LETTERS: Less than favourable review of the Office of the Ombudsman

A life lesson learned when it comes to seeking redress

To the Expositor:

As most are aware, I have been advocating on behalf of residents and students of Manitoulin and as well having input into First Nations communities who at the time had top level representation at the board table. A final report has been handed down to me (March 6, 2019) from the Ombudsman addressing many issues but not limited to, and including, misleading statements, transgressions against board policy, the Education Act itself, by the Rainbow Board. I was helping parents travel/navigate the path of the proper way to appeal expulsions and suspensions and winning those appeals at unusual numbers. 

I share the first comment of the Ombudsman’s office to me is that “they have no power” to change, alter or cancel bad decisions of the board, only make recommendations. Here they are again washing their hands of apparently bringing fair treatment, honesty, and transparency to the public in their findings.

Anyone wishing to see the full report please contact me and I would be pleased to share.

“As you are aware, our office has found room for improvement in the school board’s conduct processes, as set out in the past letters to you and to the school board. More recently, we have suggested to the school board that it engage an independent third party, such as an integrity commissioner, for future formal conduct matters. It is up to the trustees to determine what steps, if any, the School Board Takes.”

Bottom line, the Ombudsman is handing it over to the trustees and their conscience or wishes for behavioural patterns towards their constituents.

If anything, I thank the Ombudsman office for the life lesson learning I have accomplished and allowing me to share with others, and advise them to ensure the (Ombudsman office) is the last source they should seek of trying to get help.

Larry Killens

South Baymouth