Director General's Report to Council
for November 2021
by Cindy Finn, Director General, LBPSB
As we near November’s end, there are several signs that one third of this school year is already behind us. Last week, our elementary and secondary students received their interim report cards. In some schools, parent-teacher interviews have already taken place while others will happen in the coming days. Most of our high school open houses have already taken place, and we are already beginning to plan for the 2022-23 school year. New sessions are beginning in our adult education centres, and we have seen cohorts of students in various vocational programs finish and new ones start. The sudden transition last Friday from crunchy
autumn leaves underfoot to a blanket of snow and ice also reminds us that the year is marching on. Last night was the first night of Hanukkah, and the arrival of this festival of lights amid the cold and dark is most welcome.
I want to wish a very happy Hanukkah to all who are celebrating.
The arrival of the colder weather makes us all appreciate the comfort and sustenance that come from a hot meal. Last year we began a program called Feed our Future, an initiative that saw us pair up with local restaurants in support of our students. Again this fall, local restauranteurs are providing hot meals at lunchtime to some LBPSB elementary schools in the area. On behalf of the Springdale, Kingsdale, and Maple Grove communities, we wish to thank the following restaurants for their generosity: Kitchen 73, Vivaldi, Gicanu, RockNDeli, and Del Friscos. We also thank our food services team here at head office for helping to coordinate the Feed our Future program.
The ongoing COVID-19 situation continues to affect the rhythm and routines of school life. We remain vigilant in applying various public health measures and monitoring the situation closely. Our COVID-19 portrait mirrors the trends reported across the province in that we continue to see more positive cases in elementary schools as compared to secondary schools and continuing education centres. For this reason, we are grateful to see that vaccination of children ages 5 to 11 is now underway. We are also pleased that we can assist by facilitating vaccinations at school, for those families who so wish. For the past several weeks, we have been working in close collaboration with the three health authorities on our territory in anticipation of the vaccines becoming available this fall. We have shared information with our parents that they can have their child vaccinated either at school or at a public vaccination site. Each elementary school has a specific date whereby health professionals will visit the school and administer a first dose to children whose parents have given written consent. These school clinics began November 29th and will run until Dec. 21st. Parents can find more information by visiting our school board website, contacting their school directly, or visiting the clic santé website.
We are grateful to our partners in the health network for being so flexible in their planning efforts. Beginning with the school clinics in our high schools and continuing education centres earlier this year and now with our elementary clinics, we have benefited tremendously from their efforts to meet the needs of our school communities. Un gros merci à nos partenaires dans le réseau de la santé.
Nov. 15-19th was Education Professionals’ week across Quebec, a time to recognize the non-teaching professionals who provide services to students, teachers, and school teams. This year’s provincial theme was 10,000 hands reaching out, a reference to all of the non-teaching specialists who work in the school setting.
Merci à tous nos psychologues, conseillers, ergothérapeutes, animatrices spirituels, bibliothécaires, orthophonistes, traductrices, sexologues, nutritionnistes, agents de réadaptation et tous les autres professionnels qui aident nos jeunes à réaliser leur potentiel.
Non-teaching professionals work alongside our teachers, support staff, and administrators, and all LBPSB personnel are to be commended for their dedication. Once again this year, data released by the Ministry of Education reveal that our students are among the most successful in the province. Our 86% 5-year graduation and qualification rate is the highest on the island of Montreal and the 2nd highest in the province. Our success rate climbs to 90% when we look at those who complete their studies over 7 years. We take pride in these achievements, but we also challenge ourselves to work at pushing these numbers ever upward and to find
ways to not only help our students achieve academically but to grow personally and be engaged in the world around them.
December is on our doorstep, and it will be a quick three weeks until we go off on winter break. Until then, I encourage our students to keep up the great work, and I thank our staff for continuing to inspire and challenge these scholars to learn and grow.
Director General, LBPSB