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KPDSB welcomes new Mental Health Leader

25 Feb. 2016

Media Release - February 25, 2016

It is with great pleasure that the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board announces our new Mental Health Leader, Ms. Candice Kerkermeier. 

Candice comes to us from FIREFLY, a key organizational partner involved in the delivery of children’s mental health services.  She brings extensive experience in the delivery of clinical mental health services, as well as mental health promotion activities, targeting both children and youth in our schools.

As the KPDSB enters year five of the provincial Mental Health Initiative, Candice will continue to collaborate with the School Mental Health ASSIST Team to disseminate resources for increased mental health literacy for staff and strengthen pathways to care for vulnerable students.

She will also continue to focus on implementation of the key priorities with the KPDSB Mental Health Strategy including focused efforts of system support to school staff and administrators to effectively develop and lead “Mentally Healthy Schools”. 

Ms. Kerkermeier stated:

 “I am very excited to join the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board team.  The KPDSB is an extremely dynamic and innovative Board that has done and continues to do a great deal of work in regards to mental health promotion and literacy.  I plan to carry that work forward and continue to build pathways with our community partners to support the mental health of all students.”

Superintendent of Education, Joan Kantola expressed enthusiasm for the new appointment: 

“We are extremely excited to hire Ms. Kerkermeier for the Mental Health Leader positon.  She has worked extensively in many of our schools and brings a global mental health perspective and level of expertise to our Board.  Ms. Kerkermeier will continue to develop strong partnerships with FIREFLY and help to build capacity within the staff in support of students who have mental health issues and help them to be more ready for learning.”

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KPDSB releases 2015 Director's Annual Report

11 Feb. 2016


To view the 2015 Director's Annual Report, please click here.

Message from Sean Monteith, Director of Education

On behalf of the Keewatin-Patricia District School, I am very pleased to present to all of our families, Trustees, communities, First Nations partners, staff, and of course our students the 2015 Director of Education Annual Report.

As I reflected on the past year and the events that defined it in the KPDSB, it became clear that in addition to being a very busy 12 months, one also becomes aware of how progressive and innovative our staff and our schools truly are. With the full impact of the Board's Efficacy Review, that three years ago identifying that it was incumbent on us to rethink how we offered programs, delivered courses, appropriated resources in our schools, and unleash an out-of-the-box approach to designing new opportunities, the full regional scale of change within the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board has become obvious. At the center of our work, continues to be the Board's Vision Statement:
All stakeholders create a culture of learning so that students come first.

This stance, affectionately now known as "Kids First", has been the catalyst for many changes and revisions to how we have traditionally brought educational opportunities to all of our communities, as well as increasing our reach into the far north of the province. As we have learned first-hand, stating you put students first by centering every decision made around their needs, is far easier than it is implementing on a daily basis; so much so that it becomes the cultural norm for the organization. Putting kids first, often can mean decisions that alter traditional practices, depart from comfort levels that adults have become accustomed to, and in some cases create challenge. But in our opinion, there can be no greater cause to advocate for, than the cause of empowering a young person to believe they can make their life better, and in the process ...the lives of those around them better too. The KPDSB is about as diverse and expansive a school district as one can find anywhere in the country, and we continue to grow in a number of places. Our approach to ultimately attaining our belief of a"Kindergarten to Diploma" strategy redefines what true student success is. It suggests that as a school board, we make it our cause that every child, sibling and parent who comes to us without a high school diploma,will get our best efforts to ensure they have that very chance. Earlier this year, while talking about the future of the North with Ministry of Education officials, the comment was made tome, that the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board is synonymous with never quitting, accepting hard luck and circumstances, and an organization that is beating the odds. With the future of Northern children on the line, the stakes have never been higher nor more deserving of our all-out very best and exhaustive efforts.

Warm Regards,

Sean Monteith
Director of Education
Keewatin-Patricia District School Board

Tags: http://www.kpdsb.on.ca/pages/view/directors-annual-report

KPDSB focuses on innovation and specialized programming in schools

11 Feb. 2016

Media Release - February 11, 2016

Trustees of the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board met at Dryden High School on Tuesday, February 9, 2016, for a regular board meeting.

The February “Students Come First” presentation titled ‘Beaver Brae Secondary School Wrestling Club’ was received by Trustees.  Matt Lawrence, Recreation and Wellness Coordinator for the Kenora area, accompanied by students from our Kenora area elementary schools, provided Trustees with a look into the pilot recreation program that began in September, 2015.  Lawrence runs a variety of programs for students in the Kenora area, including the Playground Activity Leaders is Schools program (PALS), the Kilometer Running Club, and a Wrestling Club.  Many of the recreation activities take place during nutrition breaks at schools allowing all students the opportunity to participate.  Trustees heard how the new programs are encouraging and supporting students in participating in physical activity each day, healthy eating, resolving conflicts, building confidence and developing leadership skills. 

Sean Monteith, Director of Education, presented the 2015 Director’s Annual Report.  The Director’s Annual Report is a report to the communities and stakeholders our schools serve, and highlights the progressive and innovative work of our staff.  2015 was a year of change in the KPDSB, with our Efficacy work and our commitment to always putting kids first bringing about much of that change.  The report speaks to the exhaustive work of our schools and staff to improve the lives of children in the North, and their families, by striving to offer every possible opportunity to students in our classrooms.  With a focus on specialized programming options, and celebrating the many partnerships that are crucial to the success of these programs, the report is a compilation of written documents and videos.  To view the report, please visit www.kpdsb.on.ca or click here.

Monteith said "I am pleased and proud to present to all of our communities and families the Director's Annual Report for 2015; it is an accurate reflection of the tremendous work undertaken across the entire Keewatin-Patricia District School Board over the past 12 months. It also gives very clear insight into the direction we will continue to take with added aggressiveness, as a learning organization built around Northern Ontario children and their futures."

Caryl Hron, Superintendent of Education, presented the 2016-2017 Draft School Year Calendar.  The calendar was approved by our Board of Trustees but remains as a draft calendar pending approval by the Ministry of Education.  To view the 2016-2017 Draft School Year Calendar, please visit www.kpdsb.on.ca or click here.

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ETFO offers workshop to staff to support and welcome refugee families to schools

05 Feb. 2016

Presented by the Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario, this workshop will give information and strategies to support elementary educators who will be welcoming refugees and newcomers into school communities.

Please click here to view the pdf.

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CBC News: The National - The KPDSB Hockey Solution

22 Jan. 2016

Our schools in Dryden and Kenora were visited by a news team from CBC's The National with Peter Mansbridge in early January to learn more about our Hockey Canada Skills Academies.  With nearly 350 students registered in Dryden, Kenora and Sioux Lookout in the first years of the accredited programs, we are planning expansions in Dryden and Sioux Lookout, as well as the launch of a new Hockey Canada Skills Academy in the Red Lake and Ear Falls areas for September 2015.

The report has received wide spread attention from across the nation with Canadian Olympians and athletes, public figures and even NHL players sharing the story.  These programs are about so much more than just hockey!  Below are links to both the CBC report and our Hockey Canada Skills Academy video.  

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