At the District School Board of Niagara, we believe in the limitless potential of all children.

That’s our starting point. And it’s a good one.

But to fully develop our Board’s story – our plan to unlock that limitless potential – we had to delve deeper. We had to flesh out the values, priorities and actions that bring us together on a daily basis in support of students.

We wanted this plan to become something our entire community can rally behind. Something that each student, staff member and stakeholder, could see themselves in. To achieve that kind of buy-in, the plan needed to reflect your values and viewpoints.

So, we asked you.

During the Strategic Plan consultation process, the DSBN launched an unprecedented survey of students, parents, staff and community members. The result: over 10,000 responses. You told us what we did well, where we could improve and where you think our focus should be in the coming years.

Here’s what you told us:

WHAT WE DO WELL

  • Teachers and Staff
  • Welcoming School Environments
  • Open Leadership and Management
  • School Board Decisions Focused on Student Support and Engagement
  • Wide-range of Extracurricular activities

WHERE WE CAN IMPROVE

  • Mental Health
  • Additional EA and Classroom Support
  • Increased focus on Science, Technology and Mathematics (STEM)
  • The list also included concerns (class size and staffing practices) which are prescribed by the provincial government or existing collective bargaining contracts which the Board cannot take unilateral action.

WHAT OUR FOCUS SHOULD BE IN THE COMING YEARS

  • Increased supports for student and staff mental health
  • Adding more learning technology within schools
  • More professional development for all staff within the Board
  • More arts programming, such as music, drama and dance, for students
  • Class size. This is an area mandated by the Ministry of Education and the DSBN cannot take unilateral action to alter class size.

From the survey, we convened a group of 70 stakeholders to provide further feedback and refine the plan. The result is our Strategic Plan, which highlights the importance of ensuring that each individual in our system has what they need to become successful. In reading it, we hope you’ll see how evident that commitment is and that you’ll be able to confidently say that “I Matter” at the DSBN.