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No plan to eliminate trustee elections: Education Minister

Last Updated Oct 19, 2016 at 4:52 pm PDT

Former Education Minister Mike Bernier, in October 2016 (Lasia Kretzel, NEWS 1130 Photo)

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Education Minister Mike Bernier says there are no plans to get rid of the existing system in which school trustees are elected, despite recent conflicts over budgets and seismically upgrading schools.

Days after firing Vancouver’s School Board, Bernier says there are no larger plans to get rid of elected boards.

“What I think is important right now is the role of the elected school boards,” he says. “The role around the province of these boards that really understand the local dynamic.”

UVic education professor Helen Raptis says elected boards are fine, but big districts should be split up so trustees are better plugged into community issues.

“Because these larger districts that we now have today are overseen by a small number of people that are very, very far from where the action is actually taking place,” says Raptis.

Raptis adds much has changed since school boards were first brought in, and in many cases trustees aren’t properly prepared to oversee massive operations in large districts like Vancouver.