Laskin back on school board seat

Former trustee eager to get back into public board

Shelley Laskin is back.

And she’s eager to get going, now that she’s been elected Ward 11 for trustee for Toronto District School Board, a position she held from 1997-2003.

“I am very grateful to the voters and it’s encouraging to see that they remember my work from my previous term,” Laskin said the next morning after the election. “I believe I earned their trust and I will make sure I continue to work hard to keep it.”

Laskin ousted challenger Adam Chaleff-Freudenthaler in a battle to fill now councillor-elect Josh Matlow’s trustee seat.

One immediate priority for Laskin is to tackle the September 2011 closure of Arlington Middle School. According to Laskin, the school board considers it as a “surplus” to the community with its low attendance. Closing Arlington will make schools such as J.R. Wilcox Community, Cedarvale Community, Rawlinson Community, and Humewood Community raise their models up to grade 8 to accommodate the departing students.

Laskin said if enrollment is falling at a school than the board and community should find a way to attract more students, and supporting their excellent teachers can encourage that.

Laskin says she plans to meet with Matlow and the community to devise a plan for the next four years.

“After my term, I stayed with (Matlow) as a volunteer to work on issues in St. Paul’s schools and now we hope to keep working together to better the community and our students,” Laskin said. “We are hoping to model how trustees and councilmen can work together and benefit their community.”

Second place finisher Chaleff-Freudenthaler says he plans to stay active in his community and keep an eye on Laskin’s work.

While he received only 7,372 votes compared to Laskin’s 11,326, he said he was proud of what they accomplished, especially the number of voters his campaign was able to bring to the polls.

“We had people, we had ideas and we had money in place,” Chaleff-Freudenthaler said Oct. 26. “My goal was 6,000-8,000 votes and we got it.

“If you look at Matlow’s win in 2006, he received a similar amount, but unfortunately, it wasn’t enough this time.”

Chaleff-Freudenthaler said he’s passionate about his community and will continue to work hard in helping the school board and neighborhoods with his vision.

“I am committed to help our city flourish,” he said. “I’ll remain active for this is where I grew up, attended school and live.”

About this article:

By: Christopher Sa'd
Posted: Nov 3 2010 2:25 pm
Filed in: NEWS
Edition: Toronto