Ajax High School scc september 19, 2017 Welcome and Introductions

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Ajax High School SCC September 19, 2017

Welcome and Introductions


Chris Lawton, Annika Tomovski, Phill White, Aprile Joesph, Eleanor McIntosh, Ronda Franco, Nataliea Edwards, Bibi Ally, David Hogg, Dave Lewis, Carolann Bell Prue, Jane Mitchell, Tricia Henery, Dawn Adams, Gloris Spence-Simms Delores, Jackie Leacock, Melodie Vaughan


  1. Welcome by Carolann Bell Prue current chair of AHS School Community Council. Community Council Annual Report was presented.

  2. June 2017 minutes approved by Carolann Bell Prue and seconded by Mr. Dave Lewis. 

Ms. McIntosh explained the recognition of parent voice in the school and community. The SCC positions were discussed. Should any members know of someone from local community who could be the community rep please put their name forward.

  1. SAC represents the students at the SCC meeting. SAC were not in attendance. 

  2. Nominations were taken for chair, vice-chair and secretary. Aprile Joseph and Bibi Ally nominated for vice-chair. Carolanne Bell Prue acclaimed as chair. Aprile Joseph and Bibi Ally acclaimed as co vice-chairs. Ronda Franco acclaimed as secretary.  

  3. Anna Marple was suggested for community representative. 

  4. Teacher Report

Revised Bell Schedule for September 2017

Sept. 5 Grade 9 was well attended.

Parents indicated that students did not know how to get the info for sign up. A sport/club fair would be helpful.

Course changes ended Friday Sept. 16

Grade assemblies will review code of conduct and goals for 2017.

YWAP and dental health clinics for School To Work class took place in the LGI

Library Orientation for grade 9 Sep 18, 2017 - Sep 29, 2017

"Math from Nine to Twelve" - Information Meeting - Sept 19, 2017 28 people in attendance. Topics discussed: pathways, gizmos, EQAO. Parents asked if this would be offered again in 2nd semester.

Chromebooks - Grade 10 Students handed out September 18th.

University Information Night Thursday, Sept. 21st, 2017, at 7:00 pm in the cafeteria.

College Information Night on Sept. 28

Commencement Cap & Gowns For November 3rd, 2017 Commencement

Commencement cap and gowns are currently on sale. The cost is currently $30.00 which includes a gown, cap and grad photo. Price will increase as date approaches.

Gr. 9 Parent Tool Kit handed out to all grade 9 students. Reaching out grant supported the production, of the pamphlet. Parents are invited to provide input and suggestions for additions and changes.

Time frame for minutes will be submitted to Chair and Principal a week ahead of monthly meeting.

  1. Student Rep report-absent

  2. Principal Report

EQAO 2016-2017 results will be released tomorrow. To view results visit EQAO website. Feedback will be given to students regarding results. The test is not the only indicator of achievement.

Professional Development for teachers took place on Aug 31. Topics included school values, collaboration and setting norms. PM staff engaged in technology on the Google apps and chrome books.

Chromebooks: Big focus for DDSB. Every gr. 7 and 10 will get a Chromebook in phases through 2017-2018. Gr. 10 received device on Monday. Students who failed to hand in the accountability form did not receive the device. Chrome books remove barriers for 21st century learning and opens doors to actively engage in course material. Mr. O’Toole technology coach for DDSB is here to help students and teachers utilize the device. A short intro to digital citizenship to engage online in a respectful manner was held by Mr. Warren.

21st Century Collaborative Spaces Grant: School’s application was successful. Grant will support the learning environment by improving 4 classrooms. Academic resource will receive some of the money to help students with special education needs. Three other classrooms in English/Moderns, French and Fashion departments will be improved with the purchase of class equipment, flexible modular seating, standing desks, and collaborative seating. The grant is for furniture not for technology.

RAMP Peer Mentorship Senior students will be paired with gr. 9 students. Ms. Leacock- started the initiative last year. Currently gr. 11 students are paired with gr. 9 students. A meet and greet and other events are planned. Grade 11’s have been doing team building activities. Parents will be notified if their child has been selected for mentoring. Students are suggested by feeder school. Carruthers Creek and Falby Court are currently participating. As program develops other feeder schools will be involved. There are 28 mentors and 31 mentees. Parents can put their child’s name forward if they feel there is a need for mentorship.

Construction Update - Construction started in May and keeps going into the fall. Roof needed replacing after 25 yrs. Project is near the end but challenges have caused delays. Work is limited to before and after school.

Community Youth Hub - This will be a central space for services that engages the community within the school. Neighboring school boards have already implemented community hubs. This is a not for profit space. Research supports the advantages of having access to a welcoming and inclusive space that incorporates community services within the school. The 1600 sq. ft. space was created by combining two classrooms in the north east part of building. The project is overseen by a collective DDSB, school voice and no. of community members. Currently CAREA, YMCA, Town of Ajax, PFLAG, and the Durham Black Educators group are actively involved. Programming will support youth engagement. Room is currently being furnished. Programming to follow. There will be an open house for feedback. Program will be flexible depending on needs of students. Programming will be 3pm to 6pm.

Q: Is library invited? Lots of teen programs and supports can be offered through the library. Miss McIntosh will investigate that library be invited.

Tour of empty hub space will take place at a future meeting. Requesting survey from students to make suggestion as to how to use the space. Creation of hub space created ripple effect of construction. Developmental class moved, 3 all gender washrooms created, teacher workroom also moved. A gross motor room and a life skills apartment will be available for spec. ed. students. More renovations over the course of the next few years are to be expected.

Q: Will there be air conditioning for the whole school? No. It is very costly to install in an old building. Unless a tear down and rebuild occurs there is no plan for air conditioning.

  1. Open questions:

How are teachers using the google chrome books? Teachers are starting small with creating online classrooms. Varies by teacher. Lessons and assignments are being created. Tech coach is available to assist teachers.

Q: Can students contact teachers through the google classrooms?

Currently no. Students can use remind if teacher is set up with the app. Conversations around how to engage with students online are being discussed.

In 2 years every student in high school will have a chromebook. Students will keep the same device.

Q: What is available for the gr. 11 and 12 students? Technology access now is high. Laptop carts plus desk top computers are available. Gr.11 and 12 will not get a device to take home.

Q: Do students need to have a data plan?

No students do not need a data plan while in the building. All DDSB buildings have wifi. All students have access for all student devices. Students need their own data to access sites blocked by DDSB. They need their student number to log in. Infrastructure has been upgraded for quick access.

At staff meetings staff will be doing more PD on chromebook programing.

Q: Can chromebook be purchased through DDSB? No. Device is for sale at stores approximately $400.

Q: How much storage is on device? There is ample gigs on cloud. School is trying hard to move away from paper.

Q: How does fundraising happen? What does SCC do here at AHS?

Traditionally SCC at HS level do not engage in fundraising but it can happen. SAC and other student groups do the fundraising. Miss. McIntosh is open to suggestion for what SCC could raise money for i.e. gym clock or classroom fans.

Q: What do the members do? Volunteering within the school, trips, guest speakers, etc. Find out needs of students and how can we use SCC to help?

Q: What are the priorities of staff? Engagement with parents and get students to get involved in community and have the community see the students engaging in a positive way. How can the school help connect students and community in a positive way? One opportunity is our Ecospace by greening the school and areas around it. Even with old infrastructure.

Q: How can we engage as a council?

Movie nights in cafeteria? Building positive school climate. Staff wants to know how to improve the positive school climate. Movie night might do that.

Jane: Asked if a club fair and sport fair was a possibility.

Miss McIntosh noted that more communication for when you are a new student and how to get involved in school activities at the grade 9 level is needed. This will be mentioned to the SAC.

Q What is the climate, what needs to be addressed?

A welcoming and accepting inclusive environment is the goal. Ajax population is fragmented. Different groups engage in different ways. Civic engagement. Concept of respect for self and others. Character education.

Q. Involving the community, engagement, the cleanliness of the environment around the school goes along with that. Adopt a road, a park already exists, why not the school? Goes with the eco idea of greening the school.

Q. Concerns were raised about the demographics. Students are now coming from north of Hwy 2. Considered out of area for school bus. No direct bus route to the school. $90 gets student half way to school. Relationship between DDSB and transit should be revisited. The student 226 bus exists but no information on the website is available. Lakeside P.S. parents did a lot of work with DRT to get a bus from mid-town.

Phill: Food bank is another way to engage in the community.

Miss McIntosh mentioned that students can get volunteer hours. Maybe a priority for students to engage in community would be service. There are lots of activities like the food and toy drive going on in the building but not out.

Gloris: There is a sign at town hall for shoreline clean up.

Miss McIntosh suggested that the SCC should decide as a group what to focus on.

Carolann: Suggested music, using expertise as coaching, etc. would be a way for SCC to engage. A presentation by Edtech coach for chromebooks to engage parents and community with internet safety included as well.

Phil: Can a list of clubs and teams be posted on website.

Students can only sign up for one sport per semester.

Q: Why is commencement in November? AHS is moving toward a spring commencement in 2019. Students must have credits, and community hours done before the spring. i.e. summer school. Spring commencement allows more graduates to participate and parents to volunteer.

Carolann: Cash online system is not so great. There is no receipt for claiming items. Teachers do not have a list for who has paid. Go to parent portal to order sweatshirts for AHS. Items can be ordered through paper forms as well.

  1. Regional SCC meeting is Nov. 7, Feb. 27

Curriculum night date corrected online.

  1. Parent Involvement Committee – Oct. 10, Jan. 16, Mar. 20, May 8. PIC is separate from SCC. It is a larger group that oversees the SCC at board level. PIC works with superintendent, and plan regional meetings. Committee is made up of representatives from Ajax, and other areas elementary and secondary schools. Information is on the DDSB calendar and website.

  1. Other business

Miss McIntosh brought resources for the council to view.

Parent Tool Kit, Teen Addition- available electronically and in guidance,

What to Consider if you’re Considering University, - Coates and Morrison talks about all pathways for students.

CAMH-What Parents need to Know about Their Teens (Facts Myths and Strategies) - David A. Wolfe-talks about wellbeing, what to look for and staying engaged with kids

Self-Regulation, Calm, Alert and Learning - Stuart Shankar

Smart but Scattered Teens - helps to support parents with ADHD Richard Guar, PhD, Peg Dawson PhD, and Colin Guar

Suggestions for SCC focus please email Carolann at purplekidsvaapg@hotmail.com

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