Canada Markets open in 25 mins

Some old, some new on public school board

·3 min read

The Medicine Hat Public School Board welcomes two new trustees, along with three incumbents, after Monday’s municipal election.

The two new trustees are Yvonne Sissons, whose three children attend public schools, and Patrick Grisonich, a familiar name with over 30 years of experience as a teacher and administrator in the city.

Grisonich, who collected the most votes with nearly 6,000, was grateful for his win.

“I’d like to think that the biggest reason I won is because my focus has always been what’s best for our students, and I also think that it’s really important that we support our teachers,” said Grisonich. “Our students are obviously number one, but if we truly want those kids to have the best results or to be the best they can be, not only academically but just as people, as young students, then we need to support our teachers.”

As a former educator and administrator, Grisonich says he believes strongly in supporting all the working parts of the school system.

“My biggest thing is that we’re there to support our students, number one, and our teachers, number two. I think that’s been something I’ve been really adamant about,” he said.

Grisonich says his first order of business is to sit down with superintendent Mark Davidson, the district and the trustees to get a good understanding for what his role will be. He also says he wants to get involved and be visible in the schools.

Grisonich added he is looking forward to serving with the board members.

“I know the kind of people they are. I’m excited to get together, because I think all of them feel the same as I do; we want to make sure we’re doing what’s best for our students and the people who are working with them,” he said. “I’m really excited, I can’t wait to get started.”

One of the incumbent winners, Catherine Wilson, who collected the third-most votes, says she feels she won because “consistency matters and I think that when I’m there and making decisions in the best interest of what I think the community feels is the best decision, I think that matters and I think they see that. I think they also know that I’m exactly who I say I am.”

Wilson looks forward to working with the two new candidates.

“I think they’re great additions to the board, I’m excited to have a new board,” said Wilson. “I met Yvonne so I feel like I know her a little bit. Pat I know really well and he’s going to bring some amazing contributions so I’m excited for the future.”

She says the board will continue moving forward in dealing with the pandemic and the draft curriculum.

“Lots of exciting things to come, I’m sure, coming out of this pandemic, so I’m looking forward to the next four years.”

The final results of the votes are as follows: Patrick Grisonich (5,839 votes), Rick Massini (5,094), Catherine Wilson (4,942), Deborah Forbes (4,653) and Yvonne Sissons (3,154).

LAUREN THOMSON, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Medicine Hat News

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting