LaBonte desires to give attention to high quality of training, amenities

LaBonte desires to give attention to high quality of training, amenities

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Editor’s Observe: That is the primary in a sequence of profiles of candidates for Brockville-area public college board trustees. The election is on Oct. 24.

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Michel LaBonte hopes to be elected as a public college board trustee subsequent month, although he’s been following the board out of pure curiosity for years.

LaBonte, 64, is one in all two candidates to be a Brockville-area trustee for the Higher Canada District Faculty Board, and mentioned he “enthusiastically” entered his identify onto the poll on Could 2 – the opening day of nominations.

LaBonte, who presently chairs an advisory committee of the general public college board, is working towards incumbent John McCrea, to characterize Ward 5, which covers Brockville and Augusta Township.

“It’s all in regards to the college students,” LaBonte mentioned in a telephone interview, of his motivation to run.

LaBonte has lived in Brockville since 1980 and had a 30-year profession as a chemical engineer at Invista in Maitland. As soon as retired, he started reacquainting himself with an curiosity he’s held for years.

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In Grade 11, he took an inherent ability take a look at that beneficial a set of choices for his future: He might both be a chemistry instructor, or a chemical engineer. He selected to be an engineer, however that curiosity in training by no means waned, he mentioned.

“I’ve definitely at all times had an curiosity in and extremely worth our academic system,” he mentioned.

After retiring from his profession as an engineer, he had a household dialogue about what the subsequent part of his life would seem like. His daughter, a neighborhood college instructor, prompt he can be college board trustee. That’s when he began attending the general public college board’s conferences.

“I’ve been to each board assembly since September 2017,” mentioned LaBonte.

“After the primary six or seven conferences, I mentioned: ‘I’ve a skillset that will work out effectively within the college board.’”

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That skillset, he mentioned, contains being pragmatic, and an “trustworthy, logical, easy, common sense” particular person – qualities he mentioned will make him match on the board of trustees.

He mentioned the general high quality of the nation is “basically primarily based on the standard of our academic system, and that features the standard of our all our assets; workers, amenities, tools and management.”

On the subject of particular concepts he’ll convey to the board desk, he mentioned he doesn’t cope with platforms.

“I’m really fairly discouraged after I hear or see one- or two-issue candidates,” mentioned LaBonte.

He added, nonetheless, one in all his foremost targets as a trustee can be to verify college amenities are “nearly as good as they are often.”

This contains enhancing air flow, air-con, furnishings, general high quality of college buildings, and the standard of the programs provided.

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“We should acknowledge that we do compete with three different college boards. The entire features of our academic system are (thought-about). The standard of our individuals, however the high quality of our amenities and our tools is one thing individuals have a look at, as effectively.”

Particularly, he hopes to make sure arts training is prioritized. He performs the trumpet, and mentioned he’s “volunteered music-related help at a lot of our native colleges.””

“Music is a useful a part of our society,” he added.

Regardless of by no means being on the board of trustees, he has some expertise within the system. In 2018, he was appointed by the board of trustees to the Particular Schooling Advisory Committee, and finally turned the chairman of that committee in January of this yr.

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Over the course of his profession, he served on “each place, together with chair, of the native chapter of Skilled Engineers Ontario.” He was the training outreach coordinator, “bringing engineering ideas into a few of our native colleges.”

For this work, in 2000, he was acknowledged and formally inducted into the Engineering Order of Honour, he mentioned.

These experiences, he added, would make a “worthwhile” contribution to the board.

“The varsity board wants a variety of varied enter and so they want some excessive stage educators. They want pragmatic individuals,” he mentioned.

“We now have a reasonably good mix on the board, and I believe it may very well be somewhat higher with me on it.”

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