Halton Hills and North Halton newspapers
OPINION Kids' future at stake
Independent & Free Press (Georgetown, ON), 13 Oct 2006, p. 6

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When Halton Hills residents head to the polls next month for the 2006 municipal election, we hope they have the future of their children-- or grandchildren -- in mind. While electing town and regional councils sometimes steals the spotlight of the campaign trail, voters must be cognizant of the equally important role played by elected school trustees at Halton's public and Catholic school boards. School trustees are the men and women responsible for deciding how local tax dollars allocated to education are utilized inside and outside the classroom. Combined, Halton's two school boards manage operating budgets of more than $600 million and are responsible for the education of nearly 80,000 students. School trustees are elected to represent the interests of students, parents and taxpayers. Trustees are the residents parents should be able to count on to represent their interests at school board meetings, or simply listen to concerns about the quality-- or lack thereof-- of education in their neighbourhood. Trustees are also responsible for explaining to residents, who feel overburdened by their local tax bill, how the education portion of local taxes are being spent-- or misspent. From a purely quality control standpoint the education buck is supposed to stop at the local school trustee, elected by the people to serve the needs of local school communities. Unfortunately, as with any elected office, not every candidate for Halton's school boards is devoted solely to the interest of the neighbourhoods they represent. In recent years, some trusteees in Halton have focused their energies on personal agendas, devoting their time to a special interest issue, while forgetting the bigger picture. If you worry about the quality of education in Halton, or feel the education portion of your property tax dollars are being wasted, consider spending a few hours between now and Nov. 13 finding out about your local school trustee candidates. By doing so, voters will be able to make more educated decisions about who would best represent their interests for the next four years.

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13 Oct 2006
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OPINION Kids' future at stake