August 2011

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2010-11 SEAC Building Capacity Survey Results Highlights

August 26, 2011

Dear Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC) Chairs:

The ministry would like to take the opportunity to welcome you back for the 2011-12 school year. We continue to seek opportunities to support SEAC capacity building and are pleased to provide you with an update on our plan to address this goal for the upcoming school year.

Thank you to all of the SEACs who took the opportunity to review and complete the SEAC survey that was sent in September 2010. Many SEACs contacted us and asked if we would extend the survey completion deadline to Spring 2011 to accommodate the SEAC elections that occurred to provide them with a full opportunity to complete it. At this time we are now able to provide you with highlights of the survey. (See attached). Please take time to review and share this information with your SEACs.

We were pleased with the number of SEACs that indicated that they had some effective practices and resources that they developed and would like to share with other SEACs. We will be contacting these SEACs shortly with instructions about submitting these effective practices and/or resources.

At this time, we would like to share with you a number of updates and next steps to support SEACs.

  • Highlights of the SEAC survey were shared at the Minister's Advisory Council on Special Education (MACSE) June meeting. MACSE minutes are publicly available at www.macse-on.ca/public.php.
  • A video entitled "Board Improvement Planning for Student Achievement" was developed by the Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat for their Webcast Professional Learning Series. This video has been shared with all English school boards and is publicly available at www.curriculum.org. Of interest, is a section in this video about Special Education that includes effective practices of sharing information about BIPSA and consulting with SEAC during this process.
  • Ministry representatives were invited to attend SEAC meetings this year both in the capacity to provide updates about Special Education in Ontario and to assist with SEAC orientation and training opportunities.
  • This fall the ministry will be taking into consideration your survey feedback to inform next steps for building the capacity of SEACs in Ontario. One on which we are focusing will be updating the SEAC website in order to make it more user-friendly in order to provide you with current, up to date information as well as providing SEACs with an opportunity to share their effective practices and/or resources with other SEACs across the province.

Thank you for your continued efforts to support students with special education needs in partnership with district school boards. I look forward to working with you throughout the 2011-12 school year, as we strive to assist you in your roles as SEAC members.

Sincerely,

Barry Finlay
Director
Special Education Policy and Program Branch
Ministry of Education