February 26, 2020

Statement from Peel District School Board Chair regarding the Board Meeting on Feb. 25, 2020

As Chair, my goal is to balance the rights of the public to participate in Regular Meetings of the Board with the need for the Board of Trustees to be able to conduct its board business effectively and productively. At the Regular Meeting of the Board on Feb. 25, 2020, we were not able to continue with the meeting’s agenda as I was not able to maintain order. Per Burinot’s Rules of Order, I recessed the meeting for five minutes hoping that once we resumed we would be able to continue, but order could not be restored. In an effort to continue with the agenda, I made a decision to move the public meeting into private session. 

I would also like to address the presence of police towards the end of last night’s Board Meeting. During private session, a Trustee indicated that he felt there was a risk to his personal safety given an interaction he had with a member of the public. In response, I directed staff to engage security and to call Peel Regional Police to ensure that Trustees got home safely. While attending the HJA Brown Education Centre, the police officers did not enter the Board Room until it was vacated nor did they engage w​ith individuals who attended the public portion of the Board Meeting. 
Given the nature of the concerns raised by Trustees, I felt having police attend was necessary. This being said, I appreciate that the presence of police can feel threatening and apologize for any negative impact having them attend has caused.

An audio recording of both the public and private sessions of the Feb. 25, 2020, Board Meeting is available at http://www.peelschools.org/trustees/audiorecordings​​.

Brad MacDonald
Peel District School Board

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