Did you know that 24.5%1 of Oakville property taxes goes toward education?
Did you know the operating budget for the Halton Catholic District School Board is $261 million2?
Did you know the operating budget for the Halton District School Board is $490 million3? That’s more than the annual budget of the Town of Oakville.
We are about a week away from the 2010 municipal election and it is easy to say that Oakville residents may be informed about those running for Mayor and Town Council but what about those running for Halton School Board Trustees?
How much do we know about this position?
What is the School Board?
The School Board was established by the provincial legislation and is governed by public elected officials (trustees). The School Board, provides an atmosphere where students can achieve and excel, offer effective programs, have a board that can successfully implement its goals and encourage students to do the same, makes sure policies are followed. Furthermore, the board also has a hand in setting its budget, implementing the curriculum, and making sure qualified staff are hired.
The school trustees also take care of school transportation, libraries, continuing education, and childcare facilities.
School Board Trustees
Some of the responsibilities of a trustee are: to keep focus on the achievement of the students, making decisions that benefit the student body, being the voice for the public and taking what they have to say to the board and vise versa, trustees are accountable to the province and to the public they represent.
You must be at least 18 years old to be a Board Trustee, must be eligible to vote, a Canadian citizen and in some cases you must be Roman Catholic depending on the school board.
There are statutory and none statutory duties by the province. “ Statutory duties include the appointment of a trustee to various committees such as the Special Education Advisory Committee, or to board-based quasi-judicial committees such as those responsible for conducting proceedings dealing with the suspension or expulsion of students. Non-statutory obligations may include participating in ad hoc committees or working groups of the board,” as stated in the online document Making a Difference for Kids, Running for Election as School Board Trustee.
How many trustees are you voting for?
For the Halton District School Board, Ward 1&2 are acclaimed, but residents in Wards 3, 4, 5&6(together) must pick a trustee for their respective Ward.
For the Halton Catholic District School Board, residents of Oakville must vote for a total of 4 Trustees – in this case they are elected ‘at large’ and are not grouped into Wards.
So when you vote this year, be aware of what the Halton School Board Trustee’s responsibilities are and what type of budget they control before going to the polls October 25th.
1: 2009 Town of Oakville Annual Report
2: 2010-2011 HCDSB Operating Budget
3: 2010-2011 HDSB Operating Budget
The 2010 Oakville Municipal election will be held on October 25, 2010. Visit our special Oakville election 2010 section for the latest election news, candidate profiles and more.