13 Dec. 2017
KPDSB celebrates excellence at Dryden High School, receives update on KPDSB/NAN partnership
Media Release - November 14, 2016
Trustees met at Dryden High School on Tuesday, November 8, for a regular board meeting.
The November “Students Come First” presentation titled ‘Skills for Life’ was received by Trustees. Dryden High School (DHS) teachers Paul and Dave Darling, accompanied by DHS students, shared a glimpse into technology programs offered at DHS. The classes offered through DHS’s technology department are vast, including transportation, communications, construction and manufacturing technology, computer sciences and robotics, dual credits (where students can earn both a high school and college credit) in welding and basic hand tools, and an integrated trades bundle credit program. Students at the presentation shared what the technology courses mean to them, telling Trustees that the hands on learning offered through the tech classes reduces stress, provides creative outlets, builds confidence, and increases engagement while providing an opportunity to explore new experiences and find out what they are interested in, all while having some fun during the school day.
A group of DHS staff also made a presentation to Trustees, titled ‘A Story of our Successful Graduates and Leaders of Tomorrow’. DHS teachers Jason Stevenson (Languages Department Head, English), Kurt Schmidt (Science Department Head, Physics, Outdoor Education), Blair Roberts (Senior Biology and Chemistry, Environmental Science), Nicole Moline (Senior English, Anthropology) and Joanna Ulisse-Caren (Senior Math - Calculus and Vectors, Advanced Functions, Data Management) shared some of the strategies they use in their classrooms as they work to prepare their students for their careers of choice. All agreed on the importance of challenging their students through inquiry based strategies to support them in becoming resilient, self-sufficient learners who can think critically and form out of the box solutions to any challenges they may face in the future.
Following the teachers presentation, videos of DHS alumni were shared where former students spoke about how their time at DHS prepared them for the careers and post secondary studies they have chosen. Trustees heard many of the students not only felt they were well prepared for their programs, but that they watched their classmates struggle and were grateful to the staff at DHS for going above and beyond to make sure they had the tools they needed to succeed. The students spoke about specific staff in the building who had impacts on them, often identifying more than one teacher or staff member, and extended their appreciation and thanks to their former teachers for their support, which often continued past graduation.
Michael Boos, KPDSB principal currently on secondment with Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN), presented the NAN/KPDSB partnership update. In 2013, discussions began between NAN and the KPDSB to look at new ways of support northern children. Through those discussions, a partnership was formed to develop and implement a pilot program to support Frist Nation schools within the NAN territory though leadership development, while working collaboratively to help design and promote strategies to equip First Nation students with the self-confidence and educational opportunities to be successful in reaching their education goals. Beginning steps of the pilot program include, but are not limited to, an assessment of what is needed, on the ground assistance based on community needs, support for teacher evaluations, retention strategies, transitions strategies, and principal mentorship. Participation by NAN communities is voluntary, with the following communities participating in the initial pilot program as of November 8, 2016: Fort Severn First Nation, North Spirit Lake First Nation, Webequie First Nation, Marten Falls First Nation, Long Lake #58 First Nation, and Mattagami First Nation. Each First Nation will work directly with Boos in developing a plan to meet their needs.
Dryden High School’s Kieran McMonagle recognized at 2016 Guiding the Journey: Indigenous Educator Awards
Media Release - November 10, 2016
The KPDSB is extremely proud to announce that Dryden High School’s Four Directions Program’s Lead, Kieran McMonagle, is one of nine educators across Canada to receive an individual award at the 2016 Guiding the Journey: Indigenous Educator Awards. McMonagle received the Role Model award at a ceremony in Toronto.
The awards, presented by Indspire, recognize the achievements of outstanding Indigenous educators who are exemplary in their innovation and dedication to helping First Nation, Metis and Inuit children and youth succeed. These educators are creating lasting change in the communities they serve and enriching the field of Indigenous education through their contributions.
McMonagle, stated “I am both honored and humbled to have had the opportunity to be nominated let alone win. It is exciting to have the work we are doing through Four Directions recognized at the national level.”
Sean Monteith, Director of Education, said “The Keewatin-Patricia District School Board is incredibly proud of the work Kieran has done for our students; and that pride extends into the exemplary work by all staff at DHS that supports students.”
The Four Directions High School Graduation Coach approach started at Dryden High School in June of 2014. Four Directions offers First Nation, Metis, Inuit (FNMI) students the opportunity to work with Graduation Coaches who assist with leading and implementing programs, services and other supports to meet the unique needs of First Nation, Metis & Inuit students and their families, with a focus on student success and graduation. Since its inception, the Four Directions program has expanded to Beaver Brae Secondary School in Kenora, and most recently, to Queen Elizabeth District High School in Sioux Lookout.
KPDSB Sees Enrolment Growth for Second Year in a Row: Credits Innovative Programs and Front-Line Staff
Media Release - November 9, 2016
The Keewatin-Patricia District School Board, for the second year in a row is pleased to report increased student enrolment, both in projection and across the system. The Board credits several factors for the increase in enrolment including its expansion of innovative student-based programs that increase student engagement, the efforts of front-line school staff to put the needs of students first, and the reinforcement of high expectations for all. Director of Education Sean Monteith also credited the tireless efforts to work in partnership with major First Nation Organization partners such as the Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN), Seven Generations Educational Institute, and Keewaytinook Okimakanak (KO) as positively contributing to the enrolment increase in the KPDSB.
In 2016, the KPDSB continued to improve on Graduation rates for Indigenous students, expand alternative education programs for all students, and focus in on intensive kindergarten and early learning programing, all of which have contributed to increased enrolment numbers.
Budgeted enrolment for the 2016-2017 school year was 4,832 students. Current enrolment for the KPDSB is 4,968, 136 students above the projected or budgeted enrolment (49 students above budget in elementary and 87 students above budget in secondary).
Schools with the greatest increases in enrolment include:
- Beaver Brae Secondary School in Kenora – 41 students above budget
- Queen Elizabeth District High School in Sioux Lookout – 24 students above budget
- Dryden High School – 32 students above budget
- New Prospect Public School in Dryden – 22 students above budget
- Sioux Mountain Public School in Sioux Lookout – 19 students above budget
- Ear Falls Public School – 11 students above budget
Sean Monteith, Director of Education, said “The Keewatin-Patricia District School Board engaged in a significant enrolment strategy three years ago, that called on all staff to make the “student priority”, our main priority, and to do whatever it took to engage our learners in every way possible so that they could succeed in school. More importantly, we asked everyone to look at how we met the needs of students that encouraged out-of-the-box and innovative thinking; the KPDSB Hockey Academy program is just one example of such thinking. Today is a good day for the KPDSB.”
Employment Opportunity - Superintendent of Education and Human Resources
Hockey Canada Skills Academies officially underway following unprecedented expansion
Media Release - November 1, 2016
Photo Caption: Kenora area Hockey Canada Skills Academy students with donated hockey equipment from Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities and Reebok.
The KPDSB’s Hockey Canada Skills Academies (HCSA) are officially underway in schools across Northwestern Ontario. To date, nearly 800 students (elementary and secondary) are enrolled in our HCSA in the communities of Dryden/Vermilion Bay, Ignace, Kenora, Red Lake/Ear Falls, and Sioux Lookout for the 2016-2017 school year (enrolment in the HCSA in October 2015 was 300 students).
Our HCSA offer students a multitude of opportunities under the guidance of experienced coaches who are also qualified teachers (please click here for more information on our coaching staff). Classroom and school based staff continue to report increased engagement and improved attendance for students involved in the academies. Teachers and coaches are also seeing an increase in students’ self-confidence, as well as a willingness to challenge themselves as students and athletes, a heightened feeling of belonging and community from being a part of a team, development of important skills to help balance both school and sport, and improved awareness of the importance of physical activity and healthy eating habits.
The expansion of the HCSA for the 2016-2017 school year would not have been possible without the support of our staff, the families of our students, our communities and municipalities, and a large number of organizations and volunteers who donate their time and resources to support the program.
Dave Tresoor, HCSA Lead for the KPDSB, stated “We are completely overwhelmed by the generosity shown to our Hockey Canada Skills Academies to help students who want to play the game, whether for the first time or as a returning player. Thank you from all of us at the KPDSB to every individual, volunteer and organization who stepped up to support this program and ultimately, our students. To see the growth of the academies over the years has been tremendous and we are excited about the future of the program.”
Tresoor added “We especially want to thank Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities for their support. Hundreds of KPDSB students have been given the opportunity to participate in sport through their efforts to help us remove barriers that might otherwise prevent a child from playing.”
Donations of hockey equipment and other supports have also been received from Triple Play (Kenora), the Mayor’s Committee for Children and Youth (City of Dryden), Knobby’s Kids Hockey (Frank Spry), The Tate Group Inc. (Stan Flemming), and Bamaji Air, as well as Kevin Berube and Christine Bauermann and the parents the of the GTKL’s North York Knights Minor Midget AA team. Individual donations have also come in from families and community members across the board area.
About Hockey Canada Skills Academies
The KPDSB’s Hockey Canada Skills Academies are designed to challenge and inspire all students who participate. They are a complete program that includes education, on-ice skills, off-ice strength and conditioning, mental training, and personal and team development. On-ice sessions include hockey fundamentals such as skating, puck handling, checking, passing, and tactics. When students are not on ice they are exposed to sport specific fitness training, floorball, stick handling and shooting.
Hockey Skills Academies in the KPDSB started in 2012 at Beaver Brae Secondary School in Kenora with 23 students in grades 10-12. The 2015-2016 school year was the first year we offered fully accredited Hockey Canada Skills Academies to students in both elementary and secondary schools in Dryden, Kenora and Sioux Lookout with approx. 300 students participating. The 2016-2017 school year saw further expansion of the HCSA into Ignace, Red Lake, Ear Falls and Vermilion Bay with approximately 800 students now enrolled in the program.