Guy who Chases Painted Horses will be speaking at the AGB November 27th.

eventsorange 100x100By Staff

November 17th, 2019



This is one of those events that has three different organizations behind the wheel as it were.

The Library is sponsoring it – you will need your library card to register.

The Art Gallery is the venue for the event – they have the space.

And A Different Drummer is in there should you want to buy the book.

The event is an opportunity to hear an “ever-droll playwright, novelist, and social commentator discuss his life, career and the concerns at the heart of his artfully wry and poignant new work of fiction, Chasing Painted Horses.

Hayden Taylor

The star of this show is Drew Hayden Taylor who is “one of the dangerous writers who knows the potential of humour, and how far it can reach into a society, how deep it can cut, how quickly it can heal.”

He’s an award-winning playwright, novelist, journalist, scriptwriter and artistic director of Canada’s premier Native theatre company—and a very funny man. BPL is thrilled to welcome back Drew Hayden Taylor to share his latest novel, Chasing Painted Horses.

Admission is free–please register at this link or by contacting us at 905 639 0925 or

If you don’t have a library card give the Drummer a call – they can register you.  Seating is limited – there are a reported less than 30 left.


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Public Board of Education holding a partnership opportunities meeting in December - need for a new administrative building on the list.

News 100 blueBy Staff

November 12th, 2019



Each year the Halton District School Board holds a meeting to which community organizations and members of the public are invited to discuss potential planning and partnership opportunities.

Partnership opportunities in existing schools and co-build opportunities in proposed new schools, as well as a new Board Administrative Centre, will be discussed at the J.W. Singleton Education Centre, 2050 Guelph Line, Burlington on December 11th at 7:00 pm

Potential partners are requested to bring relevant planning information such as population projections, growth plans, community needs, land use and greenspace/park requirements to the meeting.

The big one on this list is the critical need for a new administrative building on the Upper Middle Road – Guelph Line site. The existing structure is bursting at the seams. Much of the senior staff has to located at the Gary Allan High School on New Street which results in hours of wasted time in travel between the two locations.

A number of the trustees were hoping that any new administrative building would be located closer to the center of the Region; that probably won’t happen because the Board currently owns the land on which the administrative building is located where there is a lot of space for a new building.

HDSB location

The Board owns the land right up to the NW intersection of Upper Middle and Guelph line.

There is some background information, policy and the procedures the Boards are required to follow.

You will find that HERE

The key contact at the Board of Education is Domenico Renzella, Senior Manager, Planning. 905-335-3663 | Toll-free 1-877-618-3456


Related news stories:

New Admin building will cost $23 million.

Not all trustees like the idea of a new Admin building in Burlington.

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Public School Board Wants Input on their Next Multi-Year Plan

News 100 blueBy Staff

November 11th, 2019



The Halton District School Board (HDSB) is asking students, families, staff and the community to share views and identify areas of focus for the Board’s next Multi-Year Plan 2020-2024.

HDSB multi yearOpportunities to provide input include community roundtable discussions, focus group sessions, and online surveys, available from Nov. 4 to Dec. 2, 2019.

The Multi-Year Plan (MYP) is the roadmap that informs the Board’s decisions and allocation of resources, while guiding collective actions for ongoing improvement over the next four years. It sets the direction to ensure the Board’s efforts support all students, staff and families across the HDSB.

The current MYP 2016-2020 can be found here.

All parents/guardians, staff, students and community members are invited to complete a survey to assess the Board’s current MYP and provide input on areas of priority in the next MYP. The surveys are open from Nov. 4 – Dec. 2, 2019.

All parents/guardians, staff, students and community members are invited to discuss and provide face-to-face input on the development of the Board’s next MYP at two community roundtable discussions held in the north and south areas of Halton.

Two separate identical sessions will be held from 7 – 9 p.m. on the following dates:

• Monday, Nov. 18: Milton Staff Learning Centre (215 Ontario St S, Milton) – Register here

• Thursday, Nov. 21: Garth Webb Secondary School (2820 West Oak Trails Blvd, Oakville) –
Register here

Stuart Miller

Director of Education Stuart Miller

“The Multi-Year Plan is strengthened by the experience and input of students, staff, families and community members,” says Stuart Miller, Director of Education for the Halton District School Board. “Your voice is critical to getting the plan right and setting the direction for the HDSB. We look forward to your participation in helping to shape the next four years in the Halton District School Board.”

Consultations will take place until December 2, 2019. The feedback and insights received from stakeholders through the online surveys, community roundtable discussions and other forums will inform the development of the new MYP over the next three to four months. The MYP 2020-2024 will take effect in September 2020.


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High school information nights - schedule dates.

News 100 yellowBy Staff

November 11th, 2019



High school information nights are scheduled during the month of November to provide an opportunity for students, parents and guardians to learn about Grade 9 programs, services for students and diploma requirements.

Each high school in the Halton District School Board will host an information evening. Families should attend the information night at the school designated for their community.

Dates and locations for each information night are set out below:

Aldershot High School
November 28, 2019 at 6:30 p.m.

Burlington Central High School
November 14, 2019 at 6:30 p.m.

Dr. Frank J. Hayden Secondary School
November 14, 2019 – from 6:00 pm – 9:00 p.m.

M.M. Robinson High School
November 14, 2019 from 7:00 p.m to 8:30 p.m., (includes a French Program info session)

Nelson High School
November 20, 2019, from 7:00 – 8:30 p.m

HDSB grade 9 intro

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Lest we forget

Remembered, respected

Remembered, respected


The memorial was put in place after WWI when the citizens of Burlington wanted to do something to remember the fallen.  It was paid for by citizens and then turned over to the city to maintain.

The bronze plaque on the front was put in place to commemorate those lost in WW II – beneath that plaque are the following words:

“To teach that he who serves is lost,
To bear in silence, though our hearts may bleed,
To spend ourselves, and never count the cost,
For others greater need.”

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Public gets a chance to learn just how the iSTEM program is working at Aldershot High School.

News 100 yellowBy Staff

October 31st, 2019



It was the best decision that came out of the PAR (Program Accommodation Review) of 2017 – an event that shut down two of the city’s seven high schools.

There were some issues at the time about the amount of unused space at the Aldershot High School, which was threatened with closure.

A trustee who failed to get re-elected came up with the idea and staff got a grip on it and created what came to be known as i STEM – Innovation, Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics program that takes a project approach to learning that requires students to solve problems with the subjects they are learning.

Blackwell and Miller at itsem Nov 2018

Superintendent Terri Blackwell with Director of Education Stuart Miller the night parents showed up to learn more about the iSTEM program.

The program started in September with a grade 9 class that has students from across the Region.

The response to the creation of the STEM program surpassed the Board’s most optimistic projections.

There will be a presentation on November 12th at the high school – the public will get a chance to see how well the program is working.

The grade 9 students will move on to grade 10 – when they graduate there will be a full high school program.

Available to students in Halton and beyond, I-STEM (Innovation – Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) enables students to develop innovation skills related to engineering design and design thinking, entrepreneurial thinking skills and global competencies. Students will have enhanced learning opportunities through community and post-secondary partnerships.

“I-STEM has been designed to prepare students for future trends in the workforce and help students solve complex economic, social and environmental problems,” says Terri Blackwell, Superintendent of Education for the HDSB. “We are fortunate to work with an extensive group of advisors on program development, opportunities and learning.”


Superintendent Terri Blackwell

“I-STEM has been designed to prepare students for future trends in the workforce and help students solve complex economic, social and environmental problems,” says Terri Blackwell, Superintendent of Education for the HDSB. “We are fortunate to work with an extensive group of advisors on program development, opportunities and learning.”

“We look forward to sharing with families and the community what current I-STEM students and faculty are accomplishing in the program’s inaugural year, as well as showcase the new and innovative learning spaces.”

I-STEM Open House, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019, 7 – 8:30 p.m.
Aldershot School (50 Fairwood Place W, Burlington)
A presentation will be held in the auditorium at 7 p.m. and repeated at 7:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Overflow parking is available at LaSalle Park.

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The importance of looking after the caregiver.

News 100 blueBy Staff

October 25th, 2019

Parents/guardians are invited to attend a free evening presentation on Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2019 aimed at addressing the importance of looking after themselves as caregivers in order to look after their loved ones.

The presentation by Michele Sparling is titled “Putting ‘Self’ in Caregiving – How Looking After you Helps You Look After Them”.

Seniors - caring for them

Who is taking care of the care-giver?

In this session, parents/guardians and caregivers will hear why self-care is an important part of the regimen of care, what it is, what it is not, and one family’s story of finding room to breathe and reset, in order to be there for their loved ones.

Presented by Community & Parent Partners for Kids (C.A.P.P. for Kids), the event runs from 7 – 8:30 p.m. at Gary Allan High School/New Street Education Centre (3250 New St., Burlington). There will be community displays from 6:45 – 7 p.m.

Michele Sparling is a Partner at Innovative HR and has 30 years of in depth experience as a results-oriented senior human resources professional. She has a Bachelor of Business Administration, and a Master of Industrial Relations. She is trained in mediation, facilitation, ASIST, Mental Health First Aid, and as a SocioPsychological Health and Safety Advisor. Michele and her family have lived in the Oakville community for 23 years.

C.A.P.P. for Kids is a partnership between Halton Region, Halton District School Board, Halton Catholic District School Board, Reach Out Centre for Kids (ROCK), Our Kids Network, Halton Regional Police Service, Ontario Early Years, Burlington Public Library, City of Burlington, and the Halton Multicultural Council.

For more information about this event, email

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Journalist, broadcaster and historian to talk about her book on Mary and Christopher Pratt - a couple that left a significant mark on Canadian art.

eventsblue 100x100By Staff

October 23rd, 2019



Carol Bishop-Gwyn, is a journalist, broadcaster and historian of the arts who has written an enthralling chronicle of the eventful lives, the indelible works, and the colourful relationship of artists Mary and Christopher Pratt.

Pratt art - boat

An early screen print – Boat in Sand, 1961 is in the National Gallery’s collection.

Ross King explains the book this way: “Christopher Pratt has left a truly indelible mark on the Canadian art canvas. Bishop-Gwyn’s remarkable double portrait of Canada’s first couple of painting explores the lives of Mary and Christopher Pratt with the insight and sympathy of a friend and insider, and the wide lens and forensic scrutiny of an historian.

“Along the way we learn of the passions, tragedies and rivalries behind two extraordinary bodies of work.”

In Art and Rivalry,  Carol Bishop-Gwyn delves into the the lives of Christopher and Mary Pratt, Canada’s most renowned contemporary artists.  Their once supportive relationship ended in scandal, divorce, and a furious competition for dominance in Canadian Art. Their never-before-told story offers insight into the role of art and artists in our society.

Gwyn book on PrattThe Provincial flag of Newfoundland and Labrador, was designed by Pratt and adopted in 1980.

Nfld flagAdmission is free–please register at this link or by contacting us at (905) 639 0925 or

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Can innovative farming technology make a difference to the agriculture sector in Burlington?

News 100 greenBy Daniel St George

October 21st, 2019



This is the Escarpment we are talking about. Our country, our rural country - forever.

This is the Escarpment where there are farms that thrive. Enough to make farming viable ? No one really knows.

Burlington has a large rural area that makes up close to half of the city’s geographic area – much of it is excellent land that could support profitable and sustainable agriculture. Much of it is owned by developers who rent it out on terms that are not all that beneficial for farmers.

Despite those limitations there are a number of very productive farms that can make use of some of the innovative technologies to make farming better, smarter, and more efficient.

When used in the right way, it can also help drive transformational change across the food value chain to address the most challenging agriculture and food problems facing our planet. At least that is the promise from most of today’s ag-tech companies.

The biggest risk is that this promise, is just that, a promise. Technology today is not moving the needle far enough to meet farmers’ expectations and address the biggest challenges our planet is facing now and in the future. Challenges such as climate change, population growth and changing consumer demands.

Farming tractor ancient

Tractors like this were used across Canada. There was once a huge debate on whether or not rubber tires could replace those steel wheels. This machine was driven by steam fired by a wooden furnace.

Innovation in agriculture has helped farmers and growers throughout time, from horse-drawn tilling machines to automated tractors. The rate of this innovation over the last 10-20 years has exploded, and the number of agribusiness start-ups has followed suit.

Globally, investments in the agribusiness and food sectors have tripled since 2004. Agriculture technology has become a global phenomenon, with start-ups growing by over 80 percent each year since 2012.

In Canada, farm income has risen each year since 2003, except for a brief downturn in 2018. In a recent study by RBC in Canada, the study found that the sector could contribute up to $51 billion to the economy by 2030, through boosting technology investments, building new skills and addressing labor shortages.

The real question is not necessarily how we can get more and better technologies into the hands of farmers. Instead we should ask ourselves how we can better aggregate these technologies across farms at scale, combine disparate data sets and drive insights to improve key metrics such as yield, and to improve crop planning and variety, including growing conditions such as soil quality.

However, Innovation is also a double edged sword
Every day farmers are bombarded by offers of new technological advances and innovative solutions. These include everything from farm management systems to soil sensors and innovative farm machinery.

tractor automatedThis ongoing innovation is increasing the complexity of purchasing decisions and farmers are often wondering whether the value is really there. Not to mention, many of these technologies are often too expensive, especially for farmers who own small to medium sized farms. In addition, many farmers find they do not get the full value from these technologies as they often only utilize a small portion of the functionality that the solution is capable of.

For example, in a recent research paper in the journal for Agriculture Systems, it mentions that data collected by farm technologies is heavily under-utilized, and there are significant challenges with data quality and availability, as well as a lack of integration between technologies.

A recent comment by a farmer who uses an automated self-drive tractor says, “It hasn’t really improved productivity on the farm, and it hasn’t allowed me to relax because I still have to keep an eye on it. It’s a lot harder than we think to apply technology to farming in a way that truly helps farmers. That’s the challenge.”

Large companies are squeezing margins and farmers are feeling the pinch. The food value chain has become a fragmented set of silos with different players all wanting a piece of the pie. And farmers are the ones who are suffering. Without an economically sustainable farm, many of the global challenges we face today will never be addressed.

How do we then overcome this problem? How can we utilize technology to move the needle further and do farmers bear responsibility for driving this change? What role do other organizations play such as cooperatives, food manufacturers, governments and trading companies?

Innovation paired with foresight can yield world-changing results
The world faces a challenge in providing enough food to feed its growing population. The current rate of agricultural productivity is not sufficient to feed a predicted population of 9.1 billion people by 2050.

To solve this and other future challenges, agriculture needs orchestrated innovation. When used in the right areas and for the right purposes, innovation can move the needle significantly to address these fundamental macro-challenges.

Farm supermarket shelf

The problem facing the farm community is getting their product onto these shelves in a sustainable, profitable way. The farm and the supermarket operate in separate silos.

Traditionally, the food value chain has resembled a relatively linear model, from research (e.g. seed and varieties) and production to harvest, process, packaging, distribution, and sales. The value chain is made of companies who play specific parts within the system but often not across its entirety.

Often, these companies don’t share information and compartmentalize expertise and knowledge along the value chain. This lack of collaboration limits their insight.

When innovators’ focus narrows, the technology they invent might end up hurting farmers and consumers or only help a select few, rather than helping achieve a greater good. Innovative foresight to leverage technology and apply it in the right areas to drive value is critically important.

A three-pronged road to innovation grounded in data, collaboration, and sustainability.

How can agricultural innovation ensure that new technology minimizes the risks and maximizes the benefits?

The answer lies in three fundamental areas:

1. Connecting disparate data sets across the value chain to drive greater insights—such as digital farming platforms.

2. Creating ecosystems of organizational partners to share data and best practices and to work together on uncovering exponential rates of productivity and farming yield using ecosystem-driven business models.

3. Designing business models that drive value back into the farm, while at the same time being sustainable and economically viable—with a focus on farmers and growers.

Who can address the macro-challenges we face globally and what are digital farming platforms?

What types of ecosystems do we need and how can we develop a more vertical-integrated value chain?

And who is going to get it all started?

Daniel St. George





Daniel St. George is a Senior Managing Consultant, Digital Strategy in the Agribusiness Sector.

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Interactive Art Installation - Invites visitors to engage with a 10ft long, handmade waste receptacle.

artsorange 100x100By Pepper Parr

October 20th, 2019


From October 22-25 from 1-5 pm each day, The Hobbyist will be performing on site maintenance, collecting and documenting trash in the area, and conducting a short survey with participants.

The city invests a considerable amount of money in public art and throughout each year contests are held that allow artists to pitch their ideas for what is referred to as “installation” art; something that is not permanent and is often work that can be interacted with.

The city announced seven installation art locations that were to be launched along with Culture Days which took place late in September.

A communications glitch got in the way of our publishing and promoting these events. The Senior Manager Strategic Communications prevented us from talking to the Manager of Cultural Services for some clarification. The answers the Senior Manager Strategic Communications gave us were not clear and we didn’t have the time to do the back and forth that was required to get clear answers.

Cobalt Connects, the Hamilton based organization that manages the selection of artist’s process, made what appears now available and we share it with you.
With information that is clear we can now share with you what the city made possible.

These installations were available on September 27 and will be on display until October 27, 2019. There are seven Temporary Art Installations

These artists transformed spaces across Burlington with temporary public art installations. By placing art in unexpected spaces such as parks and community centres, the Public Art Lab brings contemporary art to new audiences. All installations are free of charge! The Public Art Lab is produced by the City of Burlington’s public art program.

The art is pretty well distributed throughout the city – except for Aldershot – they got stiffed.

There are two installation in Spencer Smith Park.  Arianna Richardson (AKA The Hobbyist), holds a Garbage Party that is a Mixed Media Sculpture + Performance

Art image spencer smith 2

Now that is a garbage can!

Garbage Party is an interactive project that invites visitors to engage with a 10ft long, handmade waste receptacle as its physical form would suggest: as a fully functioning garbage bin with a wide variety of collection categories.

This installation prompts the public to consider their own relationships with waste and recycling, presenting a playful and absurd site in which to engage in conversations about our consumer society and the impact of the waste it generates.

From October 22-25 from 1-5pm each day, The Hobbyist will be performing on site maintenance, collecting and documenting trash in the area, and conducting a short survey with participants.

Arianna Richardson is a sculptor, performance artist, and mother from Treaty Seven territory (Lethbridge, AB).  Richardson most often works under the pseudonym, The Hobbyist, employing hobby-craft techniques to work through an investigation of ubiquitous consumption, gendered labour, waste, excess, and spectacle.

More at:

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If you make a bundle gambling on line - do you have to pay taxes on what you win?

News 100 blueClaire Nash

October 17, 2019



Gambling - accounting papers

No need to do any tax accounting for your on-line wins

We won’t be exaggerating if we state that taxes are every Canadian’s worst nightmare! And when it comes to online gambling, an immediate question asked by every player is – are they required to pay taxes on their winnings at such platforms?

Well, the good news is that you don’t need to pay any taxes on such winnings if you are only a recreational player and a Canadian resident.

So, I could sign up to to play the desert treasure slot, win a huge sum and get to take the entire win home, without paying anything to the exchequer.

Why casino players aren’t required to pay any taxes.
Canadian government can’t tax any gambling activity because it doesn’t serve as a regular source of income, and doesn’t originate from property, employment or any other regular earning means. Gambling also isn’t considered a type of business and majority of Canadians don’t live off their gambling winnings. In the eyes of the law, taxing such events will not be fair. Here’s more on the peculiarities of gambling in Canada.

Are Canadians required to pay any taxes on gambling winnings?
No, there is no need for Canadians to pay any taxes on winnings from gambling activities like lotteries, sports betting, horse racing, online casinos etc. however, you must declare any interest earned on these winnings in the T5 form. Any such interest is taxable in nature and you could be fined if you are caught not paying taxes on it.

Are professional Canadian gamblers required to pay taxes?
Anyone who gambles full-time, whether off-line or online, and makes a living from the activity, must pay taxes on their winnings. Hence, professional blackjack players, poker players or anyone who calls themselves a professional gambler, will be perceived as a running a freelance business, the income from which is taxable in Canada.

However, there’s a catch. The Canada Revenue Agency has been very slow in assessing and auditing people whose primary source of income is gambling. Why this is so is because these people are essentially operating the business and the profits earned from the business are taxable.

Gambling tax calculator

No calculations to be done.

But the same business can lead to major losses, reducing overall income. If the Canadian revenue agency starts taxing these professional players in a forceful manner, it could have a very bad domino effect throughout Canada.

This doesn’t mean that if you are a professional gambler, you should avoid paying any taxes. It’s only information that you should be aware of.

Furthermore, a court ruling in 2012 stated that gambling losses aren’t tax write-offs.

Gambling wins in Vegas or US as a Canadian citizen
Anyone who visits Las Vegas or United States to gamble and comes back with the winnings, must pay close to half of their winnings exceeding US$ 1200 as taxes to the government. If you thought you could just avoid declaring any such income, well, think again! When you walk up to cash out your winnings at the booth, 30% is deducted as tax at source there and then!

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Calling All Three-Year Olds - Kindergarten Open Houses

News 100 redBy Staff

October 11th, 2019



kindergarten childrenBeginning school is a big step for children and parents, and the Halton District School Board wants to make that transition as smooth as possible. In October and November, the Board is hosting Calling All Three-Year Olds Kindergarten Open Houses in Acton, Georgetown, Milton, Burlington and Oakville for families to learn more about making the first school experience a happy one.

Future students and their families are invited to attend any of the following Kindergarten Open Houses, to be held between 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Acton: Thursday, Oct. 17 – McKenzie-Smith Bennett Public School (69 Acton Blvd)

Georgetown: Thursday, Oct. 24 – Silver Creek Public School (170 Eaton St)

Milton: Thursday, Nov. 7 – P.L. Robertson Public School (840 Scott Blvd)

Burlington: Thursday, Nov. 14 – Alexander’s Public School (2223 Sutton Dr)

Oakville: Thursday, Nov. 28 – Emily Carr Public School (2255 Pine Glen Rd)

At the Open House, students and parents will:

• Explore a Kindergarten classroom
• Learn about play-based learning
• Pick up information and resource material in a free backpack
• Access information about community agencies and resources in Halton
• Get information about before and after school care
• Connect with special education staff to discuss any developmental concerns

Registration for Kindergarten begins in January 2020 and takes place at the school your child will attend. Children born in 2016 can start Kindergarten in September 2020.

Parents/guardians can learn more about the Calling all Three-year Olds Kindergarten Open Houses on the HDSB website ( and search: Kindergarten).

Learn more about the Halton District School Board’s Kindergarten Program.

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Parent Involvement Conference to feature impressive speaker: Nora Young will talk about the coming data boom.

News 100 redBy Staff

October 3rd, 2019



The Halton District School Board’s Parent Involvement Committee (PIC) will be hosting the 12th Annual Parent Involvement Committee Conference on Saturday, Oct. 19, 2019 from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. at Garth Webb Secondary School (2820 Westoak Trails Blvd, Oakville).

The theme of the conference is, ‘Envisioning Possibilities: How innovation inspires students to learn, grow & succeed’.

Registration is now open.

Nora Young

Nora Young, technology journalist and host of CBC Radio program “Spark”

This year’s conference features Nora Young, technology journalist and host of CBC Radio program “Spark”, as the first keynote speaker. She will speak about “Seeing the Forest and the Trees: Surviving and Thriving in the Coming Data Boom”.

The ‘Data Boom’ is a new era in information that requires balancing the increasing use of digital devices and privacy protection.

data deluge

The amount of data that is now available and the amount of data that will be available has the potential to drown out much of the content. Learning how to manage the flow is a major social challenge.

Members of the HDSB’s, The SHIFT, will be the second keynote speaker. Led by HDSB Superintendent Jacqueline Newton, the team’s presentation will address the topic: ‘Top Ten Lessons from a Year of Innovating (Dangerously)’.

Attendees will hear about some of the lessons the Halton District School Board has learned about evolving teaching approaches and how parents/guardians can support and inspire children to become innovators in school.

The 2019 PIC Conference will provide engaging workshops that address topics such as Building Healthy Relationships, The Gifted Learner, Tech Help, Making Financial Decisions, the HDSB I-STEM Program, Equity & Inclusion in the Classroom, Vaping and Cannabis and TVO Mathify.

“The Halton District School Board’s Parent Involvement Committee welcomes parents, guardians and community members to join us for a great conference, filled with outstanding speakers and curated content,” says John Pennyfather, Superintendent of Education for the Halton District School Board. “This annual conference is designed to recognize the important role parents play in the development of their children and in their success throughout their school experience.”


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ECoB brings the federal election candidates to your living room.

federal election 2019By Staff

October 2, 2019



ECoB – the grass roots organization that gave Burlington the best look at the candidates in the municipal election has come up with an interesting approach to giving the public a look at what the federal election candidates have to say.

ECOB logoECoB, formed in 2017 , are the Engaged Citizens of Burlington. They have a small group in every ward in the city with a membership of 600 people. Anyone can become a member.

Producing videos like this takes hundreds of volunteer hours and needs money too. If you like what ECoB is doing, please consider donating to ECoB and becoming a paid member (it’s just $10 a year).

The organization is doing two minute videos of the candidates, well at least those that accept the offer to take part.

So far there has been one video each from the New Democrats, the Liberals and the Greens.

The idea was to produce short videos on the one subject. The same question is put to every candidate. The location is always the same at the Burlington Baptist Church on New Street.

Jennifer Olchowy, a member of the ECoB executive reads a prepared introduction about the candidate, introduces the candidate who then speaks for one minute.

The best way to appreciate and understand what ECoB is doing is to watch the videos.

The Gazette will be publishing everything produce and will archive the material as well.

October 1st

Liberal candidate Karina Gould

Green Candidate Gareth Williams

New Democrat Lenaee Dupuis

The Conservative candidate declined to take part.

ECoB did not hear from the Peoples Party of Canada candidate.


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City council opts for free transit for high school students; top bus driver in the city and the Mayor and going to steer this one.

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

September 30th, 2019



It was the Mayor’s initiative from the get go.

She is going to ride this one and reap the benefits.

Meed Ward was a big fan of getting people out of their cars and on public transit.

She was behind the free ride for seniors that is now in pilot and reported to be doing very well.

She next moved onto getting high school students on to public transit.

Her goal is to have anyone who has somewhere to go to do so by just hoping on the bus – free for everyone, eventually.

Meed Ward took it one step further – she thinks transit should be a Regional government issue so that there is easy travel to Oakville, Milton and even Halton Hills where there is currently no public transit.

Transit-report-card- 2018

Public perception was very poor in 2018


It improved in 2019.

One of the new buses added o the Burlington Transit fleet. There were busses that had more than 15 years on their tires - those old ones certainly rattled down Guelph Line when I was on one of them.

Then it becomes totally free?

The instruction that came out of the city council meeting last week were crystal:

Direct the Mayor and Director of Transit to develop a draft report including a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) regarding free transit for Burlington students, outlining the program, costs, revenue impacts, eligibility, and commitments in more detail, in partnership with Halton Region and the four school boards that serve Halton students: Halton District School Board, Halton Catholic District School Board, and the two French school boards, Conseil scolaire Viamonde and Conseil scolaire catholique MonAvenir, and report back to council for a decision.

Mayor Meed Ward is going to be at the table where this happens – bet on it.

This initiative is going to be led by Burlington Transit with the different Boards of Education picking up the tab – they can certainly expect to pay more than they are paying now.

The Halton District School Board fell in love with the idea and had their motion passed before the city had their’s cast in stone.

HDSB Director of Education Stuart Miller when asked how this was going to work out said:

“It’s a little complicated.

“We do need the Catholic Board to agree and the transportation consortium as well. That hasn’t been done yet, but I suspect it is just the timing and it will as soon as the Boards can all meet.

“As for the work, most of it will be done by the City of Burlington with us helping to educate our students. The budgetary component will also be largely Burlington. We will continue to contribute the amount we have been providing, but this is pretty straight forward.”

Let us hope so.

Director of Transit Sue Connors, who did some exceptionally good work with the Brampton Transit system when she ran that operation, can be expected to do the same thing here. She is looking forward to being the first city in the province that has electric buses.

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High school students do very well in mathematics and literacy tests; exceed the provincial average..

News 100 blueBy Staff

September 30th, 2019



We reported earlier today on how well the grade 3 and grade 6 students did on their testing. Earlier in the month the Ontario Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) released results showing Halton District School Board (HDSB) students continue to perform above the province in Grade 9 Academic and Applied Mathematics, and on the Grade 10 Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT).

These results are based on assessments completed in the 2018-2019 school year and show that HDSB students are well above the provincial standard (Level 3 & 4, or a B grade or above) in Grade 9 Math and on the OSSLT.

For Grade 9 Math, there are separate assessments for students in the academic and applied courses. The Grade 9 Academic Math assessment results remained consistent with the previous year with 91% of students performing at the provincial standard. In the HDSB, there were a total of 3,698 students enrolled in the Academic Math course in the 2018-2019 school year.

For the 619 students in Grade 9 Applied Math in the 2018-2019 school year, results increased to 55% from 54% in the previous year. This is 11 percentage points above the provincial average of 44%.

grade 9 results

HDSB is proud of its “Applied Strategy” along with efforts to ensure that applied classrooms are engaging, active, relevant, and challenging places to learn through experiential opportunities. Professional learning opportunities were offered each semester for all teachers of Applied level courses. Additional sessions for Math occurred with a specific emphasis on the strengths and needs of students with learning disabilities in Mathematics. Schools applied best practices and proven strategies for teaching Mathematics. This focus on closing the gap in achievement, engagement and well-being for students in Applied courses resulted in a higher proportion of students in Applied level Math meeting the provincial standard for a third year in a row.

“We are pleased to see progress in our EQAO Math scores for the 2018-2019 school year, and are especially encouraged to see a percentage point increase in Grade 9 Applied Math,” says David Boag, Associate Director for the Halton District School Board. “We will continue to ensure math and literacy remain core areas of interest and focus as we continue to support all of our students.”

grade 10

The Grade 10 Literacy Test (OSSLT) results for the 2018-2019 school year were also released recently. The successful completion of the OSSLT is a requirement for graduation. The HDSB’s success rate for students writing the test for the first time increased by one percentage point from last year to 86%. The overall results for the OSSLT demonstrate that students in the Halton District School Board continue to have strong literacy skills.

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Some of the grade 3 and 6 marks are ahead of the provincial average but down slightly from the previous year.

News 100 yellowBy Staff

October 1st, 2019



The concern about student performances, the worry about disruption in the number of students in a classroom are what we hear about in the news.

There is some positive news: student grades are very good – higher in the Halton District School Board (HDSB) than the provincial average.

HDSB continues to perform above provincial average in Grade 3/Grade 6 Reading, Writing and Math on EQAO assessments.

Results released today from Education Quality and Accountability Office; results for students in Grade 6 Writing increased by one percentage point.

Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) show Halton District School Board (HDSB) Grade 3 and 6 students continue to perform above the provincial average based on assessments completed in the 2018-2019 school year. These results show that HDSB students are well above the provincial standard (Level 3 & 4, or a B grade or above) in Grade 3 and Grade 6 Reading and Writing.

grade 3 - 6In Grade 3 assessments, the HDSB outperforms the province by seven to nine percentage points. In Grade 6 assessments, the HDSB exceeds the provincial average by six to eight percentage points with 87% and 88% of Grade 6 students meeting the provincial standard on Reading and Writing, respectively.

In primary classrooms, HDSB staff continue to focus on sustaining effective Comprehensive Literacy Programs which include assessment for learning, differentiated and guided instruction and methods of monitoring student achievement. The Board continues to apply the Levelled Literacy Intervention Program to support students.

EQAO results are used to support continued student improvement at the school, system and provincial level. Results provide insight on how students are doing compared to the rest of the province. The Board uses this data at the school and board level, along with a variety of other student assessment data, to focus efforts toward continuously improving student achievement.

While students in the HDSB continue to perform well above the provincial average, the Board recognizes the need to make improvements in Mathematics. In 2017, the Board implemented the Mathematics Improvement Plan, which is in line with the Ministry’s Focus on Fundamentals in Mathematics Strategy. This work includes a focus on mathematics leadership, professional learning to support teachers in mathematics instruction and assessment, and investment in high quality resources and training for these resources in every school.

David Boag

David Boag, Associate Director for the Halton District School Board.

The HDSB Math Plan was launched three years ago and includes extensive support for student and staff learning, and involves developing learner profiles, using effective instructional and assessment strategies and resources to support Math learning.

“We are very proud of the HDSB’s EQAO results as the Board continues to exceed the provincial average on all assessments,” says David Boag, Associate Director for the Halton District School Board. “This success is attributed to the hard work and dedication of our staff, families and most importantly, our students.”

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Fire Prevention Week is more than a date on the calendar. It's an occasion to learn how to protect yourself and your family.

eventsblue 100x100By Staff

September 23rd, 2019



fire extinguisher

Do you have one? Do you know how to use it – and is it up to date?

Fire departments across the country do their best to get out the message – “don’t give fires a chance”.  Sure, it is part of their job but for every fire person the fear is that the fire they are racing towards may be the scene of a death from a fire that was an accident and should have never happened.

During Fire Prevention week there is an opportunity for adults to learn how to test and properly use the fire extinguisher they have in their homes – you do have one don’t you?

Disastrous fire do take place.  The house fire in Halifax that burned seven children to death has yet to be explained.  The father of the seven children is still in hospital in a coma and does not yet know that all his children are dead.  His wife visits daily.

Halifax house fire

Seven children were burned to death in this Halifax house fire.

The Burlington Fire Department is recognizing Fire Prevention Week from Oct. 6 to 12 with its annual fire station open house where residents can learn about key home hazards, how to prevent fires and how to safely escape from the house if they need to be a hero in their own home.

Fire Prevention Week is a province-wide initiative held each year in October. This year’s theme is “Not Every Hero Wears a Cape. Plan and Practise Your Escape!™”

Fire Station 1 Open House
Burlington’s Fire Station 1 Headquarters, 1255 Fairview St. will be hosting an open house on Sunday, Oct. 6 from 1 to 3 p.m. Burlington Fire Headquarters will be open for public tours and family-friendly fire safety activities, rain or shine.

Please bring non-perishable food items to the event in support of Burlington Food Banks.

Headquarters will feature special activities and live fire demonstrations. The demonstrations start at 2:30 p.m.

• Adult fire extinguisher training
• Truck tours
• Equipment displays
• Live fire demonstrations
• Kids’ fire hose spray
• Fire safety obstacle course
• Kids’ craft table
• Face painters
• Photo booth
• Station tours


The display of these massive pieces of equipment awes the kids – ensuring that they know the fundamentals of fire prevention can be taught to them when they are at a “touch a truck” event.

Fire Prevention Facts
Cooking is the leading cause of home fires in Burlington and in Ontario unattended cooking is the leading cause of many fire injuries and deaths. That’s why this year’s messages focus on how to stay safe in the kitchen.

• Never leave a pot unattended on the stove.
• Keep clutter away from elements and heating surfaces.
• Use a heat-resistant surface to cool down cookware.
• Keep young children and pets away from stove tops.
• If a pot catches fire, don’t take any risks. Never try to move a burning pot. Put a lid on it and turn off heat if it is safe to do so. Never throw water over it.
• Don’t tackle the fire yourself – Get out, stay out, call 911.

Lazenby David

Fire Chief Dave Lazenby

Burlington Fire Chief Dave Lazenby sets out his approach to running the fire department: “While the Burlington Fire Department family focuses on fire prevention all year long, we’re getting ready to kick off our annual Fire Prevention Week Open House to connect with residents.

“In a typical home fire, you may have as little as one to two minutes to escape safely from the time the smoke alarm sounds. Escape planning and practice can help you make the most of the time you have, giving everyone enough time to get out.

“We look forward to meeting with you to share information about fire safety, prevention and escape planning.”


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Counterfeit Oxycodone Pills Containing Fentanyl Circulating in the Greater Toronto Area - that includes Burlington.

News 100 redBy Staff

September 21st, 2019



Can you tell the difference between these pills? Neither can we. One of these is oxycodone, and one is fentanyl, made to look like oxycodone.

HRPS Oxy photo

If you have to use the pills – at least know that you are using the right thing.

The Halton Regional Police Service and the Halton Region Health Department want to warn the community that counterfeit Oxycocet® (oxycodone) pills containing fentanyl are known to be circulating in the Greater Toronto Area. The pills closely resemble oxycodone pills. The presence of fentanyl in these counterfeit pills increases the risk of overdose among people using them. For context, fentanyl was present in 75 per cent of all opioid-related deaths in Halton Region in 2018.

If you use drugs, or have a friend or family member who uses drugs, these tips may help save a life in the event of an overdose:

Know the signs. An overdose is a medical emergency. Know the signs of an overdose and call 9-1-1 right away:

– difficulty walking, talking, or staying awake
– blue lips or nails
– very small pupils
– cold and clammy skin
– dizziness and confusion
– extreme drowsiness
– choking, gurgling or snoring sounds
– slow, weak or no breathing
– inability to wake up, even when shaken or shouted at

Don’t run. Call 9-1-1. Our frontline officers, and other first responders in Halton, carry naloxone and we want to assist. The Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act provides broad legal protections for anyone seeking emergency support during an overdose, including the person experiencing an overdose. This means citizens, including youth, will not be charged for offences such as simple possession for calling 9-1-1 in an emergency.

Carry naloxone, a drug that can temporarily reverse an opioid overdose. Naloxone is available free-of-charge in Halton at:

– Regional Health Clinics (in Acton, Burlington, Georgetown, Milton and Oakville) and Halton Region Needle Exchange Program (Exchange Works)

– Some local pharmacies. To find a pharmacy that distributes naloxone, visit the Ontario government’s Where to get a free naloxone kit web page.

Never use alone. Don’t use drugs alone, and don’t let those around you use alone either. If you overdose when you are alone, there will be no one there to help you. If you are using with someone else, don’t use at the same time.

Go slow. The quality of street drugs is unpredictable. Any drug can be cut with, or contaminated by, other agents or drugs (e.g. fentanyl), which in very small amounts can be harmful or fatal. Know your tolerance and always use a small amount of a drug

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Bookstore chain teams up with schools to increase the number of books in school libraries.

News 100 blueBy Staff

September 18, 2019



Burlington’s Tecumseh Public school is going to be part of the Indigo Love of Reading Foundation’s Adopt a School program, running now through to October 6, 2019!

The fundraising initiative connects Indigo Brant with Tecumseh Public School and the surrounding community to help provide support for much-needed additional library resources. With an inadequate library budget of less than $30 per student for the entire year, this local school will now have an opportunity to upgrade its library collection and enrich the lives and education of its students.

Indigo wall sign - booksThe Indigo Love of Reading Foundation believes that the right book at the right moment can change a child’s life forever. And if you are a serious book reader you know how true that statement is.

This year, 182 Canadian high-needs elementary schools across the country have been “adopted” by local Indigo, Chapters and Coles stores in their communities who will fundraise on their behalf.

Supporters can participate by making a donation in-store or through the Adopt a School registry at

Each school’s unique registry will consist of 50 books for supporters to shop during the campaign. When a book is purchased from a school’s registry, Indigo will double the impact of each customer’s donation by providing an additional copy of that book to the school, enabling even more children and youth to benefit.

Talk to your child’s teacher or ask the people at the bookstore if you find this is something you would like to do.

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