Spotlight February 27

Header for SpotlightFebruary 27, 2018

Trustees Approve Policies

Trustees approved five policies during the February 27 Board meeting.

The Records and Information Policy (600.2), Niagara Catholic Education Award of Distinction Policy (100.7), Assignment of Principals and Vice-Principals Policy (202.1), Employee Attendance During Inclement Weather & Workplace Closure Policy (201.9) and Nutrition Policy (302.7) are available to the public here.


Trustees Approve 2018-2019 School Year Calendar

During the February 27 Board Meeting, trustees approved a draft copy of the 2018-2019 School Year Calendar. The consultation process provided elementary and secondary principals, vice-principals and Catholic School Council Chairs with a copy of the draft calendar, as well as the Niagara Catholic Parent Involvement Committee (NCPIC), the Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC), OCETA Elementary and Secondary Units, the CUPE local president and the Student Achievement Department.

Key dates in the draft calendar are:

First day of school: Monday, September 3

Christmas Break – December 24 – January 4

March Break – March 11-15

The Board-approved calendar will be sent to the Ministry of Education for final approval, and will be posted on the Board website for families to review. It will be replaced by the Ministry-approved calendar later this spring.

School Excellence Program – St. Denis Catholic Elementary School

Students present


St. Denis Catholic Elementary School was in the spotlight at the February 27 Board Meeting. During the meeting, students treated Senior Staff and trustees with a ukulele performance, Principal Kevin Lamb spoke about how important St. Denis Catholic is to the community, teacher Stephanie MacSporran spoke about the school’s investment in new technology and 21st century learning and students presented trustees and Senior Staff with bookmarks made from pressed flowers from the school’s garden club.




Niagara Catholic, DSBN, Explore Joint-Use School in Wainfleet

Niagara Catholic is exploring the option of supporting a joint-use elementary school, which would bring together St. Elizabeth Catholic Elementary School, Winger Public School and William E. Brown Public School in Wainfleet.

The request to explore the possibility of a single, joint-use school was made by the District School Board of Niagara, as both boards have schools in Wainfleet which are facing declining enrolment and low capacity. St. Elizabeth currently has 96 students, far below its projected enrolment of 120 students, which would be about 64 per cent of its capacity of 187 pupils. Current capacity is 51 per cent.

The operations and maintenance cost at St. Elizabeth was $192,000 in 2016-2017, a cost of $1,815 per student, nearly double the average of per-student cost for operations and maintenance throughout the Board. Utilities cost $50,000 in the same year, with a per-student cost of $503, more than double the cost of $213 across the Board.

Overall, the cost of operating the surplus spaces at St. Elizabeth cost $64,000 last year. That figure is expected to rise to $88,000 this year, based on 91 surplus pupil spaces.

Parents in the St. Elizabeth Catholic Elementary School community were invited to a community consultation meeting at St. Elizabeth on February 15, and were given until February 21 to provide input.

Comments made during the February 15 meeting – and the responses – are available in section C1 of the February 27 agenda.

OCSTA Recognizes Trustee Burtnik



OCSTA President Pat Daly (right) attended the February 27 Board Meeting to speak about the importance of the issues surrounding Catholic education and the importance of preserving Catholic school boards. While there, Mr. Daly presented former President Kathy Burtnik with a token of appreciation for her many years of service to the organization.




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