Trustess are responsible for setting the English District School Board's overall policy direction and the budget of the board. They are supposed to represent the interests of the community, parents and students from the area from which they are elected.
With the combining of all local and regional English school boards into one gigantic provincial board, representing 260 schools, 67,000 students and 8,000 employees, it is more important than ever to elect independent minded individuals that are prepared to ask tough questions and be accountable for transparent decisions.
The authority, independence and local nature of public of school boards in our province has been consistently whittled down to the point where the Provincial Government directs the board but pretend they have independence.
If elected to the role of Trustee for Zone 16, I will work towards:
- Ensuring that all votes are recorded, made in public sessions and done through a show of hands. Anyone running for public office should not hide behind secret ballots. Trustees should be honest, open and transparent.
- I believe in a needs based education system. The English School Board must be prepared to fight for the resources needed to ensure that our students receive the best educational outcomes possible and that student transportation is safe.
- I believe in community and neighbourhood schools. Local school councils are mandated by legislation, are composed of parent and community volunteers and receive no funding allocations to carry out their significant role in our education system. This must change.
- I would work towards ensuring that teachers and professionals in our school system are provided with more professional development.
- We to meet the serious mental health and addiction issues faced by our students. I would work towards finding the resources to implement the recommendations of the NL Councillors and Psychologists Association and the NL Federation of School Councillors. This would see a ratio of 1 Guidance Counsellor for 250 students and Educational Psychologists at 1:1000 students.
- I will work towards ensuring that the provincial government provides the resources to make inclusive education work.
- I am opposed to the slow and methodical policy of the provincial government to increase cap sizes. The province should re-establish the cap sizes recommended by the Teach er Allocation Commission Report.
- Teachers must have the proper resources they need to teach the education curriculum's.
- Our children's safety should be the top priority when it comes to deciding the rules for school bus safety.
- I want to see a tendering process for independent bus operators that reflects fairness to the operators instead of cut rate competition that results in unsafe buses. Lets issue contracts that are long enough in duration to allow good operators to make long term investments in new buses
- The 1.6 KM busing rule needs to be reviewed to reflect common sense. Safety - not proximity - to the school should be the primary factor in deciding who can and can not ride on a bus.
- Real consultation and open collaboration with school councils, teachers communities, education stakeholders and the public on educational issues. The Board needs to listen and develop collaborative outcomes.
- Good Communication is vital to positive relationships with all stakeholders. The board must ensure that parents understand the rationale for decisions.
If you would like to discuss issues or chat, my cell phone number is 709-697-1998, my home phone number is 709-576-2330 and my e-mail address is email@example.com.