Trustees stall appointed FNMI member decision

The Wolf Creek Public Schools (WCPS) board of trustees is still on the fence regarding whether or not it should support an appointed member

The Wolf Creek Public Schools (WCPS) board of trustees is still on the fence regarding whether or not it should support an appointed member of the Maskwacis Four Bands sitting on the board.

The board, as a collective the trustees directed superintendent Larry Jacobs to further investigate what an appointed member on the board would mean, what the person’s role would entail.

“We need to discuss this because it’s not going to go away,” said board chair Trudy Bratland.

The WCPS board has considered a First Nations member on the board in the past but the issue came to head again in mid-November when the Maskwacis bands sent a letter of request to the ministry and copied WCPS in the process.

Regarding the issue, the board has not been directly contacted by the Ministry of Education of the Maskwacis bands.

“I honestly don’t think it’s going to be left up to us,” said trustee Pan Hansen.

“I would like to see some direct contact from the ministry to us,” she added. When the time comes, Hansen believes the ministry will announce to the board of its intention and the trustees with be left to fit the position into the budget and “play nice.”

Trustee Bob Huff is still seeking a frame of reference and wants to know how their role would fit into the board.

He was also curious how many school boards across the province are getting similar letters.

Hansen told the board she spoke with the Wetaskiwin trustees, who sit with an appointed First Nations member. ‘They’re an absolutely full voting,” she addressed to Huff’s question.

“That’s the trustees’ point of view. There’s a larger point of view out there,” said Huff. Where does this appointment end . . . are all trustees going to be appointed? Is that what the public wants?”