My name is Kulvir Mann, and I am seeking re-election as School Board Trustee of the North Vancouver Board of Education in the 2022 Civic Election on Saturday, October 15, 2022.
I have been a resident of the North Shore for over twenty years and am a parent to two children currently enrolled in the NVSD. When my children were in elementary school, I got involved in the Parent Advisory Council (PAC) and assumed the various executive roles over the years, including PAC Chair. I then became a member of the North Vancouver District PAC (DPAC) and served for three years, including two as DPAC Vice Chair. I was able to accomplish a lot in these roles and felt I was really making a difference. I wanted to continue to do more for the community and students and in 2018, after much encouragement by many to run for School Board Trustee, I began my journey.
It has been an absolute honor to have the trust of the community and serving as Trustee in a variety of roles, including Board Vice Chair and currently as Board Chair. I have attended all the Board meetings, Standing and Trustee Rep Committee meetings and Trustee Seminar/Workshop meetings along with all NVSD events during my four years. I am exceptionally proud of the work of the Board, and the accomplishments achieved as Trustee over this time, including my personal leadership with our journey of Truth and Reconciliation, safe and active routes to school, playgrounds, childcare, physical literacy, outdoor education, technology and inclusive education. As Trustee I have supported many initiatives including the 2021-2031 Strategic Plan, 5 accessible elementary playgrounds and 3 seismic upgrades to secondary schools (including two full school replacements). During my term, the Board passed a budget every school year with no cuts or layoffs and kept all our schools open during the COVID pandemic.
This past school year one of the highlights of my term has been serving as Board Chair. I was excited to assume this role and received lots of support and love from NVSD and the North Vancouver communities. As Board Chair I endeavored to represent the Board to the best of my ability and have included below some of the responsibilities and personal efforts to be as involved, and visible, as possible:
I attended all the BCSTA Trustee Academies, Conferences, AGMs, and the Provincial Council Meetings in the past 4 years to learn and grow as a trustee. I got to connect with other trustees in our region and provided updates on behalf of NVSD. I have made many friends and connections with other trustees across BC. I was the NVSD BCSTA Alternate Rep for 3 years.
I had the pleasure of being trustee rep for Sutherland, Carson and Argyle Family of Schools during my term and always felt welcome at every school. I attended many school and PAC events and meetings to see all the amazing work done at each school community. Personally, it was particularly important to be engaged in schools and build relationships with the admin, teachers, support staff, EAs, LSTs, counsellors, parents and especially the students so I could understand, advocate, and make right decisions as a member of the Board. I was always available for students, parents, teachers, administrators, staff, and community members to contact me and I always responded to any inquiries, concerns, or feedback that I received.
Having visited all 32 schools, I have made meaningful connections and built relationships with all school stakeholders. I have also established respectful, professional working relationships with NVSD Senior Executives and staff – these are important relationships when making decisions regarding budget, policies and advocating for funds from the Ministry of Education. I have really enjoyed collaborating with all our partner groups, including NoVA, NVTA, CUPE, NVPAC and DSLC and value our strong partnerships and relationships.
The most important work was to meet and work with the students as they are the ones whose voices I wanted to empower and hear from the most. I am dedicated and committed to the success of all students and believe all students should have a sense of place and belonging regardless of their ability, ethnicity or gender – including access to inclusive and safe learning environments with resources and programs available that allow all students to acquire the knowledge, skills, and attitudes needed to contribute to a healthy society and thrive.
I was fortunate enough to be invited to many events, student forums and monthly meetings with the District Student Leadership Council. The students felt comfortable with me to share openly their opinions, questions, concerns and gave honest feedback during the discussions which helped me advocate for them as a trustee. I am exceptionally proud that I was able to build these relationships and trust with so many students across NVSD especially at the high schools. Their kindness and support were invaluable and spending time with them was my favourite part of the job!
There are too many to list, but these are some of the highlights:
As a parent of a child with Autism, personally I have needed to be a passionate advocate for my son at his school, within the NVSD and in the North and West Vancouver communities. I have taken my advocacy to encompass all children with Autism and have collaborated with organizations including the Pacific Autism Family Network, Canucks Autism and Autism BC to raise awareness for children and families living with Autism. I have attended Council Meetings with my son for the past 6 years to request that the District of North Vancouver and City of North Vancouver declare April as Autism Awareness Month. I also approached Monova to create sensory times for the new museum and they are the now the first organization to do so on the North Shore. As a result, other organizations are also looking to be implementing sensory times so we can have inclusive communities for everyone! Canucks Autism Network has provided training to all emergency organizations including NVRCMP, WVPD, DNV Fire, NVCFD and WVFD, North Shore Rescue. Pacific Autism Family Network recently attended the NVSD Outdoor Fair, for the first time. North Shore Disability Resource Centre has a fantastic new “sensory van” that anyone can book for events in the community and schools can access this as an extra resource. I am encouraged to see all these initiatives, as it makes it possible for all those living with Autism to feel valued, as a sense of belonging and to be meaningfully included in our community.
As a candidate for the school board, I want people to see how steadfast my commitment has been to supporting students, like my son, who have exceptional needs. But that I have always done so in way that has been purposefully constructive working in partnership with school personnel at all levels of the school district. As both a parent and a trustee, I have asked the tough questions and pressed hard on issues that I felt were fundamental to supporting students who have diverse abilities, especially ones with complex needs. However, I have also been equally passionate and wholeheartedly invested in ensuring that we focus our attention on ensuring success for all students. I am not running as a candidate who is focused exclusively on an area of special interest that is of personal value to me. Instead, I am genuinely committed to ensuring the school district is taking into consideration everything it needs to in order to continue a high quality education for all students.
I feel I have made an incredible impact in the community and have been a highly effective advocate for the NVSD as Board Chair and Trustee. As a respectful team player who builds positive relationships with organizations, partner groups and host nations and considerable involvement in the community (more included below) – I hope you will vote for me again so I can continue to be a champion for all learners!
More about my work, community advocacy and volunteerism…
In my work with North Shore Safety Council, I get the opportunity to collaborate with all three municipalities – DNV, CNV and DWV staff, ICBC, NV RCMP and Community Policing. I promote active transportation and changes around school zones and neighborhoods, so it is safer to walk and bike to school. In the past 10 years there have been many initiatives and awareness campaigns I have been involved with that have resulted in lots of safety measures put in place, upgrades and updates around schools and residential streets. We should be building independence, confidence, self-esteem, and active lifestyle in our children.
I am committed to making school and my community the best. I volunteer a lot of my time to many organizations either as a board or committee member.
I have been fortunate in being recognized for my volunteer work. Some accolades I have received:
Hello North Shore Residents,
I am asking for your support as I seek re-election as School Board Trustee for North Vancouver School District in the upcoming election. I have been a champion in advocating for student needs with impact, care, and information!
This is my platform for the next four years as Trustee on NVSD Board of Education:
Mental health and well being
Truth and Reconciliation – Indigenous Education
Inclusion, Diversity and Equity in Schools
Safe and Active Routes to School
Music and Art Education
Technology and Cyber Security
Sustainability and Climate Action
Students – Educated Citizens
Name: Kulvir Mann (incumbent)
What neighbourhood do you live in? Canyon Heights
Occupation: NVSD School Board Trustee & NS Safety Council communications co-ordinator
Do you have children in the North Vancouver school system? Yes, I have 2 children in secondary school
What are your priorities if elected?
My priorities are to create an inclusive, diverse and equitable school district where everyone has a sense of place. To respectfully collaborate, build relationships and ensure well-being for all in NVSD as a team player.
What is the biggest challenge facing the school district and how would you address it?
The biggest challenge is healing and getting back to normalcy in our schools. The pandemic affected everyone differently and some are dealing with health issues, mental well-being, anxiety and connecting with each other. Funding is always an issue as there are lots of priorities but limited funds that we decide how are allocated during each school year. It is important for me to be transparent, have fiduciary responsibility to balance the budget and advocate to ministry on behalf of NVSD. Also ensuring there is equality in the funds dispersed so all students have proper resources and supports they need.
What is your assessment of how schools handled learning during the COVID-19 pandemic and what should be done differently in future waves of the virus?
North Vancouver School District was a leader during the pandemic and we kept all our schools open while other school districts did not. Our senior team had a calm and measured approach and communicated regularly with our families and community. Our rules and guidelines model were valued by the Ministry. We had already started and done most of the ventilation upgrades and used extra funding to successfully complete work at all our schools. I have confidence in our staff to have proper guidelines in place to keep our schools open and safe so all our students can learn and grow.
Is there any segment of the school population that is not being served as well as it could be by local schools and what should be done about it?
We do our best to support, encourage, empower and care for all students and staff in NVSD. Our Indigenous, neurodiverse, LGBTQIA2S+, multicultural backgrounds or new immigrants are the ones that I would like to see more designated services, educational supports and extra funding provided for by Ministry to NVSD. I would like to see the Indigenous grad rate increased and continued collaboration with host nations and elders. I also want to see more resources, mentorship, training and educational tools for our teachers, administrators and support staff. We currently have many supports, opportunities and initiatives in place already at our schools.
What do you see as the school district’s role (if any) in providing day care options for families?
The school district has a role to support families with childcare. This is a significant, long-term issue for families, especially with high costs of living requiring both parents to work. The waitlists are lengthy and parents need access to consistent and reliable childcare. Currently, it is difficult to provide for this care on school sites due to limited spaces available as staff and teachers need access to their classrooms and other school spaces for prep time, collaborating with each other in meetings and school activities. We are working diligently with both municipalities and service providers to support expansion of childcare.
What do you see the schools’ role as in promoting social justice issues?
I do believe it is important to empower our students and have them aware and involved in what is going on in the world around us. The students have a voice not just in their classrooms and schools but in the community to be heard and make change happen. We strive to have our students acquire knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to contribute to a healthy society as educated citizens. As a trustee that has been vital to me to listen, engage, support and make connections with students so they know someone will take their feedback and be their advocate.
I have served on my children’s school PAC and on the North Vancouver District PAC. I wanted to continue to do more for students and the community so ran for school board. Currently Board Chair, I have served the NVSD community as Trustee for the past 4 years. It has been a real privilege to be a Trustee and advocate for all students in NVSD.
Reason for running
I am dedicated and committed to the success of all students. I visited all 32 schools in NVSD and have made meaningful connections with administrators, teachers, support staff, parents and students. I have also established respectful, professional working relationships with NVSD Senior Executives and staff which are important when making decisions regarding budget, policies and advocating for funds from the Ministry of Education. I have also made an incredible impact in the community with my volunteer work with many organizations as a board or committee member.
Hello, my name is Kulvir Mann and I am seeking re-election as School Board Trustee of the North Vancouver Board of Education. I have been a resident of the North Shore for over twenty years and am a parent to two children currently enrolled in the NVSD.
I have served on my children’s school PAC and on the North Vancouver District PAC. I wanted to continue to do more for students and the community so ran for school board in 2018.
Currently Board Chair, I have served the NVSD community as Trustee for the past 4 years. It has been a real privilege to be a Trustee and advocate for all students in NVSD.
I believe all students should have a sense of place and belonging regardless of their ability, ethnicity or gender – including access to inclusive and safe learning environments with resources and programs available that allow all students to thrive.
I am dedicated and committed to the success of all students. I visited all 32 schools in NVSD and have made meaningful connections with administrators, teachers, support staff, parents and students. I have also established respectful, professional working relationships with NVSD Senior Executives and staff which are important when making decisions regarding budget, policies and advocating for funds from the Ministry of Education.
I have also made an incredible impact in the community with my volunteer work with many organizations as a board or committee member.
My platform with continued advocacy, collaboration and building relationships
I want to continue to be a champion for all kids and have been a highly effective advocate for the NVSD as Board Chair and Trustee. I am a respected and valued team member who has built positive relationships within NVSD, partner groups, host nations and community organizations.