The Quebec government quietly renewed the troubled English Montreal School Board‘s trusteeship on Monday evening for an additional six months: Marlene Jennings will now continue as the EMSB’s trustee through Nov. 6, 2020.
The former Liberal MP was first appointed to the role by Education Minister Jean-François Roberge in November 2019 following a scathing audit of the board’s governance and years of political infighting among its elected officials.
Since then, Jennings has assumed nearly all the responsibilities of the board’s elected chairperson, Angela Mancini, and 14 commissioners as she works with consultants at Deloitte to craft a plan to overhaul the board’s governance.
In a statement on the board’s website, Jennings said: “I am delighted to be continuing in this important role. My mandate has been going very well, and I still have a lot of work to do.”
Jennings represented Notre-Dame-de-Grâce-Lachine — the riding where the EMSB’s headquarters are located — in Parliament from 1997 to 2011 and took part in the consultations leading up to Quebec’s 1997-2000 transition from confessional to linguistic school boards.
She indicated that officials at the board had been collaborative and helpful, saying: “I have been made to feel that this is my place. Anything I have asked for has been provided without fail and as quickly as possible.”
With her term as trustee extended through the fall, Jennings will again chair the EMSB’s upcoming board meeting on Wednesday evening.