Maple Ridge school trustee candidate: Lisa Beare
Flight attendant, 38
Lisa grew up in Maple Ridge. She attended Eric Langton, Maple Ridge Secondary, and graduated from Thomas Haney.
Lisa has always been an advocate for children’s needs, including serving two terms on the board of directors for Variety the Children’s Charity. She is passionate about education and feels all children should have access to a quality education and the resources they need to succeed.
Lisa’s biggest motivation for running is her family, presently in the public school system. She has more than 17 years of leadership experience, including her positions as vice-president of CUPE 4078, member of Canadian Women’s Voter Congress, past president of the Vancouver Chapters of Women in Aviation and The Ninety-Nines.
Through strong leadership, she would like to see the school board implement transparent discussions and voting. It is time to start including all the partners of education in board discussions concerning the future of our children’s education.
Facebook: www.facebook.com/lisabearetrustee • Phone: 778-960-8000
Twitter: @lisabeare • Website: www.lisabeare.ca
1. What neighbourhood do you live in? Central Haney.
2. How many years have you lived in the community? 20 years. In the process of relocating back to Central Haney.
3. How many school board meetings have you attended in the past year? Four.
4. Should school districts once again have authority over municipal school taxation? Yes.
5. Should the school tax be charged on municipal property taxes be raised? No. Even though municipal and property taxes have gone up, the school portion of these has decreased by 16 per cent. It is another example of the provincial government downloading costs to municipalities.
6. Should schools be closed and consolidated to save money? Yes. This is a difficult yes or no question. If school populations fall below a sustainable level the school may need to be closed. It is not something the Board would want to do but if funding remains the same school closures are something the board will have to consider.
7. Are school administrators overpaid? No.
8. Are teachers overpaid? No.
9. Do you support the teachers union’s demand for limits on class size and composition? Yes. I fully support the teachers and understand the needs for limits on class size and composition. We currently have 59 classrooms in the district that have over 30 students many of which contain students with individualized education programs.
10. Will continued voicing of school district concerns on funding force the provincial government to make changes? Don’t know. I do know we need to continue voicing our concerns over the lack of funding for public education. We need to finds new ways to work with all of the partners in education to engage the community. If we all work together maybe the Provincial Government will finally listen.
11. If the province doesn’t increase the power of school districts, such as giving taxing authority back to the board, should school boards be abolished? No. There always needs to be local control with representatives from the community. School Boards provide a much needed measure of local control over our tax-supported school system.
12. Do you think the province is underfunding public education? Yes. It is simply unacceptable that BC students receive approximately $1000 less per year than the national average. I believe BC children deserve better.
13. Should the school district solicit corporate money by way of sponsorship to fund education? No. Public education should remain public and properly funded from the provincial government. It should remain free of influence from corporations and private interests.
14. Do you think schools are relying too much on fundraising to pay for things at schools? Yes. Fundraising to pay for items that should be provided by the Provincial Government creates inequities in the system. Schools that are in affluent areas will have access to more resources than those in disadvantaged areas.
15. Should the school district cut down on utilizing technology, like iPads, in schools – to save money? No. Technology is already an integral part of our daily lives. Schools can benefit from these technologies to engage students in new ways of learning. As a Board we need to ensure these technologies do not create inequities in the classrooms.
16. Is there too much reliance on technology to teach kids? No. Technology offers teachers and students new learning opportunities. Technology will never replace the need for a teacher.
17. Should students requiring extra attention – such as ESL or those with behavioural or learning disabilities – be taught separately from other students? No. But we need to make sure that we support the students, teachers and education support staff with enough resources in the classroom.
18. Do you support increasing the amount of international students to help fund education? No. Public schools have become dependent on profits from International Education programs. It benefits the schools in the areas desired by international students but these benefits should be available to all schools in the province.
19. Should a trustee live in the community they want to serve in? No. People decide to run for a number of reasons. Many, like me, have left for a few years but still consider themselves a part of the community. Maple Ridge will always be my home. My entire family is still here, I own property here, I grew up here.
20. Should there be a limit to the number of consecutive terms a trustee can serve? No. It is up to the community to determine who they want to represent them.