What is the biggest problem facing the district you are running in?
The biggest problem facing Queens is ensuring that our students are receiving an education equitable to that in larger population centers.
What will you do to address these issues?
Declining enrollment will probably be with us for a few more years. We can't do much about that. The recent cuts to funding have been tied to enrollments to a very large extent. There are probably several ways to address this problem. One would be to request more funding which has been done with little success. Perhaps what we need is a good look at some innovative solutions to providing the best for our students. There are programs that have been successful in other areas world wide that we can use for examples. I also believe that we have the knowledge an expertise to develop our own programs right here in Nova Scotia.
By an equitable education for Queens County students I don't necessarily mean more offerings or larger schools. I do feel very strongly that our students have to be as well prepared for life after high school as students from any other jurisdiction. We need to capitalize on the values and strengths that can be derived from learning in our smaller schools.
Where and/or in what field do you work?
I am a retired teacher and principal of 28 years. I also spent more than 12 years in the lumber business. I have been a school board member 18 years, serving as chair for a total of seven years and as vice-chair for four years. I also served two years as president of the Nova Scotia School Boards Association. In retirement, besides school board activities, I occupy my time in woodworking, gardening and tending to our woodlot. I am also a member of the North Queens Fire Association, vice-president of the Queens County Fair Association and a member of the Queens General Hospital Foundation.
What is something you consider unique about yourself?
People have told me that I have an ability to develop unique solutions to difficult problems. Does the ability to say the alphabet backwards rapidly count as a unique ability?