Province Directs TDSB to Change Board Policy, Practice and Governance Structure
Ontario Strengthening Accountability and Transparency at TDSB
Ontario is directing the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) to take action, by Feb. 13, 2015, to address issues identified in a review conducted by Margaret Wilson.
The province asked Margaret Wilson to conduct a review of the TDSB to help address growing concerns about the board's operational issues and governance structure. The review focused on significant issues regarding board policy and practice. The review also outlined how to best consult on possible improvements to the governance structure.
Having considered the issues identified in Ms. Wilson's review, the Minister of Education is directing the TDSB to follow the recommendations of the report including:
- Take measures to ensure that the compensation of the Director of Education, and all applicable board staff, adhere to the Broader Public Sector Accountability Act, 2010.
- Close the trustees' offices at 5050 Yonge (with the exception of the chair's office and shared workspace) and at other board buildings.
- Implement a shared services model with trustee services staff reporting through the Director and to discontinue the practice where trustees contract with constituency assistants.
- Reduce the budget for trustees' discretionary office expenses to reflect the move to a shared services model for trustee services.
- Provide a three-year capital plan that reflects the current student population. The plan must clearly state how the TDSB can manage its capital assets within its current school operations and renewal budget.
A consultation, proposed in Ms. Wilson's review, involving the input of parents, local communities, board staff and trustees, will begin shortly and will help determine how to make changes to the board.
- The government amended the Provincial Interest in Education Regulation under the Education Act in order to allow for an urgent review of the TDSB and the authority for the Minister to issue appropriate directions. The amendments are specific to the TDSB and include a sunset clause to revoke the amendments on Dec. 31, 2015.
- On Nov. 25, 2014, the Minister asked Margaret Wilson to conduct a review of the performance of the TDSB.
- The province imposed a funding freeze on new capital projects at the TDSB in the fall of 2012, after several capital projects had run over budget. The capital freeze was lifted in July 2013.
- Margaret Wilson served as the Registrar at the Ontario College of Teachers between 1995 and 2000. Prior to that she served as the Secretary-Treasurer of the Ontario Teachers’ Federation.
“Ms. Wilson’s observations confirm the need for our government to take action to help restore public confidence in the TDSB. That is why I am directing the TDSB to take actions to address the issues raised in this report. Despite previous reports, and support provided by the province to TDSB, there continues to be ongoing operational and governance issues which demand greater attention. In response to my directions, I may need to consider further steps.”