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KPDSB, OSSTF’s Office, Clerical, Library Staff of District 5A Reach Tentative Settlement

16 Jun. 2020

Media Release - June 16, 2020

The Keewatin-Patricia District School Board (KPDSB) and the Office, Clerical, Library Bargaining Unit of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation of Ontario, District 5A, have reached a tentative settlement within the Local Bargaining Framework.


Details of the tentative settlement remain confidential until ratification by the Local as well as the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board.  Ratification is scheduled to take place by both parties by June 23, 2020.


The parties were able to work together through the use of virtual meetings to achieve the settlement and look forward to implementing the new terms and conditions for support staff.


For more information, please contact Sherri-Lynne Pharand, KPDSB Director of Education at (807) 468-5571 or Cindy Hayward, President, OSSTF at (807) 727-0988.






Cecile Marcino                                                                       Cindy Hayward, President

KPDSB Board Chair                                                               ESP-OSSTF, D.5A, Northern Shield


Sherri-Lynne Pharand                                                          

KPDSB Director of Education           


KPDSB Appoints Superintendents of Education

17 Jun. 2020

Media Release - June 17, 2020

The Keewatin-Patricia District School Board is pleased to announce the appointments of Shannon Bailey and Jane Lower as Superintendents of Education.  Bailey and Lower will step into their new roles on July 1, 2020, and August 1, 2020, respectively.

Shannon Bailey - Background

Bailey, currently in an interim Superintendent of Education role with the KPDSB, has long been a leader in the organization.  Since beginning her career with the KPDSB in 1998, she has worked as a teacher in both elementary and secondary schools, specializing in the areas of Special Education, literacy and staff development.  Bailey has been a successful elementary school leader, becoming the Interim Superintendent of Education in September 2019, following seven years in administration at Valleyview Public School and Evergreen Public School in Kenora.  She holds a BA/BEd/M Ed from Lakehead University.

As an educator, Bailey is guided by the mantra, “See a child differently, see a different child.”  Her portfolios have included leading project work for the Board under the guidance of Dr. Stuart Shanker and Susan Hopkins in the area of self-regulation, as well as leading the development of the KPDSB Leadership Framework and Leadership Portal.  She is committed to supporting the TRCC Calls to Action and creating partnerships that help support student success.

Bailey stated, “I couldn’t be prouder to be in the role of Superintendent of Education for the KPDSB.  I am incredibly honored to work for an organization where every staff member understands what it means to collaborate and learn and puts the needs of our students above all else.  I believe strongly in equity of access to education, non-academic supports and opportunities for all students to achieve great things.”

Jane Lower - Background

Lower, currently the Student Success Lead with Lakehead District School Board, brings with her extensive experience as an educator.  Since beginning her career in 1992 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, she has worked as a teacher in both elementary and secondary schools in the areas of physical education, cooperative education and student success.  She also has experience as a guidance counsellor and in secondary school administration.  In 2015, Lower accepted the position of Student Success Lead with Lakehead Public Schools following 14 years with the organization.  She holds a Master of Education degree specializing in Educational Leadership from Charles Sturt University.

As an educator, Lower is a strong advocate for ensuring equity for all children.  Her portfolios have included Indigenous Education, Four Directions approach, collaborative professionalism focused on assessment and evaluation, and data management.  Lower is committed to ensuring all students have the skills, knowledge and confidence to pursue their goals in education, career and life.  She has a strong sense of the learning needs of students and is committed to continually enhancing programs to ensure student success.

Lower stated, “I am honoured, privileged and excited to be the new Superintendent of Education for the KPDSB.  It is clear to me that this board is committed to students, to equity and achievement for all.  I believe that establishing and maintaining strong relationships is vital in education and KPDSB leads the way in ensuring collaboration and engagement with families, staff and community partners.  I look forward to bringing my experiences to the board as well as learning from all of you.”

Sherri-Lynne Pharand, Director of Education, added, “Shannon and Jane are experienced educators who bring significant strengths to our senior team. I look forward to continuing to work with Shannon and welcoming Jane to the team.” 


KPSDB Continues to See Enrolment Increases

15 Nov. 2017

Media Release - November 15, 2017

The Keewatin-Patricia District School Board is pleased to report increased student enrolment for the 2017-2018 school year. The KPDSB for the first time in its history, will no longer be eligible for the “Declining Enrolment Grant” in 2017-2018. 

The Board credits several factors for the increase in enrolment including its expansion of innovative student-based programs that increase student engagement and the efforts of front-line school staff to put the needs of students first. Additional acknowledgement must be given to ongoing and exhaustive efforts of administration to work closely with and sign formal agreements with Indigenous partners such as Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN), Keewaytinook Okimakanak (KO), Seven Generations Education Institute (SGEI), and Lac Seul First Nation (LSFN).

Budgeted enrolment for the 2017-2018 school year was 4,842 students.  Current enrolment for the KPDSB is 4,868, 26 students above the projected or budgeted enrolment.

Notable enrolment increases include:

  • All Kenora elementary schools: Valleyview, Evergreen, Keewatin, and King George VI Public Schools are above projected and actual 2016-17 enrolments;
  • Beaver Brae Grades 7/8 increased enrolment by 17 students;
  • Golden Learning Centre in Balmertown is 17 students over budget;
  • Sioux Narrows Public School enrolment at historic high; enrolment of 31 students;
  • Lillian Berg Public School in Vermilion Bay, increase of 22 students over 2016-17;
  • Queen Elizabeth DHS in Sioux Lookout is an additional 20 students higher than historic 2016-17 numbers with a total of 508; up from 396 students in 2013-14;
  • Enrolment in Senior Kindergarten was 12 higher than projected at 296 students.


Sean Monteith, Director of Education, said “There are always compelling indicators that clearly and indisputably demonstrate the direction an organization is headed in.  The enrolment growth in many of our schools and the enrolment picture across the Board is strong.  The Keewatin-Patricia District School Board continues to strengthen and with that so does our responsibility to Northern Ontario children.”

The KPDSB is currently seeking applicants for employment in all positions and will hold Recruitment Fairs in communities across the board area following a successful event in Sioux Lookout on November 8. Upcoming events include:

  • Dryden/Ignace/Vermilion Bay areas – December 11, 2017 at Dryden High School from 3:00pm to 8:00pm
  • Red Lake/Ear Falls areas – January 10, 2018 at Red Lake District High School from 3:00pm to 8:00pm
  • Kenora/Sioux Narrows areas – January 30, 2018 at Manidoo Baawaatig from 3:00pm to 8:00pm


Ontario Special Needs Strategy Update for Families - Rehabilitation Services

01 May. 2017

Please click here to download a pdf version of the update and letter to families.

Dear Families,

As a family whose child may be receiving or waiting for rehabilitation services (speech-language pathology, occupational therapy, physiotherapy), we are writing to provide you with an update on upcoming improvements to the delivery of children’s rehabilitation services in your community.

As you may know, in 2014 the government launched the Special Needs Strategy in response to feedback received from families to improve the timeliness, effectiveness and coordination of the services that children and youth with special needs require to fully participate at home, at school, in the community and to achieve goals for adulthood.

A key initiative of the Special Needs Strategy is the integrated delivery of rehabilitation services, including physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language pathology, for children and youth from birth to school exit.
Over the past year, service providers – including community-based Preschool Speech and Language providers, District School Boards, Community Care Access Centres and Children’s Treatment Centres – in communities across the province have worked to develop locally integrated, family-centred ways to deliver children’s rehabilitation services to improve family service experiences and outcomes for children and youth with special needs. In doing so, service providers have engaged with families and youth in our communities to seek their input.

What is Changing?

Once the improvements are implemented, children and youth with rehabilitation service needs and their families will have:
 A seamless service experience from birth to school exit, with no gaps in service as children transition to school or between service providers;

  • Child, youth and family centred service as parents and children/youth work together with service providers and educators to set goals based on their individual needs and strengths;
  •  Access to a broad range of high quality interventions (classroom, parent training, educator consultation) in settings that are most appropriate to their needs, and as convenient as possible to families; and
  •  Continuous and consistent services throughout the calendar year regardless of who delivers them in the community.

Following the ministries’ review of initial local proposals, service providers are now beginning to refine their proposals based on consultation with stakeholders. Based on feedback gathered, they will then begin to develop local plans for implementation of their new local models for the integrated delivery of rehabilitation services in each community.

When Will These Changes Take Place?

These changes will be phased in so that they will not disrupt any services your child may currently be receiving in the community or school. Families currently waiting for services will maintain their place on the waitlist. There will be no reduction in service capacity as a result of this change. Implementation of new service delivery models is expected to begin as early as Fall 2018.

We will continue to work together across service providers in the community to ensure that there will be no gaps in services for your child and that any changes will be seamless for you and your family.

How Can I Get More Information?

We will continue to keep you informed as the new model is developed in your community.

You can also visit the Ministry of Children & Youth Services website at for more information about the special needs strategy in Ontario.

For more information or if you have any questions, please contact: Sean Monteith, Keewatin Patricia DSB, 807 468 5571 ext 236


Joan Kantola
Superintendent of Education
Keewatin Patricia District School Board

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KPDSB students participating in provincial Skills Ontario Competition in Toronto

02 May. 2017

Media Release - May 2, 2017

14 students from the KPDSB traveled to Thunder Bay in early April to compete in the Skills Ontario Qualifying Competitions at Confederation College in Thunder Bay.  Students from Beaver Brae, Dryden High and Queen Elizabeth represented the KPDSB and their schools by demonstrating their skills in culinary, small engines, carpentry, video production, and welding.  It was the largest group of students to date to attend a Skills Ontario qualifier from the KPDSB. 

All of our students, while up against tough competition from students across the region, placed in every area of the Skilled Trades qualifier.  They each earned themselves a bid to the provincial competition currently underway in Toronto (May 1-3, 2017), where they are facing off against top competitors from across the province. Our students’ participation in Toronto also marks the largest group of qualifying students to ever attend a provincial competition for the KPDSB.

Richard Hodgkinson, Alternative Learning Lead for the KPDSB, said “Good luck to all of our students currently competing in the Skills Ontario Provincial Competition.  Your dedication and passion has lead you to where you are today and we are very proud of your accomplishments.”

Hodgkinson continued, speaking to the importance of skilled trade opportunities for secondary students in the area “We want to prepare our secondary school’s youth for the highly-skilled economy of tomorrow. We offer multiple programs in all our secondary schools including Specialist High Skills Majors, School College Work Initiative Dual Credits, Cooperative Education, Peer Mentoring, and Ontario Youth Apprenticeship to help students engage, learn and develop their skills. These enable and empower all our youth, including females and Indigenous youth, to consider a career in the skilled trades and technologies.   Through the Skills Ontario Competition, programs and our regular technology courses are just another way to help students decide their pathway when they graduate.”

Carpentry Competition

Culinary Competition

Small Engine Competition

Video Production Competition

Welding Competition