Our priorities are designed to advocate for conditions that support and improve student achievement and well-being. All students must be given the opportunity to experience success in school and in life. Education must be supported within a framework of values that ensures young people will become caring, responsible, and productive citizens. First-rate curriculum and teaching must be reinforced by a culture that nurtures the values of universality, inclusiveness, human rights, respect and kindness.
OPSBA’s five multi-year priorities are:
- Advocating for the Whole Child and Student Well-Being
- Advancing Reconciliation: First Nations, Métis and Inuit Education
- Supporting Trustees as Leaders in Public Education
- Advocating for Sustainable and Equitable Education Funding
- Strengthening Positive Labour Relations
OPSBA’s Board of Directors has assigned areas of emphasis to these priorities and endorsed actions aimed at achieving successful outcomes.
How are priorities developed?
Priority-setting at OPSBA follows a four-step process:
- Input on priorities sought from all trustees and school boards
- Individual responses discussed at Regional Meetings and further input added
- Complete input from trustees, Member Boards and Regional Meetings considered at April Board of Directors meeting
- Presentation of priorities and endorsement at OPSBA’s AGM in June
What steps are taken to put priorities into action?
After the AGM, OPSBA’s Executive Council holds an in-depth planning session in August. This results in a recommended framework for action which is sent to the Board of Directors for approval. Planning incorporates:
- Consideration of the priority areas approved for each year;
- Review of the significant concerns of Member Boards;
- Member Board resolutions approved at the AGM; and
- Analysis of the critical current issues on the public education front.
The key priorities and actions become the Association’s major areas of focus for the year ahead. They drive how OPSBA directs resources, manages issues and plans activities. This positions the organization to meet the challenges of the education agenda in the current environment. The priorities describe to the broader public what the Association stands for and what its specific positions are on the key issues affecting public education in Ontario today. The Association’s time, expertise and resources are directed at these positions. They also help guide decision-making in the year ahead. A report on progress achieved in priority areas is provided each June in the Annual Report.
How is the ongoing work of OPSBA managed?
There will always be a range of ongoing and emerging initiatives and issues relevant to the Association’s mission and connected to the key priorities. They are a focus of attention because they clearly support the values of publicly funded education, the interests of Member Boards and take into account government policy directions. Above all, they are focused on the best interests of students.
OPSBA is an issue-driven organization and exists to provide for the service needs of its members. Its role is to advocate for public education. Members expect current and emerging issues to be identified, prioritized and managed in a time-sensitive and effective way. They also expect a range of information, professional development and advocacy services to support their responsibilities at the local and provincial levels. Each year’s work plan ensures a balance between timely, strategic response to critical issues and a continuum of services to Member Boards.