Former Guelph Catholic school board chair issues apology

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The now-former Catholic school board chair in Guelph has issued an apology following social media posts that he made that were viewed as racist and discriminatory.

Marino Gazzola’s apology was posted to the Wellington Catholic District School Board’s website on Wednesday, just days after he agreed to step down as chair of the board of trustees.

Read more: Guelph’s Catholic school board chair resigns following social media posts

In it, Gazzola said he posted some items to his personal Facebook page which some found offensive.

“On reflection, I realize and acknowledge that posting these items was a serious error in judgement, for which I take full responsibility and am profoundly sorry,” he said.

It’s still unknown what Gazzola posted but it was brought to the attention of the school board last week and a special meeting was called on Friday when Gazzola stepped down. A statement from the other trustees disavowed the “racist and discriminatory tone” of the posts.

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Gazzola remains with the board as a school trustee. He and Wellington Catholic have both said the posts do not reflect the views or opinions of the board or its trustees.

“Moving forward it will be my personal mission and goal to become more understanding and inclusive, and work constantly towards being a positive influence amongst those with whom I interact,” Gazzola said.

It’s not known if Gazzola will have to undergo any sensitivity training or if he faces any further punishment. Global News has repeatedly reached out to the school board but has not heard back.

Read more: Peel District School Board director removed from post amid appointment of provincial supervisor

Gazzola, a former police officer in Guelph, has served as a trustee with Wellington Catholic since 1990 and held the role as board chair for 17 years.

The school board also didn’t address how it will select a new board chair.

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