It has been a privilege to represent Catholic voters as a trustee on the Edmonton Catholic School Board for the past term.
There are many issues in education today and in Catholic education specifically, and I have worked hard to learn about as many as possible, bring attention to them, and advocate for solutions to them. Certainly, more work needs to be done.
In a society that is becoming ever more secular, it is difficult to raise a child who has a true moral and spiritual compass. Parents who send their children to Catholic schools need to be confident that the values and beliefs that their children are receiving at school support those that they are trying to nurture at home. We cannot allow secularization to compromise our ability to contribute to the spiritual and moral formation of our students, while at the same time providing them with a quality education that prepares them for life in the 21st century.
Catholics need to remain vigilant in order to retain our right to Catholic education in Alberta. But not only that: as well, we must lobby for the right to have Catholic schools governed by Catholic boards only. I am strongly opposed to the idea that Catholic schools should become merely “special program” schools within one publicly funded system.
I am strongly committed to Catholic education and strongly committed to representing Catholics throughout Edmonton and especially in Ward 71 by ensuring that policies of the board truly reflect the wishes of the community.
I respectfully ask you to vote Becky Kallal for Catholic school trustee in Ward 71.
Also running as a candidate in Ward 71 is Romeo Ochoa. He did not send a written submission to the WCR.
Raised in a strong Catholic family and educated in the Catholic school district of Prince Albert, Sask.
Received my bachelor of education from the University of Saskatchewan and a graduate diploma in educational administration from the University of Alberta.
Taught in the Edmonton Catholic School District for 28 years.
Appointed by the minister of education to serve as a panel member on the Alberta Attendance Board.
Working with Alberta Education in the area of field testing PAT exams.
Committed to serving my community and church (parish council member at Santa Maria Goretti, maintenance chairperson and finance committee member) My wife and I teach the Baptism preparation course for the parish.
I am a strong advocate for Catholic education and believe that:
We must celebrate and promote our Catholic identity. Preservation must be a priority and therefore building and nurturing positive relationships with elected officials, various levels of government, and Catholic stakeholders is of utmost importance.
Government funding is necessary. Securing adequate, predictable and sustainable funding is greatly needed to ensure the modernization of older schools and building of new schools, supporting special needs students within the inclusive classroom setting, and securing and aligning resources for 21st century learning.
We must demonstrate good stewardship of all resources. This means promoting, developing and enhancing a variety of programs so as to best meet the needs of all students
I am a voice for all Catholic stakeholders in Ward 72 and encourage the engagement of the Church, the schools and the parents in collaborative educational planning. I am committed to representing Catholic families in a thoughtful, respectful, and thorough manner concerning the excellence in education for all Catholic students.
“There is nothing more beautiful than to be surprised by the Gospel, by the Encounter with Christ. There is nothing more beautiful than to know him and to speak to others of our friendship with him.”
These words of Pope Benedict XVl reflect my personal experience and fuel my desire to serve children. Catholic schools are extensions of the Church’s mission, bringing the Gospel to people in every age. Our board of trustees has made the “Celebration and Promotion of Catholic Education” the first priority of their three-year growth plan. This will take prayer and
“Pray as though everything depended on God. Work as though everything depended on you.” St. Ignatius of Loyola
I’ve worked with children for 25 years, as a professional social worker offering career counselling and employability skills training, as a parent council member representing schools (local, district and provincial levels), teaching children’s liturgy and volunteering in our community as a member of the board of directors for Nelson Community Social Services, and Pro-life Society.
Moving to Alberta, I began our business, and leadership for a Catholic volunteer organization dedicated to forming Catholic leaders among youth, families and in the professional sphere.
As a trustee I will facilitate effective collaboration between school, Church, community and government so that children can reach their
“Man fully alive is the glory of God” St Irenaeus
Catholic education addresses the whole child. Intellectual, emotional, physical and spiritual. When children know their dignity, education offers new excitement as they realize their schooling as a preparation to fulfill their purpose in life. Values of personal responsibility, initiative, service and stewardship are timeless and will remain essential in the 21st century. The gift of faith we give children will allow them to meet the future with hope.
I have degrees in psychology and religious studies as well as a master of divinity degree from St. Michael’s College, Toronto School of Theology. I have worked in a parish as a pastoral associate and a program director in a retreat centre.
I have been married for 13 years and have three young children, one of which attends an ECSD French immersion program. I have taught Baptismal prep, First Communion and Reconciliation classes and established Children’s Liturgy of the Word programs.
As president of the Woodcroft Community League, I spearheaded an unsuccessful attempt at saving from closure Woodcroft Elementary School, a public elementary school. Even though my children did not attend this school nor were they in the public system, I worked to save this school because of my belief that we are all parts of the one body of Christ and if one part is suffering, the others will suffer as well.
Through the process of trying to save Woodcroft, I learned a lot about various issues in education: how schools are funded (and underfunded); the inequities between schools that have an active parent council able to organize casinos versus those that don’t.
I learned how school districts in other jurisdictions deal with low enrolment schools by offering “wrap around” services under the same roof to keep schools open and communities vibrant. I connected with many public school parents and trustees and saw that we had a lot of the same concerns in regards to education. I saw areas where we could collaborate to enhance our respective school districts.
I am supportive of the ECSD’s new initiative in religious education and will do all I can to support Father Mireau’s mission to bring the message that “God is Love” to all students and staff. For more info go to www.ocii.com/~patricia or 780-454-8680.
I am a graduate of Edmonton Catholic Schools going to Fr. Leo Green, Cardinal Leger, and Archbishop Macdonald. I obtained a BSc and BEd (After Degree) from the U of A, graduating with distinction. I taught high school science with several boards including Fort McMurray Catholic, Edmonton Public and NAIT.
I left teaching to raise our three children and I assumed once they were a certain age that I would go back in the classroom. I love to teach, to me it is the most rewarding (and often frustrating!) vocation there is.
However, one of my children is severely impacted by autism, so going back to teaching is not practical at this time. I truly believe when one door closes, another opens and this is why I am running for school board trustee. I will use my experience as a teacher and a parent to make our school system even better.
We need to keep our Catholic schools strong by putting resources back in the classroom.
Keeping class sizes small and focusing on early literacy and numeracy.
Making sure there are teaching assistants in classes with special needs kids and looking at whether full integration is the best option for every student.
Supporting programs to help at risk students graduate.
Pressuring the government to adequately fund our schools.
I believe we need to protect our right to exist as a publicly funded Catholic school system. We have to celebrate what makes us unique and Catholic and promote why having a Catholic system is important to society or we risk losing it like other provinces have.
I hope you feel I am the best candidate to represent you in Ward 73. Please vote and show that Catholic education is important. Questions? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
My name is Jennifer Chahal, I am running for Catholic School Board Trustee in Ward 73. I was raised in a Catholic family and attended Catholic School from primary school all the way through to university. I am currently living in the Casselman neighbourhood with my husband and two young sons, Xavier and Isaiah.
I earned an education degree at Christian Brothers University and went on to teach in Memphis, Tenn., Calgary and most recently in Edmonton with the Edmonton Catholic School Board.
The majority of my teaching experiences have been in elementary schools but, I have also had experience working in all grade levels as a substitute teacher while raising my two sons. I am a certified personal trainer and have spent a lot of time being involved with sports and coaching.
As a teacher, I know what is happening in the school environment and what is needed by the students and teachers to be successful. As a mother, I know what type of Christ centered school environment I want my children to be brought up in.
As a member of today’s global society, I know what it takes for one to be successful in today’s world. I am a very approachable individual and carry myself with honesty and integrity and am hard working and determined.
I will touch shortly on two of my concerns.
For more information on me and my objectives, you can go to my website www.chahal4trustee.com or send me an email.
It has been an honour and a privilege to represent you as Edmonton Catholic School Trustee from 2007- 2010. During my term, I have worked hard to bring attention to and advocate for issues that matter to constituents.
There are challenges facing us in the next years. I would like to touch on two.
We are fortunate to live in a province where Catholic education is still publicly funded. However, we can never become complacent. I have been a strong advocate for Catholic education. I have been actively involved with the district and the Alberta Catholic School Trustees’ Association (ACSTA) on developing a response to the Alberta government’s review of the School Act.
Alberta Education needs to continue to honour and recognize the value of providing Alberta students with a choice to attend a school that is permeated with the Catholic faith and it must continue to be recognized that Catholic schools must be governed by locally elected Catholic school boards.
Another challenge that faces us is the issue of adequate and sustainable funding. Schools have been expected to take on more social service and health related issues. As well, technology needs for the 21st century learner have grown. It costs more to provide a quality education. I believe a collaborative cross ministry approach to funding is necessary to meet these needs and I will continue to advocate for this.
I am aware that there are other issues facing education as well. I have worked collaboratively with schools, communities, levels of government and the archdiocese to address these. Please visit my website at www.cindyolsen.net for more information or contact me by phone at (780) 405 1535 or by email email@example.com.
Vote for commitment, passion for Catholic education and a proven track record.
Vote Cindy Olsen on Oct. 18
Serving the Catholic community for 12 years has enabled me to garner invaluable experience. Eight (soon, nine) schools have opened since I’ve been a trustee. I have worked to modernize our schools and be proactive against threats to Catholic education; in 2005, I was awarded the Alberta Centennial Medal for outstanding service.
Reduced class sizes, updated technology, sufficient staff resources, excellent academic results, providing for unique learning needs, well-developed arts and sports programs, career counsellors, chaplains and space for quiet prayer are all of the utmost importance. Although spending each dollar wisely and creatively (like in the St. Francis Xavier Sports Center, a partnership with the city) is key, the bottom line is adequate, predictable and reliable funding.
As trustee, I have lobbied, discussed, educated, and have been educated, meeting numerous times with all levels of government to discuss funding issues. I am qualified and prepared to lobby effectively for needed resources to ensure Catholic education of the highest quality is delivered to our children.
Involvement with families in our community freshens my outlook on the importance of Catholic education. My house is ever a host to school-aged children; I interact with kids in our schools regularly.
I speak continuously with parents not only as a trustee, but as a fellow parent, parishioner and community member. I am kept engaged, aware and connected. I choose to make this my full-time job.
Twelve years being your trustee has not only taught me efficiency in facilitating education for the community; it has also taught me that my deepest passion lies in serving and striving to infuse my earnest faith in God into my efforts to better the school system for our children. It is my sincere prayer that I may continue to serve our Catholic community with joy, faith and passion.
My name is Brad Lohner and I decided to run for Edmonton Catholic School trustee in Ward 74 based on the following three principles:
The district developed an excellent three-year plan; however it will simply be a piece of paper if not measured objectively. We must hold ourselves accountable to the plan if we are to retain our Catholic identity. My 26 years experience in setting and monitoring key performance indicators will help the district realize those goals.
The Alberta government has told us to expect a cut in funding due to the deficit. Most recently, the archbishop announced we will no longer be relying on casino funding.
Combine this, with Alberta Education's goal of providing inclusive education for special needs students, and all of a sudden we have some real challenges ahead of us. If elected, I intend to work with my fellow board members to lobby for additional funding as well as work with the archdiocesan office to find ways to make this goal a reality.
Throwing money at problems isn't the only solution. Our board is given a mandate to be responsible stewards of the district's resources. Are we providing the district with a good return on its investment?
I checked the financial statements and some board positions were paid up to 100 per cent more than Calgary Catholic for the same job descriptions. I believe that when faced with budget reductions, belt tightening must start at the top.
There is a significant challenge before the Catholic community relating to the identity of our schools. “As a legal imperative Catholic schools need to maintain, at all costs, a distinctive identity that can easily distinguish them from public schools.” We must ask how that identity is to be defined in our secular culture and how it is to be manifested.
As a trustee I intend to engage the Catholic community in the discussion that must take place vis a vis this matter of identity. Failure to address it puts our schools at serious risk. John Paul II dramatized the importance of Catholic institutions maintaining their identity when he stated that if they lose their distinctiveness, they should be closed. I will do all in my power as a trustee to ensure this does not happen.
I run also:
I am Rudy Arcilla and I am running for re-election as trustee for Edmonton Catholic Schools Ward 75. I am married with three children and two grandkids, and all our children attend Catholic schools.
I finished my bachelor of arts in Manila and my bachelor of education from the University of Alberta. I am a retired teacher. I spent all 33 years of my career teaching junior high school in Alberta.
Three years ago, I ran on the platform of building chapels in our schools. Three years later, the district has added chapels in all of the three new P3 schools that recently opened.
As well, the newly-renovated Archbishop MacDonald and St. Francis Xavier high schools both plan a blessing ceremony for their beautiful chapels. I will continue to encourage the district to add chapels in as many schools as possible.
In these sacred spaces students, teachers and visitors can find a quiet and inviting place to pray and reflect.
If re-elected, I will try my best to request His Grace to let the district install tabernacles in these chapels. I am asking you to pray with me earnestly so that the living sacramental Presence of our Lord will be in our schools.
During the past weeks, as I went around doorknocking in my ward, many parents have asked me why many of our kids do not know how to say the holy rosary. If re-elected, I will work hard to encourage our district to do more on this.
Being a past grand knight of the Knights of Columbus, I am willing to solicit the help of the Knights in teaching the kids how to say the rosary. Other groups will also be asked.
As I have emphasized before, everything Catholic schools do must be permeated by Jesus’ life and teachings.
I am standing for election as a Catholic school trustee because I believe that faithful and educated Catholics are essential to reversing a couple of trends in our society. The first is the absence of charity in how we are governed. The second is the promotion of material gain and comfort as the principal pursuit of human life. I would work to improve the teaching of the doctrines of our faith to our children and their families.
Jesus describes his followers as salt of the earth and the kingdom of God as leaven. That is what I believe Catholic education is meant to be: salt and leaven. As salt, Catholic education can add needed flavour. As leaven, it gives texture to and makes palatable what would otherwise be a nearly indigestible mass. And while neither salt nor leaven is needed in large quantities, both are needed in specific proportion to achieve the best results.
I think that the proportions are presently too small to effectively flavour and leaven our society. A truly Catholic education will help to increase both.
We also have a responsibility to teach our children to know the love of God and his plan for each and all of us. To quote another of Jesus’ parables, I believe that it is Catholic education which can form the good soil over which the sower scatters seed, in which the seed takes root, and from which it can produce much fruit.
Like so much in Christian belief, a trustee is a position of paradox. You are required to be a representative of the people who elected you while at the same time being a community leader, offering a vision and a direction. The role of leadership is especially important in taking decisions on contentious issues.
As a long-time member of the Edmonton region Catholic community, I have experienced the value of Catholic education first hand, as a student myself and through my own children. I want to continue to use my vision and leadership abilities as trustee to ensure that our Catholic education system remains viable for the coming generations.
The best way to make this happen is to demonstrate how we use our Catholic faith and values to set policy and governance structure, in order to evolve our school district into the leading educational jurisdiction in Alberta.
During the past three years as Catholic trustee for Ward 76, I have taken a position as a fiscal conservative, a strong supporter of innovative teaching and increased teacher autonomy, board transparency, and as an active contributor towards issues of social justice and the special needs of our students.
I am proud of the quality of our teachers and the achievements of the students at ECSD.
Over the next term, one of my primary goals will be to strengthen the integration of our Catholic faith and values into the policies of our district. We need to take a top down approach to ensure our decisions and policies meet our value statements in areas such as employee relations, health and wellness, neighbourly love and good stewardship of the earth and our environment. I also want to continue to strengthen the integration and communication with the Catholic community.
Through a commitment to these values, our students will become leading citizens, and we can ensure that Catholic education is preserved.
I ask for your continued support to build the best education system in the province here at Edmonton catholic schools. For further information visit marilynbergstra.ca and follow the links to my blog, Facebook and Twitter accounts.
I am putting my name forward to run as Catholic school trustee because of my commitment to my faith and my belief in the Catholic school system. I am married to Owen and together we have two grown children who were educated in the Catholic school system — our daughter being a teacher, and our son a lawyer.
I am a registered nurse with many years experience in the field of psychiatry.
I am a member of St. Thomas More Parish, and had previously been a long time member of St. Mary’s Parish in Red Deer taking part in the ministries as a lector, Eucharistic minister and hospitality minister.
It had been my honour to have previously served as a Catholic school trustee for nine years at Red Deer Catholic and with this experience I am ready to take on the challenges that Edmonton Catholic would present.
As a Catholic trustee my mission will be to bring a quality education to the children of this division in a learning environment that is permeated by the Gospel. Tradition, Scripture and the sacraments must be the foundation of our system. In all that we do we must model Jesus and share his teachings.
If elected I would commit to seeing this mission carried forth and lived in our schools. I will work hard to do what is necessary to ensure the children of this division get the best education possible, in a faith filled environment, maintaining the high standards that Edmonton Catholic has become known for.
I would work diligently to support what is best for what will always remain our most important and precious gift — the children of this community.
I ask for your support on Oct. 18.
We will provide unrivalled excellence.
I have no doubt that our greatest strength is derived from our Catholic faith. But recent public scrutiny requires us to discuss what it means to be Catholic today; to awaken and strengthen Catholic education. Adversity and competition can make us better than the rest.
More can be done to keep our schools open and viable so our children continue to attend their neighbourhood schools. Our families should have the opportunity to be part of a vibrant community of which the school is the heart.
We can promote the use of empty school spaces at all times by the whole spectrum of organizations. Parents have a right to expect an education that is rich, competitive, fully funded, accessible and utilizing current technology. Not just core subjects, but spiritual, arts, social, sports, enriched, and exchange programs as well. Where needed, meals and transportation should also be provided without having to rely on significant school fees or casinos.
All programs must be fiscally and educationally viable. For instance, inclusive education promises to teach our children to be kind to the social reality of special needs. But it requires appropriate supports.
In providing “a Catholic education that inspires students to learn and that prepares them to live fully, and to serve God in one another,” we will need to maintain close contact with our constituents, and be that bridge that advises the Alberta government of our needs.
We will need to support our teachers who “affect eternity” by fulfilling our mission. Thanks to the unrivalled excellence of Catholic education, my own children are multilingual and in post-graduate studies, medicine and law, and I have the time and their support to devote to this task. I bring with me energy, passion and 29 years of legal experience representing children.
My name is Katherine Schwabenbauer and I am asking for the privilege of being elected as Catholic school trustee for ward 76.
I am Edmonton born and raised and I love this city. I attended Catholic schools in Edmonton and my two children do as well. I am very proud of our Catholic school system and wish to be more involved. I have served on school councils and volunteered at many school functions.
There have been many changes to our schools throughout the years and the one thing that remains the same is our Catholic faith and the values and principles it teaches us. This should never change as we grow to meet the needs of all the families and their children.
I feel that the board of trustees offers a diverse group of people looking for solutions toward a common goal. As a trustee you need to be available to the school, parents and community to answer questions and offer information in the district.
I bring my skills as a business owner understanding finances, a parent balancing family and work, my experience serving on school council for many years. I understand the needs of the schools at the school level.
Our Catholic schools are rich in history and have made many advances in being competitive and still staying true to our faith, preparing our youth to be productive and responsible adults in today’s and tomorrow’s society.
On Oct. 18 vote for Katherine Schwabenbauer, your friend in Catholic education.
Danny Kinal: A Strong Voice for Catholic Education
As a supporter of Catholic schools, are you looking for a proven Catholic leader? A visible leader? A person with depth and breadth of knowledge in Catholic education? A person with “service leadership” credentials? A leader who has a broad network in Edmonton and beyond?
Danny Kinal has been associated with the Edmonton Catholic Schools since 1955 as a Grade 1 student. A graduate of ECS and the U of A, Danny is well educated including a graduate degree, MEd 1983. After 39 years with ECS as a teacher, 29 years as a principal, Danny retired in March 2009.
The Kinal family are “pioneer” residents of Mill Woods and members of the Catholic faith community of Mill Woods since 1975. Danny has served St. Theresa Parish on finance, as lector, Eucharistic minister and three terms as chair of the Family of Schools.
Danny and Norma recently celebrated 40 years of marriage. . . . Now that’s commitment! We are blessed with three children, Amy, Jon and Matthew. All three attended Catholic schools for K to 12 in Mill Woods.
Danny also served as principal of John Paul I, St. Clement and Mary Hanley Catholic schools, adding to the extensive knowledge and experience with our Ward 77.
As your Catholic trustee, Danny Kinal will bring: knowledge, experience and a proven record for leadership; visibility in the schools, parish and community; integrity and a forthright voice for Catholic education. Currently on the Bosco Homes Board, chairs the Mill Woods Multicultural Foundation, Faculty Club executive and a dedicated volunteer.
Elect Danny Kinal as your Catholic trustee.
It has been an honour and a privilege to be your representative on the Edmonton Catholic School Board these past three years. It has been a highly rewarding first term and I believe I have accomplished a great deal, but there is so much more to do.
Since becoming a trustee in October 2007, I have had the opportunity to serve on several board committees and take part in numerous board initiatives.
I also had the opportunity to work closely with the school community, attending numerous parent council meetings throughout the ward, working with them to find solutions to the issues they face.
Engaging the community in understanding the critical nature of education and its importance to society is more vital than ever. Monies spent in our schools not only educate our children, but also proactively address social problems that can and do arise down the road.
We face significant challenges with the recent announcement from the archdiocese regarding the casino policy. We will need to fully engage our community to find solutions to the lack of funding and the significant impact this will have on our students.
For example, there are 3,000 students in our district who now receive a nutritious breakfast or lunch with funding provided by casino revenue.
Tools and technologies that used to be considered extras years ago are now essentials to the 21st century learner. Educational organizations cannot lag behind in this regard. We need to provide the best available tools and resources to prepare our students for their future.
It has been a true pleasure serving as your trustee and I ask for your support on Oct. 18 so I may continue the work that I feel so passionate about. For more information, please visit my website at www.karapelech.ca
As a happily married mother of four beautiful children, soon to be staggered throughout all levels of the education system, I want our youth to receive the best education possible.
My faith, built from 30 years at the same local church, has taught me spiritualism and involvement while guiding my own education. My diploma in voluntary sector management – non-profit agency management major is the background to my 10-year management career within the retail sector, my current work as the children’s program director with the Meadows Community League Board as well as my four year service on the Blessed Kateri School Council as elected president.
The position of Catholic school trustee involves continual research and commitment to the future of students, parents and the Church, which is achievable through 21st century learning, inclusive schooling and spiritual guidance. Communication amongst all parties will help to forge this spirit of Catholic education. I want to help guide this process.
I would like to implement critical thinkers, using applied teaching with 21st century learning and technology enabling students to work at their own pace. I would encourage inclusive education that fosters schooling in all areas of life and brings special needs students into the classroom. Together, with Catholic teaching, this would enhance leadership and spiritual development.
The mission and vision of the district is “to inspire as well as to prepare youth to live fully and serve God” and “to live a life long journey through a shared responsibility in a Christ centered community”. I will direct resources honestly and appropriately to support these goals.
My goal is for students to graduate high school within the allotted term. Our young people should be moving into the next phase of their lives complete with the skills to be productive, responsible, social and spiritually conscious members of society.