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School Board Trustee By-Election


The official results of the Brandon School Division Board of Trustees By-Election for Ward 1  held on Wednesday, November 4, 2020 have been confirmed.

Calistus Ekenna, Jason Gobeil and Blaine Foley have been elected to the Brandon School Division Board of Trustees for Ward 1.

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Please see below the official results of the Brandon School Division Board of Trustees By-Election provided by the Senior Election Official.

Official Results for Brandon School Division Board of Trustees By-Election for Ward 1



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Candidates for the BSD School Board Trustee By-Election

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Calistus Ekenna

Occupation: Social Worker

Why are you running for School Trustee? As a social worker in child welfare, I learned how program and policy decisions impact students, families and our community. I am grateful and excited about the work done by the Brandon School Division, I also know the intention of the Board and School Trustees is to service all students and families, but my input will be in line with lived experience, knowledge, and perspectives of members of racialized communities. The overall goal, ideas and ideals of the Board will guide and inform my works as Trustee.

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Bonnie-Lynn Mills

Occupation: Community Engagement Manager, Habitat Brandon

Why are you running for School Trustee? As a mother of two in the Brandon School Division, former Childcare Centre Director, and employed as the Community Engagement Manager for Habitat for Humanity, I am passionate about education and our community. I believe that our education system is the key for developing well rounded confident and innovative adults for the future. As a Brandon Area resident for the past 15 years, I am dedicated to serving our community, the students along with their families and the staff of the Brandon School Division.

As an elected trustee, my focus will be:
  • Student and staff mental health and well-being
  • Active engagement within Schools and Classrooms to observe and experience firsthand classroom settings
  • Working with all stakeholders to ensure continuous improvement
  • Working as a team to develop policies and practices that support students through inclusion, innovation, wellbeing and collaboration
  • Ensuring financial responsibility through Accountability and Transparency.

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Breeanna Sieklicki

Occupation: Red Seal Carpenter

Why are you running for school trustee? As both a mother and a red seal carpenter, primary and secondary education is of particular importance to me. My children and the youth of Brandon are why I have decided to run in the upcoming 2020 byelection for School Board Trustee. I want to continue to see our schools flourish, and ensure the top priority of the BSD is to give every child an equal opportunity to learn in all areas including, language growth, faith based education, fiscal responsibility and post-secondary preparation. Having our teachers well equipped with the tools and resources needed for their classrooms to run efficiently can help in many aspects as well. I believe our school board will benefit from more input from the parents of children who are in, or will be entering school. As a School Board Trustee, I will be a strong voice and advocate for many parents in this regard. Children are our future, and if we want to see our city continue to grow in a positive way this is where we need to start – with our children. So when it comes time to vote, I am asking you to vote for myself, Breeanna Sieklicki as the parent’s voice.

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Blaine Foley

Occupation: Reaching Home Coordinator, Brandon Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation

Why are you running for school trustee? Growing up in Brandon, Blaine considers himself fortunate to have learned from exceptional Brandon teachers and he is excited for the opportunity to serve as a school trustee to champion the highest quality of education for all students.

Blaine works at the Brandon Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation administering the federal homelessness strategy funding in rural southern and northern Manitoba. In this role, Blaine provides proposal analysis and develops successful funding agreements to either construct housing or employ housing support staff.
In the role of school trustee, Blaine will use this experience working on a team to set priorities. As a top priority, he will work collaboratively for policies which safeguard student and staff wellbeing during the health crisis. Secondly, Blaine will ensure the school division is flexible in responding to a diverse student population including enhancing access to bilingual education. Lastly, at the senior years level, Blaine intends to promote partnerships with post-secondary institutions so grade 12 students have the opportunity to enroll in advanced placement courses and obtain a head start on their future education.

Blaine previously served on Brandon University’s Board of Governors. He holds a Master of Arts degree in Public Policy and Administration.

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Jason Gobeil

Occupation: Ohitika/Ogichdaa (warrior) Wellness Coordinator

Why are you running for School TrusteeI am running for School Trustee because I care about the future position of our division at it moves forward under the pressures of annual government cutbacks, growing student registrations, and in ensuring that we are providing the best supports and direction to the lead administration within the Brandon School Division.

We need to hold accountable to our leadership the strategies that have been developed and put in place are being followed and/or adjusted to meet the needs for change.  Under a new normal of living and working in unprecedented times of a pandemic, we need to ensure the utmost safety of our children and educators is put in place throughout the entire division.

I intend to provide a voice of reason, knowledge, and compassion as a School Trustee and in working together with administration for the benefits of our guiding our children in a good way.

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Brock McEwing

Occupation: Small Business Owner

Why are you running for School Trustee? Our children’s education begins at home and is advanced by our school system. Fundamentals in understanding language, numeracy and our geographical society, all aid in their post-secondary life. Whether education is continued in trades, university or other, our children need to be best prepared for the world a head of them. Our schools are made up of students from all walks of life, abilities and
ambitions. It is the duty of a trustee to help provide the best opportunity for every student and every family. We need parental perspective on this board and that is what I intend to bring.

Lynda Arndt

Occupation:  On an LOA from Prairie Mountain Health

Why are you running for School Trustee? As a mother of a child going into Grade 6, I have a vested interest in school policies and procedures.

I have a passion for the School Division as I already serve on two committees, one being the Friends of Education, in which I gave a presentation to all the school leaders in the Division. I also represent Kirkcaldy Heights as the liason between the Parent Council and the School Division.

I have served as Vice Chair of our Parent Council for 4 years in which we collectively set out a yearly budget while working to meet the needs of both educators and students. I feel it's important to have a successful relationship with the educators and an understanding of what the School Division does for students, parents and staff with a particular focus on mental health.

  • I would address restoring programs that were discontinued because of the budget as I've had parents communicate to me the impact the loss has had on their children.

  • Being involved in the grassroots stage of the development of the 4 year Continuous Improvement Plan, I am looking forward to seeing it through completion.

  • Work on inclusion of the English as a second language students and their families to assist in the integration into the school environment.

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Jason Splett

Occupation: Territory Manager for Corteva Agriscience

Why are you running for School Trustee? I am running for school board trustee because I want to be a part of being able to offer the children of Brandon the best possible access to the best education that we can offer in this great community. I have 2 school aged children that are currently attending the French immersion program at Ecole New Era. I have been a member of this community for close to twenty years and I will strive to bring fairness to the decisions I make, representing the different views of students, staff members and the community. I have volunteered for many organizations over the past several years and currently sit as member of the Board of Revision for the City of Brandon as well as Chairman of the Board of Trinity United Church. I am also a member of the Brandon Chamber of Commerce. My experience in the current boards I serve, as well as my current tenure with Corteva Agriscience, will serve the community, students, staff members and current members of the board very well. I will strive to bring the voices and ideas of the community forward to be able to have the best and safest education for our children.


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