Montague Family of Schools District Advisory Council

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Members 2018-19: Lisa Edward (Belfast Consolidated), Mallory Peters (Georgetown Consolidated), Debra Matheson (Montague Consolidated), Mary Kouwenberg (Montague Regional High), Ashley Higganbotham (Southern Kings Consolidated), Deb Sioen (Vernon River Consolidated), Haley Zavo (PEI HSF rep), Stacey Newell (Montague Intermediate), Patti MacKenzie (Cardigan Consolidated), Alison Vandeale and Katelyn Visser (Montague Regional High students).

May 14th, 2019, Cardigan Consolidated School

Guests: District community members, MLAs Steven Myers and Cory Deagle, Board Members Harvey MacEwen and Dale Sabean, Director of French Programs Rene Hurtubise and PSB Assistant Director Erin Johnston.

Discussion and Outcomes

Late French Immersion

  • The first half of the meeting was focused on exploring late French Immersion in the District.
  • Community members, MLAs, Dept. and Branch staff and Board members worked to develop a plan moving forward.
  • There was a call put forward for interested members to sit on a working group to continue this work.
    • UPDATE: This working Group will hold its initial meeting in June 2019.


  • Membership, School Climate, BYOD, and Report Card updates were sent in the advance notes.
  • Outgoing members were thanked for their service to this DAC and school community. 
  • Members were asked to send in the contact information for their replacements.
  • DAC voices are an important part of the education system in PEI.  

DAC Provincial Report

  • There was a presentation on the actions and advice this year from all DACs. 

Forward Agenda

  • Members would like Katelyn MacLean, the School Food Project Co-ordinator, to come to the first DAC meeting the Fall to update the members on the project and answer any questions they have.
    • UPDATE: This request was made and added to the DACs forward agenda for September.

January 28, 2018, Montague Regional High School

Guests: Morgan Palmer, School Food Project; Hon. Jordan Brown, Minister of Education, Early Learning and Culture

Discussion and Outcomes

School Food Project

  • Morgan Palmer, Project Manager, gave a presentation to members about the project and the pilot rolling out in Montague area schools in September 2019.
  • There are demonstrations underway at St. Jean and Prince Street schools to examine process and to prepare for the pilot.
    • UPDATE: The demonstration projects were very successful.
  • Montague was chosen as the pilot site based on its strong application to the project.
  • It is a hub model, with the main kitchen operating out of MRSH and servicing the other schools, delivering food in hot boxes.
  • It will involve MRHS, Montague Intermediate, Montague Consolidated, and Southern Kings Consolidated schools.
  • It will be a pay what you can model, so there will be no financial barrier to participation. 
  • It is an optional program, and parents are still encouraged to send lunch from home.
  • The design is based on The School Lunch Association in Newfoundland, with over 30 years of healthy, local school food delivery to 34 schools. 
  • The project now has a social media presence - @PEISchoolFood on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
  • One of the goals of the program is to have more local food in schools. 
  • There will be more opportunities for local procurement, community partnerships and engaging students in all aspects – food curriculum, preparing and serving, as well as menu input.
  • There will be ongoing presentations to parents as the September rollout draws closer.
  • Some videos have already been produced and are on the School Food Project social media pages as well as the PSB websites.

A+ Expansion

  • There was some discussion about the A+ program and whether it could expand to include K-2.
  • The Minister spoke about the recent Mental Health Literacy Training that 30 teachers undertook with Dr. Stan Kutcher. 
  • They, in turn, will train others in their schools to recognize symptoms of student distress and how to help them. 
  • It follows a similar theory to the SEAK (socially and emotionally aware kids) and PATHS (Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies) programs.
  • Some members feel that self-regulation should be taught in the early grades, so kids have a better understanding earlier of the spectrum of emotions. 
    • UPDATE: The PATHS program will roll out in all Island elementary schools in 2020-2024, supported by the PEI Poverty Reduction Strategy.

Late French Immersion

  • Parents would like a fuller understanding of the reasons to choose French Immersion, and why LFI could be a route for District students. 
  • Many do not feel informed enough to make the decision. 
  • They would like another LFI meeting as well as the opportunity to explore what it would take to have the needed cohort of 25 in years to come.
    • UPDATE: a Late French Immersion information session was held in February.
    • Not enough registrations were received for a Late French Immersion class in September 2019.
    • The Department and PSB are willing to explore what it would take to develop LFI in this District and examine if it is viable.

Oct 24, 2018, Vernon River Consolidated School

Discussion and Outcomes

A+ expansion

  • A+ program is a (generally) offsite, short term space for students in Grades 3-6 who are not coping well in the classroom setting, to build their capacity to re-integrate and participate in their regular classroom.
  • In the last few years, the students in this program are having to stay longer, and now fewer students overall are able to access the program.
  • Space to run the program is also an issue.
  • Members asked for some data on program usage and capacity, and if more resources are needed. 
    • UPDATE: The A+ manager will attend an upcoming DAC meeting to discuss the program.

Late French Immersion

  • The cohort numbers for considering LFI in Montague remains at 25.
  • Some members want more information to make a decision.
  • They want to know the entire pathway – what choosing LFI would mean for their child as they enter high school.
  • Elementary school members were encouraged to reach out to their parent community and find out what information they need in order to make an informed decision about placing their child in LFI. 
    • UPDATE: Data on FI retention rates and course choice models in high school was acquired.

Engagement Model

  • There was some feedback shared about the model the Board followed for its Category 1 review in Charlottetown, and how it was different than the model that was used for school review in 2016.  
  • A 3rd party was hired to facilitate the review, and they used several ways to engage school communities with each other without conflict.
  • It was a much more positive experience, and this DAC was key in advocating for that model shift. 

Flexible Learning Schedules

  • There was a discussion around a pilot program that Vernon River is running, where K-6 operates in on different class length schedule as the Intermediate level students.
  • Birchwood is also running this pilot.
  • Student feedback from the Intermediate students has been very positive.
    • UPDATE: Additional feedback on this pilot was requested.

School Bus Safety

  • There was discussion about creating a new educational campaign around motorist awareness of school busses, as well as possible technologies that could be used to deter motorists from passing school busses.
    • UPDATE: the Province developed and continues to promote a school bus awareness campaign.

Provincial Common Assessment

  • The results are posted and have been shared with all DAC members across PEI.
  • The members would like more information about the assessment model and its impact on student learning. 
    • UPDATE: Elizabeth Costa, Manager of Assessment and Accountability, will attend an upcoming DAC meeting.

School Food

  • The members asked for Morgan Palmer to come speak to them about the pilot program she is leading in their District in the Fall of 2019.
  • They would like some additional information about what the pilot will look like, and how it will impact parents and students
    • UPDATE: Morgan will attend an upcoming DAC meeting.


  • The Cannabis Talk Kit was shared with the membership.
  • They are encouraged to use it as a tool to talk with their kids about cannabis.
  • Members were encouraged to reach out to all parents to attend a cannabis information night in their District.

Report cards

  • Members were reminded to provide any input in the report card update framework with was provided to them.
  • Stakeholder meetings will take place over the Winter months.

Previous School Years

2015-16 School Year

2016-17 School Year 

2017-18 School Year


Date de publication : 
le 21 Mars 2017
Éducation et Apprentissage continu

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