Meet SD27 zone 7 trustee candidate Bruce Baptiste

CANDIDATE Q&A:

Bruce Baptiste is running for a sceond term as trustee for Zone 7 – Chilcotin. He works with youth at Punky Lake Wilderness Society and coaches and plays hockey in his spare time.

What do you think are the top issues facing School District 27?

The biggest issue is the vote of non-confidence. Everybody knows we had to get a special advisor in to smooth things out.

Why do you want to be a school board trustee?

When I first got on it was because I wanted to get the best education for all students in the district by my efforts as trustee working with the board.

How would you go about improving relationships within the district in light of last year’s vote of non-confidence by the CCTA?

We need to work collaboratively both the board and the CCTA. The board had a retreat with the CCTA and some of the stakeholders, which I think was a good start. Especially with a new board coming on, it’s important to keep working on the relationship.

What are your thoughts on how the province funds districts?

As far as our district goes I think it’s pretty fair from what I am seeing. I think we’ve been pretty lucky to get the amount we get.

Would you support the closure of schools when its population drops below a sustainable level?

There are a lot of moving parts to that question. It’s tough because families may have to move children to another school which can be stressful.

What would you like to see in local schools that isn’t there now?

I would like to see First Nations culture offered to Non-First Nations students because it would help them get along better because they would understand more about the First Nations students’s culture.

What could be done to attract and retain teachers in this district?

Sharing more about the district and what’s happening in the Williams Lake area’s schools as well as the region itself. Williams Lake is a place where you can raise a family, even though it’s a smaller community, there are still lots of things to do around here.

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