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News: Thursday, March 2nd, 2017
Board of Education receives results from District Program reviews
The Abbotsford School District offers a wide range of specialized programs in an effort to provide students with customized learning opportunities. In June 2016, the Board of Education instructed District staff to review two District programs – French Immersion and Yale Sports Academies.
The Abbotsford Board of Education received the preliminary results and recommendations from these program reviews at the public Board meeting on February 22nd.
“Reviews are conducted to ensure that District programs continue to align with the Board’s vision – providing a world class innovative and individualized educational experience for every student,” noted Shirley Wilson, Chair of the Abbotsford Board of Education. “We are pleased with the results that were presented to us and we celebrate the exceptional progress we have made. But, we must determine which recommendations best align with our strategic direction.”
French Immersion Program
The French Immersion program review focused on identifying strengths, opportunities, and challenges associated with the program. Currently over 1,375 students are currently enrolled in French Immersion in Kindergarten to Grade 12, across six schools. Families and staff who participated in the review expressed that they primarily participate in the program because they see future opportunities beyond graduation.
Recommendations put forward to the Board ranged from improving teacher recruitment, to improving more specialized support for students who struggle with second language learning.
Yale Sports Academies
The Yale Sports Academies are District programs that work to prepare high-performance athletes for athletic success, and opportunities within athletic programs and careers after high school. Currently, over 175 students are enrolled in the Yale Baseball, Hockey and Softball academies, with 90 students enrolled in the Fraser Hockey Academy.
At present, 71% of the students participating in the Yale Sports Academies reside out of catchment. In light of its student composition, there is a necessity to address the needs of the Yale and Fraser Sports Academies within the context of the District’s enrollment pressures.
Recommendations put forward to the Board ranged from improving communications in relation to Sports Academies, to developing a strategy and operational plan that addresses in-District and out-of-District enrollment issues.
“At the Abbotsford School District, we are incredibly proud to offer our students world-class programs,” stated Kevin Godden, Superintendent of Schools. “However, we also recognize that we must continually focus on improving the quality of these programs if we are to live up to our mission of preparing and inspiring our students for a lifetime of success.”
The Board will take the review recommendations in the coming weeks to determine what recommendations will be approved for future implementation.