The answer “should be” simple. An elected official should always be representing their constituents. With your publicly elected Calgary Board of Education, the answer is not so simple.
Their own policy states “The Board of Trustees represents, leads and serves the organization’s owners –the citizens of Calgary – and holds itself accountable to them by committing to act in the best interests of the Calgary Board of Education and by ensuring that all Board and organization action is consistent with law and the Board’s policies.” If you look at board decisions through this lens, is it in the best interest of the public? Is it in the best interest of the Calgary Board of Education? and is it consistent with law and board policy? Often these 3 questions come into conflict.
A deeper question is, Is what is it in the best interest of the Calgary Board of Education administration in the best interest of the Calgary Board of Education? furthermore, does it serve the owners (the public) or consistent with the law and board policy?
A trustee, in this case, the board chair makes a statement as follows in a letter to the Education Minister, “we are concerned that parent and resident appeals to ministers should not be seen as a standard recourse for small dissatisfied groups.” She Insults her own constituents referring to them as a “small group” (3000 signatures on a petition) and encourages the education minister to not meet them at all saying ” “If there is a public perception that, as a result of such a meeting, the minister will request municipalities and school boards to pursue outcomes not beneficial to all citizens of Calgary, by insisting on more community consultation” It begs the question, as the title suggests, who does your trustee represent? Or as in the Trustee policy, who do they serve?
A definition of the word serve as it relates is “to render assistance; be of use; help.” I am not sure that this letter is of assistance, use or help to her constituents or the Calgary public in general? Furthermore would it not be in the best interest of the Calgary Board of Education to build consensus by listening to the concerns of it’s constituents?