Board Meeting Highlights

Board News and Updates

Here you will find highlights of the Alberta School Councils' Association (ASCA) Board of Directors Meetings

September 2018

President Allison Pike speaks about the September 29 Board meeting presentation from Alberta Education on the department Business Planning and school council involvement.

YouTube video recording (1.46 minutes)

Meeting Highlights

STEWARDSHIP OF THE ASSOCIATION

The weekend started with a presentation of the ASCA 2017-2018 Audited Financial Statements by auditor Stephen Webber of the Metrix Group. The Board was pleased to see the fiscal year ended well, and books and records of the Association were in very good order. Decisions supporting continued prudent management of the Association’s resources, concluded the discussion.

Committee Work

Through the summer, members of the Advocacy and Governance Committee worked to present a draft of revised Association Bylaws to the Board at this meeting. Their hard work was extremely appreciated, and the Board looks forward to a revised draft for the November 3-4, 2018 meeting.

The Community Engagement Committee was also active, and had recommendations regarding questions for the School Council Engagement Task Force, a survey for all school councils related to isolation rooms, and the importance of keeping education a priority for all parties and candidates running in the upcoming provincial election.

Charting the Path

As with most organizations, the ASCA Board of Directors has responsibility to establish the priorities of the Association for today, and into the future. The path set by the Board, laying out priorities to ensure the Association has a positive impact for its members and education in Alberta, determines the work the Association will do. Board members engaged in critical conversations to shape the priorities, to be presented for approval at the November in-person meeting.

PROVINCIAL LEVEL REPRESENTATION

The Board had the pleasure of welcoming Sarah Monnon and Chrenan Borradaile from Alberta Education, Business Planning. A brief overview of the Alberta Education Business Plan was provided, and the Board given opportunity to provide input related to issues or concerns for school councils in Alberta - which will help inform the Education Business Plan for the upcoming year.

Following a review of numerous opportunities ASCA has had to carry forward its members’ voices at the provincial level, the Board learned more about SOGI 1 2 3, and agreed the resources be available on our website, and that President Allison Pike participate in the SOGI promotional video being produced later this fall.

The Board also directed the ASCA President to utilize digital and social media to more actively promote education as a priority in the political arena as Alberta heads into a provincial election.

March 2018

BOARD PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT (PD) The weekend started Friday evening with a professionally facilitated session to help the Board more deeply understand, review, and revise (if needed), the Mission, Vision, Values and Beliefs of the Association. Discussion also took place related to the purpose of Governance Policies, and how to best create and utilize them to guide the work of the Board. Saturday morning, the Board was engaged in analyzing the results from their Board Self-Evaluation process, facilitated by a seasoned expert. Successes and areas for growth and improvement were highlighted, resulting in seven (7) priorities that the Board established for itself for April 2018 – March 2019.

CONFERENCE & AGM April 20 - 22, 2018 Finalizing the Agenda and Order Paper for the upcoming Annual General Meeting (AGM) was a focus for the Board. In addition, the Board approved the 2018 – 2019 ASCA Budget, to be presented to the members at the AGM. The AGM documents are available on our website, and registration for the event is steadily increasing. We look forward to seeing you at the end of April!

POLICY GOVERNANCE Over the past several weeks, members of the Advocacy and Governance Committee worked extremely hard to present a draft new Governance Policy Manual to the Board at this meeting. Their hard work was rewarded when the Board approved the new Policy Manual, which becomes effective immediately. The timing works well, as the upcoming elections anticipate to welcome a few new members to the Board, and Board Member Orientation is scheduled in May. 

SCHOOL COUNCIL ENGAGEMENT TASK FORCE AND MEMBER FEEDBACK The Board reviewed the summary from the latest round of questions (about the ASCA Conference and AGM) provided to our School Council Engagement Task Force – now available on our website on the What We Heard page. The final round of questions has been distributed to the task force member school councils, with responses being requested by April 30, 2018.

An ASCA Survey to School Councils, seeking a broader source of feedback relating to ASCA and its work, will be sent out in late April or early May – please watch for it and return it; we value your input and very much want to hear from you!

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR SEARCH Following an extensive, nation-wide search involving consideration of several noteworthy candidates, the ASCA Board of Directors has hired a new Executive Director. Previously the ASCA Director of Client Services, and an ASCA field instructor prior to that, Wendy Keiver has accepted the permanent position of Executive Director for the association.

January 2018

BOARD PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT (PD)  The weekend started with a professionally facilitated session focusing on Board Governance. Encouraging generative discussions was a theme, and continued to be a part of the meeting throughout the weekend. We look forward to continuing to learn about, and practice, effective Board Governance. Gaining a greater understanding of the fiduciary responsibilities as Directors and as a Board with respect to financial oversight, was also a PD session provided by our Auditor. In addition to the presentation, we received several print resources to help us learn and grow in this area.

CONFERENCE & AGM April 20 - 22, 2018  The Board was provided an update on the plans for the Conference and Annual General Meeting. Focusing on Student Wellbeing, we have keynote Dr. Lynn Miller offering insight on psychological issues effecting children’s lives, a plenary session with information on resources supporting mental health in Alberta schools and, excited to have the Minister of Education address the delegates. In addition, 30 breakout sessions will provide learning and networking opportunities for parents on school councils from across Alberta. Visit www.albertaschoolcouncils.ca for more information and register early!

AWARDS SEASON  A new award this year: “District School Council Engagement Award” joins our recognition program, in addition to “School Council Parent of Distinction”, “School Council Award of Merit” and “Excellence in Learning Partnership Award”.  Nominations deadline is February 28th, and winners will be recognized at the ASCA Conference. Please visit Awards Information for details.

SCHOOL COUNCIL ENGAGEMENT TASK FORCE  The Board reviewed the summary from the first round of questions (about Bill 1) provided to our School Council Engagement Task Force – now available on our website on the What We Heard page. The second round of questions (about the AGM) will be distributed to the task force member school councils by mid-February.

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR SEARCH  The Hiring Committee, comprised of four (4) members of the Board, presented the process and timeline plan regarding the search for a permanent ASCA Executive Director. The position posting is available on our website, as well as online employment sites.

SKILLS AND KNOWLEDGE DEVELOPMENT  The provincial office continues to be busy helping school councils support and enhance student success in their school communities. To learn more about what we can do for your school council, or school district, please call the office (1-800-661-3470), email services@albertaschoolcouncils.ca or visit our website. We look forward to working with you!

 

October 2017

It was a full agenda at the first face-to-face meeting in the new school year for the Board of Directors.

The Board is now also utilizing Skype for "virtual meetings"  as required, in consideration of cost and time efficiencies.

Thank you to Minister Eggen for visiting on Saturday and meeting the Directors new to the Board.

The Minister had a rich discussion with the ASCA Board on many education matters such as Curriculum, Inclusion, the Nutrition Program, School Fees, Gay Straight Alliances and Provincial Achievement Tests. 

The Assistant Deputy Minister, Wendy Boje also attended and talked about the proposed School Act amendments regarding Age of Access, Age of Common Entry, School Fees and Transportation. She thanked ASCA for encouraging feedback from school councils during what were very tight timelines in the September consultations.

While there is no official announcement of what changes might be made to the School Act, the Assistant Deputy Minister affirmed that the voice of parents through school councils is critical when it comes to changing education legislation.

Also on the agenda, was Janice Boiko from Lloyd Sadd Insurance, who presented information on insurance coverage for the organization and officer/director coverage. This is part of ongoing Board development.

The Board reviewed and approved their Results Plan for 2017-2020

The Board accepted the resignation of Executive Director, Jacquie Hansen, who was recently elected to the St. Albert City Council and named Wendy Keiver, ASCA Director of Client Services, to the position of Acting Executive Director. Wendy’s bio is available online and she can be reached at wendyk@albertaschoolcouncils.ca .

The next meeting of the Board is scheduled for January 27-28, 2018.