Administrative Procedure 120: Collaborative Relationships for Extended Services (CRES) Partnership Agreement

Legal References

Education Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. E-2, Operation of Schools - General, R.R.O. Reg. 298: Section 11(3)(o) Duties of Principal: Cooperation with Residents/Industry/Business/Agencies; Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act; Ministry of Education Policy/Program Memorandum 149: Protocol for Partnerships with External Agencies for Provision of Services by Regulated Health Professionals, Regulated Social Service Professionals and Paraprofessionals

Related References

Avon Maitland District School Board (AMDSB or Board) is committed to working effectively with parents/guardians, external service providers and community agencies to promote student well-being and academic achievement for all students. Service agreements are recognized as mutually beneficial and supportive arrangements between a school and an external mental health, physical health or social service agency. These agreements may supplement, but not duplicate, the services of AMDSB Professional Student Services Personnel and Paraprofessionals.

1.0 Definitions
External Agency: an organization, external to the School Board, that employs regulated health professionals, regulated social services professionals and/or paraprofessionals.

Board PSSP Staff: School board-employed professional student services personnel (PSSP) and/or paraprofessionals that are represented by a bargaining agent recognized under the Labour Relations Act, 1995, as amended from time to time.

Professional Student Services Personnel and Paraprofessionals:
  • Audiologists, as defined by the Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Act, 1991
  • Speech-language pathologists, as defined by the Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Act, 1991
  • Occupational therapists, as defined by the Occupational Therapy Act, 1991
  • Physiotherapists, as defined by the Physiotherapy Act, 1991
  • Psychologists, as defined by the Psychology Act, 1991
  • Psychological Associates, as defined by the Psychology Act, 1991
  • Social workers, as defined by the Social Work and Social Service Work Act, 1998
  • Other regulated professionals and/or paraprofessionals who are deemed by the school board to be essential for the delivery of programs and services for students, including students with special education needs.
  • Any future regulated categories will also be covered by the protocol.

Collaborative Relationships for Extended Services (CRES) Agreement (“CRES Agreement”): A formal, written agreement entered by the AMDSB with the External Agency which outlines the terms and conditions of the relationship. A template is attached at Appendix A.

CRES Advisory Committee: An internal Board committee chaired by the Superintendent of Learning Services and Mental Health and Wellbeing, or designate, and composed of System Principal(s), the Mental Health Lead, designated board management staff, and designated unionized staff representing PSSP and other paraprofessionals.

2.0 Responsibilities:

2.1 CRES Advisory Committee:

2.1.1 The CRES Advisory Committee (“CRES Committee”) will review this AP annually and ensure that revisions to established CRES Agreements entered thereunder will be completed and posted on the AMDSB website by January 1st of each school year.
2.1.2 The CRES Committee will convene at least two (2) times yearly to review current, pending and amended CRES Agreements. The CRES Committee shall monitor the progress of the CRES Services and set priorities based on needs identified in the Board Improvement and Equity Plan.
2.1.3 The CRES Committee will convene as required to address CRES Agreement applications, and any issues related to conflicts, disputes or issues related to the CRES Agreements or Services performed thereunder.
Annually, the CRES Committee Chair will ensure that school principals are made aware of new and existing CRES Agreements including when new CRES Agreements have been approved, details related to the Services offered, and timelines applicable to the CRES Agreements.

2.2 External Agency:

2.2.1 The External Agency is responsible for adhering to the CRES Agreement. Any requests to amend the CRES Agreement, the terms and conditions thereunder, including the terms related to Services provided, must be submitted for review and approval by the CRES Advisory Committee prior to any change in service.

2.2.2 The External Agency shall employ appropriately skilled staff to provide the Services required by the AMDSB, including, but not limited to, Regulated Health Professionals and/ or Regulated Social Service Professionals and/or staff who are supervised by Regulated Health Professionals and/or Regulated Social Service Professionals (e.g. Member of the College of Psychologists of Ontario and/or member of the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and/or member of the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario). The External Agency is responsible for supervising and evaluating the performance of its employees.

2.2.3 The External Agency shall provide evidence of comprehensive malpractice and general liability insurance, naming AMDSB as an additional insured, with limits in an amount of not less than $2,000,000.00 per occurrence.

2.2.4 In consultation with AMDSB, the External Agency shall ensure the appropriate consents have been obtained to provide service and/or access to service. In cases of whole classroom support, a copy of the required letter informing parent/legal guardian(s) of the Services being offered is appended to the CRES Agreement.

2.2.5 The External Agency shall maintain confidentiality and security of all confidential information, personal information and personal health information collected from Board students, staff and families in accordance with applicable Board policies and procedures (including related to privacy and cyber-security) and the External Agency’s professional responsibilities. Confidential and personal information will not be collected, used or disclosed except in accordance with the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (MFIPPA), the Education Act, the Personal Health Information Protection Act (PHIPA), the Child, Youth and Family Services Act (CYFSA), any other applicable laws, or as required by law.
• Should the External Agency be required to disclose confidential or personal information, it shall advise the Board prior to doing so and permit the Board the opportunity to make submissions should it choose to do so.

2.26 The External Agency shall ensure that physical space that is used in the AMDSB’s property is maintained in the condition it was found after each session and undertakes to clean and/or repair damage to the space or equipment that results from the External Agency’s use of the space.

2.27 Upon completion of the Agreement term the External Agency will provide the CRES Advisory Committee an evaluation of the effectiveness of the service provided including: case-load evidence, anecdotal reports, feedback from service providers and service recipients.

2.3 Principal

2.3.1 The Principal shall outline emergency response procedures to External Agency staff when they are providing service in the school building.
2.3.2 The Principal is responsible for the education program. Any programming recommendations made by the External Agency are suggestions only.
2.3.3 The Principal is responsible for monitoring access to school premises and refusing access if the principal determines that the presence of a person is detrimental to the physical or mental well-being of the pupils.
2.3.4 The Principal is responsible for maintaining order and discipline in the school.

2.4 Director of Education

2.4.1 If a conflict or dispute between the External Agency and School Board is not resolved by the CRES Committee, the matter shall be referred to the Director of Education and the designated lead of the External Agency.
2.4.2 The Director of Education has authority to terminate the Agreement if the conflict or dispute cannot be resolved, at the sole discretion of the Director of Education.

3.0 CRES Agreement Eligibility

CRES Agreements may be entered in respect of interventions that involve individual students, groups of students, classroom programs or school-wide initiatives. Examples of services that may be brought forward for consideration are those that involve External Agency staff meeting with student(s) at school to provide counselling, assessments or physical, psychological, behavioural or emotional interventions/supports.

Examples of applications that would not be approved include:
  • Direct services being offered in the school, by External Agency staff, during the school/work day (including lunch/nutrition breaks) that is not directly supporting curriculum and/or is a duplication of service provided by Board PSSP Staff (e.g. individual, small group or whole class sessions that constitute psycho-educational sessions, counselling, therapy, or other services provided by Board PSSP Staff, etc.).
  • Those that violate the Board PSSP collective agreement.

Examples of services that do not require approval by the CRES Advisory Committee:
  • One-time guest speaker that supports the Ontario Curriculum and are educational in nature; guest speakers do not provide counselling services and do not require CRES agreements.
  • Agencies renting school space to provide programming outside of the school day. These agencies should be directed to the Community Use of Schools portal.

4.0 Term of Agreement

Long term agreements shall be valid between September 1st and Aug 31st of the current school year and renewed annually where applicable.

For short term agreements, the parties agree that the term of the agreement will be specified in the Collaborative Relationships for Extended Service Partnership Agreement.
Appendix A - External Collaboration Agreement & Application (please see pdf)
Appendix B - Required Documentation for approval of Collaborative Relationships for Extended Services (CRES) Partnership Agreement (please see pdf)
Appendix C - Services Currently Available (please see pdf)
Revised January 2024