November 2019

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Message from the Executive

Dear Parents

Just six weeks ago, school board trustees were asked to consider a school closure.  

Since then, DPAC has not only attended meetings with District staff and PAC executives of the impacted schools, but also supported the PACs to ensure their voices were heard at the VSB and presented at a VSB Facilities committee meeting. In the most recent board meeting this week, the trustees voted to stop the closure process, with many trustees echoing concerns raised by the DPAC. 

Last spring, the board voted to conduct a year-long consultation prior to approving a district Long Range Facilities Plan (LRFP).  DPAC hopes to learn the details of this consultation soon. We believe that school closures (if any) should happen in the context of the LRFP; guided by a vision for education articulated by the trustees; informed by authentic, informed consultation with stakeholders and following the latest guidelines from the provincial government.  

Also of note in recent board meetings, the trustees approved a number of motions related to sustainability including support for the ongoing Climate Action strikes and the declaration of a climate emergency.  In support of these motions, the DPAC’s November 28th general meeting will focus on sustainability actions taken by groups within the district. For more information and to register, please see the event page.

In both supporting the board and challenging the board to do better, the DPAC is doing important work advocating for parents at the district level.  To improve our capacity now and into the future, we welcome additional nominations to our executive.  For more information, contact

Thank you for your support,
Vancouver DPAC

Upcoming DPAC Events

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

November is:  Adoption Awareness Month

Useful Information & Resources

Active Transportation

Diverse Learners


  • The Core Competencies within the K-12 Curriculum have been revised & finalized. Check out this 4 part video series (links inside pdf


  • The Ministry of Labour recently introduced changes to the Employment Standards Act to ensure that the work children and young people do is age-appropriate and safe for their health and development. These changes will bring BC in line with international child employment standards and align BC with regulations in almost all other Canadian jurisdictions that protect children from dangerous work. Before they move forward with specific rules around child employment, they would like feedback (deadline Nov 15) from parents and youth on:
    • what types of work are appropriate for children and youth
    • what special rules (if any) should there be for children and youth engaged in this work
    • should there be exemptions and what might those be?
  • Note: some jobs are already exempt, including: babysitters, performers in recorded and live entertainment, newspaper carriers, and students in work-study programs. These jobs will not be impacted by the new age requirements or rules around light work.

Expand/Embrace Your Indigenous Knowledge

  • BC tables the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) legislation (watch) (info)
  • This November 8th is National Aboriginal Veterans Day, a day of remembrance and commemoration of the contributions of Indigenous veterans in the First and Second World Wars, as well as the Korean War. This Aboriginal Veterans Day, we would like to express our gratitude for the contributions Indigenous veterans have made to Canada and the world. (learn more)

Mental Health

  • Inclusive Trauma Informed Practice Through a Lens of Cultural Safety - A workshop that will help participants  better understand what trauma is, how to recognize its signs and symptoms, and develop strategies to sensitively and compassionately support children and their families. (info)


  • For parents of teens from counselor;The teen years can be an adventure and a transition for the whole family. For caregivers, it can be helpful to remember that young people with supportive family relationships and connection to school make better decisions in all areas of their lives. And, when families are connected to teens’ school and community activities, youth are stronger, healthier and better able to live up to their full potential. Stay in touch by:
    • Visit the secondary school website and read the daily newsletter
    • Signing up for the school app if they have one
    • Watch for family nights, parent-teacher night, drama productions, sporting & music events (consider attending as a family, whether your child plays or not!)
    • Reach out to your PAC, the grade 8 counsellor and to SACY family engagement
  • Wednesday, November 13 - Parenting in a Digital World - Windermere Secondary (details and registration)
  • Friday, November 15 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 (Chinese/English/French-中/英/法语-anglais/chinois/français) (poster
    • November 15, 2019 – Healthy Development 健康成长
  • December 12, 2019 at Sir Charles Tupper Secondary, 6:30 - 8:30 pm - SACY Adult Toolkit. Increase your health literacy around youth development and substances (vaping, “weed," alcohol or others.) Gain facts, bust myths, and get comfortable having conversations with youth at this friendly, non-judgmental evening for adults.  Limited seating! Please register at:

Substance Abuse

  • B.C. school trustees ask for provincial, federal aid to stomp out student vaping (Chek News). [BCSTA] Members approved a motion at the association's provincial council meeting urging federal and provincial governments to make funding available for vape education and cessation for students ... Health Minister Adrian Dix said in September the province would act soon to combat the increase in teen vaping and e-cigarette use.


DPAC Resources


Provinical Funding Model

  • Funding Model Review Working Group Reports - Recommendations from the Ministry of Ed's funding model working groups have been released.
    • Financial Management
    • Adult and Continuing Education
    • Inclusive Education
    • Online Learning
    • Related Advocacy:
      • BCSTA At the October 26, 2019 meeting of the BCSTA Provincial Council (representing all 60 boards of education in our province), members passed the following motion: “That BCSTA urge the Ministry of Education to ensure all boards of education are provided the opportunity to model and / or pilot the new funding formula recommendations prior to implementation in order to provide feedback on the positive and negative implications of the proposed recommendations, the impact on the ability of our districts to strengthen success for all students and the ability to ensure a system that is equitable, predictable and fair for all school districts.(letter to the Ministry here)


  • Parent Advocacy - co-presented with Parents' Alliance for Differently Abled Learners (PADAL) about parent advocacy
  • (D)PAC 101



Highlights: Board Meeting October 28

  • Watch the recording of the meeting.
  • The agenda for the October meeting of the Vancouver School Board included a number of important matters - a recommendation proceed to public consultation about the proposed closure of Queen Elizabeth Annex, bylaws for adoption and several motions, including an emergent one pertaining to future Climate Action Strikes.
  • A number of important motions were before the Board for consideration and approval. 
    • The Board approved two motions advancing collaboration on track and field facilities with the Park Board. In addition, two lease bylaw motions were passed.
    • Board decided not to enter into consultation with the broader school community on a proposal to close QEA.
  • The Board also considered several notices of motion.
    • A motion was passed directing staff to investigate how other boards of education manage questions and answers at public board meetings, and to report back findings in January.
    • A motion to create a strategic plan addressing racism and discrimination was referred to the Student Learning and Well-Being Committee, as was a motion to address the issue of vaping and signage in and on Board facilities.
    • A motion to support lowering the voting age to 16 was also referred to the Student Learning and Well-Being Committee.
    • A motion that the Board affirm the application of the United Nations Declaration of Rights for Indigenous Peoples in its policies, procedures and decision making, and work to implement the Declaration was referred to the Policy and Governance Committee.
    • An emergent motion was passed that the District supports participation in the Climate Strike on November 29 and in subsequent strikes so that staff can voluntarily support/participate, consulting with union locals as necessary, and excusing student absences with parental permission per usual school procedures.

Ministry of Education

In the News

Public School Employer Collective Bargaining

  • There is still a moratorium/media blackout on the ongoing BCPSEA / BCTF mediation.
  • As mentioned under VSB, support staff unions local negotiations have been completed
Hero photo by the yes man, Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0) license
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