Thursday, October 23, 2008

Sask school board trustees can be past convicts

The Leader-Post reports,

The Local Government Elections Act, which governs school boards, states citizens with criminal records cannot be barred from running for election, anyway, according to the lawyer for the Saskatchewan School Boards Association (SSBA).

"If a trustee commits an indictable offence while on the board, the board does have the power to remove them, however they can then run again in the next election," the lawyer wrote to the board."

That lack of accountability has infuriated [Fred] Wesolowski, a retired police officer who has been a trustee for 20 years. He has raised the issue in previous years but "the board has never had an appetite for it," he said.
Yes, it seems strange that Saskatchewan school board trustees, who help oversee K-12 budgets of almost $1.5 billion annually, could have a fraud charge without anyone knowing it. However, this may soon (finally) change.

The argument convinced Wesolowski's colleagues to submit a resolution to the SSBA fall general assembly next month in Saskatoon. It will ask the SSBA to lobby the provincial government to change the statute to institute mandatory checks for all candidates seeking to become a trustee.

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