Following on the heels of a controversial 2017 accommodation review, most of the Rainbow District School Board's incumbent trustees are facing challengers in the upcoming Oct. 22 election.
Some of those challengers are well-known critics of decisions made by the school board.
Veteran trustee and current Rainbow board chair Doreen Dewar is being challenged in Area 5 by Dylan Gibson, a parent of two school-aged children who, along with wife Anita Gibson, has been banned from certain board property for the past six years.
In Area 2 (Wards 3 and 4), three other candidates are challenging Ruth Ward, who was selected by trustees in 2017 to replace former trustee Tyler Campbell for the rest of the term after he stepped down following conflict of interest allegations.
That includes Anita Gibson (see information about her husband Dylan above), Richard Eberhardt, an NDP organizer, former teacher, parent of two elementary school-aged children and chair of the board's Parent Involvement Committee, and Gordon Ewin, a retired director of education with the board.
Dena Morrison, also a veteran trustee and the board's current vice-chair, is being challenged in Area 4 (Wards 7 and 8) by Jason Chandler, who has recently gone public with his beefs about the school board.
Judy Hunda, a veteran trustee, is being challenged in Area 6 (Wards 11 and 12) by Michael Graham. Incumbent Robert Clement, also a veteran trustee, is being challenged in Area 8 (Espanola area) by Daphne Allen.
Two current Rainbow board trustees are not running again for this term. This includes Gord Santala in Area 1 (Wards 1 and 2) and Larry Killens in Area 7 (Manitoulin).
Killens has recently been banned by his fellow trustees from attending all meetings until the end of his term in November due to “code of conduct” violations.
Running to replace Killens are Linda Erskine and Margaret Stringer. Candidates running to replace Santala are Travis Morgan, a Walden resident who has been active in both city and school board politics, and Kerrie St. Jean, a parent who was active in the recent fight to keep Lively District Secondary School open.
Only current Rainbow board trustee Judy Kosmerly, in Area 3 (Wards 5 and 6), has been acclaimed.
Sudbury Catholic District School Board
The trustee elections for the Sudbury Catholic District School Board are not nearly so interesting, as three incumbents who are veteran trustees — Estelle Scappatura, Raymond Desjardins and current board chair Michael Bellmore — have been acclaimed.
Newcomer Alex Cimino was also acclaimed in Zone 5 (Wards 9 and 9) — incumbent Tyler Peroni, who followed in his mother Paula Peroni's footsteps to become a Sudbury Catholic board trustee, has not run for a second term.
Incumbent in Zone 4 (Wards 7 and 8) Nancy Deni is facing a challenge from Kevin Roy, while the incumbent for Zone 6 (Wards 11 and 12) Jody Cameron — who's the former board chair — is facing a challenge from Claire Morrison.
Conseil scolaire public du Grand Nord de l'Ontario
Supporters of the French public system in this area don't need to bother voting for their favourite candidate. Why? All of the candidates have been acclaimed.
Incumbent Lynn Despatie was acclaimed in Area 7 (Wards 1 and 4), incumbent Robert Boileau in Area 8 (Wards 2 and 3), incumbent Julie Oliver in Area 9 (Wards 5 and 7), incumbent Jean-Marc Aubin — the board's president — in Area 10 (Ward 6), Francine Vaillancourt in Area 11 (Wards 8 and 12) and incumbent Suzanne Nolin in the Espanola/North Shore area.
Conseil scolaire catholique du Nouvel-Ontario
The race is much more interesting in the French Catholic board, as there's at least two candidates in each zone.
Former Greater Sudbury city councillor Claude Berthiaume is running against incumbents Louise Dubé and Marcel Montpellier in Zone 4 (Wards 1 through 4).
Incumbents André Bidal, Normand Courtemanche and Marc Larochelle are taking on Josée Bisson, and Shawn Rossi in Zone 5 (Wards 7 through 12).
Incumbents Louise Essiembre and Marcel Legault are taking on Raymond Joanisse and Marcel Legault in Zone 6 (Wards 5 and 6).
Paul Gervais and Gabriel Tremblay are running in the Espanola area for the French Catholic board.
Lists of trustee candidates in this region can be found on the City of Greater Sudbury website, the Town of Espanola website and the Town of Northeastern Manitoulin and the Islands website.