Les Fédérations des commissions scolaires

Les Fédérations des directions d’établissement d’enseignement

Les Syndicats

Le «Panel»: les parents anglophones se démarquent et présentent leur vision au ministre de l’Éducation

Par: Michèle Poupore

 

Un article trouvé dans la Gazette de Montréal permet de suivre l’évolution des travaux du «Panel» chargé de rédiger un rapport concernant les alternatives pouvant remplacer les élections scolaires au Québec. Plus précisément, c’est le faible taux de participation au suffrage universel lors des élections scolaires qui est remis en question. Suite à l’appel du ministre de l’Éducation,  ce groupe, composé de représentants de la communauté anglophone et de parents, a été formé grâce à une initiative de QESBA(Quebec English School Board Association). Le groupe est chargé de préparer un rapport contenant des suggestions destinées au ministre. Selon toute vraisemblance, le groupe est submergé par le flot de mémoires et de documents remis par des participants à travers le pays. Selon la liste dressée par le  journal, les participants sont: des experts constitutionnels, des représentants des commissions scolaires, le Conseil sur l’éducation en langue anglaise, des retraités des commissions scolaires, les personnes chargées d’organiser les élections scolaires, des représentants de groupes communautaires, des individus.

Devant cette forte tendance des membres de la communauté à s’inviter dans le débat, il n’est guère étonnant d’apprendre  que les représentants du EPCA (English Parents Committee Association) ont présenté leur propre vision de la chose au ministre Blais. À leur avis, les nouveaux conseils devraient être composés d’une majorité de parents. L’association fera part de sa position publiquement au mois d’août.

Et voilà, nous sommes devant un bel exemple du fonctionnement de la démocratie scolaire en milieu anglophone. Il existe de nombreuses tensions entre les parents et les membres de la communauté. La structure actuellement en place contribue à cette division malsaine. Les 2-3 parents commissaires n’ont même pas le droit de vote.  Pour  mettre fin à cette tension,  il me semble que l’association des parents a raison,  la présence d’un nombre appréciable de parents votant au conseil des commissaires permettrait d’opérer un virage: les commissaires seraient directement redevables aux parents. Au bout du compte, au point de vue structurel cela permettrait peut-être de finalement actualiser cet idéal qui date de 1948 voulant que le parent ait le droit de choisir le type d’éducation qu’il désire pour ses enfants. Non?

Pas de vacances pour le ministre Blais: ajout d’une reddition de comptes pour les commissions scolaires

Source: Michele Poupore

Selon la journaliste E. fleury, les commissions scolaires du Québec devront  rendre des comptes au ministre Blais en ce qui a trait à l’utilisation des sommes d’argent destinées : à l’aide aux devoirs, l’achat de livres, l’aide alimentaire,  les projets visant à contrer la violence et l’intimidation à l’école. La FCSQ (Fédération des commissions scolaires du Québec) déplore la situation préférant des mesures plus souples permettant aux commissions scolaires d’utiliser les fonds selon leurs propres besoins.

Par cette mesure, le ministre Blais envoie un message claire :  ne coupez pas dans ces services. Plus précisément ne coupez pas dans les services destinés aux élèves.  Hélas, il semble que les élus, les acclamés ou représentants élus par une minorité des citoyens aimeraient disposer de ces sommes à leur guise. Cette situation soulève quelques questions.

Comme la Fédération  s’objecte à ces exigences, il semble que la pratique d’utilisation de fonds par les commissions scolaires selon leurs besoins soit courante.  On peut se demander  depuis combien de temps, les commissions scolaires mettent l’argent ailleurs? On peut également se demander à quoi cela sert-il de faire parvenir aux commissions scolaires des fonds  qui ne sont pas utilisés aux fins prévues?  Étant donné que la LIP (Loi sur l’instruction publique) n’encadre pas cette pratique, on peut aussi se demander quels sont les principes et les objectifs à la base de cette gestion des fonds?

Faut-il le rappeler, suite aux élections scolaires, plusieurs commissions scolaires ont augmenté le nombre de membres au sein de leur comité exécutif, ce qui a gonflé les revenus des commissaires.

Reste à espérer que les fonds ne provenaient pas de l’enveloppe destinée à l’aide alimentaire…

Gazette Article endorses ACDSA position. Why do we continue to accept segregated schooling in Québec? One School System for all our students is what is needed.

For many years, ACDSA has stated publicly  that Québec’s  school system is segregationist and must be changed to one that is an all  inclusive model for everyone. Linguistic extremists in both Francophone and Anglophone camps are hurting all of our children by insisting on  segregating them like cattle. In addition, it does little for creating harmony amongst our population in our beautiful province/nation.

We expressed our views in a previous editorial entitled  “Quebec Society should have no tolerance for Apartheid!”

Furthermore, ACDSA  published  the following in 2014:

“May 17, 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its landmark decision in Brown v. Board of Education ending school segregation in the US.

Sixty years later, in Québec, two five year olds stand waiting for their school bus on Levis Blvd. One child waves to the other as he enters the bus to be driven to his “French” School” The other waits with a sad look in his eyes seeing his friend leaving while he waits for his bus to go to “English” school.”

It is time for all Quebecers to admit that linguistic segregation IS wrong. The time has come to not only abolish linguistic school boards and schools  but the segregation mentality that permits us to separate friends on the basis of language. It is destroying our society.

SEGREGATING OUR CHILDREN, WHO CANNOT DECIDE FOR THEMSELVES,  BY LANGUAGE IS WRONG.

The following  is the Gazette article which again raises the ACDSA  question,  why do we continue having segregated schools and school boards? It doesn’t make sense on a societal, human and financial level.


Source:
The Montreal Gazette, West Island Section

Board approves Baie-d’Urfé school to adopt an early immersion format

as the school has operated at 95 per cent capacity, according to a Pearson consultation document.


PETER MCCABE/MONTREAL GAZETTE

Program steps up French learning

Dorset elementary’s early immersion program will be gradually phased in starting in the 2016-17 school year.“Parents (at Dorset) are very happy with the school and are happy with the programs, but they recognize we need to step up all the French-language instruction,” Stein Day said. “They are one of two (50-50) bilingual schools that are essentially full. The other one is Evergreen in St-Lazare. For all the other 50-50 programs, the enrolment is quite low. They are the exception.”

Generally speaking, Pearson schools that offer more French instruction have better enrolment statistics, Stein Day said.

Of the board’s nine elementary schools running below 60 per cent functional capacity, seven run 5050 programs, while two offer early immersion. For instance, Christmas Park in Beaconsfield offers a 50-50 bilingual program and it’s been running at 54 per cent capacity.

Capus wonders if Pearson schools operating at about half looks like the schools that are doing well (with enrolment) are doing the early immersion. We’ve been fortunate by even having good numbers with the bilingual program.

“Now that we’ve made the decision to switch over, we’ve had nothing but positive feedback from the parents, everyone is on board. Parents just want to see their kids have better, stronger French and that’s the way the school is going to go. The staff was 100 per cent behind it, which is fantastic.”

While Pearson commissioners launched a board-wide major school changes (MSC) consultation process in March to deal with ongoing budget constraints, the program change approved for Dorset was requested at the local level and isn’t being imposed by head office.

When a change of this nature is initiated at the school level, it is not subjected to MSC, noted board chairwoman Suanne Stein Day.

In Dorset’s case, enrolment hasn’t been an issue in recent years ing year it moves to another grade,” said Andrew Capus, chairman of Dorset’s governing board.

However, due to the positive reaction to this initiative, the school will have more French material for older students that won’t officially be in the early immersion program once it starts in fall 2016, he said.

“There will be some added resources for the French. There’s been a clear indication (parents) want a better level of French in the school,” he added.

The idea of transferring to the early immersion program had been discussed at Dorset for some time but gained traction with the arrival of principal Natalie Maurice last year.

“It’s so mush easier for kids to pick up languages when they’re under the age of six or seven,” said Capus, a father of two. “You know they say don’t fight the trend. It With the aim of providing more French-language instruction, the Lester B. Pearson School Board has approved a program change for Dorset elementary in Baie-d’Urfé.

The board recently granted a request from Dorset’s governing board to move from a 50-50 bilingual program to an early immersion program that offers instruction 80 per cent in French and 20 per cent in English from kindergarten until Grade 2.

This change will be gradually introduced starting at the kindergarten level for the 2016-17 school year in order to allow teaching staff to adapt and also so that the program is in place before parents register their children.

“It’s being phased in. It starts with one grade and then the followcapacity will propose, under the ongoing MSC consultation, to switch programs in order to offer more French.

Over the years, the trend in the Pearson community has been to demand more intensive French immersion programs, particularly at the elementary level, Stein Day said.

Currently, Pearson has 20 elementary schools following an early immersion program (which includes 80 per cent of instruction in French from kindergarten to Grade 2), 14 schools have a 50-50 bilingual program and four schools have implemented Français Plus (which continues the 80 per cent French/20 per cent English teaching ratio through to Grades 3 and 4).

“Parents are choosing an immersion, or some cases Français Plus, program because they want their kids to be literate in French and be able to live and work in Quebec in the future,” Stein Day said.

“The (early) immersion program is a little more colloquial French, because more of the school is French (than under the 50-50 bilingual program).

“There’s likely more French in the hallways or in the playground. The teachers are more likely to speak with you in French. You get more colloquial, which is what people want. The parents have told us, they want more French.”

Meanwhile, the Français Plus program was introduced as a pilot project several years ago following a previous major school change consultation, Stein Day recalled. “We’ve had people express interest,” she said.

Pearson has also been working to improve its French immersion programs at the high school level, she added.

Members of the Pearson community can submit briefs until the end of October as part of the MSC process. Potential solutions to budget woes and student demographics facing the Pearson board could mean an alteration to its transportation network and programs, pupil transfers or lead to school closures.

Three days of public hearings will be held in mid-November and the board is expected to make a final decision on any major school changes in December.

School board moves raise questions


Source: Montreal Gazette Letter to the editors

Re: “EMSB selection process disputed” (Montreal Gazette, July 13)

These dramatic personnel changes reek of a political chess game with nothing less than EMSB school success rate and finances at stake. Whatever happened to the credo “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it?” I question the following:

Why is there no public explanation for why Robert Stocker stepped down?

Why was deputy director general Roma Medwid demoted to a low ranking principal assignment?

Why is $160,000 being allocated to keeping Robert Stocker as a “special adviser” while simultaneously disbursing an additional high salary or more for new hire Ann Marie Matheson?

Why are these draconian measures required at a time when the EMSB already boasts the best school success rates and a balanced budget?

Remember we are talking about a school board that fights each day for its survival in a less than nurturing environment. Is Angela Mancini’s ruling faction risking the extinction of our precious schools just to garner more political power?

Jeff Black, St-Léonard

Culture of cronyism at the very heart of the English Montreal School Board

Commissioners question hiring of new EMSB director general

Katherine Wilton, Montreal Gazette
Published on: July 12, 2015 | Last Updated: July 12, 2015 7:37 PM EDT

The EMSB’s council of commissioners is made up of 10 elected commissioners and four parent commissioners. The council, which oversees board operations, has been dogged by political infighting since the board’s inception in 1998. JOHN MAHONEY / Montreal Gazette files

While Angela Mancini was campaigning to be chairperson of the English Montreal School Board last fall, she often had a trusted adviser by her side. Ann Marie Matheson, a principal at the Lester B. Pearson School Board, sometimes drove Mancini to campaign events and acted as a strategist, according to several people who participated in the campaign.

When Robert Stocker, the EMSB’s highly regarded director general, stepped down suddenly at the end of May, rumours were rife at the board that Matheson was a leading contender for the job.

After the job was posted, the board’s selection committee interviewed two candidates to succeed Stocker. One was Sandra Furfaro, the EMSB’s director of pedagogical services, whose husband ran on Mancini’s team in the school board elections last November, but was defeated.  The second candidate was Matheson, who was on Mancini’s team when she was an EMSB commissioner between 2011 and 2014.

Angela Mancini is chairperson of the English Montreal School Board. Peter McCabe / Montreal Gazette files

The selection committee, chaired by Mancini, ended up selecting Matheson for the job. But before the EMSB’s council of commissioners ratified the appointment last month, Mancini recused herself from the vote after opposition commissioners suggested that she was in a conflict of interest because of Matheson’s role in her campaign. Mancini’s team has a majority on council and Matheson’s nomination passed easily.

Since then, opposition commissioners at the board have asked Education Minister François Blais to look into the appointment to see whether the process was handled properly. “This is one of the most coveted positions in the English education system in Quebec and the candidate they selected was involved in their campaign,” said Commissioner Agostino Cannavino.

Several former commissioners, who were opponents of Mancini during their time on the board, sent a letter to the Montreal Gazette saying they feared “a return to the suspected cronyism of past years.”

The EMSB’s council of commissioners is made up of 10 elected commissioners and four parent commissioners. The council, which oversees board operations, has been dogged by political infighting since the board’s inception in 1998 with the creation of linguistic school boards.

Mancini was unavailable this week to answer questions about Stocker’s departure and Matheson’s hiring, board spokesperson Michael Cohen said. The Montreal Gazette also asked to interview Matheson, but Cohen said Mancini had instructed him to handle media calls about the issue “until further notice.”

When asked about rumours that Stocker was pushed out, Cohen said that Stocker made a personal decision to step away as director general, although he will remain at the board for one year as a special adviser and continue to collect his $160,000 salary.

“As far as he has told me, no, and if he was pushed out, he certainly is not giving that indication,” Cohen said. “He stayed in his office until June 30 and now he is coming in and out of the board and intends to work with (Matheson) on her transition. As far as he told me, he was not pushed out.”

Ann Marie Matheson has been selected to replace Robert Stocker as director general of the English Montreal School Board. Matheson, a former school principal, worked on the campaign of board chairperson Angela Mancini last year. EMSB

Peter Mercuri, the head of the board’s Central Parents’ Committee, questioned the wisdom of having Mancini and members of her team on the selection committee that was interviewing Matheson for the director general’s job given her role in their election campaign.

Mercuri reiterated that he wasn’t questioning Matheson’s credentials, but questioning “the way the selection occurred and who did the selecting. I find that there may have been overstepping,” he said.

Several EMSB observers say they have been baffled by other changes the board has made over the past two months. As part of the reshuffling of its senior management team, the board demoted deputy director general Roma Medwid, a widely respected and hard-working educator who has worked in public education for 40 years. The demotion raised eyebrows in education circles both inside and outside the EMSB. Medwid is now the principal of the Shadd Health and Business Centre.

On the night the board announced changes to its senior management team, more than 20 principals turned up to offer their support to Medwid, Mercuri said. “She’s a gem, a fantastic leader. It’s sad that we won’t be working with them,” he said of Medwid and Stocker.

Stocker and Medwid declined to be interviewed for this story. However, many people who know them say they are surprised that the board is losing two of its best administrators at a time when there is so much uncertainty about the future of school boards.

Bob Mills, the outgoing director general of the Lester B. Pearson School Board, said he was surprised by the suddenness of Stocker’s departure. He said he had talked with Stocker about retirement over the past two years, but when Stocker told him he was leaving, he was surprised that it happened so quickly.

Mills said that Matheson has been a wonderful principal at the Pearson board and has leadership qualities. “Had she applied for a senior staff position within Lester B. Pearson, she would have been a formidable candidate,” he said.

Suanne Stein Day, the chairperson of the Pearson board, also said Matheson was a very good principal, but added that the job of principal and director general are “two very different jobs and I have no insights into her qualifications as director general.”

“She is jumping many, many positions,” Stein Day said, noting that Matheson is moving from a Level 9 to a Level 17. Her salary will increase by at least $60,000.

Matheson has worked in education for 23 years. She has been a school administrator, worked in student services and for the Education Department.

Stein Day said many people in the English school board network will miss Stocker’s experience. “His background in finance benefited the EMSB and our whole network because he would come to our meetings at the QESBA (Quebec English School Boards Association) and add a lot of value to them,” she said.

Commissioner Joseph Lalla, who is not on Mancini’s team, said Matheson meets the minimum qualifications for the job, but he said he couldn’t recall any other time where someone went from being a school principal to director general. “It’s an enormous jump,” he said. “My big concern is that this appears to be a blatant political appointment.”

Mancini does not believe there was any conflict of interest in hiring Matheson and said she recused herself from the vote on Matheson’s selection out of good faith, Cohen said. “They were impressed with the work she did as a commissioner and feel that she will bring something new to the table,” he said.

He also said that Mancini was elected board chairperson by the public, which gave her a mandate to appoint her supporters to the selection committee. “That’s just the way democracy works,” Cohen said. “Denis Coderre has the authority to select his executive committee and (when) Stephen Harper picks his cabinet, he doesn’t go to Tom Mulcair. This is what happens in politics.”

Many principals and board employees are dismayed by the departures of Stocker and Medwid, who are credited by many with keeping the board in good standing over the past five years, Lalla said.

“When I meet with the principals in the schools the first thing they ask is what the hell is going on,” he said. “They did such a good job. We have the best school success rates and a balanced budget.”

Lalla said he had also heard the rumours that Stocker may have been pushed out to make room for Matheson. “I was a bit shocked that they went through with it, but they have the votes and they are going to do whatever they want,” he said of Mancini’s team. “The only person who can stop them is the minister.”

Blais’s press attaché, Julie White, said Tuesday that she would not comment on internal EMSB decisions.

kwilton@montrealgazette.com

 

Time for EMSB trusteeship?

Source: The Suburban    Professor. Jon Bradley, McGill University

The letter from a number of concerned citizens and past EMSB school board commissioners (What’s going on at the EMSB, July 1) raises troubling issues. The sudden and secret removal/reassignment of two senior administrators of any school board is not something to be taken lightly. Further, the fact that such a situation happened within the hallowed halls of the EMSB simply adds to the growing perception that this board is incapable of functioning in a transparent manner.

All elected bodies must operate acknowledging the trust that has been placed in their hands. Public trust must be seen at all times to be above reproach and public monies, especially in this age of restraint and accountability, allocated in as judicious a manner as possible.

It really makes no sense to “fire” the director general and then immediately retain that same individual in a consultative function. Hell, if he is not good enough to be retained as the DG, then what possible use can he be as a special advisor?

A review of the last two EMSB school board meetings is reminiscent of The Gong Show. Thinly veiled contempt abounds amongst the various members, sarcasm has replaced civil discourse, contentious issues are immediately bumped into “in-camera” sessions, and the viewing public is left with the overall impression that this is a body incapable of serious dialogue or meaningful action.

Frankly, it is time that Education Minister Blais ended this travesty and placed the EMSB under trusteeship. The parents and students deserve much better and it is clear that the presently constructed EMSB board is incapable of fulfilling its obligations to the electorate.

Prof. Jon G. Bradley

NDG

Sauvons la démocratie scolaire: mettons fin au suffrage universel

Par: michelepoupore

La Fédération des commissions scolaires du Québec dans un ultime effort de préservation du statu quo, a lancé une pétition en ligne.  Voici le texte argumentatif visant à convaincre les citoyens de signer la pétition:

Sans débat public, sans manifester aucune considération pour les élèves, le ministre de l’Éducation, de l’Enseignement supérieur et de la Recherche, M. François Blais, au lieu de défendre le réseau scolaire contre les coupures budgétaires en éducation, a décidé de priver la population d’exercer son contrôle local sur les services offerts aux élèves dans les écoles publiques, en remplaçant les personnes élues au suffrage universel par un conseil d’administration privé. Un glissement qui nuira aux intérêts des élèves.

Voici quelques commentaires sur la privation de la population d’exercer le contrôle local sur les services offerts aux élèves dans les écoles publiques et le suffrage universel dans les commissions scolaires.

D’abord, les commissions scolaires n’ont pas tellement de pouvoirs, elles sont loin de permettre à la population d’exercer le contrôle sur les services offerts. C’est au ministère de l’Éducation que les décisions les plus importantes se prennent. C’est aussi le ministère de l’Éducation qui contrôle 86% de la taxe scolaire québécoise. Bref, c’est beaucoup plus au niveau de la politique provinciale que les citoyens exercent un contrôle.

Ensuite, la population ne s’intéresse pas à la démocratie scolaire: elle ne participe pas aux élections scolaires; il manque de candidats aux élections. Pour ces raisons la  démocratie scolaire québécoise, plus précisément la question du suffrage universel suscite une remise en question depuis son instauration  à Montréal en 1973.  Jettons un regard sur ce problème de légitimité en identifiant les causes potentielles de ce désintéressement des citoyens.

Depuis 1973, le taux de participation aux élections scolaires diminue. Un très grand pourcentage des commissaires est élu par acclamation. Selon  J.P. Proulx (1997),  intéressé à la question, le  système scolaire québécois  est caractérisé par l’apolitisme scolaire, un héritage du passé,  dissociant éducation et politique.  Contrairement à ce qui se fait au municipal et au provincial, au niveau scolaire on perçoit mal la délibération et la formation de partis politiques.  Les commissaires se perçoivent plus  administrateurs que  politiciens. L’éducation est perçue en tant qu’offre de services plutôt que lieu de participation. Dans ce cadre, exclus des débats et en l’absence d’enjeux politiques, les électeurs se manifesteront lorsque insatisfaits. Les citoyens croient que les élections scolaires servent  à combler des postes administratifs laissés vacants. De plus, l’État prend les décisions les plus importantes. Les commissions scolaires  contrôlent à peine 14% de la taxe scolaire. Depuis les années 1970, un mouvement en faveur de l’école et des usagers a pris place. Cette revalorisation de l’école s’est fait au détriment des commissions scolaires.  Bref, même si on améliorait les mécanismes électoraux comme le réclame les commissions scolaires, sans changements structuraux il serait  difficile de mobiliser les électeurs.

Pour ces raisons, Proulx (1997) suggère une réforme des élections scolaires. Il propose d’améliorer les processus électoraux, d’ accepter et promouvoir la démocratie locale et de passer du paradigme de la démocratie des citoyens à celui des usagers. Ici, l’avantage serait de reconnaître le rôle des parents, premiers concernés par l’éducation de leurs enfants. Dans ce cadre, afin d’offrir des services sociaux et culturels à la communauté, il serait possible  d’inclure un mécanisme de participation des citoyens au gouvernement local.

Un collège électoral composé des parents  tel que le proposait le Rapport Parent et relancé par J-P. Proulx pourrait susciter une participation accrue en s’adressant aux principaux intéressés par l’éducation, les parents. À l’heure actuelle, il semble que les commissions scolaires soient déjà un conseil d’administration élu par une minorité. Bref, on est loin de ce lieu idéaliste qui permettraient à la population d’exercer un contrôle sur les services offerts aux élèves. Par ailleurs,  le suffrage universel est une mesure fort onéreuse pour choisir des membres d’un conseil d’administration. Non?

Dissident EMSB Commissioners’ concern about selection of new Director General are not theirs alone.

Contrary to what the EMSB tries to portray through it’s spokesperson, Michael Cohen, many people are asking questions about not only the manner in which this Director General, Ann Marie Matheson,  was selected but the hidden manner in which school board decisions are being made in general.

It not only points at the secretive decision making process of school boards but hits directly at the big gap between school board operations and the public. A historical, chronic gap which once again is highlighted by this situation and which must be addressed by the Education Minister’s proposed educational reforms  and acknowledged by the “Jennings Panel”  acting on behalf of the generously public funded QESBA.

For far  too long, the concerns of the public  have been ignored by School Boards, with all decisions being made by what ACDSA  likes to call the modern day  “Chateau Clique”  of School Boards. Those in the inner sanctum and  those permitted to enter in.

In general terms, school boards are not just about pedagogy, it is about controlling  billions of educational dollars. In essence, eliminate those who demand openness and transparency,  put the right individuals in place and public overview and accountability  is all but non-existent.
Some may even go so far as to suggest that with the amount of money involved and the  lack of transparent  public oversight, School Boards  are like magnets for those on the take of public funds or infiltration by organized crime.

The students, parents, the in-school administrators, teachers,  the schools and the community deserve more openness, representation and accountability  than that.

Controversy arises surrounding new EMSB Director General

MONTREAL – It’s the latest controversy to hit the English Montreal School Board. On Wednesday, in a 6-2 vote, commissioners chose Ann-Marie Matheson as the new director general.

Now, the two opposing commissioners are claiming many of the safeguards in place to ensure a fair nomination process were disregarded.

Commissioners Julien Feldman and Agustino Cannavino are asking Quebec’s  Education Minister Francois Blais to independently review the hiring process.

“We ask him to take a look at an impartial view of the process, to make sure that it was done in an equitable way, to make sure that everything was respected as far as the qualifications of these individuals, as far as the process for advertising for the position,” said Agostino Cannavino, commissioner for Saint Michel, Villeray, Plateau-Mont-Royal and Ville Marie East.

Feldman and Cannavino raise many concerns, one being Matheson’s role in the fall election, where they say Matheson acted as chairperson Angela Mancini’s campaign manager.

The two commissioners are also trying to understand why only three people submitted their candidacy for the most coveted job in the English Montreal School Board.

“I find it very far fetched that only three candidates would apply, two of which are from within so they would know there’s an opening, and the other one was not even met,” said Cannavino.

EMSB spokesperson Michael Cohen says the procedure was done by the book.

“In this particular case, the selection committee, behind closed doors because it’s a personal matter, brought forward their recommendations,” said Cohen. “There were some commissioners who were not in favor of this, and that’s their prerogative, and then they had a democratic vote where the majority of the commissioners recommended Ms. Matheson.”

Still, the opposition isn’t convinced. They claim that, given Matheson’s supposed association to the chairwoman, all team Mancini members on the selection committee are in conflict of interest. Ms. Mancini herself did not vote, because of the perceived conflict.

“She acknoweldged it and recused from the vote but not the debate,” said Feldman, commissioner for Westmount, Sud Ouest and Ville Marie West. “But then she instructed all the members of team Mancini to continue voting and debating. We think that was a conflict of interest.”

For now, both sides are waiting for the minister’s response.

“I don’t really see him meddling in a decision that’s been made by a duly elected council,” said Cohen.

He adds that the EMSB will be there to hear the minister should he decide to intervene.

EMSB COMMISSIONERS REQUESTING IMMEDIATE INTERVENTION BY MINISTER OF EDUCATION

PRESS RELEASE – English Montreal School Board

MONTREAL – July 3, 2015 – English school board opposition members, Commissioners Agostino Cannavino and Julien Feldman will be holding a media briefing at 12 noon on Friday, July 3, at school board offices at 6000 Fielding Ave.

During a vote at the council of commissioners meeting held Wednesday to appoint a new chief executive replacing longtime director general, Mr. Robert Stocker, chairman Angela Mancini declared a conflict of interest arising from the appointment of her own political organizer to the position.

In light of new information, the opposition members will raise additional concerns relating to the legal validity of votes cast by commissioners elected as members of Team Angela Mancini.

The opposition will call on Education minister Francois Blais to independently review the chairman’s hiring process and to examine the validity of the vote culminating in Wednesday’s appointment.

Mr. Cannavino represents Ward 6 (Ahuntsic, Plateau Mont-Royal & St-Michel) and Mr. Feldman represents Ward 3 (Westmount, Ville-Marie & Sud-Ouest);

Agostino Cannavino

Julien Feldman