Monday, June 22, 2015

BCCPAC Conference 2015 Report by Karen Nordquist

In addition to the Keynote address and the Plenary session, I attended two other sessions at the BCCPAC conference.

The first was session B “BCCPAC: Who we are and what we are doing” which, as the title indicates, gave a general overview of the activities of the BCCPAC.  The main focus of the discussion involved a description of all of the committee work, on both external as well as internal committees, undertaken by the executive of the BCCPAC, as well as a discussion of the volunteer opportunities available to the parent community.

Members of the BCCPAC executive serve as parent representatives on a large number of external committees with the Provincial representatives of other education partner groups, including the BCTF, School Administrators, the Superintendents and School Board Trustees, among others, as well as with the Ministry of Education.  Some of these committees include the: BC Standing Committee on Curriculum; BC School Based Mental Health Coalition; BC Teachers Council (BCTC); ERASE Bullying Advisory Committee; Education Partners Group and many others.

The BCCPAC executive also serve on a number of internal committees including: Finance, Awards, Nominations, Resolutions and Publications.  There are seven Standing Committees: Curriculum; Employee Services; Formal Role of Parents; Provincial and Federal Policy; Inclusive Education; Student Safety; and Support Services and Funding.  In these standing committees, parent volunteers work along with members of the executive to put forward resolutions at the AGM and follow through on resolutions which have been passed with the Ministry of Education and the other partner groups.

I am serving as a parent volunteer on two of the standing committees and I helped to put through three important resolutions at the AGM this year.  If other parents are interested in volunteering, they can fill out the volunteer form on the BCCPAC website and they will be contacted.
The second session was Session E: “Understanding the Classroom Resource Framework.”  This workshop involved a brief overview of the new model for funding education which is being proposed by the BCCPAC.  Rather than the Ministry of Education providing funding for students on a per pupil basis, the Classroom Resource Framework suggests looking at the support and resource needs of each individual classroom based on its composition.  Resources for classrooms include teachers, education assistants, classroom equipment and fixtures, education supplies, as well as student and staff support services.  Resources must be determined by analyzing both the individual needs of each student and staff as well as the overall needs of the class as a group.  The model proposes that the funding and resources necessary for each classroom be determined through collaboration between teachers, administrators and parents at each school.

At this point the Classroom Resource Framework remains a broad concept, but the BCCPAC has already organized some promising meetings with the other educational partner groups, and there has been interest expressed in exploring and defining this model further.

Karen Nordquist
NVPAC Vice-Chair

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