Fair Notice to Parents/Gurardians

 Fair Notice to Parents/Guardians

In the event of a serious threat to the wellbeing of students or staff, A Violence, Threat and Risk Assessment (VTRA) Protocol will be initiated.

A threat is an expression of intent to do harm or act out violently against someone or something. Threats may be verbal, written, drawn, posted on the Internet or made by gesture. Threats must be taken seriously, investigated and responded to.  If the threat is immediate, the RCMP will be called upon to deal with the threat immediately.

 What is the purpose of a student threat assessment?

  • To ensure the safety of students, staff, parents and others.
  • To ensure a full understanding of the context of the threat.
  • To understand factors contributing to the threat makers’ behaviour.
  • To promote the emotional and physical safety of all.
  • To be proactive in developing an intervention plan that addresses the emotional and physical safety of the threat maker.

What behaviours initiate a VTRA?

A VTRA will be initiated when behaviours include, but are not limited to, serious violence or violence with intent to harm or kill, verbal/written threats to harm/kill others, Internet website/social media threats to harm/kill others, possession of weapons (including replicas), bomb threats and fire setting.

Duty to report

To keep school communities safe and caring, staff, parents, students and community members must report all threat‐related behaviours to the principal and/or the RCMP.

VTRA Teams at each school

Each school will have a multi-disciplinary threat assessment team. The team may include members of school staff and members from district and community agencies.

What happens in a student threat assessment?

All threat making behaviour by a student shall be reported to the principal who will activate the protocol for the initial response. Once the team has been activated, interviews may be held with the student(s), the threat maker, parents and staff to determine the level of risk and develop an appropriate response to the incident. Intervention plans will be developed and shared with parents, staff and students as required.

Can I refuse to participate in a threat assessment process?

It is important for all parties to engage in the process. However, if for some reason there is a reluctance to participate in the process by the threat maker or parent / guardian, the threat assessment process will continue in order to promote a safe and caring learning environment.

Reporting on Student Progress

Parents are being asked for their opinions on reporting student progress until February 28, 2017. This will help shape what information parents and guardians receive and how they receive it. Please see the attached  Letter from Minister Bernier.

You can learn more about the engagement at engage.gov.bc.ca/yourkidsprogress .

Additionally, in the coming weeks and months, community meetings and focus groups will take place in many communities around the province, providing in-person opportunities for families and community members to share their thoughts on student reporting. Ministry of Education staff are currently working with host school districts to set up the 10 community meetings and will keep you informed of their dates and locations as they are finalized. A community meeting in Dawson Creek is being scheduled for the week of Novemebr 21 – 25.  The exact date, time and location will be posted very soon.

All feedback from this important public engagement process will be considered while a provincial student reporting approach is finalized. A summary report on what was heard from parents during the engagement will be produced and posted publicly online in June 2017.

Provincial Exams

There have been changes to provincial exams in British Columbia. Most exams have been eliminated, although some students may still need to write grade 10 and 11 exams and any student taking English 12 or Communications 12 this year will have to write a provincial. Check out the following link for more information Provincial Exams.

BC’s New Curriculum

British Columbia’s new will be implemented this year for students in K-9. The new curriculum includes a focus on literacy and numeracy skills while weaving in core competencies of communication, thinking and personal and social growth. In addition, students in K-9 will be taught Applied Design, Skills and Technologies and Career Education.

The new curriculum is in draft form for grades 10-12. Teachers teaching these grades may be teaching this new curriculum, the old curriculum or a combination of the two.

For more information about British Columbia’s new curriculum, please check out the following BC’s New Curriculum.

 

ERASE Bullying

Every child deserves an education free from discrimination, bullying, harassment, intimidation and violence. The ERASE (Expect Respect and A Safe Education) Bullying strategy is part of the Province of British Columbia’s efforts to personalize learning and supports for all students.

ERASE Bullying builds on the Province’s Safe, Caring and Orderly Schools Strategy (2004), which focussed on creating schools where students are free from harm, where clear expectations of acceptable behaviour are held for all members of the school community, and where there is a sense of connectedness. ERASE Bullying will help ensure every child feels safe, accepted and respected, regardless of their gender, race, culture, religion or sexual orientation.

ERASE Bullying also builds on effective programs already in place and will ensure there are consistent policies and practices across all 60 school districts, backed by strong community partnerships and support. Please visit www.erasebullying.ca for additional information.

As part of the ERASE Bullying initiative, there is a new website with an online reporting tool for students and parents. This tool allows for the reporting of incidents of personal bullying, potential fights or violence and more. Reporting can be anonymous, and will be routed directly to the district. The new reporting site can be found at reportbullyingbc.ca. The administration has begun showing the Reporting Tool to all students at TRSS.

As the first line of action, we encourage students to talk to someone in school. This could be the administration, teachers, support staff, or any adult/student they trust.