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Durham District School Board
Ignite Learning
Make a Difference
On November 25, 2013 Durham District School Board Trustees Michael Barrett, Kathleen Hopper, Larry Jacula along with Superintendents Jeannine Joubert and Lisa Millar, presented the details of the Make A Difference Program to Oshawa City Council.

The Make a Difference Program was launched by the DDSB in select Oshawa elementary schools to ensure that young children in DDSB schools in Oshawa have access to programs and opportunities that can address the impacts of poverty on students’ development and long term success.

You can view the presentation here.

Please read below to find out more about the Make a Difference Program.

In September 2013, the Durham District School Board  (DDSB)  launched a pilot project in select Oshawa elementary schools entitled, “Make a Difference – an Oshawa Early Years Initiative.”  The goal of the “Make a Difference” program is to ensure that young children in DDSB schools in Oshawa have access to programs and opportunities that can address the impacts of poverty on students’ development and long term success.

The goal of the Make a Difference initiative is to ensure a multi-faceted approach is in place to support our youngest learners and their families, to help ensure all students, especially our most vulnerable, have a solid foundation in place in the earliest years of learning.

Participating DDSB elementary schools, along with community partners, will provide young learners and their families with a range of programs and community-based supports.

Programs will include:

      • Nutrition/breakfast programs
      • Vision, dental and hearing screening
      • Ongoing use of focus groups to engage the community
      • Full service-centred schools offering a range of programs to meet the needs of the community
      • Parent and Family Literacy Centres
      • Parent activities/workshops to support community needs
      • Creation of an Opportunity Gap Action Plan
      • Intervention programs
      • Use of Early Development Instrument (EDI) to plan, develop and measure programs
      • Kindergarten support programs
      • Affordable high quality early years and child care programs
      • Targeted oral language programs

The Make a Difference program will focus on interventions that address the three priorities of the Early Years initiatives: school readiness; reducing the achievement gap; and connecting families and community support services.

Additional Resources and Information:

Make a Difference, DDSB - An Oshawa Early Years Initiative Report Summary

Make a Difference, DDSB - An Oshawa Early Years Initiative Full Report​