SD49 School Board Trustee Candidates outline their platforms

SD49 School Board Trustee Candidates will be participating in an All Candidates Forum tonight at NES

Marisa Blewett

Hello there, my name is Marisa Blewett and I have been in the valley since June 1979, so a community member for 39 years.

My husband and I have raised our two daughters here and have been involved in the school and their extra-curricular activities. Both went to the schools here and graduated in 2008 and 2010. I was also very involved in their education since they started pre-school at 3 years old. For me, being there as a parent was and is very important. I chaperoned countless school trips, volunteered and helped in class.

For 13 years I was a member of the schools Parent Advisory Council and contributed ideas and helped with whatever needed to be done. I was vice-president and ultimately became president and enjoyed the many challenges these roles brought.

I have been a school trustee since I was elected in 2011 and have loved the new role. I have gone to many Provincial Meetings to better understand and learn what a trustee does and put it into practice here at home. I have a genuine interest in the students and want to see them succeed and become happy and confident adults in society. By developing skills in all areas of their lives, they will go on to achieve their own personal potential.

For the last 6 years or so I have been involved in the schools by going to BCE and reading to the Kindergarteners and/or exploring with them on their outings. Also helped in the grade 1/2 with reading and math or whatever the teacher has asked. Then at SAMS I have continued to help with the weekly “Dysfunctional Pizza” by lending a hand in making the lunch for the whole school. Now with the re-opening of NES I hope to help or volunteer in whatever they might need. I have also had the privilege to travel to the two outer schools in Shearwater and Wuikinuxv and meet the students and teachers there.

I am very happy this year with the re-structuring and re-opening of Nusatsum Elementary. This was something we really wanted to do as we felt that the students needed more space and freedom to learn and therefore succeed. There have been a few admin changes too that have been positive to the District and that will therefore benefit the students.

All in all I have truly enjoyed my role and hope to have the opportunity to continue to do so. To be a voice on behalf of the students and their parents in our community, to do my part to encourage better student achievement by providing the programs they need; and therefore help to produce tomorrow’s leaders, thinkers and players.

Thanks for listening.

Darlene Hall

Darlene Hall is of Nuxalk and Gitxsan ancestry and a registered member of the Nuxalk Nation. She leads by example, always doing her best and encouraging other to do the same. Her entire career has been dedicated to working with Aboriginal children/youth, families and their communities in the area of healing and community development.

Currently, as a manager of the Nuxalk Wellness Department within the Nuxalk Nation Darlene passionately strives to create opportunities to support the full human experience for the community members through Nuxalk educational practices.

Darlene also currently an elected member of the Nuxalk Chief and Council on her third two year term ending March 2019. She found this a rewarding experience and educational.

With her knowledge and expertise from her extensive work and educational experiences she will put forth her best effort to ensure positive educational outcome for all students.

Christina Hoppe

Hi all! I am Christina Hoppe, a resident of the Bella Coola Valley for 30 years. I have put 4 children through the public school system in the Valley and have 2 grandchildren in the schools. I have served on the School board for 2 terms.

I was one the founding members who helped originate the Aboriginal enhancement agreement and now as a Trustee continues to help increase the First Nation content in all our new curriculum. I currently sit on SD 49 professional development committee which is responsible for bringing in relevant training for educators.

I am seeking re-election for Trustee for another term to continue this Boards work. Some of the things we are currently working on include:

· Ensuring that all our students have the greatest achievable success in our schools

· Implementing the new curriculum to benefit all students

· Working with the Unions in the upcoming bargaining year

· Developing a fiscally, financially responsible budget

Nicola Koroluk

My name is Nicola Koroluk and I have lived in the Bella Coola Valley for over 20 years. My husband graduated from Sir Alexander Mackenzie in 1986, and we have 3 children that attend schools in the district. I became involved with our schools when my oldest child started grade 1. I have chaired BCE PAC, volunteered at numerous school functions, acted as a substitute teacher and have been on the school board for the last 2 terms. I am asking for your support to serve the education community for a third term.

I believe that a great education is essential to all our students and over the last two terms I have advocated for this. I have attended provincial meetings advocating for rural education, provided input for the new funding formula to be implemented for the 2019/20 school year, submitted motions to the provincial trustee association to pressure BC School Sports to remove many of the restrictions to our local youth. Our current board has worked diligently to develop a strategic plan that is in line with the new curriculum and we have made changes to the administration with the intent to make our students top priority.

If I am elected I will continue to advocate for all our children and will remain active at the provincial level to ensure that our voice is heard. We are at a critical time for public education, the 2019/20 school year will see a change in the funding formula which may change how much money our schools get. It will also be a contract bargaining year for teachers, the new curriculum and graduation requirements will be fully implemented next year, and there is the much needed inclusion of Indigenous education in the curriculum.

I believe two of the most important steps for the delivery of a good education are sense of belonging and feeling of sense worth. Staff, students and family need to feel that they are valued and part of the education process. If elected I will continue to direct our administration that this is important and I will also continue to be available to parents, students and staff.

Over the last two terms I have learned so much about our education system. I have spent countless hours reading, attending meetings and corresponding with ministry officials. I have been frustrated with how long it takes things to happen in the bureaucratic process, but in the end when graduation day arrives and I see our students at their graduation ceremony, I remember why I want to continue serving on the board of education.

Lisa Tallio

Lisa Tallio, of Nuxalk and Heiltsuk ancestry, is skilled as an Educator, Leader and Program Director. With 11years experience in designing, developing, facilitating and evaluating leadership and career exploration education programming and cross-cultural awareness training, she is aware of the need for education if people are going to live a happy and fulfilling life. As a grateful recipient of a Community Achievement Award from the BC Achievement Foundation in 2018, her passions are to give back to her own community, support and build capacity through governance, good operations, solid strategy, ideation and collaboration. Lisa also participated in the Banff Centre’s Community of Leaderships program, designed for Executive Directors working in non-profit to develop good governance to ensure positive impacts from good governance and operations together.

Deeply committed to Indigenous peoples, Lisa Tallio worked with Minerva BC for 10 years developing and delivering leadership and career and education exploration programming for women across the province. Now as Program Manager for the Nuxalk Nation’s Healthy Beginnings, she strives to have a positive impact on families and caregivers—taking a strengths-based approach in supporting families to reach their full potential. As a result of her education in the Native Indian Teacher Education Program, at the University of British Columbia, she has the knowledge, expertise and desire to embark on having meaningful conversations about education, especially as a representative of our Nuxalk Nation.

Lisa brings the following strengths to the role of School Trustee:

• Specialized in Values-Based Leadership, with a solid track record in ideation, program design, development, implementation, and program evaluation

• Takes a shared leadership approach to governance, fund development, financial management, and reconciliation.

• Proven leadership and engagement skills gained through creating connections and relationships with stakeholders

• Direct experience creating space that fosters respect, tradition, and culture while serving the interests of approximately 1200 Indigenous peoples within their communities throughout British Columbia.

• Demonstrates strong accountability and responsibility while leading and managing multiple contractors, staff, committee members and volunteers

If a successful candidate, Lisa will place significant focus on setting local policy for the effective and efficient operation of schools. She will advocate for reconciliation; initiate creative and innovative conversations around Aboriginal education; maintain a focus on student achievement and well-being, and participate in making decisions that benefit the interests of the community. Lisa acknowledges the value of life long learning and currently enrolled as a student with Royal Roads University completing her Master of Arts in Human Security and Peacebuilding. She trusts that this continued education will continue to benefit her potential. Lisa hopes to have impact in her Community.

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