The next municipal to elect Catholic school board trustees takes place on October 22, 2018. At that time, electors will cast their vote for a Catholic school trustee in their ward.
Trustees are responsible for the governance of the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board. Nine trustees representing 15 wards are elected for a 4-year term to represent the interests and concerns of electors at the school board and other levels of government.
To be eligible to serve as a Catholic school trustees, candidates must:
- be a Roman Catholic;
- be a Canadian citizen;
- be a separate school supporter;
- be 18 years of age or older;
- be a resident within the jurisdiction of the board;
- not be employed by the board.
What do trustees do?
Catholic trustee responsibilities include:
- establishing the system’s mission and vision;
- establishing a Multi-Year Strategic Plan;
- establishing and monitoring the implementation of an annual budget;
- monitoring the implementation of provincial education policy;
- approving curriculum guidelines for Catholic schools;
- developing policies to ensure the efficient operation of the Board;
- determining the type size and location of schools.
Duties and powers of Catholic school trustees
It is the legal responsibility of each trustee to be familiar with and to abide with:
- the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act;
- the Statutes of Ontario;
- the Education Act – particularly Part IV, Boards: Duties and Powers;
- the HWCDSB Trustee Code of Conduct;
- the policies of the HWCDSB.
As members of the HWCDSB representing all Catholic school ratepayers in the City of Hamilton, trustees solemnly promise:
- to give wholehearted commitment to Catholic education, and to building and nurturing Christian education communities grounded in the Catholic faith and rooted in Jesus Christ;
- to be faithful witnesses to Jesus Christ and the teachings of the Catholic Church, and to strive to ensure that Christ remains at the centre of all they say and do.
Trustee Code of Conduct
The members of the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board of Trustees occupy positions of public trust and confidence. They are expected to discharge their duties and responsibilities in a professional, impartial and Catholic manner.
Trustee duties and expectations are outlined in the Trustee Code of Conduct, Policy T.03: Trustee Code of Conduct. https://www.hwcdsb.ca/board/policies/?file
Becoming a Catholic School Trustee: A Call to Service and Stewardship in Christ
“No one should seek (the office of trustee) for any motive other than an objective one of serving and of trying to make the school system better.” ~ G. Emmett Cardinal Carter
In its document, Becoming a Catholic School Trustee, the Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association (OCSTA) describes the role of the Catholic school trustee as a call to service and stewardship in Christ.
Speaking to the unique challenge of Catholic trusteeship, OCSTA writes, “Given the mission and distinctiveness of Catholic schools, it is simply not enough for a trustee of a Catholic school board to meet only the minimum legal requirements of office.”
“Catholic school boards must be served by trustees who have a sense of being called to ministry. They must be trustees who insist on quality academic programs steeped in gospel values and excellence and who publicly promote and defend the religious dimension of our Catholic schools.”
“Catholic school boards will function effectively with trustees who possess Christian attributes and skills which facilitate full participation of all board members in the decision-making process, which foster respect for diverse opinions, and which promote good working relationships with others.”
“Catholic school board will benefit from the dedicated contributions of deeply committed trustees. Trustees must be capable of dealing with the pressures of office and willing to make difficult and sometimes unpopular decisions. They must be prepared to devote the time necessary to attend meetings and public functions, to reflect the interests and priorities of the constituencies on various board committees and/or advisory bodies and to address the concerns of parents.”
A downloadable copy of the document can be accessed at http://www.ocsta.on.ca/ocsta/wp-content/up
Board meeting attendance
The Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board meets twice per month. The Committee of the Whole meets on the first Tuesday of each month while the Religion, Family Life and Instructional Services Committee meets on the third Tuesday of each month. Regular meetings of the Board take place at 5:00 pm in the Boardroom at the Father Kyran Kennedy Catholic Education Centre, unless otherwise determined by the Board.
In addition to Standing Committee meetings, trustees sit on various ad hoc and permanent committees which meet throughout the year.
Trustee distribution is as follows:
- Ward 1, 2 & 15: One to be elected
- Ward 3 & 4: One to be elected
- Ward 5: One to be elected
- Ward 6: One to be elected
- Ward 7: One to be elected
- Ward 8 & 14: One to be elected
- Ward 9 & 11: One to be elected
- Ward 10: One to be elected
- Ward 12 & 13: One to be elected