Q & A
Trustee Questions and Answers
Trustees have held Special Committee of the Whole meetings in order to ask Board staff questions related to the secondary accommodation reviews. Staff researched the responses and presented these responses at subsequent meetings. See the documents below that Trustees received, with their original questions as well as the responses.
General ARC Questions
How many Secondary School Pupil Accommodation Review Committees are there?
Trustees approved the initiation of three secondary review committees. Those committees are broken down into the following areas:
- Secondary ARC West: Ancaster High, Highland, Parkside and Westdale
- Secondary ARC South: Barton, Hill Park, Mountain, Sherwood, Sir Allan MacNab,
- Secondary ARC North: Delta, Glendale, Orchard Park, Parkview, Sir John A Macdonald, Sir Winston Churchill
Does this mean our school will close?
All secondary school remain open for our students to continue to learn and obtain the best education possible. At this time, no HWDSB secondary school has been identified for closure. All schools are open for business to provide the high standards of education that parents and students expect.
How does the Secondary School Pupil Accommodation Committee impact my school?
HWDSB is committed to creating innovative learning environments for the 21st century that support student achievement. To do that, we need to have expanded dialogue about what challenges and opportunities our students face and ensure our secondary schools support our students. Schools will be looked at in groups in order to develop recommendations to trustees that make the best use of location, space and programming.
Should student still submit option sheets?
All secondary schools remain open for our students to learn and obtain the best education possible. While we understand there may be speculation throughout this process, we will continue to inform students and parents about all new developments from the Secondary Pupil Accommodation Review Committee.
Why are three schools not on any of the Secondary Accommodation Review lists?
Fifteen schools are involved in the Secondary School Pupil Accommodation Review. Three schools, Saltfleet, Waterdown and Westmount, were exempt because they are currently over capacity.
How many projected empty spaces to do we have in our secondary schools?
Currently, there are approximately 2,600 extra spaces within our secondary schools. This number is expected to increase to nearly 6,000 extra places by 2020. Closing facilities may be one of the recommendations of the committees.
Will there be a new school?
At this time, there have been no decisions to open or close any HWDSB secondary schools.
How does the Secondary School Pupil Accommodation Review Committee work?
Public consultation is at the heart of the accommodation review process. A minimum of four public meetings are to be held by each of the accommodation review committees, as well as a number of additional working meetings. The goal is to engage a wide range of school and community groups to participate in the consultation in order to make the recommendations to trustees. Committee members include principals, teachers, parents, students and community members. For a full list of the committee membership, please read our Pupil Accommodation Review policy.
Who makes the final decision regarding the accommodation review process?
The role of the accommodation review committee is to serve as an advisory body to Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board trustees to produce a report to the board that takes into account location, space and programming. Trustees make the final decision on the recommendations brought forward.
Who chairs the Accommodation Review Committees?
According to the Pupil Accommodation Review Policy, the committee is chaired by a member of Executive Council.
At what point in the process does the staff accommodation scenario get presented to the committee?
The staff recommendation would be presented to each of the area review committees during the second meeting. This recommendation provides a foundation for the committee to form its discussions. The ARC committee may also create alternative accommodation options, which should be consistent with the objectives and criteria outlined in committee’s terms of reference.
How does all the information from the accommodation review committees get shared with the public?
All committee meetings are open to the public and information such as agendas and minutes are shared through the Board’s website. Schools may also want to share a link to the website through their school’s newsletter or website to ensure stakeholders have the most up-to-date and accurate information related to the ARC in their area.
When does an individual have the opportunity to present if they aren’t on the committee?
All meetings are open to the public. Each ARC also has four meetings that provide the opportunity for individuals and groups to ask questions from the committee members.