Waiting for a clear, honest report on School Board

Open letter to the Good People of Masset/Tow Hill and all of Haida Gwaii,

I, Patrick Moores, reluctantly resigned as Trustee for the School Board on Jan. 29, 2019. I have enjoyed being a Trustee and felt that we were making headway on some of the problems of the School District (finance, amalgamation, student population). I was looking forward to implementing some of my own personal interests, such as installing our interim superintendent as the district’s first Haida Superintendent, and encouraging Haida Language immersion. But I could not stay on as a Trustee when the Board supported the Chairperson.

In School District #50 Haida Gwaii, we follow the Rule of Law. Roeland Denooij acts as if he is above the Law. Our School District policy regarding In-Camera (closed) meetings states: “No Trustee shall disclose to the public the proceedings of a closed meeting.” Roeland Denooij did disclose the proceedings of a closed meeting and two other Trustees supported him when I objected. They all broke the law. This is not the first time Roeland broke the law. When we were sworn in as Trustees, Roeland was in Montreal and could not be sworn in although he was on the phone and was nominated interim chairperson. Later he signed a substantial contract for the Board. Roeland did all this without being sworn in. This is illegal. Roeland and our Secretary-Treasurer should have known better. But, Roeland and the Secretary-Treasurer have not acknowledged this mistake, let alone apologized for it.

I have met with the investigator from the Ministry of Education, as have the trustees and, I assume, Board Office staff, and am confident he will write a clear and honest report. However, more than likely the government of British Columbia will do nothing because the district is not in deficit and the Ministry of Education tends not to intervene in Board actions. It is up to us. We must demand Roeland Denooij’s resignation.

Patrick Moores

Former Trustee for Masset/Tow Hill

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