Three new trustees were welcomed to the Saskatoon Board of Education during the inaugural meeting held Nov. 16.
New trustees joining the board following the recent civic and school board elections are Michael Pidwerbeski in Ward 1, Kim Stranden in Ward 4, and Angela Arneson in Ward 10.
Incumbent trustee Vernon Linklater was re-elected in Ward 2, as were Kathleen Brannen in Ward 6, Suzanne Zwarych in Ward 8, and Charmaine Bellamy in Ward 9. Incumbent trustees Colleen MacPherson in Ward 5, Donna Banks in Ward 3 and Ross Tait in Ward 7 retained their seats by acclamation.
MacPherson was chosen for a second one-year term as board chair during the inaugural meeting.
"Looking back on the past year I think it has been characterized by two words: change and challenge," MacPherson said, highlighting the significant effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on education.
"I think we are where we are today in large part due to the leadership we have seen in our organization from Director (of Education Shane) Skjerven, from senior leadership, all of our in-school administrators, our teachers, and even our students and families. It has been a challenging but very satisfying year to see where we are at today considering what we have faced."
As the board begins its four-year term, MacPherson said change and challenge will continue as the school division responds to the needs of students and families during a time of upheaval created by the pandemic.
"I am confident that guided by our strategic plan where all students are known, valued and believed in, and by focusing on ensuring that every student at every school has the opportunity to achieve their very best, we will continue to move our school division forward," she said.
The new Board of Education will hold its first regular meeting on Monday, Nov. 26., at 5 p.m. Due to COVID-19 and physical distancing guidelines, members of the public may attend regular board meetings virtually. If you wish to attend a meeting, please contact Estelle Allington, Executive Assistant to the Board of Education, to request the link to the virtual meeting.