SchoolsPlus Expanded to All School Boards

Department of Education (to March 26, 2013)

April 14, 2011 11:06 AM

NOTE: The list of new SchoolsPlus sites follows this release.

The province is making life better for children, youth and families by providing access to key services in community schools, ensuring families can access services when and where they need them.

Education Minister Ramona Jennex announced today, April 14, that the SchoolsPlus pilot program will be expanded to all eight school boards, giving children, youth and families better access to social, health, justice and mental health services.

Family resource centres, child care and youth health centres will be located within select schools at all school boards. This will lead to the enhanced use of school facilities by students, families and the community.

"Schools are ideal venues for our partners to provide services," said Ms. Jennex. "By expanding and formalizing this service, we are helping fulfill our commitment to enhance the use of community schools to make life better for families."

The province established SchoolsPlus as a pilot in four school boards. This expansion builds on the success of the pilot and establishes hub sites in Conseil scolaire acadien provincial and the Annapolis Valley, Cape Breton-Victoria, and Tri-County regional school boards.

"Getting students involved in the SchoolsPlus programs will have a significant impact, since it aligns projects with students' needs," said Allan Boudreau, regional director, Conseil scolaire acadien provincial. "SchoolsPlus engages young people, balances clinical and informal services, and encourages inter-agency collaboration."

SchoolsPlus programs and services are delivered in a school setting, during and after school. Each hub site acts as a base for services at multiple schools. The sites support information and connection to services through outreach programs and partnerships with service providers. Each hub site has a SchoolsPlus facilitator and a community outreach worker.

"SchoolsPlus is an amazing program," said Roseanna Cleveland, Chair, Take Action, a parent group at Harbour View Elementary in Dartmouth. "It opens the door for parents to come freely into the school and makes it easier to get contacts for other organizations out there. SchoolsPlus makes it easier to have that relationship with the schools, with our kids, with our personal lives."

"SchoolsPlus is an integrated service delivery model that recognizes that it takes a whole village to raise a child," said Marlene Ruck Simmonds, SchoolsPlus leader, Halifax Regional School Board. "It invites meaningful collaboration, planning and taking action with parents, provincial and municipal governments and community. This gives SchoolsPlus the potential to develop networks of supports that are critical for greater confidence and competency in school and life."

The SchoolsPlus pilot project began in 2008 as part of Nova Scotia's child and youth strategy, Our Kids Are Worth It and has been a success in the Halifax, Chignecto-Central, South Shore and Strait regional school boards.

For more information on SchoolsPlus, visit http://schoolsplus.ednet.ns.ca/ .


FOR BROADCAST USE:

     The province is making life better for children, youth and

families by providing access to key services in community

schools, ensuring families can access services when and where

they need them.

The SchoolsPlus pilot program will be expanded to all eight

school boards, giving children, youth and families better access

to social, health, justice and mental health services.

     Family resource centres, child care and youth health centres

will be located within select schools at all school boards. This

will lead to the enhanced use of school facilities by students,

families and the community.

     Education Minister Ramona Jennex says schools are ideal

venues for partners to provide services.

-30-

Media Contact: Glenn Friel
              Department of Education
              902-424-5432
              Cell: 902-456-7416
              E-mail: frielgp@gov.ns.ca


A list of new SchoolsPlus sites is as follows:

Annapolis Valley Regional School Board

-- Champlain Elementary School, with support for other schools including Annapolis Royal Regional Academy, Annapolis West Education Centre and Clark Rutherford Memorial School

Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board

-- Sherwood Park Education Centre and feeder schools Cusack-Cornwallis-Ashby Complex, Brookland Elementary School, Mira Road Elementary School, Shipyard Elementary School, and Southside Learning Centre as well as Membertou Elementary School

Conseil scolaire acadien provincial

-- École secondaire de Par-en-Bas, with support for other schools including École Pubnico-Ouest, École Wedgeport et École Belleville
-- École Beau-Port, with support for École acadienne de Pomquet

Tri County Regional School Board

-- Digby Regional High School and feeder schools Digby Elementary School, Barton Consolidated School, and Digby Neck Consolidated School