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Simcoe County District School Board, also known as SCDSB is one of Ontariomarker's largest public school boards, serving Simcoe County. The schools and learning centres are dotted throughout 4,800 square kilometres in Simcoe County. This south-central Ontariomarker setting is bordered by the Holland Marsh in the south, the Trent-Severn Waterway in the east, Blue Mountain in the west and Muskoka in the north. It is an English-language school board.

Mission

The mission of the Simcoe County District School Board, serving diverse growing urban and rural communities in the Huronia and Georgian Baymarker region, is to ensure students reach their full potential to become responsible and contributing members of an ever-changing global society through quality programs which develop the skills of lifelong learning in a safe, caring environment enhanced by community support.

Staff and Students

The SCDSB currently has more than 56,000 students in 92 elementary schools, 16 secondary schools and 6 adult learning centres.[288972] The SCDSB also employs over 5,000 employees.[288973]

Controversy

King Edward Public School

The Ministry of Education has released a report that upholds the King Edward Public School accommodations review process. The accommodations review resulted in the Simcoe County District School Board’s decision to close the aging Barriemarker school by September 2008. King Edward was designated as “prohibitive to repair” by the Ministry of Education after province-wide inspections in 2003.

In response to a request by individuals in the King Edward community, the Ministry of Education appointed Dave Cooke, an independent facilitator, to review the three-year process that led to the Board’s closure decision. The facilitator met with the King Edward Accommodations Review Task Force members, other community members, trustees, and staff during the summer.

A Ministry of Education press release noted that the facilitator “determined that the board did follow its board-approved accommodation review policy as well as the intent of the McGuinty government’s Good Places to Learn initiative.” In addition, the release states that the facilitator “made recommendations for the board to improve its accommodation review process, but also determined that the outcome of the review of King Edward would not have changed under a different process.”

SCDSB Associate Director Lou Brandes agreed that it is time to proceed with next steps. “David Cooke's review has validated our Accommodation Task Force Review process as well as the integrity and the inclusiveness of the work of the committee members,” he says. “Transition teams made up of principals, staff and parents from King Edward, Allandale Heights Public School and Assikinack Public School communities will be continuing to work with their communities over the next two years in preparation of the transfer of students to their new locations in September 2008.”

The decision to close the school was made on April 26, 2006, nearly three years after the Ministry of Education conducted province-wide school inspections and deemed the school to be “prohibitive to repair”.

The “prohibitive to repair” designation is made when the cost of renewing the school building surpasses 65% of the cost of the replacement value of the existing building.

As a result of receiving this designation, the Simcoe County District School Board followed the procedures set out in Board Policy 2313, School Closure and Consolidation. The King Edward Accommodations Review Task Force Committee was formed in November 2003 to begin the accommodations review process and make recommendations for Board consideration.

Schools

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