The school board voted Tuesday night (June 28) to ask the Ministry of Education to reduce the number of trustees to five and change the areas they represent in order to give the Haida population a bigger voice on the board.
The vote was not unanimous, however. Sandspit trustee Gail Henry quietly abstained when the motion was made, while the other six trustees voted in favour.
School board chair Andreas Uttendorfer said the decision – which has been several years in the making – is hugely important for the future of education on the islands.
“It is a historic moment,” he said, just before trustees voted. “We are ratifying the decision the board has reached, that there are going to be five trustees.”
Mr. Uttendorfer said the district office will now send a package to Education Minister Shirley Bond, as well as the deputy minister and other officials, containing the recommendation along with a huge report on the decision-making process and the public meetings which were held on the issue. The school board is also asking the Minister to make the change in time for this year’s trustee elections, which will be held this Nov. 19.
Copies of the report (which weighs more than half a kilogram) were available at the meeting, and more copies are available at the school board office for any members of the public who want to read it, Mr. Uttendorfer said.
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