The Legislative Assembly of Ontario has returned to Queen’s Park as of October 25. One of the first expected bills to be introduced is to focus on housing and be a follow up to Bill 3, Strong Mayors, Building Homes Act, 2022. The Ontario PC Party’s 2022 annual general meeting was to be held at the Toronto Congress Centre October 24 and 25 to elect a new executive, as well as regional representatives. Michael Diamond will be acclaimed PC Party president, succeeding the outgoing Brian Patterson.

Plan to Catch Up Next Steps and Provincial EQAO Results

Following the release of Provincial EQAO results, the Minister of Education has announced next steps on their Plan to Catch Up, with a focus on catching up in math, reading and writing. The government also provided details about how to apply and receive “Catch Up Payments.” This includes one-time funding between “$200 to $250 to help pay for student learning supports to help fill gaps that may have emerged because of COVID‑19.”

See the Ministry news release, Province Takes Action to Ensure Students Catch Up.

Visit the Ministry website to apply for Catch Up Payments.

To see EQAO highlights, visit Highlights of Provincial Results, 2021–2022.

See the memo sent to the sector, Release of 2021-22 EQAO Provincial Results, including next steps in the plan.

2023-24 Education Funding Consultation Guide /  Grants For Student Needs

As previously noted, the Ministry of Education has released the 2023-24 Education Funding Guide that focuses on three government priorities: Efficiencies and Reducing Administrative Burden; Capital: Reducing Time to Completion for Capital Projects; Capital: Joint Use of Schools. OPSBA has sent a brief survey to the Board of Directors to gather input, with additional information being sought from the Indigenous Trustees’ Council, senior business officials, and from member board correspondence. A draft document will be shared with both the Education Program and Policy Development Work Groups at their upcoming joint meeting on November 18, 2022.

Skilled Trades Career Fairs

Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development, has announced Level Up!, which is “a series of dynamic, multi-day career fairs highlighting the 144 different skilled trades,” for students in Grades 7 to 12. The fairs will be held in Mississauga (October 25 to 27), London (November 9 and 10), Sudbury (November 14 and 15), Ottawa, (November 22 and 23), and Thunder Bay (November 29).

See the news release, Ontario Launches Skilled Trades Career Fairs for Students. A joint letter from Minister McNaughton and Minister Lecce has been sent to board chairs and directors of education, and a poster with career fair location details is available.

Student Transportation Funding Formula Consultation

OPSBA has been formally invited to participate in a review of the funding formula for student transportation. The sector consultation will include the school board/trustee associations, COSBO and CODE. No meeting date has been determined, but OPSBA will be represented by our Executive Director and President.

Municipal Council and School Board Elections – Election Day!

Election results are now available on the OESC elections website.

OESC is producing an updated Good Governance Guide: 2022-2026 for all school board/trustee associations. The expected timing of the release of digital versions is mid-November, in time for the start of new trustee term. Printed copies will follow and will be sent directly to each association for their distribution. OPSBA plans to send copies directly to each member board in January to allow and encourage trustees to bring to the Public Education Symposium.

OPSBA continued the campaign aimed at encouraging citizens to vote right up to Election Day.

OSTA-AECO / Student Trustees

OSTA-AECO’s Fall General Meeting occurred this past weekend. OPSBA President Cathy Abraham addressed student trustees about the importance of student voice and our strong partnership supporting public education in Ontario. She also announced that nominations are now open for the 2022-2023 Ontario Public Student Trustee Leadership Scholarship. The intent of this award is to recognize outstanding achievement in a leadership role and provide financial support to a graduating public board student trustee to assist with their post-secondary education plans (University, College, or Apprenticeship).

To see President Cathy Abraham’s comments, visit OPSBA on Twitter.

This scholarship is based on an outstanding initiative accomplished during the student trustee’s term and how the initiative positively impacted the students in their board. Two scholarships, in the amount of $500 each, will be awarded.

For more information, visit the OPSBA Student Trustees webpage.

Other News Releases and Information