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Nominations invited for seat on Board of Education 20 November 2007

NOMINATIONS are being invited to fill the seat on the Board of Education left vacant following the death of Geoff Cannell in September.

Nomination papers for the Douglas West vacancy can be obtained from the Director of Education John Cain and must be returned to him by noon on Friday, December 14.

The papers must be signed by and carry the full names and addresses of the nominee, a proposer and a seconder. They may also include the names, addresses and signatures of up to 20 assentors. Proposers, seconders and assentors must be on the Isle of Man electoral register.

Nomination papers may also be accompanied by a brief personal statement from the nominee containing his/her aims and objectives in the field of education together with any previous experience and other relevant information.

The Board will meet on Friday, January 11 to select a candidate and ratify the appointment.

A public election to fill the seat had been scheduled for Thursday, December 13. However, no-one had submitted their name to the returning officer by last Monday’s deadline. The next step is being taken under Section 4 of the Representation of the People Act.

Board constituencies are the same as those for House of Keys’ elections. However, just one member is elected to represent each constituency. Elections to the Board of Education are normally held every five years and a general election had been due this autumn. However, the Department has the support of Tynwald to extend the life of the current Board for a period up to June 2009, during which time it will introduce a new Education Bill.

Included in it will be a proposal to replace the Board with a non-elected body of lay members who will continue to support the Education Minister, Members and officers.

The successful candidate for Douglas West will, along with the existing 14 members, serve until no later than June 2009, by which time it is hoped the new body will be in place.

Members will be eligible for appointment to the new body.

Board members’ main role at present is to sit on schools’ governing bodies and advise the Department on matters relating to policy. The present Board meets as a whole twice a year, while there are area meetings in the spring term.

To obtain a copy of the booklet Membership of the Board of Education, please contact Carole Tourle, Executive Officer, Department of Education, on 685806.

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