2014 Trustee Surveys – Ward 6 and Puslinch

Christopher Cassel

1) Qualifications: What makes you right for the job of school board trustee?

What sets me apart from the other candidates is my front-line involvement in community organizations such as Family and Children Services, Big Brother’s, Guelph Community Patrol, and Canadian Mental Health Association helping families and children who are directly involved in the Upper Grand District School Board.

I also hold a Criminal Justice and Public Policy degree from the University of Guelph and am in the process of completing a second degree in Public Management that finishes this December. When I am not attending classes or working and volunteering in the community, I am raising my young son Liam, who will be attending UGDSB in 2015, alongside my partner Virginia.

Therefore, as a current student, father, and active participant in the community, I have
fresh experience and knowledge needed to ensure our children are prepared to succeed in today’s dynamic society.

2) What’s the most pressing issue for Guelph/Wellington schools?

I would support our director of education to overcome challenges internally because I believe that we are blessed with a great public school system but as we enter the future, our needs will change which requires a young, fresh outlook regarding the needs of our children. In addition, I would do everything in my ability to keep the teachers in front of the classroom teaching; the parents working at their jobs to support their families; and avoid any service disruptions. We all have a part to play and as a board member I would do mine!

3) How will you balance the demands of students and schools with the parameters set forth by the Government of Ontario?

As a board member, I am here to serve the school system for parents and children. The demands can be tough but I am up to the call.

4) The ongoing relationship between teachers and the province is a concern, how will you help insure the smooth operation of schools in our area in this regard?

We will fully support our children and families within the limits of our power to ensure that children receive a quality education and parents are able to attend their jobs to support their families.

5) I don’t have kids in school, why should I care about who runs (and wins) for trustee?

The children are our future so the better prepared they are to tackle new challenges, the stronger we are as a community.

6) What’s an example of something Guelph schools are doing well, and how can we capitalize on that?

I’ve had the great pleasure of working with a wide range of children enrolled in the UGDSB and have noticed how well the schools cater to each children’s individual needs. Although we could always do better, it is without question that our school system accommodates those with different abilities very well. I would ensure this is the case!

7) Where can voters get more information about you and your campaign?

You can reach me at chris.cassel@outlook.com or call me at 519-400-5571.

Marty Fairbairn

1) Qualifications: What makes you right for the job of school board trustee?

Experience: total of 7 years in the job so far.
Education: PhD in ethics/value theory.
Commitment: profoundly dedicated to every student’s success.
Ability: voted Vice Chair by fellow trustees; and voted Ontario Public School Boards Association Director representative by fellow trustees.
Leadership: Chair of Budget Committee; Chair of Special Education Advisory Committee.

2) What’s the most pressing issue for Guelph/Wellington schools?

Mental health, special education resources.

3) How will you balance the demands of students and schools with the parameters set forth by the Government of Ontario?

This is always a tricky balance to achieve, but I believe our board has the right proportions of student focus and budgetary restraint.

4) The ongoing relationship between teachers and the province is a concern, how will you help insure the smooth operation of schools in our area in this regard?

Our board is front and centre in keeping these relationships healthy. We were the only board in Ontario to sign collective agreements with the local OSSTF during the last round of bargaining. It’s the focus on relationships that really count as we move toward new agreements.

5) I don’t have kids in school, why should I care about who runs (and wins) for trustee?

We all need to care about whom represents us at the board table. Kids are our future and our job is to ensure that caring, compassionate, involved people are going to be the result of our educational endeavours.

6) What’s an example of something Guelph schools are doing well, and how can we capitalize on that?

A very good example of something Guelph schools are doing well is ‘career pathways,’ which can be found at College Heights Secondary School, amongst others. This program seeks to help kids discover what their strengths and interests are, then set them on a pathway to success in that area, offering everything from hairstyling to chef school.

7) Where can voters get more information about you and your campaign?

Voters can email me directly at marty0053@bell.net, or call me at home at 519-824-1703, or visit my Facebook page.

Other Candidates:

Tyler Rockliffe