Locally elected public school counselors: making a difference in public education
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Prepared by the Board of Directors of the Grande Prairie Public School Division
Mr. John Lehners, President, Ms. Lesley Craig, Vice-President, Ms. Paulette Kurylo, Ms. Joan Nellis, Mr. Andre Ouellette and Mr. Rob Martin.
Our experience as Commissioners for the Grande Prairie Public School Division during the last term has been interesting and rewarding. With the next election scheduled for October 18, we wanted to share specific information about our work and help educate our community about the role of directors and the board.
The job of our locally elected school board is to develop and support conditions in the school division that will maximize the growth and success of our students. We are elected as 7 people, but we operate as one board to focus on the growth and success of our students. Being elected as an administrator is a great opportunity to make a difference for all of our 8,000+ students in the 18 schools in the Grande Prairie Public School Division.
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As elected officials, we are accountable to our community and are expected to provide governance to support effective operations in the Grande Prairie Public School Division. The Education Act empowers the board to develop policies to identify the behavioral expectations of school counselors. The main functions of our board are identified in board policy 2, and board policy 3 outlines the role of each trustee. The key roles of the board are:
- prioritize being responsible for student learning and financial transactions,
- work closely with the school director and delegate operational responsibilities to him,
- evaluate the improvement of the division and build / support community insurance,
- overseeing the accountability of the school division to the provincial government,
- establishing board policies, fulfilling specific responsibilities identified in legislation and board policy 2, such as approving school calendars, attendance limits,
In accordance with Alberta law, directors are elected for four-year terms at the same time as municipal elections. The Grande Prairie Public School Division Board of Directors meets every 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month at 6 p.m., with some exceptions. Each year, school trustees are delegated to various committees as per Board Policy 8, attend school council meetings regularly, and attend meetings, conferences and workshops of the Alberta School Board Association and the Public School Board Association throughout the year.
Grande Prairie Public School Board Commissioners are communicators, policy makers, role models and politicians. They receive honoraria, benefits, per diems to attend meetings other than regular board meetings, and travel expenses to attend conferences.
If you have a passion for public education and the education of students in the Grande Prairie Public School Division, and a willingness to work and learn with fellow board members, visit https://www.gppsd.ab.ca/election for all the information you need to become a candidate.