John English Junior Middle School
April 6, 2015
Marie, Chair of the SAC welcomed everyone to the meeting.
Principal’s report – Mr. Craig Howe
- Schoolyard report: currently kids are being kept on the pavement instead of the field due to the wet weather and field conditions. For a short time, this will help keep the mud to a minimum in the school. Soon the PALS program will begin again.
- On April 6th PINK day was celebrated at the school and it was a great success. There was a school assembly which focused on inclusion and valuing all, as well as discussions around how to mitigate homophobic bullying.
- Pizza Days continue and they are going very well. The parent volunteers are very much appreciated and this is a tremendous fundraiser for the SAC.
- The following are upcoming dates for your calendars (see school website for updates):
- The Dance-athon Fun-draiser will be held Friday, April 10th.
- The Fibonacci Math contest will take place on April 14th
- The Toronto City wide clean-up will be observed at the school on April 16th
- Dental screenings will take place on April 27th
- The French exchange is gearing up for the John English students to go to Vienne, France on May 6th until May 20th.
- Jump rope for Heart May 29th
- EQAO June 4th (9 days)
- Tuesday, June 23rd Grade 8 graduation
- Thursday, June 25th last day of school
- Career day for Grades 6, 7, 8 – looking for people to present from the school community.
- Projections for next year’s classes. Mr. Howe gave some projections of how the classes would be sorted out based on the number of students expected in each grade and in which of the three streams (English, French and Extended French). It is currently expected that the school will have 889 students. The school will be increased by .5 teachers. The school has received approval for full time ECEs, 2 French and 2 English. Unfortunately, the special education allocation has been reduced for John English by one teacher. So, Mr. Howe, working under the allocation guidelines provided by the TDSB, has projected the classes for next year and he showed the group the chart with a breakdown. Mr. Howe reminded the group that many things can change with attrition and also with families moving into the area.
Vice Principals report – Mrs. Becky Jenkins
- A water bottle station was approved.
- John English celebrated Earth Hour – students from the Eco Club students were reading stories in the classroom about water around the world.
- For grade 2 students, there will be a play day on official Earth Day (Wednesday, April 22)
- On the first Friday in May (1st), there will be an Eco club fundraisers ( Quizno’s lunch) to raise funds for the gardens at JE and also the school will make a donation for a clean water project.
- Forest of Reading program continues. – April 23rd
- Sylvester has a tracking sheet of problems that they are working on at the Grade 6, 7 & 8 Homework Club. He encourages kids to visit!
- Morning of Music – April 24th
- Outdoor classroom will emphasize on an outdoor environment for the kindergarten classes. They are going to use a space that is fenced in (and therefore safe) under advisement from some experienced TDSB staff. Speak to Mr. Murray if you can donate a playhouse, containers logs, tree stumps, bug containers, garden hose, watering cans, pallets, gardening tools etc.
- Grades 5’s are going to Crawford Lake next week.
- Pledge forms for Dance-Athon are due. Kids in grade 6, 7 and 8 are asked to bring a toonie or a loonie.
- Math Matters speaker is Thursday, April 15th from 7 – 8pm. An email blast went out today. Marc Husband will speak to parents. Heather will send out through Parent Network.
- Movie Night will be held on Friday, May 8 The movie that will be shown will be “The LEGO Movie” . This evening is a great community event (everyone welcome) and includes dinner in the cafeteria, an amazing basket raffle and of course, a fun, family movie. Information will soon be distributed through the classrooms regarding the collection of items for the basket raffle. We are looking for volunteers to help put the baskets together (May 6th, evening) and to sell raffle tickets at lunchtime (May 7th and 8th). We are also looking for volunteers on Movie Night to set up and serve food and help with the event. Please contact Tania Krishnan (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you are able to help.
- The Staff Appreciation Breakfast will be held on Thursday, June 4th. Joan Raymond will run this program and will be asking for donations and volunteers. The John English staff and faculty work very hard to make our children’s school experience a positive and productive one. This is our chance to say “Thanks for everything you do”. We hope you will join in by donating food or your time. Joan can be reached at email@example.com.
Some conversation ensued about the fundraising efforts for the next school year. More information will be provided once research has been completed and further decisions have been made. The SAC endeavours to be responsive to parent suggestions, therefore some changes are being considered.
“Fresh from the Farm”, is a new fundraiser being considered for next year. The fundraiser involves selling fresh fruit and vegetables in a one-time order for a very low price. For our school, we would place orders in September and they would be delivered on one day in November. Two options are available: 10 lbs of Empire apples and the second option is a basket of onions, carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes etc. 50% goes to the farmers, 40% to the school and 10% the organization. Wendy Kitson is looking into this and will report back.
- Jane was not present at the meeting however, she has confirmed that the Ukulele groups will be participating on May 4th in Music Monday. musicmonday.ca. More information will be distributed to Ukulele families.
- The registration numbers are good. Registration will open June 1st for next year.
- A grant application for funding has been made for 2015.
- Cafeteria cutlery goes missing at a great rate. Some solutions were discussed to keep them out of the landfill and reduce purchasing new all the time. Please remind your children to return their cutlery!
- The Cookie sale is going well as is the Cobbs Bread donation. Cobbs donations allow the program to continue with an extremely reasonable cost to parents.
- Student Volunteers are going well (including some boys for a nice change!)
- Snack program is going very well.
The program is looking for volunteers for the kitchen; even 3 hours per month. Neighbours and grandparents welcome, as well as parents of children at the school. Please contact Jennifer Hara and Lisa Truant-Tan, Program Co-ordinators, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Financial Report – Terry Durette
We are on track to meet our fundraising efforts for the year as budgeted.
Real Food for Real Kids is an option for catering lunches on the days when there is no Healthy Bites or for those not enrolled. There was also discussion about The Lunch Lady. Some discussion has taken place on this. This is not moving forward at this time due to coordination concerns, however, should there be a time when there is a great need, this option could be considered.
Our last meeting of the year will be held on Wednesday, May 13th.