PDSB School Trustee – Wards 2 & 6

Trustees must balance the demands of the community with the duties required by the Ministry of Education. By law, they are required to consult with parents, students and supporters of the board on the board’s multi-year plan and bring the concerns of these groups to the attention of the board. This takes dedicated leadership coupled with a willingness to seek innovative ideas and the courage to implement them.

School board trustees have a responsibility to all the families in their community – not just their neighbours, and not just families with school-aged children. Trustees build and maintain relationships with the entire community. They work with their school board colleagues and with other community partners to ensure that all the students within the board’s jurisdiction have equal opportunities to reach their full potential.

By applying One Planet Living principals, School Board policy can significantly impact how the City grows as a sustainable community as well as being a major contributor to student success. See how the candidates responded to the following questions related to the ten One-Planet Living principles.

Culture and Community

Climate change represents a significant threat that can only be addressed through collective action. When is comes to environmental issues, we truly are all in this together. School Boards can have a big impact in relating the importance of the environment to different cultures and providing concrete actions students can take that will give them hope as we collectively deal with the climate crisis.

Question: Brampton’s 2040 Vision is based on One Planet Living Principles. How well do you understand the City’s 2040 vision document?

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
I’m intimately familiar and support itX
I’ve read it. It is a good aspirational goalXXX
I know about it and don’t have strong opinions either way
I think it is time for a new vision for the City
I’m not familiar with it but would like to learn moreXX
I don’t think Vision 2040 is a priority for Council

Question: How should the School Boards contribute to Brampton’s 2040 Vision?

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
Act as a community partner with the municipality as part of a coordinated strategy and workplanXXXXX
Establish Board goals and objectives aligning with the municipal plansX
Meet occasionally with municipal staff to share thoughts and ideas
The School Board is an independent body and needs to focus on its own priorities

How important is it for school boards to support Eco-schools programs such as Low Carbon Commuting, Ground Greening, Nature Based Playgrounds and Project 2050?

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
Very importantXXXXX
Somewhat importantX
Neutral importance
Somewhat unimportant
Not at all important

Would you support making Eco-schools certification mandatory for all schools in your jurisdiction?

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
YesXXXXX
No
OtherI would not suggest that this needs to be mandatary from the start but rather a goal to work towards.

Land & Nature

Schools utilize a significant percentage of the City’s total land area. How it is used can have a big impact on City sustainability.

Question: How important is it for school boards to support siting of schools to minimize bussing and car travel and to place schools on streets with access to sidewalks, multi-use pathways and bike lanes?

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
Very importantXXXXX
Somewhat importantX
Neutral importance
Somewhat unimportant
Not at all important

Health & Happiness, Travel and Transport

Commuting to and from school accounts for about 30% of the morning and afternoon traffic. Reducing this will have a significant impact on community carbon emissions. 

According to Public Health Ontario children and youth require 60-90 minutes of daily physical activity to stay healthy. In-school programs provide 20 minutes of physical activity for elementary students. School Boards can, however, affect physical activity patterns outside of school hours.

Active school travel means students travel to and from school using their own power, (walking, cycling etc.). Studies indicate that students who actively travel to and from school have better concentration and perform better with problem solving than those who do not travel by active means.

Question: How important is it for school boards to support (financially or otherwise) active school travel programs such as walking school bus, bike train and school streets?

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
Very importantXXXXX
Somewhat importantX
Neutral importance
Somewhat unimportant
Not at all important

Question: How important is it for school boards to support student cycling skills training either as part of the curriculum or as an after school activity? 

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
Very importantXXXXXX
Somewhat important
Neutral importance
Somewhat unimportant
Not at all important

Zero Carbon Energy

Mitigating the climate change risk means reducing fossil fuel consumption as quickly as practicable. School Board infrastructure consumes a lot of energy and School Boards can be amongst the leaders in implementing energy conservation and fuel switching programs.

Question: If elected as Board Trustee, what energy conservation or fuel switching actions, would you support? 

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
Purchase green energy offsets
Hire an energy management consultant to review Board energy consumptionXX
Implement a building retrofit program to improve energy efficiencyXXXXX
Implement a rooftop solar program for new or existing schoolsXXX
Install heat pumps as boiler replacements in schoolsXX
Integrate schools into district energy projectsXXX
OtherElectric school buses, field trips to recycling facilities and zero waste goals for each individual school

Question: Would you support programs to provide education to parents about adhering to idling bylaws (no more than 2 minutes) when picking up children from school and or the benefits of active forms of travel to and from school rather than by car?

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
YesXXXXXX
No
Other

Sustainable Water 

Brampton has parts of three watersheds within its boundaries including the Credit and Humber Rivers as well as the Etobicoke Creek. These watersheds provide significant eco-system services including temperature moderation, storm-water management and recreational opportunities. School Boards can help students understand the importance of proper watershed protection and management.

Question: How important is it for school boards to teach water conservation and watershed health to students, either as part of the curriculum or as an after school activity in association with the Conservation Authorities? 

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
Very importantXXXXXX
Somewhat important
Neutral importance
Somewhat unimportant
Not at all important

Question: What programs could be run at the Board to promote water conservation and improve water quality? Check all that apply

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
Installing rain barrels on school propertyXXX
conserving storm water by building a rain gardenXXXX
adopting a section of valley land near each school for litter clean up campaignsXXXX
OtherLook into low flow toilets, make sure all taps have auto shut off. The listed options have certain liabilities attached to them which must be investigated before I can commit.Improving the water fountains at each school (ideally with purification filtration)

Equity & the Local Economy, Materials & Products, Zero Waste: 

If everybody lived the way that North Americans do, it would take five planet’s worth of resources. We have only one planet. We must use resources more efficiently if we are to sustain our living standards and allow others to improve their lot. School Boards consume significant resources. How they are procured and used can have a big impact on the City’s local economy as well as on its sustainability. 

Question: How important is it that School Boards favour local and or ethical suppliers as part of their procurement process?

ResponsesArun AlexDaniella BalasalDavid BosveldWill DaviesMansoor MirzaBlair NitchkeAbdul RaheemPaula SchulzkeNirpal Sekhon
Very importantXXXXX
Somewhat important
Neutral importanceX
Somewhat unimportant
Not at all important

Question: As Board Trustee, what steps would you take to reduce waste in schools including school supplies and food,  reducing lunch box litter and promoting anti litter activities with children on the school grounds and while walking to and from school?    ?

Arun Alex
Daniella BalasalI would actively support and advance an ongoing education campaign to inform students and staff about the benefits of reducing waste and lunch box litter, and other similar programs that promote conservation and environmental protection. I would also support the implementation of a school-to-school audit to gauge how effective these campaigns have been to ultimately help school communities understanding of how environmentally- friendly practices make our communities healthier, safer, and more livable for all.
I strongly support the City’s 2040 Vision and its principles rooted in sustainability, as one of the past engagement facilitators for its development, and I support the tenets and the 10 action areas of the 1 Planet framework.
I also support planting of community gardens and visits to natural features and local conservation areas as a learning experience that should be integrated into the curriculum.
Thank you for this survey and for building awareness of key issues.
David BosveldI would promote all of the above and in addition a meal program for students, particularly in under resourced neighbourhoods
Will DaviesI would like to review the distances that are eligible for bussing and possibly expand them. I also want to set up walk to school programs where students on a street can meet at the corner at a certain time and all walk together, this would make parents more at ease and less likely to drive each student to school. More bike racks should also be a priority, they also make racks for scooters and skateboards now which should also be looked into.
Mansoor MirzaBy connecting dots between four stakeholders Students, Parents, Teachers, School Board
Blair NitchkeEducation and Involvement of each student and school. Awards and recognitions for student’s efforts. Local media recognition of schools and students. Field trips and guest speakers to address the environment and ways to improve our carbon footprint.
Abdul Raheem
Paula SchulzkePartnering with local grassroots organizations and leaders to bring awareness and introduce change as part of a lifestyle that can be sustained throughout their lives.
Nirpal Sekhon
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