Islanders will be electing just five school trustees this fall instead of seven, after Education Minister Shirley Bond approved a trustee variation request from the school board.
The Minister signed the order changing the number of trustees and the areas they represent on Sept. 1, just in time to make it effective for the trustee elections this November.
Trustees unanimously passed the new election bylaw on Tuesday (Sept. 6) in a meeting which most attended by conference call.
The change will give trustees representing Haida communities a bigger voice on the board, and should also save some money. The Council of the Haida Nation and both band councils had been asking for the change for many years.
Eddie Russ of the Skidegate Band Council thanked trustees at the end of Tuesday’s 15-minute meeting.
“Thank you guys for going through this process, I wish you continued success,” he said, while Queen Charlotte District Teachers’ Association president Duncan White added that it was a historic moment.
Old Massett education administrator Florence Lockyer was thrilled about the announcement.
“It’s wonderful news, a great opportunity,” she said. “Now, we’ll see who runs.”
Ms Lockyer said it’s important to get lots of good candidates coming forward.
The new trustee areas are: Old Massett, Skidegate, North (including Masset and Tow Hill), Central (including Port, Tlell, Lawn Hill and Miller Creek) and South (including Queen Charlotte and Sandspit).
Nominations for trustee will open on Oct. 4 and close Oct. 14, with elections to be held Nov. 19.
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