Monday, January 26, 2015

Margaret Wilson’s report on the TDSB comes under fire from critics

Margaret Wilson wrote about a “culture of fear” among principals in her
scathing review of the TDSB
They were tough words for an unruly school board that few would deny needed a little tough love.

But since troubleshooter Margaret Wilson called for a rollback of trustee powers at the Toronto District School Board — starting trustees and staff on a scramble to do that in the four short weeks Queen’s Park has given them — some are asking if all Wilson’s criticisms were fair, and whether her reforms will fix the real problem.

Some, in fact, warn Wilson’s fix for dysfunction could deal a blow to local democracy.

At least 80 members of the public have signed up to address her recommendations Monday night at a special board meeting to allow public input.

“The thrust of the recommendations are off-balance; it’s excessive finger-pointing at trustees as being the problem in the whole mix,” said Ryerson political science professor Myer Siemiatycki.

“We’re talking about major public institutions using public funding that need to be accountable, and at this point the only way we’ve figured out how to do that is through elected officials. The irony is, you can’t find a more powerless, marginalized group of elected officials in the country than school trustees — and now the province wants to clip them back even more? It’s a big mistake to go down that path.”  (more...)

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