A new school year has begun, and once again Bill Turanski finds himself in a familiar seat: as chairperson of the Vernon School District board of trustees.
At a recent board meeting, the most experienced trustee at the table was once again elected to guide his six fellow trustees, with Kelly Smith re-elected to the position of vice-chairman.
Trustee Mitzi Fortin was elected as representative to the B.C. School Trustees’ Association provincial council, with Tami Ryder as alternate.
One of Turanski’s first tasks as chairman for the 2013/14 school year was to introduce the district’s new secretary-treasurer, Lewis Hill.
“I am so impressed with what he has managed to accomplish in a month and a half,” said Turanski.
Hill was hired to replace Randy Hoffman, the district’s longtime secretary-treasurer, who retired this year.
The meeting was the first public one for new superintendent Joe Rogers. A familiar face at the table, Rogers was principal at Kalamalka secondary school, before taking on the job of director of student learning for the district.
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The district is in the process of hiring a consultant to review its current aboriginal programs and services.
The consultant will meet with the aboriginal education committee, members of school district staff, teachers, administrators, aboriginal support workers, aboriginal parents and students.
“The goal is to look at the great things we are doing and to make some suggestions going forward,” said district superintendent Joe Rogers.
The review will run from October to December, with the board receiving a written report that recognizes the current areas of strength and recommendations on areas of growth, based on community needs and current best practices in aboriginal programs.
“Our review will be done by Doug Hoy, who is past principal of aboriginal programs in Maple Ridge and he will put together a report for what’s going well and how we might do things differently,” said Rogers, adding that the district expects that this report will ultimately lead to the development of an Aboriginal Enhancement Agreement.