Trustee Bauer's Message

Hello School Community!

The last few months have been challenging for all of us.  This different method of educating children has been a shift in teaching that no one had predicted or was prepared for.  Our Aspen View educators have done an exemplary job of making sure our students had some program continuity.  I know the end of the school year was not what any of us had imagined, there were no field trips, no swimming lessons, no playing on the playground, no track and field, and the list goes on and on. 

I have a few Aspen View Public Schools Division updates to share:

We were very happy to be able to reallocate our Nutrition Grant dollars to food hampers that were made available through our schools.  This program has distributed over 900 hampers to Aspen View families.

April 8 the Board made the decision to close Grassland high school Grades 10-12 and reallocate those students to Boyle, effective June 30, 2020. 

Aspen View applied for the Capital Maintenance and Renewal Stimulus Funding as part of Alberta’s get people back to work plan.  We received $2.5M that will go towards a few major projects around the division: a couple boiler replacements, an air-handling unit, and a couple parking lot upgrades.  These projects are planned to be completed over the summer.

The design committee for the new HAK School in Smoky Lake has been busy and we are expecting the project to break ground spring 2021.

Our Board usually meets with each municipality within Aspen View boundaries in the spring.  Due to the challenges with COVID19, we were unable to do so and will be rescheduling those meetings for this fall.  We understand the importance of building those relationships and working with our municipal partners to strengthen rural sustainability.

Thank you to everyone who took the time to fill out the Aspen View Re Entry Survey.  We are actively planning for three reentry scenarios:

1.       In-school classes resume (near normal with health measures)

2.       In-school classes partially resume (with additional health measures)

3.       At-home learning continues (in-school classes are suspended/cancelled)

We will receive our direction from the government by August 1, scenario 1, 2, or 3.  In the meantime, we need to prepare for each scenario and be prepared to transition between scenarios, if required, with short notice. 

At our Alberta School Boards Association Spring General Zoom Meeting, Aspen View put forward a motion that ASBA advocate on behalf of its members for the Government of Alberta to provide full funding to school divisions for all additional expenses incurred as a result of the COVID19 pandemic provincial government protocols.  The motion passed and we are hopeful, with ASBA lobbying on our behalf, that the government will commit additional funding if required.

The Board has cancelled international travel trips for 2020/21.

In May, we approved our budget for 2020/21 of $42.8M, with a deficit of $300k.  Our projected revenue is down slightly from 2019/20. 

Our 2020/21 Organizational Board Meeting is September 10.  In order to cut our Board expenses we have made the decision to limit our Board meetings mostly to Division Office and will only be visiting five schools this coming year.  The other five will be on our schedule to visit for the following year. 

 

If you have any questions or want to discuss any of the above please feel free to reach out.  I am wishing everyone a lovely summer and look forward to a time when we can gather once again.

Sincerely,

April Bauer

Trustee Ward 4

april.bauer@aspenview.org

780-307-8026     

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