UGDSB approves updated policies

GUELPH – The Upper Grand District School Board (UGDSB) approved two revised policies, pertaining to student fees and Indigenous education, during the board meeting on Jan. 30. 

These policies were offered for public consultation from Oct. 25 until Dec. 8. 

Draft revisions to a policy about community use of schools were made available to the public during the same period – this policy was set to return to the board’s policy and priorities committee on Feb. 6 for consideration. 

A policy development plan was also approved for a new policy about celebrations and commemorations during the Jan. 30 meeting. 

Policy development officer Christine de Boer presented the plan and summaries of public feedback during the policies and priorities committee meeting on Jan. 9. 

Student fees

UGDSB students, parents and staff submitted 14 comments regarding the draft revisions to the Student Fees policy. 

Most of these responses included concerns that the changes would result in a reduction of opportunities for students. 

The updated policy states that its intent is “not to reduce or cancel programs, sports or extra-curricular opportunities for students. Instead, it provides an opportunity to revise how programs have traditionally been funded and to re-imagine how all students are offered the same or similar experiences while at the same time removing barriers and reducing costs for families.”

A clause was added to the policy after public feedback submissions that identifies fundraising as an option to help subsidize the cost of programs for students. 

The updated policy will be effective as of Sept. 1. 

To read the updated policy visit 

Indigenous education

The First Nation, Métis, Inuit Self-Identification and Education policy merges the Indigenous Education policy with the First Nation, Métis, and Inuit Self-Identification Policy.

Revisions include updates to the policy statement and a statement about the option for students and families to self-identify as First Nation, Métis, or Inuit through a confidential and voluntary process.

The board received four comments about the draft policy, including concerns from staff about the “appropriate and responsible application of resources to Indigenous students and families,” states de Boer’s summary of feedback.

No changes were made to the policy after the public consultation feedback.

To read the updated policy visit 

Celebrations and commemorations

Celebrations and Commemorations is a new policy that outlines how events and people are recognized, celebrated, and commemorated, including flying flags at schools and other board-owned sites. 

The policy’s objectives are to: 

– confirm the board’s commitment to displaying educational flags that support the UGDSB’s mission, values and multi-year plan; 

– clarify UGDSB staff’s role after the death of a student or staff member; and 

– provide planning requirements for celebrations to ensure inclusivity. 

The draft policy will be made available on the UGDSB for between 30 and 45 days and a survey will be distributed for public consultation. 

To read the draft policy visit