Want to read how trustee hopefuls in other wards responded to our school-themed scenarios? Click here.

You suddenly find yourself back in grade school. You have all of your grown-up life experience, but you’re moving around the school in a young person’s body. You’re in Grade 1 and Halloween is fast approaching. Which costume do you wear to school and why? 

Public school board candidates

Patricia Bolger: A witch because I loved the story Miss Nelson is Missing.

Lisa Davis: Wonder Woman.  The lasso of truth would be very helpful!  Plus I have always wanted to fly an invisible plane.  (For those who have only seen the recent movie – the original Wonder Woman had many talents!)

Separate school board candidates

Lori Iovinelli: At a Catholic School Halloween is celebrated by wearing something either Orange or Black. I would wear an orange t-shirt that reads: “Got Candy?” because it is inoffensive and appropriate of the season.

How time flies. You’re in Grade 9. Your teacher is insisting you vote for which school club to cut because there’s a shortage of teachers to run the clubs. Which one gets the thumbs down? Explain your decision, please.

Public school board candidates

Patricia Bolger: Chess club, I don’t play much chess!

Lisa Davis: AV club. None, actually. I would ask one of the other teachers if we could have 2 clubs at the same time as the one they are supervising and if they would do both at the same time.  Or, I would ask if bringing in a volunteer to help would enable one of the teachers to take on 2 clubs.  Clubs are a great way for students to build friendships, develop leadership skills, and contribute to a student’s sense of belonging at school.  Every effort should be made to encourage that.

Separate school board candidates

Lori Iovinelli: Chess club. In order to maintain a safe and caring learning environment, none of the clubs should get the thumbs down if there interest shown. Each group should be represented if the need exists.

You’re in high school. You realize that one of your friends has been bullying another student because of his sexual orientation. You go to a teacher about the need to start a Gay Straight Alliance club, but her reception is lukewarm. You can tell she’s not going to help. How are you going to make this happen?

Public school board candidates

Patricia Bolger: I would approach another teacher who might be more receptive to the idea and perhaps bring my friend along.  He could help explain the challenges he is facing and the benefits of having a GSA club at school.  Next step, gather some more friends and supporters and press the issue further with the school principal.

Lisa Davis: Bullying is a serious issue. First I would speak to my ‘friend’ and advise their bullying was a deal-breaker in our friendship, as we all have a responsibility to speak up if we know of bullying.  Many of us remember the devastating effects of bullying in our youth.  I would ask another teacher or principal for support to start a GSA.  Students Count team has proposed an independent ombudsman to handle unresolved complaints about bullying as we know how important this issue is for student wellness.

Separate school board candidates

Lori Iovinelli:I would gather a group of students interested in starting a Gay Straight Alliance Club and attempt to approach the teacher again. If the reception continues to be lukewarm I would proceed with my intentions to the School Guidance Counsellor or part of the School Administration team.

It is nearing the end of the tenth grade and marijuana has been legalized for a little over a month. You and a few other students learn that a teacher smokes a lot of cannabis at home. Do you think she should be held to a different standard when it comes to her recreation? 

Public school board candidates

Patricia Bolger: Well, unfortunately this is a situation that we will likely be faced with in the near future.  If the activity is legal and taking place in the teacher’s home it would seem unlikely that s/he could be held accountable to a different standard. However, in my personal opinion I would like them to be.

Lisa Davis: We trust teachers to be responsible and this is no different.  As with alcohol, this would only be an issue if there was behavior that affected students.

Separate school board candidates

Lori Iovinelli: What a teacher does on his and her own time should not be addressed at school unless it comes into conflict with his/her teaching practice. Teachers are role models to students and hopefully would hopefully acknowledge that special, sacred position and thus act accordingly.

 All responses have been edited for typos, but not for spelling or syntax.


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