Comox Valley trustees will discuss ‘Balanced calendar options’

Balanced calendar options for School District 71 are expected to be presented to the Board of Education at its October meeting.

Balanced calendar options for School District 71 are expected to be presented to the Board of Education at its October meeting.

At Tuesday’s meeting, trustee Rick Grinham brought forward a recommendation that the board direct district staff to “provide an overview of the use of a balanced school calendar for SD71.”

Grinham pointed out other school district’s are taking similar actions.

“The legislation has changed and there is a number of school districts looking at various different calendar options. BCSTA (British Columbia School Trustees Association) is also doing some research, provincially and nationally on what calendars could look like,” he said. “I’m just curious to find out what it would look like.”

Board chair Tom Weber wanted to be clear about the board’s direction on the matter.

“Maybe this is my personal anxiety sitting on the board for this many years, but I just want to be really clear,” he said. “This isn’t the board saying we’re going to do anything, this is about curiosity.”

The recommendation was carried.

Board of Education meetings are held at the school board office board room at 607 Cumberland Rd. in Courtenay. The date is usually the last Tuesday of the month. For more information on the meeting, visit

• • •

School District 71’s director of finance noted enrolment numbers have declined as expected when he reported on the numbers to date.

As of Sept. 18, SD71 had 7,466 kindergarten to Grade 12 students enrolled. This number is down from the 9,526 enrolled in the district as of Sept. 30 last year.

However, Ron Amos noted an increase in kindergarten students — from 513 last year to 550 as of Sept. 18. He added kindergarten enrolment is expected to continue to increase in the coming years.

Official enrolment numbers are not in yet.

• • •

Implementation of the ERASE Bullying (Expect Respect and A Safe Education) Strategy — which was announced by the Province in June — will get underway this year.

Regional training of school educators, the creation of an online reporting tool for students, and filling the roles of safe school coordinators are in the works this year.

Boards of education are expected to designate one professional development day to focus on anti-bullying.

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