October 2019


Message from the Chair

Dear Parents,

A lot of discussions will be taking place in the Vancouver School District this year that we will need your input on.  We hope to soon learn the details of the year-long LRFP consultation initiated by the Board; depending on the outcome of the next board meeting, there may be public consultation on a potential closure of Queen Elizabeth Annex; VSB budget 2020-21; and others as they come up.

To facilitate our communication with PACs, we are putting more effort into our liaison relationships with PACs (http://vancouverdpac.org/executive).  This is something we did not do last year, and, while we still continued to grow our engagement with PACs, we feel that having liaison relationships will take that even further and make DPAC more accessible to more PACs.  We hope that PACs will take the opportunity and invite their liaison to one of their PAC meetings this year to learn a bit more about what DPAC does and how the PAC-DPAC relationship benefits both of us.

In September we held our PAC 101 and our first general meeting with Superintendent Suzanne Hoffman presenting on Defining Student Success.  Because we inadvertently scheduled PAC 101 for the same night as many schools' open houses, we will be hold it for a second time later this fall as it is usually one of our highest-attended sessions. Thank you to those parents who did attend and for your feedback, and thank you to those who reached out to tell us they couldn't attend but would still like the opportunity to benefit from the conversation.

Our executive consists of a maximum of 12 parents and we currently have 9 positions filled.  That's a good number, but it means that we can still accept nominations for our open positions. Nominations are officially received at our executive meetings (the next one is October 10th).  They must be made by your PAC, typically through a minuted motion, and the form must be submitted to chair@vancouverdpac.org along with a short bio at least 24 hours prior to an executive meeting to allow us to do necessary due diligence. At this point in time, we are under-represented on the east side of the district and would particularly welcome nominations from PACs there. As a note to interested parents, joining the DPAC executive is not a fast track to solving specific issues at your school and you will be disappointed if that is your motivation.  While we can and do work with with individual PACs on specific issues, our main effort is, of course, at the district level and we encourage parents interested in contributing at that level to volunteer.

Shaun Kalley, DPAC chair 2019-20

Upcoming DPAC Events

  • Thursday, October 10, 7pmDPAC Executive Meeting Rm 180, Vancouver Education Centre 1580 W. Broadway

  • Thursday, October 24, 7pmDPAC General Rm 180, Vancouver Education Centre 1580 W. Broadway

Please let us know if you are hosting any events next month which will be open to the greater community and want included in our newsletter.

Important Dates

October is: Women's History Month; Canadian Library Month, ADHD Awareness Month; Dyslexia Awareness Month

Useful Information & Resources

Active Transportation

Diverse Learners

  • Fri/Sat October 18/19 – BCEd Access Fall Advocacy Conference: Connecting to Strengthen Advocacy in Education. Registration is now open, Surrey.

  • How to (Explain) ADHD - short, informative explanation of ADHD, with the basic definition, some of the most common challenges and offers useful metaphors in an animated format to better illustrate life with ADHD

  • What is Dyslexia? TedEd by Kelli Sandman Hurley "Dyslexia affects up to 1 in 5 people, but the experience of dyslexia isn't always the same. This difficulty in processing language exists along a spectrum -- one that doesn't necessarily fit with labels like "normal" and "defective." Kelli Sandman-Hurley urges us to think again about dyslexic brain function and to celebrate the neurodiversity of the human brain."

Expand/Embrace Your Indigenous Knowledge


  • Flu season is just around the corner. Find out how you can help protect your family. - more info

Mental Health

  • Wednesday, October 16 - Resilience: What the science tells us about raising healthy kids - more info

  • Friday, October 25 - The Art and Science of Calm, featuring the latest science and practice related to cultivating calm and balance in our lives - Magee Secondary - more info


  • Thursday, October 3, 7-8:30 pm - "Social/Emotional Learning: Examining our own Self Awareness" - presented by Partners for Inclusive Education, General Gordon Library, 2268 Bayswater Street (6th and Bayswater) - More information

  • Thursday, October 24, 6PM - 8PM, Encouraging Healthy Eating in Children, presented by VCH Child And Youth Mental Health Services And The Vancouver School Board- more info

  • VSB's Settlement Workers in Schools (SWIS) Program presents a Cross-Cultural Parenting series – My Tween & Me (家长教育讲座) 如何在加国培养下一代 - 子女教育家长研讨会 on Fridays from 9:30-11am at Kerrisdale Community Center. For inquiry & registration: please contact Elisabeth Chan, VSB SWIS 查询或登记: 伊丽莎白陈 778-227-5452 或 echan@vsb.bc.ca (Chinese/English/French-中/英/法语-anglais/chinois/français) (poster)

    • October 11, 2019 – Life at School 学校生活

    • November 15, 2019 – Healthy Development 健康成长

    • January 10, 2020 – Family Relationships 家庭关系

    • February 21, 2020 – Peer Relationships 朋辈关系

    • April 17, 2020 – Today’s World 今天孩子所处的资讯世界

    • May 22, 2020 – Building Community 善用家庭所属的社区


Substance Abuse


  • Apply NOW for Elementary School Sustainability Grants. NEW for 2019-2020, Elementary and Annex schools are invited to take on a sustainability project that teachers and students are passionate about. Schools are eligible to receive a grant of up to $500 that can be used toward a sustainability initiative related to the VSB Environmental Sustainability Plan. Projects can be a thing, an event, a field trip, or equipment for your school or class. For more information, download an application form. Submit completed forms to sustainability@vsb.bc.ca by October 15, 2019.

  • VSB is not the only school district looking at becoming more environmentally conscious. Here are the 2019 Greenest School in Canada winners according to the Canada Green Building Council, a not-for-profit, national organization that has been working since 2002 to advance green building and sustainable community development practices in Canada. The CaGBC is the licence holder for the LEED green building rating system in Canada and supports the WELL Building Standard and GRESB (Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark) in Canada. “A green school is one that actively creates a healthy learning environment while diverting waste, saving energy and instilling a sustainable lifestyle in its students. Our environmental projects teach our students how to lower the school’s carbon footprint and gives them the tools to mentor younger students to do the same.” Johnny Dulku, Teacher and Green Initiative Club Supervisor

DPAC Resources





Highlights: Board Meeting September 23

  • The agenda for the September meeting of the Vancouver School Board included a number of important matters including swearing in of the student trustee for the 2019-2020 school year, declaring climate change as an emergency, supporting students' advocacy efforts through September 27 Climate Action Strike, and consideration of a recommendation to close Queen Elizabeth Annex and supporting students. more details here.


  • SACY (Supporting and Connecting Youth) - SACY Parent and Family Engagement Stream

  • Curriculum and Assessment

  • Community School Teams - initiative of the Vancouver School district to provide evidence-based extra-curricular programming which supports asset development of children and youth enrolled in Vancouver schools

Ministry of Education

In the News

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