The P.E.I. Home and School Federation held its semi-annual meeting and information exchange on Tuesday, October 23rd at Central Queens Elementary School in Hunter River. The event was attended by 45 local home and school parents, teachers and administrators. Students from East Wilshire and Kinkora schools, Jordan Brown, minister of education, early learning, and culture, Susan Willis, deputy minister, Parker Grimmer and Dale Sabean from the Public Schools Branch participated in the Home and School Exchange World Cafe.
The café format engaged delegates to provide feedback on key questions of importance to the federation. The questions posed included: What are the 'hot topic' items for your local Home and School? What are your biggest challenges in navigating the PEI school system? How can PEIHSF continue to support school communities? All discussions are being compiled into a summary report and working document for the federation.
Delegates donated food items which were dispersed to regional food banks as well as book or game resources, which were exchanged with each other or brought back to their respective school libraries.
School food youth forums, funded by Health and Wellness, are being organized by Morgan Palmer. Kinkora Regional High School, East Wiltshire Intermediate School and Montague Regional High School will host forums over the next six weeks with students planning and leading discussions on school food. Students will be invited to comment on school cafeteria food and other aspects to school food. The federation is looking forward to reporting on the feedback from these sessions.
Cannabis is of interest to school communities since the legalization of marijuana last month. Parent information sessions are happening in families of schools. The federation office is circulating and posting related resource links being provided by federal and provincial government to its membership and posting online at: peihsf.ca.
A public survey is being conducted as part of an external review of the provincial government’s student assessment program. RMJ Assessment from Ontario is conducting this review. The federation participated in an interview and urges all school communities to fill out the online survey at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/rmjassessmentEN
School bus safety is a key concern of the federation with current policies supporting a variety of safety issues. A letter was forwarded to education minister with policy that includes a request to reinstate two license plates on vehicles in PEI which may work to help identify vehicles passing school buses. This federation policy was passed in 2002.
Events and dates to remember include: Public Schools Branch board of directors meeting will be held on November 14, 7:30 p.m. at L.M. Montgomery school. Home and Schools are asked to submit membership fees to the federation office by November 30. Mark your 2019 calendar with the federation’s 66th Annual Meeting & Convention date which will be held on Saturday, April 13 at the Rodd Charlottetown hotel.
For more information on information on the P.E.I. Home and School Federation, contact the office at email@example.com / 620-3186 / 1-800-916-0664.
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 e reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 902-620-3186.
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