Presentation “Managing Difficult Conversations with Children” – Tuesday, Jan 17th

Norquay PAC is excited to announce that we will have Emi Garzitto give a presentation on “Managing Difficult Conversations with Children” at our next PAC meeting on Tuesday, January 17th. This 45 minute presentation will provide parents with some tools and strategies on how to practice holding difficult conversations with children. The presentation will take place in the Norquay Library, beginning promptly at 6:00pm.

The following topics will be explored:

1. Creating systems and strategies in the home that help children develop the skills required to hold difficult conversations

2. Provide a framework when dealing with children who are angry and upset.

3. Provide time to practice the framework in the session.

4. Provide time for questions

A “cheat sheet” will be provided for parents to take home, that will contain the key points of the presentation.

We hope to see you all there!

Norquay Elementary PAC


17 Jan 2017

6:00-7:30PM Norquay Library


  • New Business
  • Admin Message (5 mins – Margaret/Sharon)
  • Old business/Updates (2 mins)
  • Treasurer’s report – Update on Budget (5 mins – Shirley)
  • Teacher Representative (2 mins)
  • Approve January 17th Agenda
  • Approve past minutes – December 13, 2016 – See below (2 mins – Charis)
  • Welcome & Introductions, Attendance: (2 mins – Charis)
  • PAC Presentation: “ Managing Difficult Conversations with Children” – Emi Garzitto (45 min)
  • Garden Update (2mins)
    • Discussion of Garden fund to cover half of Box building TOC costs.
  • Playground Update (2mins – Letti)
  • Fundraising/Volunteer Update (2mins – Charis/Shauna)
    • Discussion of division of labor for remaining events of the year.
  • EMB Update (2min – Shauna)
    • Discussion of 2 DPAC Reps
  • Communications (2min – Janisha)
  • Traffic Update (Please see Report Below)



Next PAC Meeting February 21st @ 6:00pm PAC Presentation: Social Media 4 Parents

Jan 17/17  PAC Meeting      Transportation Report 

  •  We submitted a Transportation Bulletin with the map of the school and the best routes around as well as safety tips depending on your means of transportation.
  •  In that bulletin, we asked for volunteers to help out with the traffic at drop off and pick up to ensure parents understand and respect the signs around school.
  • We are hoping to have enough volunteers to do 3 days in January and 3 days in February. It will depend on the responses we get
  • We will start looking at options for a biking class for kids as an after school program for May/June if there is interest for it.

Jan 17/17  PAC Meeting        Garden Report

  • Build date for one out of six new planter boxes with 10 leader students from Ms De Jardin’s grade 6/7 class and Mr. Russ Evans from Tupper Tech is Tues Feb 28
  • The remaining five boxes will be built on Thurs Mar 2 with the leader students and Mr Evans mentoring the rest of the class
  • Cost for TOC to cover Mr Evans will be shared 50/50 by Norquay PAC and Norquay School
  • VSB Grounds will prepare the ground and put down a gravel pad for the boxes
  • Soil to be ordered from VSB.  The goal is to have the boxes placed outside by 2pm on Mar 2 to start transferring soil to the boxes (weather permitting).
  • Growoyas are on order from Figaro’s Garden.  Need a total of 14 (2 per box for the new planters plus 2 to replace chipped ones with sharp edges in the older boxes).  More covers for the Growoyas are on order also to replace some that were lost.

Costs breakdown:

Costs of TOC for Mr Evans ~    350

Cedar wood and materials for the six 4×8’ boxes ~ 2,100

Grounds prep and gravel pad ~ 1,100

Soil ~    350

Growoyas (14 @ discounted rate of $24 each) ~    370

TOTAL                   4,270 approximately


Note:  Toyota Evergreen Learning Grounds Grant for $2,000 received in summer 2016 is to go towards the box building costs.

  • Ms Chang requested donations from West Coast Seeds, and they have provided us with more than enough seeds for the entire garden!
  • Nikoo from SPEC (Society Promoting Environmental Conservation) is coming on Feb 1 and Feb 2 to do indoor seeding workshops.  New grow lights, extension cords and timers have been purchased and Ms De Jardin’s class will help to set up the lights before the workshops.
  • Nikoo is inquiring about drip irrigation options with VSB.  Currently, drip irrigation is not allowed by VSB Grounds.  An irrigation system would be a huge help as hand watering is very time consuming.

Jan 17, 2017 Norquay PAC Meeting – DPAC Report

  • Regarding the FSA:
    • The VSB will allow a parent to excuse their child from taking the FSA.
    • To opt out, the parent(s) should put their request in writing to the student’s teacher and principal(s). No special form required.
    • The mandate from the Ministry is that allstudents take the FSA.
    • Parents may or may not receive a letter from BCTF.
  • Changing the Dates for Winter Break:
    • A proposal was brought forth regarding changing the dates for the winter break to align with all districts that border Vancouver
    • DPAC Exec Chair Nathan Wilkes said this is expected to pass and a public announcement will be made Jan 24th
    • This would make the dates for winter break from the 2017/2018 School Year as follows: December 25, 2017 – January 5, 2018 with classroom instruction resuming January 8, 2018.
  • Potential – with emphasis on POTENTIAL – Meeting between DPAC Execs and Education Minister Mike Bernier
    • DPAC Executives have explored the possibility of having a face to face meeting with the education minister. Questions, talking points, priorities still undecided.
    • General consensus was that this presents a valuable opportunity and that we should our individual PACs about their top issues for the minister. The ask being to then bring this information back to the DPAC Execs.
  • Committee 2 report recap:
    • The name “Crosstown” will stay for the new elementary school with a second additional name to be assigned later
    • The calendar committee addressed the holiday break reset
  • Committee I & Committee 3 report recap:
    • K-12 enrolment is slightly declining – biggest drops in Grades 11, 12
    • French Immersion is the most popular
    • From 2013-2016 huge drops in Adult Ed and Alternative Youth programs (this is directly related to funding cuts)
    • Transition to Secondary for EMB Committee representation
      • New committee being formed to look at selecting a suitable secondary school location for the Early Mandarin Bilingual Program presently at Norquay, the percentage of instruction in Mandarin at the secondary level, and course content at the secondary level
      • The first meeting for this new committee will be held sometime in February
      • A call-out was made by Nancy Brennan for a number of participants, two of whom would be DPAC reps
      • The 2 DPAC rep names put forth were myself (Shauna Cook) and Jean Wong. I let the group know that Norquay wishes to have the input of another rep to be active on this committee and would be voting/deciding upon that person at our 1/17 meeting.
    • Committees 4 & 5 – no reports – those meetings were cancelled.
    • Last 30 minutes were devoted to the upcoming City-wide play and workshop on February 9th. Crystal presented her play titled Building Resilience and “Saving Mother.” The DPAC Execs requested promotional materials to drive attendance at the event.

PAC-Dec.13, 2016 Tentative Meeting Minutes