Megan Dykeman

ELECTION: School trustee Township candidate Megan Dykeman

A Voter’s Guide to key election questions.

Megan Dykeman

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Running for school trustee in the Township of Langley

Farmer/business owner, 40

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Have you held office in past? If so, please specify: Yes. Trustee two terms – a total of seven years

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Candidate provided bio:

Megan Dykeman, a Langley farmer and business owner, is seeking her third term as trustee in the Township of Langley.

Megan is currently vice-chair of the Langley Board of Education, chair of the board policy committee, and a provincial councillor on BSCTA finance committee. She has also served on the provincial committee for review of legislation related to municipal conflicts of interest and on the BCSTA trustee governance committee.

Ms. Dykeman holds degrees in governance, law and management and international relations. She is the managing director of Strategics Canada, a consulting firm, and founder of Freedom Fields Farm, a specialty poultry farm. Active in her community, her volunteer activities include serving on Langley’s agricultural and economic advisory committee for eight years, six years as community chair

Megan is the founding “A” leader of the Langley 4-H poultry club. She has two children who attend public school in Langley.

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Website: www.megandykeman.com

Facebook: @trusteemegandykeman

Telephone number voters can reach you at: 604-763-5019

Who is your favourite superhero, and why?

GROOT! I AM GROOT…

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There are 12 candidates running for seven positions on Langley School Board. The following are questions asked of each trustee hopeful. They were directed to provide a minimum of a Yes, No, or Don’t Know answer, and given an option to expand on one answer in print (to a maximum of 100 words per question). They could expand on all questions online, if they wished to do so. The following are their replies.

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Questions and Answers:

1. What neighbourhood of Langley do you live in?

Answer: I live in Brookswood/Fernridge.

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2. How many years have you lived in Langley?

Answer: I have lived her for 10 years.

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3. How many Langley School Board meetings have you attended in the past year?

Answer: I attended all committee meetings, and all regular meetings, except one.

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4: Do you support the use of the SOGI resources in Langley schools?

Answer: Yes. SOGI123 is an optional learning resource intended for teachers to use as a reference when needed. There are many such resources available, this is one of them.

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5. Should school districts once again have authority over municipal school taxation?

Answer: Yes.

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6. Are school administrators overpaid?

Answer: No.

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7. Should the province have the power to dismiss school boards?

Answer: Yes. As local taxation should be accompanied by local representation, I believe strongly in democratically elected boards. School boards are in a co-governance model with the province, and as a result, in rare cases where a board is not acting in the public interest, it may be warranted in those very rare instances for the board to be removed.

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8. Should Langley offer incentives to attract more teachers?

Answer: Yes. By this, I mean that we should not only offer incentives to come to Langley, but also to remain here. These incentives should not be monetary.

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9. Do schools rely too much of parent fundraising efforts?

Answer: Yes.

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10. Should the district do more to lobby for new schools in the faster growing areas?

Answer: Yes.

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11. Do you think the province is underfunding public education?

Answer: Yes.

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12. Should the school district solicit corporate money by way of sponsorship to fund education?

Answer: No.

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13. Should the school district cut down on using technology, like iPads and computers – to save money?

Answer: No.

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14. Should the district have a strategy to reduce portables?

Answer: Yes. The district currently has a strategy to reduce the use of portables.

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15. Should we re-instate the previous busing boundaries for students?

Answer: No.

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16. Should students requiring extra attention – such as ESL or those with behavioural or learning disabilities – betaught separately from other students?

Answer: No. I believe that all parents and their children should be treated with respect and understanding. Decisions in relation to the most appropriate educational environment in cases such as these should be decided in consultation with appropriately qualified professionals. A blanket policy one way or the other is as unrealistic as it is naive.

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17. Do you support increasing the amount of international students to help fund education?

Answer: No. I believe that the district and its international students should have a mutually beneficial relationship. Where there is unused capacity, after all local students are accommodated, that capacity should be used to generate additional revenue from foreign students for the benefit of all students in our district.

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18. Should a trustee live in the community they want to serve in?

Answer: No. I believe that trustees should be chosen on their ability to contribute to student success in Langley, not necessarily a qualification confined to one postal code.

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19. Should there be a limit to the number of consecutive terms a trustee can serve?

Answer: No.

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20. Should the district redevelop vacant school sites to bring in revenue?

Answer: No. The district has very few “vacant” sites. If by vacant you mean empty schools as opposed to bare land, these are and have been used for various things such filming, and in one case for training for groups, thereby generating revenue. If you mean bare land, I do not believe that the district should be using taxpayer’s money received in trust for education for any purpose unrelated to education. So I would not support taxpayer funded redevelopment for a non-educational purpose of a capital asset being held for future educational use.

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