Picture of Cathy Fountas
by Cathy Fountas - Thursday, 9 February 2012, 4:37 PM
Hello SD63 PACS,
At the last COPACS meeting on February 2nd/12 some items were brought up that need to be shared with your PAC members please

All grade 12 students will receive report cards from Semester 1, while the rest of the students will not receive them as announced by the Ministry of Education deputy minister, James Gorman. So there will be no blank report cards issued this time. The School Board wishes to remind and encourage all parents and guardians to contact teachers directly to receive information regarding student performance and grades. Also please note that the secondary schools have scholarship information on their websites under the "Student" or "Grad" tabs at the top and staff members who may assist in scholarship applications are also listed there.

The School Board passed a motion in January that approved the shifting of recess, for elementary schools only, to the end of the day as of April 2nd,2012 only if the board trustees are sufficiently satisfied by the March school board meeting that all logistical and safety issues have been resolved regarding any change to dismissal procedures. Please note, the change in recess time does not result in a shortened day or early dismissal of students and parents and guardians will not be required to pick up students early.

Due to the lower level of supervision during recess, there may be minor conflicts occurring on the playground during the day that may not be fully resolved by the district staff on duty. To help deal with these events, Sidney Elementary teachers are holding "community circles" in classrooms after recesses so that any concerns can be worked out in a positive way according to WITS and restitution practices. Suggest this at your school if the same need exists.

There is still no positive movement in negotiations between the BCTF and the BCPSEA regarding teachers' contracts. There is a possibility of some legislation from the government when the house resumes sitting on February 14th, 2012, but this may solely focus on class size/composition Bill 27/28 issues.

The annoyance and frustration is perhaps building up amongst pac members and indeed some schools have begun an email campaign to the Ministry of Education and the NDP Education Critic. The greater number of individuals who send an email or letter the greater the impact at the Ministry of Educaiton and COPACS continually encourages individuals to add their voice and opinion to the public education conversation.

Email contacts:
Minister of Education, George Abbott:
NDP Leader, Adrian Dix:
NDP Education Critic, Robin Austin:
Deputy Minister of Education, James Gorman:
BCTF President, Susan Lambert : or

COPACS Executive Elections April 2012 Meeting
The Annual General Meeting of COPACS will be held on Thursday April 5th, 2012 at 7pm and new individuals will be needed to step up to fill the COPACS executive board. We are having great conversations at our COPACS meetings and are providing direct feedback on many important issues to our school board trustees and superintendent who attend these meetings. Please help keep these conversations going by playing a role on the COPACS executive team next year.

Become more informed about new education programs being suggested or offered, school board policies that may impact students, new concepts and learning trends/tools from our school board superintendent, discuss issues directly with our school board trustees. Become engaged at the district level and advocate for the best education system possible for all students in Saanich. If you have been on a school PAC executive, then you already have the necessary experience to be on COPACS executive and even if you haven't but just want to support our public education system in Saanich, then join COPACS!

The COPACS board represents all three zones, North, Central and South Saanich and from all school levels, Elementary, Middle and Secondary to be a fair advocate in our district. Executive Positions on COPACS team: President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, Board Committee Representatives, First Nation Liaison, Communication Director, Parent Education Director. Past president will be filled by prior year's president and also a new position is being considered to represent the unique concerns of special needs/IEP students (no formal title has been determined yet) and will be brought forward for discussion at the March 2012 meeting. Some of the current members of executive will be returning and all positions can be shared with the exception of Treasurer.
If you would like more information then please contact the nomination committee:
Cathy Fountas at who will become past president next year.
Jacqueline Peacock at

Next COPACS meeting is on Thursday March 1st,2012 at 7pm in the Saanich Schools Education Centre building, behind Keating Elementary's parking lot and portable.

Thank you and see you there!
Cathy Fountas
COPACS President