Education Minister announces panel to examine troubled TDSB

WATCH ABOVE: Liz Sandals introduced an advisory panel Monday that includes former Toronto mayor Barbara Hall. The panel will help efforts to restore confidence in the TDSB.

TORONTO – Ontario’s education minister has appointed an advisory panel to look at ways to reform Toronto’s troubled school board, including possibly dividing it into several boards.

A government-ordered review found earlier this year that a culture of fear at the Toronto District School Board is getting worse because elected trustees interfere in everything from hiring principals to procurements.

Education Minister Liz Sandals says this advisory panel supports one of the review’s recommendations, to look at possible structural and procedural changes at the board.

The seven-member panel, headed by former Ontario human rights commissioner Barbara Hall, will conduct public consultations and report its recommendations to Sandals by this summer.

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Sandals says the panel will look at whether the board has become too large to be managed effectively, and a solution may involve breaking up the TDSB into more than one board.

She says it is still open to her to appoint a supervisor, but the role of a supervisor is to replace the board, not to change its structures, so Sandals says the panel will examine broader issues around the culture and set-up of the board.

WATCH: Former Toronto mayor Barbara Hall described Monday what role an advisory panel will play to help reform and restore confidence to the TDSB.