John Oliver PAC Executive 2016/2017

We’re pleased to announce the PAC Executive for 2016/2017:

Anne Montgomery – Chair (

Tracey Santos – Treasurer

Jo-Ann Gordon – Secretary

Suzanne Smythe and Ramandeep Minhas – DPAC reps

Lara Spence – Social Media/Website

Please contact us with questions, concerns, or ideas!

All parents of John Oliver students are members of PAC! We thank the many of you who come to our meetings, volunteer (contact us if you want to help with fundraising, events, etc.!), and act as ambassadors/cheerleaders for John Oliver kids, the school, and our community.

JO PAC Meeting – May 25, 2016

JO PAC Meeting – May 25, 2016

Present:  Anne Montgomery – PAC Chair, Tracey Santos – Treasurer, Ramandeep Kaurminhas and Suzanne Smythe – Co-DPAC Reps., Jo-Ann Gordon – Secretary, Paul Thandi (Moberley PAC Chair), Tim McGeer – Principal, and 10 parents

The meeting began at 7:00 p.m.

  1. PAC Elections:

Co-Chair – needed for next year as it will be Anne’s last year at John Oliver

Treasurer – Tracey

Secretary – Jo-Ann

DPAC – Suzanne and Ramandeep

In September there will be a re-structuring to share Chair duties – including teacher liaison, student liaison, email distribution, etc.

  1. Principal’s Announcements: Tim McGeer

New Principal for September 2016 – Tim is being transferred to UHill and Pedro de Silva (currently VLN Principal) will be replacing him.

Dry Grad – happened Wed. May 25 with a Mystery Bus Tour, followed by fun event in gym.

Graduation – June 7th – Chan Centre

5 PAC Scholarships (2 for Mini Students; 1 i/n/o Thomas Harapnuick – past VP) – to be presented by Anne and Ramandeep.

Sr. Girls Softball – won Provincial Championship

Subject Awards Evening – Tues. May 31st – family and students welcome to attend.

Music Concert – June 9th concert with Alumni – tickets are $2.

  1. Update on John Oliver Secondary School – closure or seismic upgrade:

Anne and Suzanne will speak at the June 15th Long Range Facilities meeting on behalf of PAC.

Intention is to have John Oliver back on list for seismic upgrade; to build a right-size new school and use the old building as swing space for other schools.

June 20th – school closure list will be announced.

Henriquez architects have drawn up plans for new John Oliver school (under capacity) to be built along 43 Avenue. Mentioned that the plans should be made public to parents, with “Envision the Future” as slogan.

Any voicemail phone calls to Minister Mike Bernier’s office in the evening will be documented and shared the next day. Please phone (250) 387-1977 with your positive message for a new school to be re-built.

  1. Amateur Radio Club:

Have given John Oliver an HF Unit = emergency radio communication HUB. JO was chosen for its location.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:30 pm. with the next PAC meeting to be held in September 2016.

To stay in touch and help learn about/share the happenings at John Oliver, please:

‘like’ the John Oliver Facebook page ( ), the Twitter feed (, or (if in Mini) ask to join the Mini School parents FB (

You can also check in on the John Oliver PAC blog (

Have a good summer.

JO PAC meeting Wednesday 25 May 2016 7pm Learning Commons

Regular week changed b/c of important VSB Facilities meeting (Committee II) (we are sending a delegation). May 25, 2016 is the last JO PAC meeting of the year. We’ll be hearing results of our recent BMO fundraiser, having elections for a few PAC positions so would love to see parents out!

PAC meetings help you be informed about issues around school, allow you to meet with Admin (Principal McGeer always attends) and allow you to contribute towards and connect with a great school family! Be a great role model for your children!

Email with questions and ideas!

ps – seen our FB page?

Letter from Anne Montgomery to VSB Trustees re: Considerations re: JO and Facilities May 9 2016

Here is the letter to the VSB and Minister of Education re: JO Opportunity re: Facilities by Anne Montgomery, John Oliver PAC Chair mentioned my Anne Montgomery at the meeting on May 9 2016 re: considerations for the Facilities team re: John Oliver and seismic upgrades. Questions?

Ever wondered the purpose of PAC?

If you’re wondering more about what PACs in Vancouver are for, and the benefits of being in one, read this summary from the BC PAC website:  (

What is a PAC?

The School Act gives parents the right, through PACs, to assume an advisory role in every school. PAC is the officially recognized collective voice of parents of their school. A PAC, through its elected officers, may advise the school board, the principal and staff of the school respecting any matter relating to the school other than matters assigned to the School Planning Council (SPC).

PACs are forums within each school community to discuss matters affecting your school and the education of your children. Parents’ voices are a tremendous value to their school. They offer a wealth of ideas and support in the challenges that face all public schools. PACs strive to represent the diversity within their communities and contribute to the benefit of all students by:

  • providing opportunities to educate and inform parents about the school;
  • involving parents in volunteer activities; and
  • openly discussing parents’ concerns and aspirations for their schools.

Who Can Become a Member of PAC?

All parents and guardians of students registered in the school are able to participate as a member of the PAC.

What Governs a PAC?

As an autonomous body, the PAC must abide by its Constitution and Bylaws and the School Act.

How Does a PAC Work?

Through their elected executives from parents in the school, PACs communicate with their parent community gathering and discussing issues of importance regarding their school in order to adequately advise those that influence their school. In addition to PAC meetings communication may also be done through, newsletters, telephone, email, and websites so that all parents have the opportunity for input. PACs, with strong participation from parents, have an important influence on life at the school and the feelings the community has toward the school and education. There is strong evidence that increased parent involvement in the school results in increased student achievement, accomplishment, satisfaction, and bonding all of which result in decreased dropout rates and better citizen.

Whom does the PAC Advise?

(a) advise the board and the principal and staff of the school or the Provincial school respecting any matter relating to the school or the Provincial school, other than matters assigned to the school planning council, and

(b) at the request of the SPC, assist the SPC in carrying out its functions under this Act.

(c) advise their District Parents’ Advisory Council (DPAC), British Columbia Confederation of Parent Advisory Councils (BCCPAC), the Ministry of Education and any other organization, as they deem necessary.

The Purpose of a PAC can be:

  • to provide parents with the opportunity to gain greater understanding of the school;
  • to assist the School Planing Counsel in carrying out its function;
  • to give input into school- based decisions;
  • to participate in goal setting;
  • to unify efforts of the school community towards the goal of quality education;
  • to monitor and review school rules and conduct, the safety programs, the educational programs; learning materials, equipment and the school building;
  • to educate parents;
  • to advocate equal educational opportunities for all students;
  • to liaise with other education partners and organizations; and
  • to provide methods to resolve problems between the school and community by directing parents and students to the Advocacy project.

The PAC is NOT:

A forum to discuss individual students/staff problems or conflicts.

Your Involvement

Parents are encouraged and invited to bring forth issues, suggestions, or concerns relating to the meeting and enhancement of the needs of your school community.

These issues can be brought forth by:

  • contacting a PAC executive member
  • sending a letter to the school addressed to a member of the PAC executive
  • attending a PAC meeting.

Looking forward to seeing you out at an upcoming John Oliver Secondary PAC meeting!

Funds raised, Budget Shortfalls, Activities – great stuff – Minutes April 13 2016 PAC meeting

Lots of goodies talked about at the JO PAC meeting Wednesday April 13, 2016, including success of our BMO-fund-matching program ($3250 raised), some filming going on ($7000 raised), and some very important issues you should read about (VSB shortfalls that will affect our school in terms of kids per class (raised), loss of mini school program secretaries (jeopardizing programs at all 17 Vancouver secondary schools).

Read please!  JO PAC Meeting Minutes 04-13-2016

Do you follow JO on FB? Do you receive emails from JO PAC? Being informed and sharing accurate information with other parents, students and neighbours in the John Oliver family is key to our success. Thank you!

Follow / Share about John Oliver:

FB group for Mini School Parents:

Do you receive the John Oliver PAC email: If not, email and request to be added!

Communication is key for the goals of our kids and our school. Ask 3 parents of JO students you know if they are on the email list and/or following JO via the methods above. If not, ask them to please sign up! Thanks!

Welcome, John Oliver Secondary Parents!

Yes – you are at the right place! We just chose a new theme for the website!

For the latest minutes, browse this blog or (for before 2015), see ARCHIVES above. THANKS!

Find us on FB:

Find us on Tw: @jo_school

Got questions? Ask

Open a Student Account with $100, Get $50 and JO PAC gets $50 (before end of March 2016)

Deposit $100, get FREE $50

Hi all – want to help John Oliver make $15,000 this year for student programs/band/arts/sports *and* get $50 in matched savings for your child? BMO on Fraser has made an offer to the John Oliver PAC and we need action by end of March!

The Bank of Montreal at Fraser and 48th has given the JO PAC a generous offer – if 300 JO students open accounts at that branch in the next month or so, the bank will give the PAC $15,000! That money would go a long way towards funding some of the requests we receive each year from teachers and students. There are information packages at the office if you would like to know more about this special offer. Basically, the JO student (can also include siblings, faculty and faculty children) opens up an account at BMO Fraser/48th by depositing at least $25, and then depositing another $25 for at least 3 months (this means you put in another $75). At the end of 3 months, BMO will put another $50 into that account and give the PAC $50! There are no fees with the student account. You will need student ID or a BMO form to prove your connection to JO, and you should have a SIN number and 2 other pieces of ID with you (the student) when you sign up. Parents should come with the student and also provide ID. Saturday March 12, 2016, has been set aside for John Oliver families to open accounts. Please call Charlene Chen at the bank 604-668-1313 for more information, or email the PAC at This is an amazing opportunity for us so please open an account! The JO PAC thanks you! SHARE with JO Parents!

February 2016 JO PAC Meeting Minutes

Present:       Anne Montgomery – PAC Chair, Tracey Santos – Treasurer, RamandeepKaurminhas and Jo-Ann Gordon – Co-Secretaries, Tim McGeer – Principal, Constable Robert Feenan, and 6 parents

The meeting began at 7:00 p.m.

BMO 48th& Fraser Branch Fundraising:

Branch Manager, AnupamJindal, of the 6391 Fraser Street branch of the Bank of Montreal, along with 3 staff members talked about $30,000 being committed for 300 families and JO PAC. If parents at John Oliver open 300 new children’s accounts, BMO will deposit $50 into each account and give $50 to PAC. With 300 accounts being opened, the PAC would receive $15,000.

The Bank of Montreal is willing to add a further 200 accounts, bringing the total potential money to be raised to $25,000.

Simple steps to do this:

  1. Open a chequing and savings account (no fee Plan) and $25 will be deposited by BMO.
  2. Over the next 3 months, do at least 3 transactions on the account (cash deposit, transfer, cheque, etc.)
  3. After 90 days (once BMO has seen 3 transactions) a further $25 will be deposited by BMO.
  4. If a parent arranges a pre-authorized credit/debit for the account, $50 will be deposited at the time it is opened. There will be no waiting for 90 days.

Anupam brought 300 envelopes ready with new account forms, to be given to those students interested in opening an account. Deadline is March 31st for 300 accounts and April 30th for another 200 accounts.March 5 and 12 have been set aside for JO families to come and open accounts, although you can make an appointment for any time by calling the bank.

Call or email questions to Charlene Chen, Fin. Ser. Mgr. at 604-668-1404 or

Mr. McGeer will launch this at the staff meeting, to encourage those teachers who are leaders of Band, Athletics, Fine Arts, and Mini School to encourage their students to help with this fundraiser.

Vancouver Aboriginal Child & Family Services Society:

Meg and Rusty from the VACFSS talked about the high need in Vancouver for foster parents of aboriginal children. Baby homes and teenager homes are critically needed. The first Tuesday of each month there is a 2 hr presentation at 471 Broadway East. Please contact Rusty Whitford at and look at their website at for more information.

Constable Robert Feenan:

CST Feenan is the School Liaison Officer. He is requesting the PAC to sponsor the Van. Police Dept. Indoor Soccer Tournament at the end of April. This means providing 15-20 t-shirts with the John Oliver logo on the front and a number on the back. Tracey asked CST Feenan if the students would be interested in opening a BMO account in order to receive PAC funds? He will check into it.

Principal’s Announcements: Tim McGeer

South Van Rotary Club– have selected John Oliver as one of their charities for this year. The Rotary club wants to set up an Interact Club at JO, where members come to JO and mentor students.

Surrogate Robot – used as an adaptive device if a child has to be in hospital or at home. A robot is coming to JO on March 3rd.

Math Jr. Olympics – Gr. 8 – coming up in early March

Aboriginal Education Day, April 28– raising the totem pole at JO

Strategic Planconsultation deadline is Feb. 21

Complete a brief survey to tell us about your key ideas, issues and priorities for the future at the following address:

Goals from this plan influence where resources are allocated in the schools for the next 5 years!

Facilities Review– online survey and open houses

63 schools will be affected (closures, swing space schools, rebuilds)

Feb. 24 – 7-8:30 pm – Bayview School – Public Education Society is holding an open house with the Members of Public Education Network Society (PENS) and the Parent Advocacy Network (PAN). For more info go to

Filming at John Oliver – Riverdale (Archie comics) will be filming in March; Paramount will be filming in June “Death Note” at JO.

PAC Funding Requests:

An invoice was submitted to the PAC by the Math & Science Tutor Clubfor $200 for 10 t-shirts. Tracey will check with them as to whether they can come up with a few more t-shirts for that amount and/or whether some of the Tutor club students will open a BMO account to offset the cost.

Teachers Appreciation Lunch – Wed. May 4 2016:

Volunteers are needed to bring in food, and arrange for donations from vendors on Fraser Street.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:20 pm. with the next meeting to be held on Wednesday, March 9, 2016 at 7:00 pm in the Library. Go and open 1 or more BMO accounts before this next meeting!

January 20 2016 JO PAC Meeting Minutes

JO PAC Meeting – January 20, 2016


Present:      Anne Montgomery – PAC Chair, Tracey Santos – Treasurer, Ramandeep Kaurminhas and Jo-Ann Gordon – Co-Secretaries, Tim McGeer – Principal, Farrell Segall– Past PAC Chair, and 10 parents


The meeting began at 7:00 p.m. with the minutes being accepted from November 2015.


Principal’s Announcements: Tim McGeer

Gr. 7 Breakfast – more representatives from feeder schools than ever before; both teachers and Principal are talking to neighbouring school PACs; the reputation of JO having changed is getting out there


  • Failing List (students in trouble at school in terms of graduating) ranges from 2.4% (Gr. 8), 3.9% (Gr. 9), 9.4% (Gr. 10), 5.3% (Gr. 11) and 3.2% (Gr. 12)
  • Principal’s List (harder to get on) ranges from 3.0 to 4.0% in each grade
  • Honour Roll (increased from 75% to 80% average marks to be on it) ranges from 27% (Gr. 8), 30% (Gr. 9), 27% (Gr. 10), 33% (Gr. 11) and 30% (Gr. 12) – nearly 1/3 of the school is on the Honour Roll!
  • Effort Honour Roll (must attain a G and E in all subjects – means attaining deeper level of education) ranges from 32% (Gr. 8), 38% (Gr. 9), 24% (Gr. 10), 29% (Gr. 11) and 21% (Gr. 12)

STEM Program – JO has been given an innovation grant to pilot projects.

All-Star NBA Tour – All-Star NBA game is being played in Toronto. Tour is going across Canada and a group of basketball players will be coming to JO Thurs. Jan. 21st.

Vancouver Opera – StickBoy – Thursday, February 18 (1:45 pm)

Shane Koyczan wrote the libretto for the Opera; it’s about bullying; Gr. 8, 9, 10’s will watch it.

DI Mini School – Sun Peaks Trip was a success – fewer injuries this year.

Mid Year Exam week January 25 – 29

Classes are suspended. Students are in exams or presentations relating to school and education goals. See the schedules students brought home. Some things they will do:

Human Library – come and take out a person instead of a book; will span from New Age to Industrial Age (link between Math and careers)

Grad Transitions, Career Explorations (Jan. 28 from 3:00 – 7:00 pm) is open to public/parents.

School PlayLittle Shop of Horrors Feb. 11-13 (Thurs. – Sat.)

Ms. Enthoven is re-building the theatre program. Come and enjoy the show – by donation.

Paramount Pictures – in June will be filming “Death Note” at JO.


School System is changing:

  • New Curriculum – training has begun with staff; enacted in K-Gr. 9 in September 2016; what is assessment/report cards going to look like? Apparently all schools will have coding classes!

With more collaborative time this year (Thursdays) teachers are finding encouraging ways to have high standards, and are focusing on relationships with students first.

  • Seismic Upgrading – JO has been waiting for 12 years and has gone through 3 different design processes. Facilities Review is underway. JO must present an Interim Plan by Jan. 31 and then it is up for review for a year, so it will be 2017 until we know more. JO is no longer a high priority for seismic upgrading. Government would like to see schools maximizing space to 95%. JO is currently at 83%.

CBC News (January 2016) –

The New Yorker (July 2015) –


PAC Funding Requests:

Band has requested $1,500 to pay for half the cost of a tuba. They have been doing ongoing fundraising this year but are still short. Further requests from other groups will come in February.


Direct Drive Fundraising:

Requests going out soon via email (through Secretaries) to current families and alumni (400 are being asked), and paper copies for those without emails. Perhaps on the form there can be an option for people to add where they would like their donation to go, i.e to Band or Athletics, etc.


Shop Funds Fundraising:

Raised $100 from mainly Gr. 8 and 9 families participating. Need to change to another company that allows on-line ordering. Lara Spence has the name of one. Someone is needed to come forward to run it.


Scholarship in the name of Thomas Harapnuick:

VanCity has donated $250 towards a scholarship, with perhaps another $250 coming.


Bank of Montreal: 48th & Fraser Branch

Anne has been trying to reach the Manager, with no luck. She will continue pursuing this.



As the Mini School has had successful fundraisers this year, the Bingo Night will be school-wide. Prize donations take the most time and effort, and those wanting to help before, during and after the Bingo Night, please contact


Treasurer’s Report:

Tracey reported that cheques have been written for the Bench, Drama Club, Safe Teen and Grade 12 (Dry Grad and Breakfast), and $7,000 has been allocated to Athletics. This leaves $6,500 in our account, some of which will be dispersed in February.


Teachers Appreciation Lunch:

A date to be set in April. Volunteers are needed to bring in food, and arrange for donations from vendors on Fraser Street.


UBC Engineering:

Many events are happening in January, February and March. Check the or their website for more information.


100th Anniversary Legacy Fund for JO:

Farrell Segall spoke about the 100th Anniversary of the school (2012) which was a success and raised $40,000 mainly from alumni. From the money raised $10,000 was set aside for scholarships and the remainder ($17,000) is to go towards keeping the auditorium (when JO is seismically upgraded) or for building improvements on the auditorium.

The committee meets once every few months. A letter has been drafted to be sent to alumni groups when they are getting together to mark anniversary milestones. The letter asks if the event would consider making a donation to the legacy. The mandate of the committee is to “celebrate the past, showcase the present and support the future.”

In 1967 a time capsule was buried in front of the school, to be dug up in 2067. Will Farrell is suggesting digging it up in 2017 (50 yrs. after being buried) and then re-dedicate it for a further 50 yrs. If we wait the school may no longer be here, and there are graduates from 1967 that are interested in seeing what is in it. The opening of the time capsule will need to be coordinated with the VSB, who will provide the digging equipment.

Anne presented Farrell with a token of appreciation for all he’s done for the school since 2010.

PAC Chair or Co-Chair:

Anyone interested in helping out with being a PAC Chair or Co-Chair please contact Coming on board now will make for an easier transition next year.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:20 pm. with the next meeting to be held on Wednesday, February 17, 2016 at 7:00 pm in the Library.