As we approach the end of 2018, District School Board Ontario North East (DSB1) is proud to reflect on accomplishments that help support a positive future story for every student.
We are pleased to welcome five new Trustees on our Board this year. We are grateful for the contributions of our outgoing Trustees and look forward to continuing our amazing work with this new Board.
We are also proud to have renewed our Strategic Plan, which will guide our work until 2021. More than 2,000 voices informed the plan through online and in-person consultations. We are grateful for our staff, students, families and communities for sharing their ideas and vision with us. A staff committee was created to support us in bringing our Strategic Plan to life. The group will share monthly vignettes, highlighting activities and initiatives related to one of our priorities.
The Strategic Plan consultations highlighted the opportunity for DSB1 to share the good work that is happening within our schools with our families and communities. The Board approved the hiring of a Communications Officer this fall to support that work and further engage our communities.
The Board of Trustees approved a balanced budget in June 2018. This demonstrates our continued commitment to fiscal responsibility while ensuring that we are meeting the needs of our students. Part of that budget includes $18 million in capital improvements across our schools. These improvements support student achievement by providing safe and modern learning environments.
DSB1 is leveraging student voice with the creation of a Student Senate. The Senate brings together two students from each secondary school and serves as an advisory body to our three Student Trustees. We look forward to electing our three new Trustees for the 2019-2020 term from our Student Senate.
We continue to foster a culture of empowering all learners to achieve personal excellence. Our learners include students and staff alike. Professional development opportunities were introduced for Board office staff this year. Staff heard from keynote speakers and participated in activities related to our Strategic Plan.
We welcomed Dr. Greg Wells shared a message of wellness and performance to more than 1,700 students and 200 family and community members. His message focused on evidence-based tactics to improve overall health and wellbeing. We are excited for our leadership team to continue our work with Dr. Wells in August 2019.
DSB1 continues to build positive relationships with Indigenous communities across our district. Our Board committed to the calls to action identified by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Kevin Lamoureux, Education Lead for the National Centre Truth and Reconciliation, spoke to all DSB1 staff in April 2018. His message of hope and focus on the need to move forward together was inspiring for staff. We are so pleased to continue to work with Mr. Lamoureux as we work to improve the way we reach our students who identify as Indigenous.
We are strengthening a sense of belonging with all students and staff at DSB1 through the 10/5 Way. The 10/5 Way is an initiative that started in the hospitality business but fits the education system perfectly. Anytime we are within 10 feet of someone, we acknowledge them with a warm smile, a wave, eye contact. Anytime we are within 5 feet of someone, we greet the person verbally and use their name if we are fortunate enough to know it. This simple initiative ensures that everyone feels seen and welcome at DSB1.
We are proud of the work that is being done in our schools to support a positive future story for all of our students. We look forward to building on these successes in 2019.