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Second Street Straw Bale Garden - funded by the Ward 3 Eco schools Award

At the end of last year, I initiated an Eco-Schools award for those schools in Ward 3 who qualified for Eco-Schools status during the school year. This year, another 13 schools qualified, including Second Street JMS, who has already put the money from the award to good use! I was happy to join them on June 12th, as they planted straw bale gardens for student, staff and the community to enjoy!

Trustee Pamela Gough's Update: June 2nd, 2017

June is an active month as we wrap up the school year. We are just finishing Bike to School week, with more than 300 TDSB schools taking part. Thank you to all schools who joined in this celebration- you gave a valuable message of the importance of healthy active living and the increased mobility that cycling provides to your students.  

I was honoured this week to have met His Holiness Ogyen Trinley Dorje, the 17th Karmapa, at the Queen's Park breakfast hosted by the Parliamentary Friends of Tibet. A revered spiritual leader in the large Tibetan community, the young Karmapa is on his first North American tour.  

VISION ZERO: I put forward a motion at the May 24 Board meeting, which was supported unanimously by all trustees. It calls for the TDSB to set up a task force with the City of Toronto to work together on the City's Vision Zero plan for road safety in school zones. Vision Zero is a road safety strategy which states that every road fatality is preventable and not a single road death is ever acceptable. It has been effective in greatly reducing pedestrian road deaths and serious injuries in many other cities such as Seattle, Copenhagen, New York City and Rotterdam. 

This task force will activate the City's Vision Zero guidelines for improved road infrastructure and traffic safety measures in school zones. There is a strong education component in the road safety plan, so the TDSB is a natural partner with the City of Toronto. Toronto has already established designated zones near schools that require reduced speeds.  

At the provincial level, Bill 65 (Safer School Zones) has been enacted to ease the installation of red light cameras near schools. These cameras reduce driver speeds- important since speeds of 30 km/hr or less are by far the safest in school zones.  

I encourage all school communities to educate parents about the importance of reduced speeds and staying mindful of student safety in school areas. Contact police services at 22 Division to ask for crossing guards or patrols to enforce safe driving. Your city councillor will be willing to help if you ask. The new Guide to Safer Streets near Schools gives many great tips for making your streets safer for children.   

In this issue:  

Local education news and updates

  • Successful OPAL play night June 1 2017
  • New! Website blog for local school community resources
  • Parents Reaching Out Grants deadline extended to June 15 2017
  • Award of Excellence to Matthew Weis, Itinerant Caretaker
  • Sarah Sheppard of ESA wins Dragon's Nest contest
  • Special Education support group now meeting

News and updates from TDSB's Education Centre

  •  Special heritage celebrations for June 2017
  • Anti-bullying initiatives: creating positive, healthy, accepting schools

School and community festivals, fundraisers and events

  •  Seventh Street JS Fun Fair June 8 2017

Read the full newsletter here.

Establishment of a Task Force on Traffic Safety in School Zones

At a recent Program and School Services Committee Meeting, I put forward a motion asking for the establishment of a Traffic Safety Task Force. This was partially in response to the death of a 6 years old TDSB student who was killed by a vehicle while walking home from school. I am happy to say that at the May 24th Board meeting, my fellow trustees and I unanimously approved this motion, and we will now be working together with the city toward the next steps. TDSB Chair, Robin Pilkey, will soon meet with Mayor John Tory to discuss the formation of the task force.  

My fellow Trustees and I often get many phone calls during the school year from concerned parents and neighbours, who complain about traffic safety around schools, especially during drop off and pick up times. This task force will work to make the streets surrounding our schools safer for pedestrians and drivers alike.

Read the full motion here.

Trustee Pamela Gough's Update: May 9th, 2017

This is Traffic Safety Week. May is National Aboriginal History Month as well as Jewish and Asian Heritage Month! Wow, that is a lot of commemoration. Soon it will be Bike to School Week as well, since starting on May 29th, Toronto begins a week of recognition of cycling as one of the healthiest ways to get to school/work and back.

As we heard from our international guest speaker Gil Penalosa at April 25th's ward meeting on School Communities as Agents of Change for Vibrant Cities, Toronto has a long way to go in order to meet the standards of street safety for active transportation that many other cities across the globe have achieved. Seattle, Copenhagen, Amsterdam- all have redesigned their streets to make them not only efficient for vehicles but safer for the many who want to walk and cycle. In the aftermath of the recent death of a TDSB kindergarten child on the street fronting his school in Scarborough due to a collision with a vehicle, I have called for a joint City of Toronto-School Board(s) Vision Zero Task Force on Traffic Safety in School Zones, with a goal of zero student school zone traffic fatalities over five years. This motion was passed at Programs and School Services Committee May 3 2017, and will be before the full board on May 24, 2017. I'll keep you updated.

Coming June 1: Recess is getting a makeover to make it more exciting. Join me at Seventh Street Jr. School's playground for an OUTSIDE ward council meeting in which we will learn how TDSB is piloting OPAL (Outdoor Play and Learning) enriched active STEM play on selected schoolyards. More details below. 

And finally, congratulations to Director John Malloy, who was recently recognized for excellence in educational leadership with national and provincial awards from the Canadian Association of School System Administrators and the Ontario Public Supervisory Officers' Association. Well deserved recognition to an outstanding leader.


In this issue:

Local education news and updates

  • ESA: Understanding your Teen: TODAY May 9 2017
  • Dr. David Hulchanski (University of Toronto) May 11 2017
  • Apply for free bike rack and cycling education programs
  • Ward 3 EcoSchools Award now out
  • Bike to School Week starts May 29 2017!
  • Outdoor Play and Learning (OPAL) Ward Council June 2017

News and updates from TDSB's Education Centre

  • Webcast on mental health and well-being with Director Malloy May 11 2017
  • 13 Reasons Why: FAQ for parents and educators
  • TDSB graduation rate at all-time high of 85%
  • The future of education: learning global competencies at TDSB
  • Fostering student well-being: report
  • School year calendar for 2017-2018

School and community festivals, fundraisers and events

  • Royal Ontario Museum National Aboriginal History Month Bursary
  • LAMP Health & Wellness Fair May 13 2017
  • Etobicoke Butterfly Festival May 13 2017
  • ESA Art Sale May 25 2017
  • James S. Bell Sports/Wellness Academy Bellapalooza May 27 2017
  • ESA Community Yard Sale Saturday May 27 2017
  • Wedgewood Fun Fest May 27 2017

Read the full newsletter here!

Trustee Pamela Gough's Update: April 21, 2017

EARTH WEEK EDITION: The TDSB prides itself on being one of the most environmentally responsible school boards in Canada. We are especially proud of having started the famous EcoSchools program which is now Ontario-wide. With Earth Day happening tomorrow, almost 400 TDSB schools are participating today in Clean Toronto Together, a community clean-up event that sees 137,000 TDSB students out in their schoolyards and communities collecting the winter's litter. I'm joining the students of George R. Gauld Junior School today for their clean-up event. I'm proud to say 87% of Etobicoke Lakeshore public schools are participating in Clean Toronto Together. Thank you to all the students, teachers and principals supporting this event.

The next ward meeting is Tuesday April 25th! We are celebrating Earth Week with a renowned speaker: Gil Penalosa, chair of the non-profit 8-80 Cities. Mr. Penalosa is an international speaker with a message of activism that especially resonates with youth. He calls on school communities to work with and on behalf of students to make their cities safer, healthier and less congested places. Students at Karen Kain School of the Arts (a Platinum level EcoSchool) will join Mr. Penalosa in sharing actions school communities can take to be agents of change for healthy urbanism. All are welcome. More below. 

Equity in Education: The TDSB's Enhancing Equity Task force is reaching out to ask people who use our public school system how it's working for them. Is the system fair and equitable for all? If not, what needs to be changed? Please feel free to comment and ask me questions. I can be easily reached at Join me May 4th at Kipling Collegiate for a multi-ward public consultation. More below.

Local education news and updates

  • Ward council: School Communities as Agents of Change April 25, 2017   
  • David Hornell Game Night: April 27, 2017
  • Apply for free bike racks and cycling education programs
  • Bike to School Week registration now open
  • TDSB Etobicoke/Weston enhancing equity consultation May 4, 2017
  • Ward 3 school council resources guide: call for volunteers/ideas

News and updates from TDSB's Education Centre

  • TDSB passes balanced budget
  • Anne Frank exhibit coming to John Polanyi CI
  • TDSB strategy to address city growth and intensification
  • New trustee appointed for Scarborough Rouge River
  • Second week of October named as Body Confidence Week

News and updates from our community

  •  Mimico Waterfront Clean-Up Day April 22, 2017
  • Youth Mental Health Awareness forum April 27, 2017
Read the full newsletter here!

Clean Toronto Together 2017

On Friday, April 21st, students, staff, and parents from across Toronto are encouraged to help rejuvenate our city’s green spaces by picking up litter in their schoolyard, neighbourhood park, or local community.

Almost 400 TDSB schools have also registered and will also be taking part in the challenge, including the majority of schools in Ward 3! In fact, I'm proud to say that Etobicoke Lakeshore has 86% of it's schools participating - we were only narrowly beat out by the very environmentally aware Ward 22 in Scarborough, at 88%!

I will be doing my part by joining some students in cleaning their school yard and I encourage you all to join the clean up efforts in your communities!



Norseman JMS Addition & Renovation Update



Centennial Park Earth Hour Walk

On the evening of March 25th, I was happy to participate in the Earth Hour Hike at Centennial Park. The walk was organized by Our Place Initiative, and the group was led by Matthew Siwiec and Jonathan Robertson. We were joined by children, parents and other community members - even my dog, Chelsea, was able to participate!

LAMP CHC's International Women's Day Luncheon

On Wednesday, March 8th, I had the pleasure of attending the Lakeshore Area Multi-service Project Community Health Centre's (LAMP CHC) International Women's Day Luncheon, held at the Mimico Cruising Club. 

I was joined by my assistant, Christy Heath, as well as the 5 students from Lakeshore Collegiate Institute, whom I sponsored to attend the luncheon. We enjoyed a great afternoon in the company of some great women, including guest speaker Mary O'Connell, award winning documentary producer of CBC's "Ideas".   

The theme for the event was #BeBoldForChange, and all proceeds will go towards supporting LAMP CHC programs, helping serve the local community, including students from LCI. 

Ward 3 Long-Term Program & Accomodation Strategy

On March 2nd, Daniel Castaldo from the TDSB's Planning Department gave a special presentation at my ward council meeting involving the board's Long-Term Program & Accommodation Strategy for Etobicoke-Lakeshore. 

The minutes from the meeting will be posted shortly on the ward council side bar page, but in the meanwhile, Daniel has shared the slides from his presentation for those who are interested. 

TDSB Researchers Release New Findings on Long-term Impact of Early Childhood Vulnerabilities

In February 2017, TDSB researchers presented results of a new study that tracked children's academic success through time, from Kindergarten until school leaving in Grade 12.  Since 1998, TDSB teachers have used the Early Development Instrument (EDI), an assessment tool that assesses young children's ability to meet age-appropriate developmental expectations. Longitudinal tracking of the first EDI cohorts shows that on average, children who show vulnerability in one or more EDI domains in kindergarten continue to struggle to meet provincial expectations throughout their school careers, and experience lower than average success in post-secondary acceptance. Month of birth has an impact on school readiness in that children born later in the year (Oct-Dec) show higher rates of vulnerability in 2 or more domains compared to those born earlier in the year. Early interventions, such as pre-school participation in Family Literacy Centres or being in schools supported by the Model Schools for the Inner City program, has a positive effect on child development.

Canada's Outstanding Principals 2017

Every year, The Learning Partnership’s Outstanding Principals program recognizes the unique and vital contribution of Principals in publicly funded schools. Nominated by parents, colleagues and community members, and chosen by a national selection committee, 40 Principals from across Canada are being celebrated for demonstrating innovation, having an entrepreneurial spirit and for employing creativity in finding solutions and opportunities.

I am proud to announce that Craig Howe from École John English Junior Middle School is one of two TDSB principals chosen for the honour this year. Craig and Principal Monday Gala from C.W. Jefferys Collegiate Institute join this year's class of principals who are being inducted into the prestigious ranks of the National Academy of Canada’s Outstanding Principals. The Principals will be awarded for their accomplishments at the annual Canada’s Outstanding Principals gala on February 28th, 2017.

Join me in congratulating Craig and all the Outstanding Principals of 2017!

Pictured (left to right): TDSB Director John Malloy, TDSB Chair Robin Pilkey, Principal Craig Howe, Trustee Pamela Gough, Superintendent Sandra Tondat

Childcare in Schools: An Evolving Partnership

Minutes for the January 19th, 2017 Ward Council meeting are now available. You can download a copy of the minutes here, and a copy of the presentation here.

I have also linked some additional items regarding Before and After School Programs, recently provided by The Ministry of Education. You can read the memo sent to Ontario Directors of Education here and the Policies and Guidelines outlined for Ontario School Boards here.

For past ward council meeting minutes, visit the Ward Council Meetings sidebar page.

"How can I find out more about education funding in Ontario?"

Please see below for a link to a Ministry of Education Funding Technical Paper that offers an excellent glimpse into the many factors involved in funding schools boards in Ontario.


Here are some useful links to get you started:


trustee image
Trustee Pamela Gough

Ward 3, Etobicoke-Lakeshore
5050 Yonge Street
Toronto, ON
M2N 5N8

Tel: 416-395-8787

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