegates from local home and schools coming together to discuss what is best for children Prince Edward Island promoting total well-being and the highest standards of education for each child in the province.
The federation bases most of its yearly plans and strategic directions on the resolution process from its annual general meeting (AGM) every April. Local home and school associations across the province bring forward resolutions that were debated and supported at the local level at the spring annual meeting. On April 14th, 2018, the PEI Home and School Federation hosted our AGM at the Rodd Charlottetown Hotel with over 80 delegates registered, representing 35 schools. The 65th annual meeting’s minutes and roundtable summaries will be posted on the Federation’s website when completed at: https://peihsf.ca/agm.
Approved resolutions include:
School Closure for Deaths in the School Community: The federation request the Public Schools Branch develop a policy for school closure/ early dismissal that includes support for closure or dismissal for the wake or funeral of a member of the school community who has had significant and regular interaction with a wide range of students, school staff and bus drivers and/or whose death is untimely or in tragic circumstances, regardless of this person’s employment.
Communication Protocols in Urgent Situations: The federation request the Public Schools Branch establish a clear protocol for communicating with school and education decision-makers when urgent situations arise outside school hours and require timely resolution.
Seek Policy Advice from Students on the Autism Spectrum to Help all Students with Transitions: That regular feedback from students on the autism spectrum, and their caregivers and educators, be integrated into all aspects of the policy-making process by Public Schools Branch and the department of education, early learning and culture and that public schools branch convene an advisory body of students on the autism spectrum and their caregivers and educators, to conduct a review of operational policies and procedures, with particular focus on transitions, with the goal of advising the branch on changes to these procedures that could mitigate the challenges of transitions for all students.
Request for a Revision of the Education Act and a Return to Elected School Board: The federation request the Minister of Education, Early Learning and Culture and cabinet revise the education act and designate decision-making authority regarding educational matters to an elected board of school trustees, one for each family of schools, with school board elections to coincide with provincial government elections.
Home and school associations may nominate a school bus driver to receive recognition for keeping our children safe as they travel to and from school from September to June during school year. Submissions deadline is May 11. Find more details at: https://peihsf.ca/bus
The Welcome to Kindergarten Program helps prepare pre-kindergarten children for a positive start to their school journey. Each student will participate in educational activities with school staff and their parents during the session. The schedule is posted online at: http://www.gov.pe.ca/edu/psb/parents_students/wtk-sessions/
The 2018-2019 school calendar, signed on April 13 by the minister of education, early learning and culture, is at: https://peihsf.ca/content/school-calendar-2018-2019
The Public Schools Branch is initiating a review of the Charlottetown family of schools to further investigate possible capacity issues in the future and to develop potential options. To access the review information visit: https://edu.princeedwardisland.ca/psb/charlottetown-family-of-schools-review/ The next PSB meeting is June 13 at Eliot River Elementary School, Cornwall. Contact the PEIHSF office at 902-620-3186 or toll free, 1-800-916-0664, for more information.
Cory Thomas, president of the P.E.I. Home and School Federation, lives in Summerside with his wife and two children, who both attend Elm Street Elementary School. His column appears in The Guardian during the school year on the first Thursday of the month. He welcomes comments from readers and information for the column. He can be reached at peihsf.ca or 902-620-3186.
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