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Chinook Trustee Profile: Katelyn Toney

June 07, 2019

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Chinook School Division is featuring profiles on our Board members throughout the 2018-2019 school year. We gave them a series of questions to answer so our families and communities can get to know them a little better...

Katelyn Toney is the Trustee for Subdivision 4, which includes the schools in Tompkins, Gull Lake and Wymark as well as the Hutterian schools in the area - Tompkins, Grassy Hill, Carmicheal, Earview, Webb, and Wymark colony schools. Katelyn was elected to the Chinook Board of Education in the April 2017 by-election.

1. Why did you become a trustee?
I felt that it was important to have someone in our area represent us who cares deeply for rural education and students and I wanted to be that person. 

2. What do you feel you bring to the Board table? (experience, skills, career, expertise, a particular perspective)
I feel that I bring a sense of rural culture and community, a love of learning, the ability to listen and learn new things, as well as the courage and desire to try something different.

3. What kinds of things does a board of education do?
1) Read a lot. 
2) Set direction and develop policies.
3) Listen to problems.
4) Try to squeeze as much value for our students out of the money we have been given.

4. What is your most memorable school event or activity you have been a part of?
Hands down it was the colony Christmas concerts I was fortunate enough to attend. They had a wholesome, loving community vibe where I really was allowed the chance to be a part of their family. They performed amazing plays and sang beautiful songs and welcomed everyone with open arms. I truly felt blessed to be invited to participate.

5. What do you feel is one of the most important issues facing the Education sector today?
Adequate and equitable funding. 

6. What is your most heart-warming and/or funniest moment in your time as a trustee?
I really love the determined attitude of so many of our teachers. It is heart-warming to know that in these economically challenging times, our teachers are dedicated to providing excellent education to their students in spite of decreased resources. There are some really amazing, caring, and giving people out there who have decided to be educators and I am so thankful.

7. What do you want people to know about being a trustee?
It is definitely easier to be an “arm-chair quarterback” than it is to actually sit around the board table and make decisions for the betterment of our entire division.

8. What are you looking forward to in regards to the future of the Education sector?
I am excited about the uptake of community-based learning, a learning model based on the premise that the most profound learning often comes from experience. Our communities can benefit from the resources of our faculty and students, while the courses can be educationally transformative to students in very powerful ways.   

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