Mental health and student proficiency levels top issues for District School Board

By Pepper Parr

April 18th, 2023



Chair of the Halton District School Board Margo Shuttle worth commented yesterday on the statements made by the Minister of Education who apparently wanted the Board to take a clearly defined position on the attire of an Oakville High School teacher who is not currently in a classroom

Halton District School Board chair Margo Shuttleworth

Shuttle worth explained that the Director of Education has been given the task of bringing in some support to guide the trustees but that has yet to happen.

The Board of Education has yet to get its budget back from the Ministry “so we are not sure just what we have to work with” said Shuttleworth.

She added that requiring teachers to have proficiency with math is useful – what she was not able to comment on is where the 1000 additional teachers the Minister mentioned are going to come from.

The selling of school properties is something the government wants to have more of a role in – Burlington City Manager Tim Commisso has a clear plan for what he hopes to be able to do with any surplus property that becomes available. Burlington would appear to be ahead of the province in its thinking.

Social distancing.

Asked what the overriding concern is for the trustees Shuttle worth said “without a doubt – the health of our students – particularly their mental health”

The pandemic hasn’t helped but there is a larger problem – children don’t appear to play anymore – their lives seem to be determined by the number of online friends they have and the number of “likes” they have accumulated.

The Director of Education has sponsored several on line session on mental health issues for parents that have been very well received.

Schools, like every other sector, are dealing with a level of change that is taking to time to understand and then adapt to.

It will be interesting to see who the people in wards 1&2 choose is as their trustee. There are eight candidates.

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