Tag Archives: Edmonton Public School Board

Edmonton City Hall

There are 90 days left until Edmonton’s Municipal Elections

There are 90 days left until Edmonton’s municipal elections. Here are some of the latest updates to the list of candidates running in Edmonton’s municipal election for City Council and the Edmonton Public School Board:

  • Fahad Mughal Edmonton Mayoral Election

    Fahad Mughal

    He had initially planned to run for City Council in Ward 10, but Fahad Mughal made a surprise announcement at his campaign launch on July 15 that he would instead run against Don Iveson in the Mayoral election.

  • Eli Schrader is running for election to City Council in Ward 8. Schrader is civics director with the Cloverdale Community League and a member at large of the University of Alberta alumni association.
  • Cheryl Johner is planning to seek re-election as a trustee on the Edmonton Public School Board in Ward A. Johner was first elected in 2010.
  • Joseph Luri has announced his candidacy in Edmonton Public School Board’s Ward A. Luri has been a settlement practitioner in Edmonton since 2007 and is currently a team leader for the Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers Domestic Violence Prevention Program.

If you know any other candidates who have announced their intentions to stand for Mayor, Council, or School Board and are not on this list, please send me an email at david.cournoyer@gmail.com. I will add them. Thank you!

Edmonton City Hall

102 days left until Edmonton’s Municipal Elections

There are 102 days left until the October 16, 2017 municipal elections in Edmonton. Here are some of the latest updates to the list of candidates running in Edmonton’s municipal election for City Council and the Edmonton Public School Board:

  • Martin Narsing is running for Edmonton City Council in Ward 4. Narsing’s LinkedIn page lists him as being employed as a Directional Drilling Consulting.
  • Samantha Hees is running for Edmonton City Council in Ward 10. Hees works as a Unit Clerk with Alberta Health Services.
  • Edmonton’s Poet Laureate, Ahmed “Knowmadic” Ali, is running for election to the Edmonton Public School Board in Ward A. Knowmadic serves on the Edmonton Arts Council and is the co-founder and current artistic director of Edmonton’s only spoken word collective: Breath In Poetry.
  • Leslie Marks is running for election to the Edmonton Public School Board in Ward E. She is the owner of Sunflower Yoga and Music
  • Retired educator Alene Mutala is running for the Edmonton Catholic School District in Ward 75.

If you know any other candidates who have announced their intentions to stand for Mayor, Council, or School Board and are not on this list, please send me an email at david.cournoyer@gmail.com. I will add them. Thank you!


Miranda Jimmy, a city council candidate in Ward 5, is hosting a Political Pub Night and networking event for women running in the 2017 elections. The event is free to all interested Edmontonians on Wednesday, July 26, 2017 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Yellowhead Brewery.
Edmonton City Hall

116 days left until Edmonton’s Municipal Elections

There are 116 days left until the October 16, 2017 municipal elections in Edmonton. Here are some of the latest updates to the list of candidates running in Edmonton’s municipal election for City Council and the Edmonton Public School Board:

  • Emerson Mayers is running for City Council in Ward 4. Mayers is a Registered Nurse and a former vice-president of United Nurses of Alberta Local 183 at Alberta Hospital Edmonton. He was a candidate for the Progressive Conservative Party in Edmonton-Strathcona in the 2012 election. He previously sought the Liberal Party nomination in Edmonton-Manning in 1997, the PC nomination in Edmonton-Manning in 2008, the PC nomination in Edmonton-Highlands-Norwood in 2012, and the PC nomination in Edmonton-Beverly-Clareview in 2015.
  • Bill Knight is running for City Council in Ward 6. Knight is the CEO of Three Knights Investments, the founder of B&B Demolition and a well-known philanthropist who has made generous donations to many charities and not-for-profit organizations in Edmonton.
  • Sim Senol is running for City Council in Ward 10. Senol is an administrator at the Centre for Teaching and Learning at the University of Alberta. She is also the President of the Parkallen Parents Association, the Treasurer of the Turkish Canadian Society, and the Chair of the Brightview Playground Development Committee.
  • Sherry Adams is running for re-election to the Edmonton Public School Board in Ward I. Adams was first elected in 2013.
  • Perry Chahal is running for for election to the Public School Board in Ward A. Chahal ran in Ward B in 2001 and 2010, Ward A in 2004, and as an Independent candidate in Alberta’s 2012 Senate nominee election.

If you know any other candidates who have announced their intentions to stand for Mayor, Council, or School Board and are not on this list, please send me an email at david.cournoyer@gmail.com. I will add them. Thank you!

Kris Andreychuk launches his campaign for Edmonton City Council in Ward 7.

Edmonton Election Update: 137 days to go.

Photo: Kris Andreychuk launches his campaign for city council in Ward 7.

We are now 137 days away from the October 2017 municipal elections in Edmonton. Here are some of the latest updates to the list of candidates running in Edmonton’s municipal election for City Council, the Edmonton Public School Board and the Edmonton Catholic School District.

Edmonton City Council

  • Kris Andreychuk launched his campaign for Edmonton City Council in Ward 7. Andreychuk is a Supervisor of Community Safety with the City of Edmonton. He was introduced and endorsed at his launch event by Ward 6 Councillor Scott McKeen. Andreychuk is challenging incumbent Councillor Tony Caterina.
  • Nafisa Bowen is running in Ward 5. Bowan works as a fundraiser for the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation and is Vice-President Elect at the Cultural Connections Institute – The Learning Exchange.
  • Lenore Dilts is running in Ward 8.
  • Nigel Logan is running in Ward 12. Logan is the former constituency manager for Edmonton-Mill Creek MLA Denise Woollard.

Edmonton Public School Board

  • Ken Gibson is running for re-election in Ward E. Gibson served as trustee for this ward from 2004 to 2010 and again since 2013.
  • Nathan Ip is running for re-election in Ward H. He was first elected in 2013.
  • Sajida Asghar is running in Ward I.

Edmonton Catholic School District

  • Nancy Robb is running in Ward 71.
  • Dan Posa is running in Ward 72.
  • Glen Argan is running in Ward 75. Argan was the editor of the Western Catholic Reporter for nearly 30 years and ran as the Green Party candidate in Edmonton-Mill Creek in the 2008 provincial election.
  • Lisa Turchansky is running in Ward 76. She was chairperson of the St. Mary Elementary School student advisory council.

If you know any other candidates who have announced their intentions to stand for Mayor, Council, or School Board and are not on this list, please send me an email at david.cournoyer@gmail.com. I will add them. Thank you!

 

Edmonton Election Update: School Board Trustees Now Included.

We are now five months away from the October 2017 municipal elections in Edmonton. Here are some of the latest updates to the list of candidates running in Edmonton’s municipal election, now including candidates running for trustee positions on the Edmonton Public School Board and Edmonton Catholic School District.

Edmonton Public School Board

  • Former CBC reporter Trisha Estabrooks announced tonight at The Bellevue that she will run for Edmonton Public School Board in Ward D. A long-time local CBC reporter, Estabrooks is now a freelance journalist and co-host of The Broadcast, a podcast about women and politics. She is being endorsed by Ray Martin, who has served as trustee for the area since 2013 and is not seeking re-election. Local advocate and Alberta Avenue resident Adam Millie is also running in Ward D.
  • The current chairperson of the Edmonton Public School Board, Michelle Draper, is running for re-election in Ward B.
  • Former chairman Michael Janz is seeking re-election in Ward F. Janz was first elected to the public school board in 2010 and has become well-known for his public advocacy on issues such as fair and equitable funding for public schools and improving financial literacy in schools.
  • Bridget Stirling is running for re-election in Ward G. Stirlng was first elected in a 2015 by-election to replace former trustee Sarah Hoffman, who had been elected as the MLA for Edmonton-Glenora and now serves as Deputy Premier and Minister of Health.
  • Local photography business owner Mary-ann Fleming is running for election in Ward I.

Edmonton Catholic School District

  • Outspoken trustee Patricia Grell is running for re-election in Ward 71.
  • The current chairperson of the Edmonton Catholic School District, Laura Thibert, is running for re-election in Ward 77.
  • Trustee Debbie Engel is running for re-election in Ward 74. Engel was first elected to the Catholic board in 1998.
  • Trustee Larry Kowalczyk is not seeking re-election in Ward 72.

Edmonton City Council

If you know any other candidates who have announced their intentions to stand for Mayor, Council, or School Board and are not on this list, please send me an email at david.cournoyer@gmail.com. I will add them. Thank you!

Putting protection of LGBTQ students and staff back on the agenda at Alberta school boards meeting

Amid allegations of financial misspending and a lack of transparency, representatives from sixty-one elected Public, Catholic, and Francophone school boards from across Alberta will gather at the fall general meeting of the Alberta School Boards Association on November 15, 16 and 17 in Edmonton.

Michael Janz Edmonton

Michael Janz

School board representatives could face another round of debate about protecting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer students and staff. The Edmonton Public School Board will introduce a motion at the meeting for the ASBA to create a policy that protects all students, staff and families who identify as sexual or gender minorities.

I think tone at the top is very important, and it is important for the Alberta School Boards Association to take an active stance against the bullying and marginalization of lesbian, gay bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning students. I think this will send a very important signal across school boards that we do support inclusion, we do want to support our students,” EPSB chairperson Michael Janz told the Edmonton Sun.

The motion has been proposed as emergent by EPSB and will be introduced on the first full day of the meeting. Delegates will be asked whether it should be added to agenda and debated at the meeting.

Debate at the ASBA’s general meeting in 2012 attracted national attention when 62 percent of the delegates voted down a proposal to protect gay students and staff from discrimination, similar to a policy passed by EPSB in 2011.

David Eggen

David Eggen

One trustee at the 2012 meeting from the Pembina Hills School Division suggested if “children with a gay tendency” could hide their gayness it would be “for their own benefit.” The trustee later apologized but not before his comment became national news.

The debate around legislating the creation of Gay-Straight Alliances in Alberta schools became a major political issue in the final months of 2014 and created major rifts between social conservatives and moderate conservatives in the Wildrose and Progressive Conservative parties.

Recent debates at the Edmonton Catholic School District about creating safe environments for transgender students have degenerated into public scenes of crying and shouting. “I expect a higher standard from all elected officials here, generally in Alberta, and specifically with Edmonton Catholic,” Education Minister David Eggen said following the debates.

Mr. Eggen has directed all Alberta school boards to have a policy supporting LGBTQ students in place by March 31, 2016.  It has been reported that only 13 out of 61 school boards currently have stand alone policies protecting rights of LGBTQ students and staff.

The result of the debate about whether to adopt a policy protecting all students, staff and families who identify as sexual or gender minorities will likely set the tone for an important breakfast event being held for trustees and MLAs on the final day of the meeting. Twenty-eight NDP, Wildrose, Progressive Conservative and Liberal MLAs are scheduled to attend the breakfast, including cabinet ministers Brian Mason, Joe Ceci, and Oneil Carlier. Mr. Eggen scheduled to deliver an address at the breakfast.

What the Education Minister has to say in his address will likely depend on if Alberta’s elected school trustees choose to rise above the closed mindedness and ignorance that has dominated these debates in past years. Protecting students and staff is not optional.


Here is the motion that the EPSB plans to introduce:

That the Alberta School Boards Association support its members school boards in establishing and maintaining welcoming, inclusive, safe and healthy learning and working environments for all members of the school community, including sexual orientation and genders minority students, staff and families. This includes provision of support with policy development and related resources.

EPSB rationale for the motion:

  • Issues with regard to publicly funded education and supporting Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity students, staff and families have been in the news this year. The ASBA has been silent on these issues, both in policy and presence. It is proposed by the Committee that we take a second attempt at moving forward the 2012 Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Policy to the ASBA.
  • The Committee believes it is important for the ASBA to clearly take a policy position in support of students, staff, and families in alignment with provincial legislation and our Strategic Plan outcome to provide welcoming, inclusive, safe caring and healthy learning and work environments. Research has shown that sexual minority youth experience more bullying, harassment, alienation, and suicide ideation than do their heterosexual peers and; therefore, boards are encouraged to counter pervasive cultural biases against sexual minorities through proactive and specific policy and regulation to ensure that all sexual orientation and gender identity minority individuals are welcomed, respected, accepted and supported in all of their schools.

Previous ASBA fall general meetings have been webcast. I will post a link to the website once I have confirmed this meeting will be live streamed online.

Building a replacement school in Greater Highlands?

The crowd at Highlands School

The crowd at Highlands School

When was the last time we talked about opening a new school in the urban core, rather than closing one down?

Packed into the gym of the hundred year-old Highlands Junior High School, hundreds of school and community members heard about plans to replace three already existing schools with a brand new Kindergarden to Grade 9 school.

The provincial government has presented the Edmonton Public School Board with a funding opportunity to build a replacement school for a mature community in Edmonton’s urban core.

The school board has identified the Greater Highlands Area, the Greater Lawton Area and the Greater Westmount Area as potential areas for the new school. Only one of these areas will be selected for the first, of what could be many, replacement school.

While there remains a number of unanswered questions about the project and how it will impact the community, I am generally excited about the prospect of a new school being built in the community I call home.

While the currently existing schools – Highlands, Mount Royal and Montrose – are important community hubs, they are also old buildings facing the challenges of low-enrolment and growing maintenance costs.

Capacity and Enrolment: Capacity represents the maximum number of students that can attend the school. Enrolment represents how many students are currently attending the school.

Capacity and Enrolment: Capacity represents the maximum number of students that can attend the school. Enrolment represents how many students are currently attending the school.

If the Greater Highlands area is chosen as the spot for the new school, there is also an opportunity to coordinate with the reconstruction of 112th Avenue and 50th Street and the construction of the new Highlands Branch of the Edmonton Public Library.

Of course, it is important that a new school be accessible to all members of the Greater Highlands community, including the more ethnically diverse community living north of 118 Avenue in Montrose area. A new school in this area must recognize and be inclusive of our city’s fast-growing urban aboriginal population.

Improvements to schools are an important part of revitalizing mature neighbourhoods, as they will help attract and retain young families who want to live core communities. It’s part of building a smart city.

I look forward to further participating in the consultation process and am grateful that school board has opened up this process to the community.

The Public School Board has presented out their community consultation timeline for the project:

April 22-24, 2014 – First Public Meetings
May 20-22, 2014 – Second Public Meetings
June 19, 2014 – Final Public Meetings
June 24, 2014 – Site selection for replacement school will be presented to the School Board to Trustees

Update: This website is currently experiencing some technical difficulties with the hosting service that are preventing comments from being posted. I hope to have this resolved by the end of the day. In the meantime, please feel free to leave your comments on the daveberta.ca page on Facebook. Thanks for your patience. – Dave