Be the Voice of Our Schools ~ Consider Running as a School Board Trustee!
“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest,” Benjamin Franklin
We couldn’t have said it better ourselves! Investing in our children and meeting their educational goals equates to successful for all of us and our future. Our children need passionate and dedicated people who advocate for all the children in our care. School Board Trustees have a vital role in providing leadership and guidance to the school division by defining the vision, mission, and operational expectations on behalf of their stakeholders and communities.
School Board Trustees are elected during local municipal elections every four years; the next one is this fall with Nomination Day on September 18, 2017 and Election Day October 16, 2017. If this sounds like a position you could embrace, we want you. Keep reading to learn more and thank you for your interest!
Step One: What does a School Board Trustee do?
School Board Trustees belong to the Alberta School Boards’ Association (ASBA) where you can find invaluable information on the roles and responsibilities as a school board trustee. We encourage people to read the ASBA’s brochure Be a leader in your community – become a school board trustee which provides some insight into the expectations of a trustee. Other resources are continually being added to the ASBA Election website, including videos and FAQs.
Here are some other valuable sites about trusteeship to check out
- Alberta School Boards Association (ASBA):
- Alberta Education
- Municipal Affairs
- Elections Alberta
- Public School Boards' Association of Alberta (PSBAA)
Step Two: What does it mean to be a School Board Trustee for Grande Yellowhead?
Our Trustees work very hard to build strong partnerships with parents and other stakeholders including other elected officials, to ensure that all children are provided the best educational opportunities to become the future citizens that we all envision.
We have put together a list that may be of particular interest to new candidates but we also encourage you to visit the Board page on our website to learn more:
- Division Foundational Statement – Policy 1
- Role of the Board – Policy 2
- Role of the Trustee – Policy 3
- Trustee Code of Ethics – Policy 4 and Appendix A
- Board Operations – Policy 7
- Committees of the Board – Policy 8
- Trustee Compensation and Expenses (yes you get paid!)
Policy development is under the purview of the Board of Trustees. You can view all of the current policies of the division on our website.
Step Three: What is the time commitment as a School Board Trustee?
The Board sets an Annual Work Plan that serves as a guide for monthly activities for trustees or the board as a whole. While the monthly list of activities in the Annual Work Plan is not all inclusive of the responsibilities that fall to the Board, it serves as a guide for activities that regularly occur in the months of September 1 through August 31.
The Board generally meets at the Education Services Centre in Edson on the first and third Wednesday of each month during the school year for scheduled Public Board Meetings (PBM). The 2017-18 Board Meeting Schedule is
- August 23, 2017 PBM
- September 6, 2017 PBM
- September 20, 2017 PBM
- October 4, 2017 PBM
- October 17, 2017 TOM (Trustee Orientation Meeting)
- October 18, 2017 ORG (Organizational) and PBM
- November 1, 2017 PBM
- November 15, 2017 PBM
- December 6, 2017 PBM
- December 20, 2017 PBM
- January 17, 2018 PBM
- February 7, 2018 PBM
- February 21, 2018 PBM
- March 7, 2018 PBM
- March 21, 2018 PBM
- April 4, 2018 PBM
- April 18, 2018 PBM
- May 2, 2018 PBM
- May 16, 2018 PBM
- June 6, 2018 PBM
- June 20, 2018 ORG and PBM
These meetings generally last all day. All agenda packages are posted on the Monday prior to the meeting. All these meetings are open to the public to attend so please feel free to join the current Board at any time during these meetings. PS – for a quick version of what happens at the meetings, we also post Key Messages.
Trustees do a fair amount of travel as they are also expected to attend meetings outside of the division as our division’s advocate at provincial and national meetings and conferences. They are also highly encouraged to attend local school activities and celebrations.
To carry out its mandate on local governance of education, the Board may delegate some of its functions to a Committee of the Board. Trustees are encouraged to join a variety of committees over their term.
Step Four: This Role is For Me! ... How Do I Get Started?
Great to hear!
First you need to determine if you qualify to run. A person may be nominated as a candidate if, on nomination day, the person:
- is eligible to vote in the election;
- has been a resident of the local jurisdiction and the ward for the six consecutive months immediately preceding nomination day, and;
- is not otherwise ineligible or disqualified.
Note: these are general guidelines, candidates should refer to the Local Authorities Election Act and the School Act for complete information. These Acts are available on the Alberta Queen's Printer website.
Next, where do you reside? Grande Yellowhead Public School Division is divided into three electoral wards or boundaries. Except for Hinton and Edson which have two trustees elected, each ward has a school trustee that has been elected by the citizens within the boundaries of that ward. Candidates are invited to run in the following areas:
- WARD 1
- Sub-Division #1 (Hinton and Area)
- Sub-Division #2 (Edson and Area)
- Sub-Division #3 (Lobstick Area – Niton Junction, Wildwood and Evansburg)
- WARD 2 Grande Cache
- WARD 3 Jasper
Find here a map of the division to determine what ward you reside in.
Good to go? Fill out your PDF fillable Nomination Form, (Note: this version can only be viewed in Explorer) save and then print the form, and then return it on nomination day ONLY to:
c/o Juha Karen, Asst. Supt.
Grande Yellowhead Public School Division
3656 1 Avenue
Edson, AB T7E 1S9
IMPORTANT! Nomination Day is Monday, September 18, 2017 and only nomination forms received during certain times and locations (TBD ~ stay tuned!) on the 18th will be accepted. You can also contact us to pick up a hard copy of this form if you prefer.
Once your nomination form has been officially accepted, you are now ready to hit the campaign trail for the next month to talk about how you can help make a difference in the lives of children in your community. Election Day is Monday, October 16, 2017 and polling stations in the various communities within our boundaries will also be posted closer to Election Day.
Step Five: Last Helpful Hint for our Future Trustees
We have put together a helpful New Candidate Handbook that outlines a lot more information for you to learn about trusteeship. You can also contact us to arrange for a hard copy to be mailed to you or picked up at our Education Services Centre in Edson. We also encourage prospective candidates to contact Juha Karén, Assistant Superintendent of Business Services, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 1.780.723.4471 or 1.800.723.2564 if you still have some questions. Good luck!