An incumbent school trustee in Nanaimo-Ladysmith district is seeking a third term at the board table.
Over eight years with Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools, Tania Brzovic was part of the board that voted on closing Rutherford Elementary School in 2018 and also part of the board voting on potentially re-opening the school in 2024 or 2025, reflecting how things can change.
She said software projections of growth and enrolment, as well as other analysis, factor into decision-making.
“Even though I wasn’t in favour of that decision [to close the school], I understand the thinking, because the reality is, the current model of capacity utilization doesn’t really reflect how we use our schools,” said Brzovic. “We’ll say a school’s being used 78 per cent, but that’s not really true. It’s more like 98 per cent, because they’re not allowing us to count our band rooms and our multi-purpose rooms and we need to really address that.”
Going into the 2022 municipal election, she thinks another school, Nanaimo District Secondary School, is one of the district’s top priorities.
“We’ve got to work and we’ve got to advocate strongly to get NDSS refurbished, or renovated or rebuilt … that’s the first issue,” she said. ”Second issue, I think, is we need to continue to advocate for more supports around our students with diverse learning needs, and mental health, just helping people come back from this pandemic and get back in the swing of being together again [considering] the toll it’s taken on people.”
The school district passed its Syeyutsus truth and reconciliation policy in 2019, something Brzovic said she is proud of. She said the learning and teaching involved and the relationship-building is part of her day-to-day life.
“I know that I’ve done a lot of personal growth around this area of understanding what reconciliation means,” she said.
Anyone running for mayor or councillor in the City of Nanaimo or the District of Lantzville, regional director in the Regional District of Nanaimo’s Area A, B, C or E, or school trustee in School District 68 is asked to contact the Nanaimo News Bulletin to set up an interview or invite us to a campaign launch event. Phone Greg Sakaki at 250-734-4621 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.