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2018 Trustee Innovation Awards
Thirteen Employees Recognized at 2018 Trustee Innovation Awards
Posted on 09/27/2018
Trustee Innovation Awards

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September 27, 2018 (Brockville, ON) – The Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) honoured 13 employees for  innovative teaching and work practices on Wednesday, September 26  at the 2018 Trustee Innovation Awards held at the Board office in Brockville.

The purpose of the annual awards program is to inspire and encourage staff to be innovative in their work to increase opportunities for students and improve on how the board delivers education and other services to students and the community. The first awards were presented in September 2013. 

Award Winners: 

Debbie Banks and Mary-Kaye McGreevy, Oxford Mills Board Office: These two educators received the Trustee Innovation Award in the Facilities/School System category. Banks, principal of special education, and McGreevy, an elementary intensive support teacher, were honoured for their work visioning and initiating the UCDSB Kids Gotta Move Program - After-School Version  that was successfully implemented into seven of our schools. The program, developed by local community partners Cecile Loiselle, Sarah Sark and Erin Jansman and their multi-disciplinary teams serving Lanark, Leeds & Grenville, is an adaptation of the Tumbling Together© and Kids Gotta Move© Programs, designed for students ages 4 to 6 diagnosed with Autism and/or other developmental challenges. 

It is an inter-professional, movement-based therapy program that supports students’ growth in the areas of self-regulation, gross motor and sensory skills, and connection and communication skills. The program also helps foster a positive connection with parents within the school setting, and helps to increase parent understanding of how to support their child. 

Brian Dickie, Carleton Place High School: This  physical education teacher was  honoured with a secondary teacher award for his work creating the CrossFit Program at Carleton Place High School (CPHS). Dickie was the first teacher in Canada to introduce CrossFit into the high school physical education curriculum. His connections with former students and his positive reputation were instrumental in allowing him to purchase top-of-the-line equipment at a reasonable cost and have it delivered and installed quickly. The program has grown and is now taught by many at the school. Teachers from other schools and boards often consult with Dickie about the program as a model. He also coaches the CrossFit team at CPHS, volunteers to organize strength and conditioning practices several times each week for the community, regularly holds and judges competitions to raise money for various charitable causes, and has worked with colleague Jamie Bell to develop a very successful track and field program at CPHS. 

Fiona Frigault and Justine Gowsell, Central Public School: These two teachers have earned the elementary award for their role creating and organizing the Central Public School cooperative education program. The program allows Grade 6 students to develop leadership skills by helping other students in their school. It also teaches responsibility and social skills that are difficult to teach in a  classroom setting. Each week, the students do a one-hour shift in various areas of the school, such as helping Kindergarten students with reading, or working with custodians, kitchen staff or administrators. 

Restless RedHawk Café Teaching Team, Smiths Falls District Collegiate Institute (SFDCI): SFDCI hospitality teacher Chef Jeff Burns, construction teacher Doug Miller, media arts teacher Jennifer Fox, visual arts teacher Rebecca Soudant, music teacher Kevin Baker and student success teacher Blake Seward were honoured with the 2018 team award for their work spearheading the popular Restless RedHawk Café. The teaching team initially plans the outline of the café series together, then each teacher takes relevant components back to their students to allow them to drive the planning and execution. The student-run cafés take place every second Thursday at the high school. Approximately 70 students host a full café featuring food planned, prepared and served by students in an ambiance generated through décor and stage areas produced by construction, visual arts and media arts students. Diners are entertained by local entertainment booked by students. 

Mary-Louise Scappaticci, Thousand Islands Secondary School (TISS): This art teacher at Thousand Islands Secondary School is being honoured with a secondary teacher award for her work leading the TISS Colour Brockville Project. The experiential learning project saw art, history and photography students work together to produce a colouring book about history and architecture in Brockville. Students conducted research on the city, met with local businesses and historians, and visited sites within the community. They then created colouring book images for the project highlighting key pieces of architecture in Brockville. The colouring book is also interactive and works with the HP Reveal app, an app that scans the pages and makes 3D images and videos pop up on mobile devices.  The project was funded through a Community Connected Experiential Learning Grant, sourced by Scappaticci. Local businesses also sponsored the project and their ads will become part of the virtual reality experience this semester. 

Jennifer Sims, Rockland Public School: This educational assistant won the 2018 award for support staff for her innovative work helping both students and colleagues at Rockland Public School (RkPS). With the support of administration, Sims was the driving force behind the school’s Coach’s Corner program. Rather than give a student a detention, staff in Coach’s Corner work with students to review their behavior, debrief, reflect and have students plan a different way of handling their frustrations. The program is a key element of maintaining a positive environment at RkPS by supporting students before disciplinary action is required. She frequently assists new teachers by  reviewing their lesson plans and producing similar activities that  are better suited for students who may have special needs. She also finds time to run the WE Club at the school, spearheading the Rockland Public School food drive, raising money for water in Kenya and supporting many other WE initiatives. 

For more information, please contact: 

Caroll Carkner
First Vice Chair
Upper Canada District School Board
(613) 222-7332


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