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Seven trustee seats up for election in Sooke School District

In the Sooke School District, voters will choose who will fill the seven trustee seats in the two zones.

The district is broken into the Belmont Zone, covering Colwood, Highlands, Langford, and Metchosin, and the Milnes Landing Zone, covering Sooke and Port Renfrew.

Four trustees will be elected in the Belmont Zone, and three in the Milnes Landing Zone.

In 2018, 41,842 votes were cast in the district’s election.

Belmont Zone

There are seven candidates declared for the Belmont Zone, with only one incumbent, Ravi Parmar.

Cendra Beaton, Mary Brooke, Russ Chipps, Dominique Jacobs, Christine Lervold, and Trudy Spiller are also seeking one of the four seats.

Cendra Beaton

Beaton has been a parent volunteer on a number of organizations at the school, district, provincial, and national level. She has attended school board meetings regularly since 2014.

If elected, she says communication and collaboration will be used to drive her decisions, as will research and hearing from partners, communities, and families.

She unsuccessfully ran in the 2018 election, receiving 2,345 votes.

Beaton’s website can be found here.

Mary Brooke

Brooke has covered SD 62 meetings as a journalist for Island Social Trends. She has been involved with PACs and has come to know many working in the district through her work and volunteering.

If elected, Brooke hopes to strengthen the public education through supporting parents and placing emphasis on academic excellence, and implement policies to recover from the pandemic.

Brooke’s website can be found here.

Russ Chipps

Chipps is the elected Chief of Sc’ianew First Nation, a role he has been in since 2003. He attended SD 62 for elementary through secondary school, and all three of his children graduated from the district.

He announced his campaign alongside Parmar and Lervold, all three have committed to working to ensure schools remain accessible and inclusive learning environments for all learners if elected.

Chipps unsuccessfully ran in the 2018 election, receiving 2,909 votes.

Dominique Jacobs

CHEK News did not hear back from Jacobs. If information about her and her campaign becomes available, the story will be updated with the information.

Christine Lervold

Lervold was educated in, worked in, and raised children in SD 62. She has a bachelor of education from UVic, and has taught pre-school and youth programs at Westshore Parks and Recreation.

She announced her campaign alongside Parmar and Chipps, all three have committed to working to ensure schools remain accessible and inclusive learning environments for all learners if elected.

Ravi Parmar

Parmar has served as a school trustee for two terms, five of which he was the chair of the board.

He announced his campaign alongside Chipps and Lervold, all three have committed to working to ensure schools remain accessible and inclusive learning environments for all learners if elected.

In 2018, Parmar received the most votes in the Belmont Zone with 5,760.

Trudy Spiller

Spiller has been a First Nations role model in the district since 2011, and served as a board member for the Victoria Native Friendship Centre. She was the co-chair for the NDP Indigenous Commission, and retired this year after a 35-year career in nursing.

If elected, she hopes to engage in long term financial and capital planning that meets the needs of the district, build positive relationships with the school community, push for inclusive education and mental health supports, address class size and composition, and provide support for students. with different abilities.

She unsuccessfully ran for the school board in 2018, receiving 4,121 votes.

Spiller’s website can be found here.

Milnes Landing Zone

There are also seven candidates in the Milnes Landing Zone with only one incumbent, Allison Watson.

Amanda Dowhy, Murielle Lagace, Candace Linde, Ebony Logins, Philip Ney, and Veronica Pemberton are hoping to be elected to the board.

Amanda Dowhy

Dowhy and her husband have two children in the Sooke School District in elementary and middle school. She has spent 10 years volunteering on Parent Advisory Councils and School District Committees.

If elected, she hopes to champion equitable access to quality education programs across the district, remove the stigma of have and have not schools, and improve access to transportation.

Dowhy’s Facebook page can be found here.

Murielle Lagace

Lagace has worked for 12 years as an Aboriginal social worker, before coming to SD 62 where she worked for 16 years as an Aboriginal educator, and two as an educational and behavioral assistant. She has two degrees in child and youth care and criminology.

Lagace thinks SOGI-123, the provincially mandated education curriculum to ensure students understand and accept sexual orientation and gender identity, needs to be rethought. If elected, she also hopes to address inappropriate use of electronics.

Lagace is part of a slate of candidates running for the SD 62 board and Sooke council, called Elections for Change.

The slate’s website can be found here.

Candace Linde

Linde worked in the Sooke School District for 30 years as an education assistant.

If elected, she hopes to implement policies to address increasing mental health issues in students, and to increase transparency of how financial resources are used in the district.

Linde is part of a slate of candidates running for the SD 62 board and Sooke council, called Elections for Change.

The slate’s website can be found here.

Ebony Logins

Logins has previously served as a Sooke councilor for two terms, and is now running to be a school trustee, and she worked for the school district between 2013 to 2019 as a community school coordinator.

If elected, she hopes to bring her council experience in the budget process for the district, make decisions to ensure schools are safe and inclusive spaces, give youth opportunities to demonstrate they are strong voices of reason and innovation, and address facilities issues in the growing district.

In the 2018 election, Logins received the second most votes on Sooke council with 2,197.

Logins’ Facebook page can be found here.

Philip Ney

CHEK News was unable to find contact information for Ney. If information about him and his campaign becomes available the story will be updated to include it.

Veronica Pemberton

Pemberton says she is running for the school board because over the last two years she grew concerned about what is happening in the country, community, and schools. She teaches piano and music in Sooke and previously worked as a management consultant in Montreal.

If elected, Pemberton hopes to ensure children leave school with skills and knowledge needed to thrive in the world, work with teachers to ensure they have the supports they need, and ensure students have a high quality education.

Pemberton is part of a slate of candidates running for the SD 62 board and Sooke council, called Elections for Change.

The slate’s website can be found here.

Allison Watson

Watson is hoping to be re-elected to continue the work she started in her first term including climate action, equity, partner group engagement and outdoor learning.

If re-elected, she hopes to represent and advocate for all members of the school district, continue work on climate action including reducing emissions by the district, work with the municipalities and provincial government to implement safer routes to school, advocate for before and after schoolcare to be delivered by district staff, build on equity and diversity initiatives, and use her experience and knowledge as an incumbent to support fellow trustees.

In 2018, Watson received the most votes in the Milnes Landing Zone with 2,380.

Watson’s Facebook page can be found here.

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