The Indigenous Student Trustees policy and procedure supports student voice and the contribution of Indigenous student leaders in the learning process. This policy and procedure outlines the process of the Indigenous student trustee appointment, support structure, professional development and expense reimbursement guidelines for the Indigenous student trustee.
On this page:
What has changed?
Major changes to the document: New Policy and Procedure which is aligned with Policy and Procedure #221.0, Student Trustees.
Reason for review: New Policy and Procedure.
Who is affected by these changes and what is the impact on current practice? All stakeholder groups with responsibilities.
Implementation timelines: Immediate.
Lead Superintendent(s)/Subject Matter Expert(s): Director of Education and Superintendent, Leadership and Development
Stakeholders with Responsibilities under this Policy
Board of Trustees
Indigenous Student Trustee
Director of Education
Chief Financial Officer
Corporate Secretariat and Trustee Services
Relationship to Board priorities
The Indigenous Student Trustee policy and procedure supports student voice, success and well-being by developing positive collaborative relationships among Indigenous students and engaging indigenous students in their public education.
Timelines and Next Steps
This policy and procedure was scheduled for second review at the November 1, 2022 Policy and By-Law Standing Committee meeting.
Questions about this policy and/or procedure should be raised with your principal, manager or supervisor. If additional clarification is required, principals, managers and supervisors may contact the lead superintendent and/or subject matter expert through Trustee Services.
In accordance with Board Policy #285.0, Board Policies, Procedures and Supporting Documents, the Board welcomes all comments and suggestions on Board policy.
Input is an important component of the review process. If you feel a policy and/or procedure needs to be revised, feedback may be submitted through the school council or by submitting the on-line form. In your response please.
- outline clearly the specific section(s) of the policy and/or procedure in which you are not comfortable,
- suggest specific alternate wording to reflect your position, and
- identify the reason(s) for your concern(s).
Specific recommendations or questions about the review process should be submitted using the on-line form or sent to the Policy Officer via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or via telephone at 905-727-0022 extension 2570 or in hard copy at The Education Centre – Aurora.
It is the expectation of the York Region District School Board that all employees, students and persons invited to or visiting Board property, or partaking/volunteering in Board or school-sponsored events and activities, will respect the policies and procedures of the Board.
The York Region District School Board recognizes and supports the importance of the voice of Indigenous students throughout the Board. As well, the Board recognizes and values the contributuion that all students make in the learning process. The policy outlines processes for Indigenous Student Trustees.
reviewing the Indigenous Student Trustee policy in accordance with the approved policy review cycle;
understanding and communicating with members of the Indigenous Community about the Indigenous Student Trustee policy as required;
assigning the Indigenous Trustee to act as a mentor for the Indigenous Student Trustee during the term of office; and
ensuring that the Indigenous Student Trustee is aware that the term of office is one year, but that the Indigenous Student Trustee may choose to run for a second term.
promoting leadership in York Region elementary and secondary schools in accordance with the Student Leadership and Student Voice policy;
providing an information report to the Board of Trustees at monthly Board meetings;
fulfilling responsibilities as outlined in the Education Act;
sharing information, perspectives and ideas from the diverse Indigenous student body made up of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis students who attend York Region Schools;
attending meetings, as required, of the Indigenous Student Council (ISC) and the Indigenous Education Advisory Council (IEAC), and other Board committee meetings;
sharing information from Trustees, staff and the Indigenous Trustee with members of the Indigenous student community where appropriate;
advise on the process for the election of the Indigenous Student Trustee, provided that the Indigenous Student Trustee is not running for a second term, before the last day of February annually using a process that ensures equity of access for all Indigenous students;
maintaining strictly confidential materials and related information discussed during Private Session of the Board or committee meetings; and
adhering to Board policy, procedure and related guidelines regarding the appropriate use of technology.
implementing the Indigenous Student Trustee policy; and
overseeing all academic and other requirements for the York Region District School Board Secondary School Cooperative Education Credit Program for student trustees during their term of office in conjunction with the senior staff member assigned to support the student trustee.
Administrative, Legal and Trustee Services
Revised: 2002, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2011, 2015, 2022
Final Approval: December 2022
This procedure outlines the process to assist the Indigenous Student Trustee as representative of the Indigenous student body working with the elected Board of Trustees. It defines reimbursement of miscellaneous, professional development and communication expenses incurred by the Indigenous Student Trustee in fulfillment of duties. It outlines provisions to facilitate Indigenous Student Trustee communications with the Indigenous student body, Board of Trustees, Board staff, other student trustees and student trustee associations.
The Indigenous Student Trustee must be in Grade 11 or 12 and hold all qualifications for the position as outlined in Ontario Regulation 7/07 Student Trustees for the duration of their term.
The term of office is one year starting August 1 in the year in which they are elected to July 31 the following year. The Indigenous Student Trustee may choose to run for a second term.
Vacancies will be filled in an election determined by the Board in consultation with the Indigenous Student Trustee and York Region Indigenous Student Council.
Legitimate costs for equipment and related services used by student trustees to ensure they are accessible for the purpose of conducting Board and Indigenous Student Trustee business include, but are not limited to:
residential high-speed internet; and
one of the following cellular options,
a personal dedicated cellular phone and service plan; or
a Board-provisioned cellular phone and service plan.
The Indigenous Student Trustee may be reimbursed to a maximum of $100, one time during a one-year term to cover the cost of purchasing a cellular phone or other telecommunication device dedicated to trustee business.
Additional communication expenses incurred while performing Indigenous student trustee duties such as, but not limited to, initial set-up fees for home phone and/or internet and long distance charges on a personal home phone or cellular phone may be eligible for reimbursement. The Indigenous Student Trustee will be required to submit documentation (including original receipts) regarding additional communication expenses, including related rationale for consideration and reimbursement where applicable, using a monthly expense form.
The Indigenous Student Trustee will not be reimbursed for the cost of conducting personal business (including long distance charges) on any cellular phone or residential telephone line.
These may include, but are not limited to, mileage, public transportation and other reasonable and legitimate expenses incurred while attending educational community and school events, public forums, and other functions that are related to the role of an Indigenous Student Trustee and furthering the business of the Board in that capacity.
All Student Trustees are encouraged to make arrangements to use public transportation, ride share or personal vehicles to attend Board and Committee Meetings and community events.
In exceptional circumstances, where time and safety concerns are a factor, the Indigenous Student Trustee may use a pre-approved Board provisioned taxi service or ride share up to a maximum of $150.00 per month to attend meetings or events in their capacity as Indigenous Student Trustee.
These may include, but are not limited to, registration fees, food, accommodation, parking and travel expenses while attending Board-related professional development activities in their capacity as Indigenous Student Trustee. The Indigenous Student Trustee will be reimbursed a maximum of $2,123.00 for professional development expenses during their term.
Recognizing the important role that the Ontario Student Trustees’ Association (OSTA) plays in public education in Ontario, Indigenous Student Trustee participation in conferences is supported financially as follows:
any Indigenous Student Trustee elected as a member of OSTA Executive Council shall attend meetings of the General Assembly to represent the Board;
the Indigenous Student Trustee-elect may attend the Annual General Meeting once prior to commencing their term of office;
the Indigenous Student Trustee may attend the Fall General Meeting (FGM) or the Annual General Meeting (AGM) one time during their term;
any Indigenous Student Trustee elected to a working group and/or Board Council of OSTA may attend the FGM and AGM the year in which they are Indigenous Student Trustee;
the costs associated with Indigenous Student Trustee participation in OSTA conferences outlined above will be covered by the Board and not charged against personal professional learning allocation;
additional funds may be available for the Indigenous Student Trustee to attend OSTA conferences and all requests will be considered in order to ensure equitable allocation of funds among all trustees; and
if the Indigenous Student Trustee chooses to attend other OSTA sponsored conferences that do not fall into the provisions outlined above, they are responsible for the costs using their professional learning allocation or personal resources.
allocate staff and resources to support the Indigenous Student Trustee procedure;
review and approve all Indigenous Student Trustee expenses; and
assign appropriate senior staff to support the work of the Indigenous Student Trustee for their term.
ensure the Indigenous Student Trustee receives their honorarium as outlined in provincial regulation;
allocate funds to support the Indigenous Student Trustees’ technology, travel, meals, accommodations, communication and professional development needs associated with performing their duties during the term of office; and
provide an annual report to the Board regarding Indigenous Student Trustee expenses for professional development activities.
represent the interests of Indigenous students from the diverse groups of First Nations, Inuit and Métis students;
attend meetings of the ISC to hear concerns, needs and advice from Indigenous students;
learn and incorporate Indigenous styles of leadership;
chair the York Region Indigenous Student Council;
attend meetings of the Indigenous Education Advisory Council (IEAC);
attend York Region Presidents’ Council meetings when time permits or when a request is made for meaningful consultation by the Council;
share information from staff and the Board of Trustees with members of the Indigenous student community where appropriate;
advise on the process for the election of Indigenous Student Trustee, supported by the ISC and staff, except in circumstances where they choose to run for a second term;
represent students of the York Region District School Board;
working with the ISC, prepare for and attend the annual YRPC Leadership Conference;
adhere to prescribed limits for reimbursement of miscellaneous, transportation, professional development and communication expenses in accordance with all applicable Board policies, procedures, guidelines and legislation;
complete the Internet Expenses Reimbursement Request Form and Trustee Cellular Phone Expenses Reimbursement Request Form to certify the maximum amount of communication expenses that are incurred for Board-related business;
adhere to Canada Revenue Agency requirements with regard to reimbursement for communication expenses;
ensure they are qualified for the duration of the term of office;
if desired, apply for and meet all academic and other requirements associated with the York Region District School Board Secondary School Cooperative Education Credit Program for Student Trustees;
have an opportunity to attend professional development and cultural opportunities;
endeavor to keep all miscellaneous, professional development and communication expenses to a minimum;
submit, on a monthly basis, all claims for miscellaneous and communications expenses including original itemized receipts in accordance with Board policy #221.0 Student Trustees and all other applicable policies, procedures, guidelines and legislation;
submit separate claims for reimbursement for professional development expenses including original itemized receipts in accordance with Board policy and procedure;
understand that professional development expenses will be reimbursed to a maximum of
$2,123.00 per term;
complete and submit on a monthly basis a Student Trustee Monthly Taxi or Ride Share Report with itemized receipts, when required;
understand that claims for use of Board-provisioned taxi services or ride share services will be reimbursed up to a maximum or $150, per month;
adhere to all requirements with regard to communication tools and professional development allocations, as outlined in the Student Trustee policy and procedure;
provide Administrative, Legal and Trustee Services with contact information;
support the maintenance of the Student Trustee website, so that it includes information from ISC and the Indigenous Student Trustee in conjunction with Corporate Communications and Administrative, Legal and Trustee Services;
ensure that official Indigenous Student Trustee letterhead is used solely for communication of Indigenous Student Trustee business;
if applicable, complete the requirement of the York Region District School Board Secondary Cooperative Education Credit Program for Student Trustees;
attend monthly Board meetings, and may attend Board Standing Committee meetings;
provide an Indigenous Student Trustee Report at the monthly Board meeting as part of the Student Trustee Report;
attend meetings with the Director of Education;
host the Board’s Annual Celebrating Student Success evening; and
participate in Board events and cultural gatherings.
oversee all academic and other requirements for the York Region District School Board Secondary School cooperative Education Credit Program for student trustees during their term of office when required; and
act in an advisory capacity to support the Indigenous Student Trustee during their term.
provide support to Administrative, Legal and Trustee Services and the Indigenous Student Trustee in maintaining the student trustee website;
provide guidance to the Indigenous Student Trustee about the use of social media in their role.
provide an orientation program, administrative support and ongoing guidance to the Indigenous Student Trustee;
facilitate the Indigenous Student Trustee election process;
provide the Indigenous Student Trustee with resources to support their role;
in conjunction Corporate Communications, support the review and development of content for the student trustee website as required;
arrange for and support the Indigenous Student Trustees’ use of Board-owned information technology equipment during their term;
facilitate the sharing of the Indigenous Student Trustees’ monthly report to the Board with the broader community;
facilitate participation in professional development related to their role;
schedule the Board annual report regarding Indigenous Student Trustee expenses;
ensure candidates for Indigenous Student Trustee are aware of the roles, responsibilities and time-commitments of the position;
schedule regular meetings with the Indigenous Student Trustees, Vice-Chair of the Board and appropriate senior staff members;
manage requests for Indigenous Student Trustee input or assistance outside regular Board meetings with the Director of Education and Board Chair; and
ensure that Indigenous Student Trustees’ access to information is governed by the Municipal Freedom of Information an Protection of Privacy Act and other relevant legislation.
The York Region Indigenous Student Council (ISC), chaired by the Indigenous Student Trustee, meets monthly. Its role is to listen to and address questions and concerns raised by the student community during face-to-face interactions, forums, or electronic communications. The ISC is open to Indigenous students in Grades 6 and up. The ISC uses a model of direct election based on traditional Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee community political systems. It allows all members to have a say and be able to participate in discussion and decisions by consensus.
Administrative, Legal and Trustee Services
Drafted: January 2020
Working Document: February 2022
Final Approval: December 2022