Welcome back parents and students. We hope you enjoyed your summer vacation and it was full of adventure and fun!!
With the school year now under way, hopefully both parents and students are transitioning smoothly into routines. We, parents, fill up our calendars with work, programs and activities for our children and often are happy dropping them off and picking them up after school. Often, we do not have contact with the teachers or administrators unless we have a special need or problem we hear about and want it addressed in some way. For some parents, they are struggling in getting their children into their neighbourhood schools and some are balancing the rigours of double-shift schedules due to overcrowding or lack of adequate facilities.
How do we become more engaged, connected and involved in our schools and education system?
At schools, parents can participate in PAC (Parent Advisory Councils) Executive or activities which may require as little or as much involvement as one is willing to take part in, for example, volunteer in one or two activities such as Sports Day, Track Meet, or all events the school holds throughout the year. PACs are more than fundraising; they are in fact a valuable way for parents to share information between parents, teachers and administration. PACs are also an avenue to openly discuss parents’ concerns and aspirations for their schools.
At the district level, Surrey DPAC (District 36 Parents Advisory Council) represents the interests of Surrey parents in the public education system. Surrey DPAC advocates for parental involvement in the education system and give input into the development of education policy and curricula. DPAC Directors sit on school district committees, such as French Immersion, Inter-A, Montessori, Surrey Traditional, etc. The Surrey DPAC is about parents helping parents learn more about the education system and how they can contribute to it. All parents are welcome to attend DPAC general meetings/ education forums held on the fourth Wednesday of every month at the District Education Centre from 7:00 – 9:00pm in room 2020, Registration at 6:45pm.
At the provincial level, BCCPAC (BC Confederation of Parent Advisory Councils) represents DPACs, PACs and parents. BCCPAC advises and meets regularly with Ministry of Education staff and provincial education partners on behalf of parent resolutions passed at its Annual General Meeting. BCCPAC works to ensure parents have a voice in their children’s education, to ensure the BC public education system remains focused on the needs of children, and to support parents as they navigate the education system and exercise their children’s rights to education.
If you would like DPAC assistance in getting more involved in your school, advocate on an issue, templates on writing to your MLA, please contact us. We can be reached through our website, www.surreydpac.ca and our facebook page, www.facebook.com/surreydpac. You can find information about upcoming events and numerous resources. To be connected, please subscribe to our emailing list through either site.
2016-17 DPAC General Meetings:
All general meetings will be held on the 4th Wednesday monthly (except December and March) at the District Education Centre 14033 92nd Ave. Rm 2020, from 7:00 to 9:00pm, Registration at 6:45pm. Light Refreshments Available.
Wednesday September 28, 2016 – Parent Information/ Education Forum
A forum to encourage open discussion to help DPAC implement and follow-up on suggestions and recommendations from the Sept 2015 Forum, our priorities for meeting topics and planned DPAC activities for the 2016-17 school year. How can DPAC most effectively engage with Surrey parents? How would you like to provide input to the Surrey school district budget?
Wednesday October 28, 2016 – PAC and Finance 101, Student Insurance
A general overview of how to run a school PAC from finances and budgeting to how to run an effective meeting. It is a great opportunity for PAC reps to network and share strategies as well as get some input about their specific PAC related questions and concerns.
November 23, 2016, Reporting / Fresh Grade (TBA)
Discussion about the Reporting and use of Fresh Grade in the District.
December 2016 – No General Meeting
January 25, 2017 – Mental Health or Safety Topic (TBA)
February 22, 2017- Planned MLA Candidates Meeting (TBA)
The Surrey District Parents’ Advisory Council will be inviting all potential Surrey MLAs to participate on a panel to discuss issues surrounding education funding, safety & crime, and the impacts of lack of resources for our students.
Our district education funding is determined provincially and February is an opportunity for our potential MLA representatives to respond to parent concerns. We invite our parents to engage with our current and to-be elected officials in the upcoming 2017 election to hear from them: how they would address our challenges in Surrey and advocate for education funding on behalf of Surrey.
March, 2017 – No General Meeting
April 26, 2017- P.I.E. Topic TBA, Year in Review/ BCCPAC Resolutions
May 25, 2017 P.I.E. Topic TBA (GM, AGM, DPAC BOD Election)
“Every parent is welcome. Please bring a friend.”
Parents helping parents learn more about our education system
All DPAC general meetings are held on the 4th Wednesday monthly (except December and March) at the District Education Centre, 14033 92nd Ave Surrey, Rm 2020.