Sandhya Kohli has been appointed by the Board to carry out, in an independent manner, the duties and responsibilities of the Independent Office of the Integrity Commissioner as set out in the York Region District School Board Operational By-Laws (Part 5:00, Accountability Framework).
The Board has established a Trustee Code of Conduct to govern the conduct of Trustees and to provide transparency, accountability, and public confidence in its governance of the York Region District School Board.
The Complaint Protocol for the Trustee Code of Conduct describes how complaints concerning alleged breaches of the Trustee Code of Conduct are reported, investigated and resolved.
The Integrity Commissioner is accountable to and reports directly to the Board of Trustees and shall:
- provide advice to trustees on the application of the Trustee Code of Conduct (Appendix E), Board policies, procedures, the Trustee Code of Conduct Complaint Protocol (Appendix F) and general information with respect to a trustees’ obligations under the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act;
- make inquiries as directed by the Board of Trustees and in accordance with the Complaint Protocol into whether a trustee has contravened the Trustee Code of Conduct,
- provide opinions on policy matters and make other reports to the Board of Trustees as requested on issues of ethics and integrity,
- provide educational programs to trustees on issues of ethics and integrity,
- maintain custody and control of their complaint and inquiry files and on completion of the term of office, transfer open files relating to ongoing matters to the incoming Integrity Commissioner appointed by the Board of Trustees, and
- provide such other duties respecting ethical matters as assigned by the Board.
I have a concern, what can I do?
Trustees, staff members and member of the public who have identified or witnessed conduct by a trustee that they believe is in contravention of the Trustee Code of Conduct are encouraged to first address their concern informally.
- Advise the trustee(s) that they believe the conduct to be in contravention of the Code of Conduct with an explanation as to why.
- Encourage the trustee(s) to stop the prohibited conduct.
- Keep a written record of the incident(s) including date(s), time(s), locations(s), the names of witnesses, and any other such relevant information.
- Tell someone else, such as, but not limited to the Chair of the Board, a senior staff member or an officer of the organization about their concern(s), any communication about the matter with the trustee(s).
- If applicable, confirm their satisfaction with the trustee(s) response; or, if applicable, advise the trustee(s) of their dissatisfaction with the response.
- If the parties agree, the Integrity Commissioner may participate in resolving the issues relating to the complaint.
- Consider the need to pursue a formal complaint as described in the Formal Complaint and Request for Inquiry Process.
While addressing a concern using the informal complaint process is encouraged, it need not be used before a formal complaint may be brought.
A formal request for an inquiry into an allegation that a trustee has contravened the Trustee Code of Conduct may be made In Confidence to Integrity Commissioner Sandhya Kohli in writing by submitting the completed Code of Conduct – Formal Complaint Form or by email at:
Ms. Sandhya Kohli, LLB, MA, LLM
Guide Corp., Workplace Conflict & Conciliation
A request for formal complaint must include the following:
- A signature by an identifiable person (initials or other form of anonymized identifiers may also be used in signing such a complaint).
- An outline of reasonable and probable grounds for the allegation that a trustee has contravened the Trustee Code of Conduct including; the name of the trustee(s), specific section(s) of the Code of Conduct that they believe has been violated, the facts constituting the alleged contravention, the names and contact information of witnesses and contact information for the complainant during normal business hours (except where the complaint has been made on an anonymous basis).
Note: In a Municipal Election year, a Code of Conduct complaint may not be filed with the Integrity Commissioner against a trustee who is seeking re-election during the period starting on the Civic Monday in August and ending when a new Board is deemed organized as outlined in the Municipal Elections Act.
Please contact Corporate Secretariat and Trustee Services by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 905-727-0022 ext. 2217 if you have any questions about the York Region District School Board Operational By-Law, Trustee Code of Conduct or the Complaint Protocol for the Trustee Code of Conduct.