Peel District School Board Review

On November 27, 2019, the Minister of Education announced a formal review of the Peel District School Board (PDSB) to address concerns about equity, anti-Black racism, and serious issues related to governance, leadership and human resources practices in the board.

The Ontario government is committed to creating learning and working environments where all students and staff feel welcome, included and respected. The PDSB is the second largest school district in Ontario, serving a diverse student population across Brampton, Caledon, and Mississauga and the surrounding areas west of Toronto. The board consists of 217 elementary schools and 42 secondary schools that service over 155,000 students. As such, this review is critical to assuring students, parents, and educators in the PDSB community that schools and school boards are expected to respect and uphold principles of equity and human rights.

Review Team

Community members with expertise in these areas have been appointed to conduct the formal review:

Support for the review will be provided by the Ministry of Education's Education Equity Secretariat, headed by Patrick Case, Assistant Deputy Minister.

The three reviewers will compile and analyze the feedback gathered from the community and PDSB staff and draft a report with recommendations on how the board can ensure effective board governance that promotes equity, increases accountability and transparency, and safeguards the success and well-being of all students.

Community Participation

The review team will reach out to students to enhance their understanding of the student experience within the PDSB. As well, the reviewers welcome the opportunity to hear from Peel community members and PDSB staff who wish to share their views or personal experiences as it relates to the mandate of the review.

Anyone interested in sharing a written submission or in finding out how to schedule a face-to-face interview* with the review team, please contact:

By email: PDSBReviewers@ontario.ca
By telephone: 647-289-6346
By mail: PDSB Review Team
315 Front Street West, 17th Floor
Toronto, ON M7A 0B8

*Face-to-face interviews will be conducted across the region throughout December and January.

Privacy

The interim and final reports drafted by the reviewers will not include individual names, and wherever possible, will be drafted so as not to identify individuals. It is important to note that disclosure could be required by a court or other adjudicative body, or otherwise by law.

However, please note that in situations where a request is made under access to information legislation that would reveal personal information about an identifiable individual, it would generally be subject to a mandatory privacy exemption and would, therefore, not be released.

Meet the Review Team

Ena ChadhaEna Chadha – Ena Chadha is an experienced human rights lawyer, investigator, educator and mediator. A proud member of the South Asian community of Brampton, she has dedicated her career to working with leaders in the areas of equality rights and conflict resolution. Currently, she is Chair of the Board of Directors of the Human Rights Legal Support Centre. Ena served as Vice-Chair with the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario from 2007 to 2015 as a Mediator and an Adjudicator, where she rendered noteworthy decisions in the area of racial discrimination, sexual harassment and disability accommodation.

Previously, Ena was Director of Litigation with ARCH: Disability Law Centre and worked as counsel with the Ontario Human Rights Commission. She has litigated before various court levels, including prominent Constitutional challenges before the Supreme Court of Canada, advancing Charter rights in the areas of workers compensation, immigration law and government services. Ena, a graduate of the Peel DSB, has a Journalism degree from Ryerson, and received her Masters degree from Osgoode Hall Law School. Ena taught Administrative law at Osgoode Hall Law School, and serves as sessional lecturer at the Schulich School of Business (York University). Ena has spoken and published extensively on gender, race, disability and harassment.

Suzanne HerbertSuzanne Herbert – Sue Herbert has had a long career in public service and was a Deputy Minister in the Ontario Government from 1997-08, retiring after serving as Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines, the Ministry of Education, where she represented Canada for several years at the OECD Education Directorate, and the Ministry of Community and Social Services. Prior to becoming a Deputy Minister, she was the CEO of the Ontario Housing Corporation and held Assistant Deputy Minister positions.

Since retiring, Sue has undertaken a number of assignments. In 2017, she completed a review of governance and management practices in the York Region District School Board. In 2016, she provided strategic advice to three ministries on the adult education system in Ontario. In 2014-15, she was asked to review the funding model for Ontario's universities which resulted in the public report "University Funding Model Reform: Focus on Outcomes, Center on Students." In 2013-14 she led the negotiations of strategic mandate agreements with Ontario's 24 community colleges on behalf of the Ontario government.

Suzanne HerbertAnthony (Shawn) Richard – Shawn Richard is a graduate of the University of Toronto, Faculty of Law where he taught Trial Advocacy until 2018. He is also currently a partner at Lenkinski Law (which will be renamed Lenkinski Carr & Richard LLP in 2020).

Shawn has successfully represented clients in the Ontario Superior Court and the Ontario Court of Justice on various commercial and family law matters. His areas of practice include family, estates and civil litigation and he has recent publications in family law.

In 2013, Shawn acted as co-counsel for the Elliot Lake Mall Action Committee (ELMAC) at the Elliot Lake Inquiry. Before the Inquiry, Shawn practiced for several years at a civil litigation boutique in the areas of tort litigation (including medical malpractice, professional negligence and personal injury), employment litigation and commercial litigation.

Shawn Richard is the Past President of the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers (CABL). During his presidency, Shawn represented the organization before standing committees, and members of provincial and federal parliament to address issues of anti-Black racism and human rights; represented the organization at the meeting of Federal, Provincial and Territorial Ministers to discuss human rights in December of 2017; and prepared submissions and press releases on issues affecting Black lawyers and the Black communities.

Ministry Support for the Review

Administrative support for the PDSB review will be conducted by the Education Equity Secretariat, under the leadership of Patrick Case.

Patrick CasePatrick Case – Patrick Case, LSM, LL.B., LL.M. is the Assistant Deputy Minister and Chief Equity Officer in the Education Equity Secretariat of the Ministry of Education. Case was most recently an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Guelph. He is an adjunct professor at Osgoode Hall Law School and director of the Osgoode Hall Law School Certificate Program in Human Rights Theory and Practice.

From 1979 to 1985, Case was a school trustee with the Toronto Board of Education, and from 1989 to 1999 he was an equity advisor with the same board. From 1999 to 2009, Case was the director of the Human Rights and Equity Office of the University of Guelph. From 2006 to 2010, he held an appointment as a Commissioner at the Ontario Human Rights Commission. He is a past chair of the Canadian Race Relations Foundation, which was created as a part of the federal government's redress agreement with Japanese Canadians and has been a co-chair of the equality rights panel of the Court Challenges Program of Canada. He was a member of the Minister of Education's TDSB Governance Advisory Panel in 2015 and one of two individuals appointed by the Minister of Education to review the governance and administration of the York Region District School Board.