June public vs. private meeting time

In June, the CBE trustees met in properly constituted meetings of the board for 11 hours and 7 minutes. Once again, the board is showing its apparent disregard for the School Act and public accountability by meeting far longer in private than public. To be fair, it should be noted that Trustees Bazinet and Taylor voted against going in-camera for the Board meeting on June 26.

Public time for June: 4 hours (or 36% of the total board meeting time)

Private time: 7 hours, 7 minutes (or 64% of the total board meeting time)

Breakdown by meeting:

June 12: This was a regularly scheduled public meeting that began at 3:00pm and lasted until 5:40pm. The board moved in camera at 6:02pm and adjourned at 8:32pm. The public meeting lasted 2 hours and 40 minutes, while the private portion lasted 2 hours and 30 minutes. Based on the motions made after the private session, it appears that trustees discussed leasing a building to a charter school and revised the contract of employment of the chief superintendent.

June 19: This public meeting lasted from 3:00pm until 4:20pm. The board then moved in camera from 4:37pm until 6:34pm. The board spent 1 hour and 20 minutes in public and an additional 1 hour and 57 minutes in private. During the private session, they discussed the disposition of a property and an accompanying communications plan, as well as the use of the proceeds. They also accepted the mediator’s recommended terms in regards to the dispute with the Staff Association and authorized a new employment agreement for the staff association.

June 26: The regularly scheduled private meeting began at 11:00am and continued until 1:40pm for a total of 2 hours and 40 minutes. Based on the motions made, trustees discussed their annual work plan, discussed the work of the audit committee and approved the name of the new NW high school. They also responded to a survey on the Local Authorities Election Act, received correspondence, an update from the chief superintendent and a construction project status update. The board also approved an energy retrofit program for lighting in 46 schools at a cost of $4.3 million to be paid with a loan, if authorized by the minister. It isn’t readily apparent why any of these topics could not be discussed in public.

Once again, we’ll remind you that this list includes only meetings that are posted online and does not include working group meetings, attended by all trustees. It has been suggested that trustees meet for approximately two hours each week at informal work sessions, or 8 hours per month. If those were accounted for, it would mean the trustees met for approximately 80% of the time in private.


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