John English SAC Meeting Minutes May 27, 2021

  This virtual meeting was held online via Google meet.  

Welcome 6:32 – 6:33


Welcome to the final meeting. Meeting moved to accommodate the Leafs game. Not a lot of content, but we can address add-ons, or have another meeting if needed 

Additional agenda items:

None at this time.

Principal/Vice Principal’s Report 6:33 – 7:03

  • Playground update: 
    • Playground Committee had meetings with Sustainability Office and came to agreement about the amount we could put in for the play structure
    • It is now determined that the board will provide 25k, the school topped it up by an additional 25k 
    • Per the meeting at the end of April, SAC is contributing 10k 
    • There were 5 proposals received, which now in evaluation phase. Next week one of the proposals will be selected to move forward with. Deadline for that decision is June 3. Once this decision is made, there will be no option to alter the parameters of the project, so the committee will be very careful in the review process.
      • Outside of the scope of the play structure is the addition of wooden features, which will be built by the TDSB 
      • There will be 3 wooden structures, two of which have already been selected and the final will be chosen by the committee once the play structure has been finalized. 
      • The ones that have been selected are a lobster trap and an ‘A frame’ climber.
      • The two options for the third piece are a chin-up bar or a climbing wall
    • The timelines might be delayed by covid, but the order will be placed by the TDSB as soon as the structure has been selected. The TDSB can start to build the chosen wooden features ahead of the delivery timeline of the play structure. 
  • Graduation
    • Plans are well underway for the ceremony. We have been given TDSB guidelines (not allowed to have live events/only prerecorded and livestreamed)
    • School can only use approved TDSB vendors for any or all parts of this process to ensure student privacy is respected. 
    • All grade 8 teachers are involved in the plans, and we are trying our best to include all our virtual students as well
    • There is a permission form that is required to be part of the video, and will be sent out shortly to families. This allows us to use student images in the video
    • Valedictorians have been chosen, admin and grade 8 teachers listened to the speeches, both in English and French, and selections were made 
    • Students will receive a hoodie, a composite photo, and a year book
    • Ceremony will be streamed on June 28 
    • If parent council would like to contribute some money toward this, the school would appreciate it
  • Jennifer: Had not considered the SAC contribution before this—apologies on our behalf
    • Added that parent council had previously approved the $10k spend toward the playground redevelopment
    • We are still waiting for the overall spend for budget lines with respect to virtual trips as well as classroom supplies
    • We wonder if there is a specific amount that the school is asking for?
      • Luc: moving forward this has got to be a cost recovery in the future. The virtual program is more expensive than if we were hosting a party
    • There is a historical precedent of the grad year having certain costs associated with it, and we need to provide families some insight to that
    • David: if we have a specific number we can vote on support from the SAC on that we can vote on it
    • Parent comment: As a parent of a grade 8 student, because there were fees associated with graduation from previous years, there is an appetite from families to contribute to provide whatever the students need.
    • Luc: I am thinking about providing an email to families to see if they will support the graduation events, while maintaining our philosophy that everyone will receive the same thing regardless of ability to contribute toward it
    • It slowly gets very expensive, as example the cost is $3200 for hoodies alone
    • David: If $3200 is being spent on the hoodies, perhaps we can ask for a contribution from families and then the SAC could split the difference or cover the difference from the families, at a vote at our next meeting.
    • Luc: we will set up an ask for contribution from families, as money that we don’t spend on a hoodie can be spent on books or technology within the school. 
    • Jen: so from a parent council perspective, once we end up with the final budget from this year, we can allocate funds in September to help support graduation, if we are able to. Another option for next year is perhaps to find a way that the grade 8 class themselves can fundraise to offset some of the costs.
    • Alana: can we pick a maximum budget line to spend that would be agreeable for the group, and then be willing to spend up to that? 
    • Luc: our costs this year include $20 hoodie/$15 composite/$15 yearbook/1000 video/1000 banner
    • Comment: Could we use a sliding scale/multiple entry points for families to be able to contribute what they feel comfortable with.
    • Luc: we have the money as a school. We will ask parents for contributions, and then in September we will see where we land and see if the SAC will contribute.
  • VP UPDATE 704-706
  • Ms Kenney
    • Technology: TDSB sent a blanket email to determine the best way for technology to return to the school. 
    • Assuming we are still in remote through the end of the year, we will push the return as late as possible to allow students to continue using devices
    • Library has added $3500 in new books in English and $4500 in French books and the goal is for them to be catalogued and ready to be used in September
    • In the Primary department, there has been teacher development in coding which aligns with the new math curriculum.
  • Ms Gorman
    • Thank you for contributing to virtual classroom experiences, teachers have been accessing the support and it has been a wonderful addition to this year 
    • Thank you for attending the Social Media/Mental Health presentation from earlier in the month. Lots of positive feedback from teachers, students and parents. 

Teacher’s Report 7:06 – 7:08

  • Teachers have been so thankful to have scientists in the schools
    • This made a huge difference in the kids online experience, this added much joy for students and teachers
    • Staff wanted to share their gratitude to the SAC for their support for this 
    • Thank you to Ms Gorman for doing the distribution of materials for the kids
  • Ms McPhail is still bringing stories into the classroom, virtually, and teachers are taking advantage of that
  • It is really interesting to see how colleagues (even parents who are teachers) are sharing resources and it has opened a lot of really neat doors and created a team atmosphere this year
  • Regarding the SAC Kahoot trivia last night—I was so impressed by the participants of all ages being respectful and kind at all age levels. It shows that kids have learned to figure this out, and while virtual experiences aren’t a top choice, we want to be connected!

Board Business                                                                                 7:09 – 7:16


No active programs at this time.  


  • SAC hosted a fantastic Kahoot Game yesterday – THANK YOU! It was incredible, all three age-level events had great attendance and the feedback so far has been positive
  • David: Thank you for helping make it happen. It was neat to put together and fun to do. The banter was fun and entertaining.
    • 3 games/126 questions/112 participants
    • 18 winners
    • Final tally of money raised $1320
    • It felt successful enough that we could do another one in the future
  • Comment: We decided not to participate as we are a new family to the school, we are doing virtual this year, and we opted not to participate because it was very school-centric and we weren’t sure that it would be engaging to any of us who have not actually been part of the school so far. 
    • Thank you for pondering participation, and for letting us know about this barrier to participation, and we are learning as we go, and your point is valid and heard.
    • If future events are hosted, we will work to make them more inclusive topics, if appropriate, so they can be more widely adopted.

Treasurer’s Report 7:16-23

  • At the April 30th meeting, the SAC voted to contribute up to  $10,000 for the playground revitalization project
  • The deposit from our 2020 Marlees fundraiser (which was cancelled due to pandemic) has been returned. The Marlees are hopeful to continue this program in the future and we are hoping to continue with it as a school as it was a highly successful fundraiser.
  • Regarding other future fundraisers, Fresh From the Farm has reached out to see if we would be interested in, should the TDSB allow fundraising next year, and we have indicated interest, which is not a commitment.
    • This is also a successful fundraiser, and is a positive contribution to the community
    • We offer families to purchase for themselves or as a donation to the Food Bank which we organize on behalf of the school.

Other Business 7:20-27

  • We are looking for a SAC Treasurer for 2021/2022 – would you or anyone you know, be interested in this role? 
    • Liz will provide support to provide transition the new person into this role.

Meeting Ends 7:27

Ward 3 School Trustee: Patrick Nunziata can be reached at or 416 996 5572, sign up for e-newsletter at or follow him on Twitter @NunziataPatrick