Ontario Special Needs Strategy Update for Families - Rehabilitation Services
As a family whose child may be receiving or waiting for rehabilitation services (speech-language pathology, occupational therapy, physiotherapy), we are writing to provide you with an update on upcoming improvements to the delivery of children’s rehabilitation services in your community.
As you may know, in 2014 the government launched the Special Needs Strategy in response to feedback received from families to improve the timeliness, effectiveness and coordination of the services that children and youth with special needs require to fully participate at home, at school, in the community and to achieve goals for adulthood.
A key initiative of the Special Needs Strategy is the integrated delivery of rehabilitation services, including physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language pathology, for children and youth from birth to school exit.
Over the past year, service providers – including community-based Preschool Speech and Language providers, District School Boards, Community Care Access Centres and Children’s Treatment Centres – in communities across the province have worked to develop locally integrated, family-centred ways to deliver children’s rehabilitation services to improve family service experiences and outcomes for children and youth with special needs. In doing so, service providers have engaged with families and youth in our communities to seek their input.
What is Changing?
Once the improvements are implemented, children and youth with rehabilitation service needs and their families will have:
A seamless service experience from birth to school exit, with no gaps in service as children transition to school or between service providers;
- Child, youth and family centred service as parents and children/youth work together with service providers and educators to set goals based on their individual needs and strengths;
- Access to a broad range of high quality interventions (classroom, parent training, educator consultation) in settings that are most appropriate to their needs, and as convenient as possible to families; and
- Continuous and consistent services throughout the calendar year regardless of who delivers them in the community.
Following the ministries’ review of initial local proposals, service providers are now beginning to refine their proposals based on consultation with stakeholders. Based on feedback gathered, they will then begin to develop local plans for implementation of their new local models for the integrated delivery of rehabilitation services in each community.
When Will These Changes Take Place?
These changes will be phased in so that they will not disrupt any services your child may currently be receiving in the community or school. Families currently waiting for services will maintain their place on the waitlist. There will be no reduction in service capacity as a result of this change. Implementation of new service delivery models is expected to begin as early as Fall 2018.
We will continue to work together across service providers in the community to ensure that there will be no gaps in services for your child and that any changes will be seamless for you and your family.
How Can I Get More Information?
We will continue to keep you informed as the new model is developed in your community.
You can also visit the Ministry of Children & Youth Services website at www.children.gov.on.ca for more information about the special needs strategy in Ontario.
For more information or if you have any questions, please contact: Sean Monteith, Keewatin Patricia DSB, 807 468 5571 ext 236
Superintendent of Education
Keewatin Patricia District School Board
KPDSB celebrates excellence at Dryden High School, receives update on KPDSB/NAN partnership
Media Release - November 14, 2016
Trustees met at Dryden High School on Tuesday, November 8, for a regular board meeting.
The November “Students Come First” presentation titled ‘Skills for Life’ was received by Trustees. Dryden High School (DHS) teachers Paul and Dave Darling, accompanied by DHS students, shared a glimpse into technology programs offered at DHS. The classes offered through DHS’s technology department are vast, including transportation, communications, construction and manufacturing technology, computer sciences and robotics, dual credits (where students can earn both a high school and college credit) in welding and basic hand tools, and an integrated trades bundle credit program. Students at the presentation shared what the technology courses mean to them, telling Trustees that the hands on learning offered through the tech classes reduces stress, provides creative outlets, builds confidence, and increases engagement while providing an opportunity to explore new experiences and find out what they are interested in, all while having some fun during the school day.
A group of DHS staff also made a presentation to Trustees, titled ‘A Story of our Successful Graduates and Leaders of Tomorrow’. DHS teachers Jason Stevenson (Languages Department Head, English), Kurt Schmidt (Science Department Head, Physics, Outdoor Education), Blair Roberts (Senior Biology and Chemistry, Environmental Science), Nicole Moline (Senior English, Anthropology) and Joanna Ulisse-Caren (Senior Math - Calculus and Vectors, Advanced Functions, Data Management) shared some of the strategies they use in their classrooms as they work to prepare their students for their careers of choice. All agreed on the importance of challenging their students through inquiry based strategies to support them in becoming resilient, self-sufficient learners who can think critically and form out of the box solutions to any challenges they may face in the future.
Following the teachers presentation, videos of DHS alumni were shared where former students spoke about how their time at DHS prepared them for the careers and post secondary studies they have chosen. Trustees heard many of the students not only felt they were well prepared for their programs, but that they watched their classmates struggle and were grateful to the staff at DHS for going above and beyond to make sure they had the tools they needed to succeed. The students spoke about specific staff in the building who had impacts on them, often identifying more than one teacher or staff member, and extended their appreciation and thanks to their former teachers for their support, which often continued past graduation.
Michael Boos, KPDSB principal currently on secondment with Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN), presented the NAN/KPDSB partnership update. In 2013, discussions began between NAN and the KPDSB to look at new ways of support northern children. Through those discussions, a partnership was formed to develop and implement a pilot program to support Frist Nation schools within the NAN territory though leadership development, while working collaboratively to help design and promote strategies to equip First Nation students with the self-confidence and educational opportunities to be successful in reaching their education goals. Beginning steps of the pilot program include, but are not limited to, an assessment of what is needed, on the ground assistance based on community needs, support for teacher evaluations, retention strategies, transitions strategies, and principal mentorship. Participation by NAN communities is voluntary, with the following communities participating in the initial pilot program as of November 8, 2016: Fort Severn First Nation, North Spirit Lake First Nation, Webequie First Nation, Marten Falls First Nation, Long Lake #58 First Nation, and Mattagami First Nation. Each First Nation will work directly with Boos in developing a plan to meet their needs.
KPDSB launches new application process for employment opportunities
Media Release - December 1, 2016
The Keewatin-Patricia District School Board (KPDSB) is launching a new platform for receiving applications for positions with the organization.
Apply To Education provides a paperless application system that streamlines the recruitment process for applicants by allowing them to fill out one application online and upload all of their supporting documents to complete their portfolio.
Beginning today, when individuals access www.kpdsb.on.ca/pages/view/employment-opportunities they will be directed to https://kpdsb.simplication.com/ to create a profile and apply for jobs. Additionally, job seekers can request to receive e-mail alerts when a new job is advertised for the Board. There is no cost to applicants to utilize this service.
The use of Apply To Education will replace previous procedures for applying for jobs and being hired within the KPDSB. This platform will also provide additional services within the Board, including management of absences for staff as well as internal job postings.
Jocelyn Bullock, Human Resources Manager stated “We are excited to move forward with this project and look forward to the new working relationship with Apply to Education to improve the overall experiences of potential future employees and current staff”.
KPDSB Chair and Vice-Chair acclaimed, Trustee appointments announced, Trustee Appointments Announced
Media Release - December 19, 2016
Trustees of the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board met at Dryden High School on Tuesday, December 13, 2016, for the inaugural board meeting of the 2017 calendar year.
The Board of Trustees committed to stability and direction by acclaiming Trustee Dave Penney as Chair and Trustee Cecile Marcino as Vice-Chair.
The following Trustee appointments were made:
- Trustees Roger Griffiths, Jennifer Kitowski and George Seaton were appointed to the Audit and Finance Committees for a one year term.
- Trustees Lesley Barnes, Desta Buswa and Gerald Kleist were appointed to the Native Education Advisory Council (NEAC) for a one year term.
- Trustee Cecile Marcino was appointed to the Ontario Public School Boards’ Association (OPSBA) Board of Directors.
- Trustee Jennifer Kitowski was appointed as the alternate to the OPSBA Board of Directors.
- Trustee Dave Penney was appointed as the OPSBA voting delegate.
- Trustee David Wilkinson was appointed as the OPSBA voting delegate alternate for the General Meeting.
- Trustees Lesley Barnes and Michelle Guitard were appointed to the Parent Involvement Committee for a one year term.
- Trustees Michelle Guitard and Jennifer Manitowabi were appointed to the Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC) for a one year term.
- Trustee Roger Griffiths was appointed to the Transportation Policy Committee.
- Trustee Lesley Barnes was appointed as the Transportation Policy Committee Alternate.
KDPSB launches new Kindergarten Resource for Registration Week (January 30 to February 3)
We have launched a brand new online resource for families with children starting Kindergarten in the fall (children born in 2013 can start Kindergarten in the fall of 2017).
Our new website can be found at http://buddysystem.ca/
Families can visit the site for everything Kindergarten, including:
- Videos of parents and staff talking about our schools and programs
- Our Full-Day Kindergarten programs
- Dates and times for our schools’ Kindergarten Open Houses
- Specialized programming like our popular Hockey Canada Skills Academies and French Immersion programs
- A new online registration process families can complete from the comfort of their own home
- And so much more!