I grew up in Toronto, and am a product of our city’s public education system. From a young age, I loved school. I looked forward to September and felt sad when school was over in June! This early love of learning carried me through university and through two M.A. degrees. Today, I still walk into schools feeling excited and inspired!
As soon as my first child entered kindergarten in 2006, I became involved as a parent volunteer at her school, Northlea Elementary and Middle School, helping to oversee the planning of a new playground. That first project led to over a decade of involvement in a variety of roles as a parent advocate and volunteer in public education (including sitting on committees at my chiildren’s school, such as the Safe and Caring Committee and the Full Day Kindergarten Committee, as well as taking on more substantial roles such as Communication Co-Chair and Co-Chair of the parent council).
In 2018, I was elected as TDSB Trustee for Ward 11, Don Valley West. Thoughout the last four years, I have had the pleasure of working collaboratively with wonderful staff, teachers, administrators, TDSB Trustees and Superintendents, community leaders, City Councillor Jaye Robinson, MP Rob Oliphant, former MPP Kathleen Wynne, current MPP Stephanie Bowman, and so many school families, parents and guardians. During this term, I have found that by working together -- with staff, parents, community organizations and community partners, and all levels of government and their agencies, such as Toronto Public Health, we can create a stronger and more supportive school system.
The last four years as a trustee have been busy and, in many ways, unprecedented. With the pandemic playing such a large role in the delivery of education, I have spent the last couple of years focussing on health, safety, and pandemic learning. At the same time, though, I have remained focussed on safe and caring schools, student learning and achievement, and much more. To learn about the many committees I sit on (and have been involved in over the past four years), please take a peek at my Committee Work section on this website. Check back soon to see the list of the many motions I have sponsored at the TDSB.
As your Ward 11 trustee, I am committed to ensuring my community is well informed about board and ward news. I write for local periodicals, including a regular column in Leaside Life, I publish a regular newsletter that comes out every 2-3 weeks, and I hold “coffee mornings” approximately every six weeks during the school year – informal mornings of casual conversation about everything education! I am joined at these morning meetings by our Ward 11 Superintendents, and together we provide board updates, ward news, and encourage a free flow of conversation so that parents, caregivers and community members can ask questions and share information about education and school news. I also hold regular ward forums on topics of interest to parents and Ward 11 families (some examples of topics of past events have included Back to School and Covid Safety, Mental Health and Well-Being, Eating Disorders). I firmly believe parent engagement comes in many forms, and is a key ingredient to student success. As your trustee, it is important for me to offer parents and caregivers multiple ways to be involved in education issues in our ward.
Most of all, as a parent and as a member of this community, I want ALL children to have the very same feeling when they walk through the doors of their school that I had as a little girl and still have today. As a mother of three girls – two in high school and one recently graduated from the Toronto District School Board – I not only have a personal stake in our public education system, I also have a strong appreciation for how important our schools are in preparing our city’s children for their futures. As your trustee, I will work as hard as I can to provide Toronto children with a school system that will not just meet their needs, but inspire them to become the very best people they can be.